Interesting Reads This Week

You probably didn't have spiritual songs on your bingo card

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Ankle bone connected to the leg bone

Leg bone connected to the knee bone

Knee bone connected to the thigh bone

Thigh bone connected to the hip bone

- James and J Rosamond Johnson

EdTech folks often talk about our field in terms of ecosystems, which drives my friend Alan (who trained as a biologist) crazy because it is taking a very complex concept and applying it simplistically in a new context. Perhaps he would approve of describing the way higher education and EdTech function like the bones in the old spiritual song referenced above. You can’t jiggle one thing without the whole thing reacting, often in some unexpected ways.

Taking care of business

Preston Cooper over at the Foundation for Research on Equal Opportunity recently had a piece about how vocational 2-year colleges have not seen the kinds of enrollment declines that have beset 2-year institutions in general. The evidence is striking if not that surprising, given the increasing career focus of students, especially in that sector.

Cooper’s advice is that other community colleges should follow this example. That may or may not be a great idea, but that sentiment at its heart is what Gainful Employment and Financial Value Transparency regulations are going to make a reality for a lot of US higher ed. To get good GE and FVT outcomes, institutions are going to need to put a lot more emphasis on employability.

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