Some of the News Fit to Print
ABOUT HIGHER ED
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT MOOCS
Call it the year of the mega-class. Colleges and professors have rushed to try a new form of online teaching known as MOOCs—short for "massive open online courses." The courses raise questions about the future of teaching, the value of a degree, and the effect technology will have on how colleges operate. Struggling to make sense of it all? The Chronicle of Higher Education is gathering all the information with on ongoing coverage of MOOCs.
STATE EDUCATION BOARDS DEVELOP NEW POST-HIGH SCHOOL READINESS DEFINITION
Massachusetts' board of higher education voted to accept a new definition of college readiness, which already was adopted by the K-12 board of education. Some of the required abilities include: reading and comprehending "sufficiently complex tests"; effective writing and researching skills; and workplace skills, like working under the direction of others. The article is in the MetroWest Daily News.
POLITICS AND CAUTION IN CALIFORNIA
California lawmakers detailed a plan Wednesday to require the state’s 145 public colleges and universities to grant credit for low-cost online courses offered by outside groups, including classes offered by for-profit companies. The bill, backed by the powerful leader of the state’s Senate, would force all the state’s colleges – from community colleges to the University of California at Berkeley – to reduce overcrowding by allowing students to enroll in dozens of outsourced classes. The idea immediately captured attention not just among educators, but among pundits and politicians -- and not just in California. The measure's lead sponsor, Democratic State Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, said the bill would reshape higher education and “break the bottleneck that prevents students from completing courses.” The article is in Inside Higher Ed.
FUND THAT SUBSIDIZES INTERNET FOR SCHOOLS SHOULD EXPAND
WASHINGTON — The $2.3 billion federal E-Rate program, which subsidizes basic Internet connections for schools and libraries, should be overhauled and expanded to provide those community institutions with new, lightning-fast connections to the Web, the chairman of a Senate committee that oversees the F.C.C. said Tuesday. The article is in The New York Times.