Welcome to your December 2013 Insider Update -- the newsletter for readers of Inside Higher Ed. Once a month we send a quick rundown on what's happening at Inside Higher Ed: events, accomplishments and a bit of fun.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT -- President Obama was making waves in higher education in August, and Inside Higher Ed's coverage by Paul Fain, Colleen Flaherty, and Ry Rivard and Carl Strausheim kept higher education on top of the news. But readers were also focused on issues a little closer to the heart. The most popular story on Inside Higher Ed last month was Scott Jaschik's coverage of a study showing that when white people are told of the success of Asian applicants, their commitment to basing admissions on grades and test scores drops. Also drawing many readers (and comments) was Scott's story on new research finding that students select or reject majors based in large part on the quality of the first college instructor they have in the discipline. Lighting up the comments section were Allie Grasgreen's story about men accused of sexual assault who have filed their own lawsuits alleging that administrators violated their due process and Scott's story on a "feminist anti-MOOC" that aims to show that education can be free and online and yet reject some of the choices made by proponents of massive open online courses.
BOOK WITH BUZZ -- Change everything about how higher ed is funded and public colleges can offer free tuition, argues University Council-American Federation of Teachers president Bob Samuels in his new book, Why Public Higher Education Should Be Free: How to Decrease Costs and Increase Quality at American Universities (Rutgers University Press). Click here to read Ry Rivard's interview (as well as all of Inside Higher Ed's books coverage).
NEW CARTOON -- We've just published the September edition of our cartoon caption contest. Click here to add your suggestions for this month's cartoon, cast a vote for our last contest -- and find out who won our August prize.
INSIDE HIGHER ED NEWS
NEW ON THE SITE -- Inside Higher Ed's 2013 Survey of Faculty Attitudes on Technology explored the perspectives of more than 2,000 college professors on topics such as how to measure quality in online education and the potential impact of massive open online courses. The survey was conducted in conjunction with researchers from Gallup. Our analysis of the survey as well as a link to download the complete survey report can be found here.
OUT AND ABOUT -- Scott Jaschik and Laura McFarland head to Toronto on September 19 for the 69th annual conference of the National Association of College Admission Counseling. On Friday, September 20 at 8:30 a.m., Scott will present the results of Inside Higher Ed's 2013 survey of college admissions directors in a session titled What Admission Directors Think: Results of a Survey on Hot Issues in the Field.
Doug Lederman travels to Dallas to speak to the annual meeting of the Independent Colleges and Universities of Texas on Sunday, September 15.
Scott travels to Boston on September 27 for a meeting of the Education Writers Association.
On October 1, Doug heads to Nashville, Tenn., where he'll be presenting results of Inside Higher Ed's Survey of Faculty Attitudes on Technology at the Quality Matters Annual Conference on Quality Assurance in Online Learning.
And on October 2, Laura McFarland travels to Buffalo, N.Y., for the State University of New York Human Resources conference.
STAFF NEWS -- Megan Rogers starts September 9 as Inside Higher Ed’s new reporting intern. Megan comes to us from Penn State, where she graduated with degrees in journalism and English and a certificate in women's studies. In addition to working on the campus paper, she interned with The News Journal in Delaware and the Pennsylvania Legislative Correspondents' Association.
And reflecting recent staff changes, Carl Straumsheim is now covering technology for Inside Higher Ed, while Ry Rivard is covering management and finance.
RECENT VISITORS -- August is hot and quiet in Washington, D.C., but we still welcomed several interesting visitors to the Inside Higher Ed offices, including leaders from Louisiana State University, the Postsecondary Success Collaborative, the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, Lebanon Valley College, ACT, AGB Search, and Inigral. We're always happy to host higher education leaders in our D.C. offices. Contact Scott at firstname.lastname@example.org or Doug at email@example.com to plan a visit.
Open Access, Privacy and Hacker Culture -- An Inside Higher Ed webinar on making college policy when law and technology are out of sync
September 24, 2 p.m. Eastern
Click to register
The recent report by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, in the wake of the Aaron Swartz suicide, noted many areas where issues of law about intellectual property and network security may be inconsistent with the state of technology, or the state of practice by many students and faculty members. The MIT report examined how that university might better respond to these issues, and our presentation for September explores how the issues faced by MIT are actually issues facing every college and university. This webinar – presented by Tracy Mitrano, director of IT policy and the Institute for Internet Culture Policy and Law at Cornell University -- will cover:
The current state of the law – including copyright, computer fraud and abuse, and the Electronic Communications Privacy Act.
Key areas where the law and technology are out of sync and the implications of this for higher education. Areas include the Fourth Amendment, government electronic surveillance laws, intellectual property and network security.
Activities of students and faculty members – both the super tech savvy and the more typical person on a campus – that are affected by the state of the law.
The kinds of policies colleges need to protect themselves, their students and their professors, and how to develop those policies.
The webinar costs $199 and will consist of a 30-minute presentation and a 30-minute question period. There is no conference call required for this event -- the entire presentation, including audio, is delivered via the web. You may gather as many colleagues as you like to view the webinar via one monitor, but only one login per registration will be allowed. This event will be captioned for the deaf and hard of hearing by SpeechText Access.
Enter discount code SEPT2013 at checkout to get $25 off your registration fee.
Click to register
Results of the 2013 Inside Higher Ed Survey of Faculty Attitudes on Technology
September 12, 2 p.m. Eastern
Click to register
Join Inside Higher Ed editors Scott Jaschik and Doug Lederman for a free webinar on the outcomes of our 2013 Survey of Faculty Attitudes on Technology. Conducted with Gallup, the survey aimed to understand how college and university faculty members and campus leaders in educational technology perceive and pursue online learning and other emerging opportunities for delivering course content. Scott and Doug will lead a lively discussion sparked by the results of the survey, and by questions and comments from participants.
Read up before you attend -- Inside Higher Ed's article about the survey and the complete survey results can be found by clicking here.
The Inside Higher Ed Survey of Faculty Attitudes on Technology was made possible in part by the generous financial support of Deltak, McGraw-Hill Higher Education, Pearson and Sonic Foundry. Your registration information will be shared with these companies.
Free webinar presented by Pearson
The credit hour is the lingua franca of higher education. From graduation requirements to financial aid allocation and more, the concept has valuable uses. But is the credit hour the best way to determine student learning? A recent proliferation of post-secondary, competency-based, degree programs suggests that student learning should be assessed by competence rather than credit hour.
Join us on September 18 as Corrine Gordon, Assistant Clinical Professor, Personalized Learning at Northern Arizona University delivers an engaging discussion on NAU’s development of its competency-based programs. Hosted by Kenneth C. Green, senior research consultant for Inside Higher Ed and founding director of The Campus Computing Project, the webinar will explore:
What are the opportunities and challenges in launching a competency-based program?
What is the process for developing competency-based programs?
How do you leverage learning analytics to enable effective student dashboards and drive success?
How are competency-based programs transcribed?
Click to register
This webinar is presented by Pearson and is not an Inside Higher Ed editorial offering.
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FROM THE PUBLISHER
A word from our editors on contributing to Inside Higher Ed.
Inside Higher Ed runs opinion pieces (called Views) every day -- on policy issues, culture, academic careers, and more. We welcome reader contributions and encourage you to propose ideas. There is no one tone or subject matter we look for. But on policy issues, we are very interested in timeliness, so pieces that can be turned around quickly will have the best chance of being accepted. Generally, think of our pieces as newspaper op-eds, not journal essays. That means no footnotes (although links are fine, and strongly encouraged).
Our website is open to all views, so if you see a piece on one side of an issue, don't hesitate to propose something that takes the opposite stand -- in fact, the timing may be perfect for such a piece. And don't hold back on your views -- whatever they are. We love strongly argued pieces (and much prefer them to mushy "on the one hand, on the other hand" articles). Length can vary from 500 to 2,000 words, depending on the topic, with most pieces running between 800 and 1,200 words. Your best bet is to send a quick summary of your idea to firstname.lastname@example.org before you write up a piece, so you can get feedback from the editors, but you are welcome to send in completed pieces as well.
--If you are proposing a piece linked to an upcoming event, please reach out well in advance of that event or a particular date to discuss the idea and scheduling. When people wait until the last minute, we frequently have something else already scheduled.
--Don't be afraid to submit even if you aren't a "big name" in academe. We're proud to publish many such big names, but we're equally proud to publish the opinions of people who may not be famous -- and we regularly get great submissions from grad students, adjuncts, entry-level administrators and others who aren't remotely famous -- but have great ideas.
--Many pieces are based in part on ideas that come out of authors' experiences at individual colleges. And those experiences can be quite compelling. But we tend not to run pieces along the lines of "this is why my college is wonderful."
--Write for a broad higher education audience. We want pieces about college finance to be sophisticated to those who work in finance, but understandable to professors, and pieces about research or curricular issues to be understandable to the CIO or CFO and cutting edge to faculty members.
We always welcome your questions and suggestions.
Scott Jaschik and Doug Lederman
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