The authors of Connected Learning
By Anya Kamenetz, The Hechinger Report
Last month a high school English class at Sandvika VGS, one of Norway’s most technologically advanced high schools, published a book titled Connected …
So in two years, MOOCs have gone from the most important development in higher education in a generation to trying to remain relevant by linking up with the more substantive success of online education. It got me thinking: what other media sensation rose and fell so quickly, but remained firmly in the public eye through an association with a more promising and substantive trend?
Mapping Scientific Excellence, a new website out of Germany, has come up with a novel way to rank the world’s best universities and scientific institutions. It ranks an institution’s excellence by the rate at which it produces scientific papers that are most frequently cited.
Marcos Meideros is a 100% iPad learner. He doesn’t print documents or use books or notepads. All his readings, highlighting, note-taking and other class organization at the EMBA program of The Berlin School of Creative Leadership happens on his trusty, white iPad.
In 2009, the Indian government estimated that 13.6 million students were enrolled in post-secondary schools, compared to 19.5 million in the U.S. If India reaches its goals, 40 million students will be enrolled in higher education by 2020, surging past the 22 million American students expected to be enrolled by then.
His specialty was figuring out how to offer stripped down, simple courses that can work in remote parts of the world where Internet speeds might be slow and computers might be old. For example, he ran a program that taught journalists and lawyers English in Nepal. Because of his work with these lawyers, “I helped write part of the constitution of Nepal” during that project, he says, partly joking and partly serious.
What is it that universities should be teaching and how should they go about teaching it? In a nutshell the argument is that universities should design curricula that let students engage with the complexity and messiness of real-life problems early on. That way they get to grapple with the important epistemological questions that too frequently are left out of undergraduate curricula. We believe that a paramount objective of any form of higher education should be to cultivate a capacity for interdisciplinary dialogue and to educate concerned citizens.
The US may seem like the 800-pound gorilla with MOOC providers such as EdX, Udacity and Coursera signing millions of students and bringing in big-name venture capitalists. But Europe invented the concept of higher learning – from Plato’s Ancient Greece to the medievel universities of Bologna and Paris to powerful universities in places like Germany, Prague, Spain, Denmark and Sweden.
The plan to launch the MOOC with the upcoming free learning version of MOOC provider EdX, which is led by MIT and Harvard. B2P has built more than 100 bridges worldwide so far, helping people cross rivers in 16 countries. They are looking for a smart way to expand their organization’s reach and impact. We thought B2P’s idea represents a new area of growth for MOOCs by non-profit specialists that can offer niche education on topics.