Monday Morning Digest: 3 A’s of Education

PresidentsGood Morning and a belated Happy Presidents’ Day to those in the states! Have you ever heard of the 3 R’s? Well, this week we have the  3 A’s for Education: Access, Affordability and Accreditation. Education isn’t always fully available to all. Many times money can stand in the way, or even a lack of good curriculum, technology, etc. But when looking at access, one must ensure that accreditation and quality must  also be addressed.

We start off this week with a combination of all three A’s and a look at some of the immediate aftermath of last Tuesday’s annual State of the Union address. President Obama made a proposal to change higher education in America with a few key points: changing eligibility for financial aid, a new accreditation system, and a focus on student success rather than simply enrollment (among other things). Is this possible? Will the US Congress agree with these proposed changes? Only time will tell.

Obama’s Bold Plan to Reshape American Higher Education (Chronicle of Higher Ed.)

With New ‘Scorecard,’ Obama Seeks to Give Students a Tool for Comparing Colleges (Chronicle of Higher Ed.)
In the name of Affordability, included in one of the American President’s changes is a scorecard system that can help prospective students choose colleges and universities. However, critics feel that this new system is lacking data and that the government should first take the time to see what kind of data the students want.

Does Khan Academy help learners? A proposal (Chronicle of Higher Ed.)
In the name of Access, Khan Academy has made many videos and lessons freely available to help one learn independently. But some wonder if KA really helps the learner.

Where does Tech ed belong in Edtech? (EdSurge)
Next up, and continuing in the name of Access, we have an article from EdSurge. It states that Tech. ed., or teaching students computer science prior to university, has now become the focus of a few initiatives in some public schools, to allow more students to get a head start.

To MOOC or Not to MOOC (Chronicle of Higher Ed.)
And lastly, in the name of all three: Access, Affordability and Accredition, an article from The Chronicle of Higher Education looks at both sides of the MOOC surge. On the ‘for’ side: “[A]s higher-education systems continue to grow in scale, it makes sense to look at ways of teaching more people more efficiently, and MOOCs may well be a part of the answer.” And against: “What is forgotten in all the hubbub is that the financial models of most elite universities nowadays are not based primarily on educating undergraduates.” The journalist also further questions if such an endeavor would help research, and other sources of endowments.

Well? Which of the 3A’s is most important to you? What sort of changes would you propose for education? Other comments? Please feel free to comment below and let us know!

Have a great week! In other news…
A warning to college profs from a high school teacher (The Washington Post)
Disney ‘Connected Learning’ Aims To Infuse Games with Learning (Ed Surge)
Colleges Ask Goevernment to Clarify Rules for Credit Based on Competency (Chronicle of Higher Ed.)

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