As distance education programs expand at many colleges and universities, administrators are faced with a question: Is it better to have a centralized distance education office, or should individual departments handle distance education on their own?
Back in 2003, University Business ran a cover story that asked, "Is the Tablet PC the Future of Higher Education?"
It was an exciting time, when computers were faster and more powerful than ever, and everyone was still just scratching the surface of how to interact with the internet.
On college and university campuses across the country, people were talking tablets, and students, professors, technologists, and administrators alike thought we might be witnessing the next generation of computers.
Thanks to lecture capture, Julia Marty completed her junior year at Northeastern University (Mass.) this spring. The Office of Student-Athlete Support Services (SASS) offers student-athletes access to videos of missed classes, allowing Marty to compete on Team Switzerland's hockey team at the 2010 Winter Olympics and not sacrifice her studies. While she missed a month of classes, three of her professors recorded their lectures and "she had an extremely successful spring term," says Coleen Pantalone, associate dean for undergraduate business.
Change in academia tends to occur gradually, but the University of Missouri- Columbia turned that conventional wisdom on its head when it implemented a lecture capture system that students and faculty alike embraced with unprecedented speed.
The search for a lecture capture system began in the spring of 2009, after several faculty members approached the technology department saying they wanted to implement lecture capture for their classes, said Danna Vessell, the university's director of educational technologies.
Innovation is not a term typically used within higher education circles. Rich in tradition and history, American higher education has been sometimes labeled a bureaucratic, traditionally mired venture that does not change with the times. But this generalization is, in so many ways, incorrect. We have one of the most innovative and complex postsecondary systems in the world, with breadth and depth in our educational delivery.
Although there are glimmers the recession could be ending, the unemployment rate is expected to stay high for some time to come. College enrollments will probably keep pace, especially at community colleges, where older adults looking to brush up their job skills are joined by traditional students looking to avoid high tuition for a few years.
An educational portal at Des Moines Area Community College, built with Microsoft SharePointTM software and running on HP servers and storage systems, may ultimately transform the entire educational experience there.
“It’s all about making education accessible to everyone, anytime, anywhere,” explained Ann Watts, instructional design coordinator and portal project manager at DMACC. Des Moines Area Community College is a public institution with six campuses.
The portal ? known as “my.dmacc” to users ? is an outgrowth of the college’s educational mobility initiative that runs on HP ProLiant servers. DMACC has implemented a systemwide wireless system to support academic programs and administrative needs.
We know automakers are in trouble-they paid attention to what once was, instead of what will be. Could American higher ed suffer the same hubris or will we now witness a new generation of cellular teachers and learners?