Category Archives: Professional and Career Education

Link: 6 Universities Partner on Credentialing Initiative

Continuing education units at Wisconsin, Washington, Georgia Tech, UCLA, UC Davis, and UC Irvine are collaborating on low-cost micro credentials offered via a common storefront, the University Learning Store. Individual courses address topics common to the needs of many working professionals, cost between $50 and $150 apiece, include a digital badge as proof of competency, and can be stacked into certificates. Current certificates include:

  • Workplace Writing
  • Effective Business Writing Skills
  • Business Communications
  • Global Business Communication

Bolkan, Joshua. “6 Universities Partner on Credentialing Initiative.” Campus Technology, March 22, 2016.

Link: UMassOnline Launches Badge Program

UMassOnline, the University of Massachusetts’ online consortium, has announced the first non-credit badge program, in Project Risk Management, offered through the College of Advancing and Professional Studies (CAPS) at UMass Boston. …

The Project Risk Management badge is a self-paced online sequence of modules that covers the six steps of project risk management as prescribed by the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK).

“UMassOnline Launches Badge Program,” eCampus News, March 31, 2016.

Link: More Colleges Turn to “Stackable” Degrees as Entries to Graduate Programs

The University of Illinois is rolling out an online master’s in data science, which will be offered in conjunction with Coursera. The new degree costs $19,200, and builds on the certificates of completion already associated with the university’s pre-existing Coursera MOOCs.

Students who have already received those certificates will have a head start toward finishing the new degree, since those certificates make up two of the four distinct areas of study. The others are data visualization and machine learning. If admitted into the program, students could trade in those certificates for course credit.

Ruff, Corinne. “More Colleges Turn to ‘Stackable’ Degrees as Entries to Graduate Programs.” Chronicle of Higher Education, March 30, 2016.

Link: MIT Expansion of Innovative Programs, Including Continuing Ed Online

Details are scant, but MIT is venturing more firmly into the world of online continuing education for professionals (including but not limited to their own alumni). They are beginning with a four-course (certificate?) systems engineering program in partnership with Boeing and NASA.

Given the pace of innovation, really, if you got a computer science degree 10 years ago, are you still prepared for the real world?

Read the press release (Feb. 2, 2016).

LINK: OSU opens research unit for online teaching, learning

“The OSU Extended Campus Research Unit is designed to create an accessible and inclusive online learning environment.”

“Oregon State is in a position to build a robust research pipeline that ultimately will improve the access and quality of online teaching and learning for our adult learners,” [Lisa L.] Templeton said. “It will allow the university to expand its reach even further and give students more opportunities to succeed.”

OSU opens research unit for online teaching, learning. Oregon State University news. January 6, 2016.

LINK: Big Names Don’t Trump Good Service When it Comes to Student Satisfaction

Interview with Diana Wu, Dean of Extension at UC Berkeley, about students’ choosing institutions based on level of support as much as (or more than) the institutional reputation.

While the higher education marketplace is becoming increasingly competitive, both analysts and leaders have suggested that elite, big-name universities are protected from the change. However, this is not necessarily the case. Although students still want to be aligned with big names, they have the same heightened expectations of the institution as learners industry-wide. In this interview, Diana Wu discusses these heightened expectations, and shares her thoughts on why big-name institutions are not immune from this industry shift.

Big Names Don’t Trump Good Service When it Comes to Student Satisfaction.  Evolllution. March 16, 2015.

Link: Coursera Chief: iMBA A Glimpse At Future

I think graduate education is about to undergo a massive disruption.

Daphne Koller, co-founder of Coursera, suggests that innovative online graduate programs–such as the “stackable” online MBA programming now offered by the University of Illinois, entirely through MOOCs–will expand in the coming years.

Read full article here.

Link: 4 Ways ePortfolios Are Going Beyond College Resume Building

What happens when you take the original ePortfolio concept and expand its horizons to include other purposes?

This roundup summarizes recent case studies in the use of portfolios in undergraduate education. Read the full article here.

Link: The Quest for Demonstrable Outcomes

Schejbal, D., (2015) The Quest for Demonstrable Outcomes.

There is a buzz, even a frenzy, about competency-based education (CBE). Brought together by the Lumina Foundation-sponsored organization C-BEN (the Competency-Based Education Network), 30 institutions and 4 university systems have developed or are developing competency-based programs. About another 600 schools have claimed to be developing CBE programs, though there is no accurate data to substantiate that number. Why and why now?