Teaching and Learning — with a DIY attitude

DIY U : edupunks, edupreneurs, and the coming transformation of higher education
Anya Kamenetz

White River Junction, Vt. : Chelsea Green Pub., c2010 (available through HELIN)

Kamenetz argues that universities must radically change the way higher education is delivered and explains that institutions’ futures lie in personal learning networks and paths, blending experiential and digital approaches as open-source educational models


One comment on “Teaching and Learning — with a DIY attitude

  1. Bryan Marinelli says:

    In her book Kamanetz makes the following assertions and predictions. We should weigh these predictions against the College’s resolve to deliver a traditional, four-year, residential experience.

    (1) Concerns about the affordability of higher education must be addressed. Institutions must imagine uses of technology that help to reduce costs – that is,
    “[r]ather than layering new technologies as bells and whistles onto existing classes […], courses need to be completely redesigned using information technology strategically in order to save significant money and improve outcomes at the same time” (90).

    (2) “According to Department of Education research, a blend of technology-assisted and traditional class instruction [i.e., hybrid learning] works better than either one alone” (xii).

    (3) “Most of the growth in higher education over the next century will come from the 85 percent of students who are ‘nontraditional’ in some way – older, working adults, or ethnic minorities. They will increasingly attend the 80 percent of institutions that are nonselective, meaning they admit the vast majority of applicants. This includes most mainstream public universities as well as community colleges and for-profit colleges, which saw the most growth between 2002 and 2006” (xi).

    (4) “As it has with industries from music to news, the logic of digital technology will compel institutions to specialize and collaborate, find economies of scale and avoid duplications. Books can be freed from the printed page, courses freed from geographical classrooms and individual faculty, and students will be free from enrolling in a single institution. Stripped-down institutions that focus on instruction or assessment only, or on a particular discipline or area, will find larger and larger aduiences” (xi).

    (5) In the future “[t]here will likely still be plenty of demand for the traditional collegiate experience, but as only one of many options and entry points. People who graduate from high school at eighteen and go straight through four years of college are already a tiny minority of all young Americans, around one in ten. Pulling America out of its educational slump requires designing programs flexible and supportive enough to reach the 44 percent of students who currently drop out of college and the 30 to 35 percent who drop out of high school” (xii).

    (6) “Self-directed learning will be increasingly important. Already, the majority of students attend more than one institution during their college careers, and more than half seek to enhance their experience with an internship. In the future, with the increasing availability of online courses and other resources, individuals will increasingly forge a personal learning path, combining classroom and online learning, work and other experiences” (xii).

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