Straight Talk: December 7, 2011
Straight Talk: The StraighterLine e-Newsletter Issue #25, December 7, 2011
Edited by Jeffrey Lee Simons
In this issue…
- Announcing the Summer Slam Winners
- Tell Us Your Success Story
- StraighterLine Reports: Good Study Habits Can Be Learned
- 8 New Courses Now Live
- Best of The StraighterLine Blog
- Online Education in The News
- Burck’s Blast: Visit CEO Corner
Announcing the Summer Slam Winners
Back in June, we announced the first StraighterLine Summer Slam Contest. We promised to award an iPad2 to the StraighterLine student who started – and finished – the most courses by September 5th, with a minimum grade of 70. We also promised to award an iPad2 to the competitor who had the highest GPA for their Summer Slam courses.
Well, the grades are in, and the winners are:
Most Courses Completed: Cory Hutchinson
Highest GPA: Stephen Truax
Congratulations to both our Summer Slam Winners. You’ll be contacted by email about claiming your prizes. Enjoy your iPad2s.
Tell Us Your StraighterLine Success Story
Do you know Burlyce Logan? She’s a StraighterLine student, a wife, and a senior citizen! She needed Algebra to complete her bachelor’s degree, but when her husband fell ill, it seemed like she wouldn’t be able to find the time to take the remaining course. Thankfully, she found StraighterLine.
So did John Walsh, a successful investor with a master’s degree who needed to complete his second bachelor’s degree, in business, in order to teach. Now he’s one of our biggest fans.
We’re sure that each and every one of you has an interesting story to tell about how you found StraighterLine and how we helped you on your path to your college degree. We’re collecting student success stories to write about on our blog, our website, and even here in this newsletter. A positive write-up never hurt anyone when looking to get accepted to the school they want, or to land a job, or even just to show off to friends and family.
So if you’d like your moment in the sun, so to speak, please email your stories to firstname.lastname@example.org. And be sure to include any links to your own websites, Facebook pages or blogs that you’d like us to include in your StraighterLine Success Story.
StraighterLine Reports: Good Study Habits Can Be Learned
By Beth Dumbauld
Do you have good study habits? How would you know if you did? What if there were a few great tips and skills that, if you knew them, you could increase your chances for success? Would you want to know? Assuming the answer to that last question is yes, then I suggest you check out Beth’s StraighterLine Report on learning good study habits. From finding out the best time of day to study (yes, you have a “best time”) to learning the “SQ3R” technique (Survey, Question, Read, Recite, Review), if you want to succeed, you’ll want to read this report. Read Full Report
8 New Courses Now Live
The wait is over! Last month we launched 8 new courses, each of which have been reviewed and recommended for credit by the American Council on Education’s (ACE) Credit Recommendation Service.
The new courses are:
- Introduction to Business
- Introduction to Criminal Justice
- Introduction to Nutrition
- Introduction to Sociology
- Western Civilization I
- Personal Finance
- Pharmacology 1
- Pharmacology 2
Don’t wait to get started… enroll today by clicking on the course names above.
Best of The StraighterLine Blog
New Study: Online Learning Could Build Better Reading Skills
The National Survey of Student Engagement is out, and thankfully, Barry Lenson read all 50 pages so we don’t have to. He did find some interesting data, though, and his blog post is much shorter than 50 pages. What was the biggest surprise? The study found that “Students who take courses online seem to develop better reading skills than students who take all their courses in classroom settings.” See what else Barry found out… Read Full Post.
Forty Degrees Below Zero and Dropping . . . Occupy Alaska Protestors Are the Most Determined of All
If you thought the Occupy Wall Street or Occupy Philadelphia protesters were determined, then you need to read this post about the protesters in Anchorage and Alaska. They’ve been outside for weeks, in tents, in temperatures that have reached 40 below! Get the cold, hard facts about Occupy Alaska here! Read Full Post
There’s More than One Way to Complete Your Degree
What would prospective students on an admissions tour think if they saw a student on campus holding a sign that said: “UNABLE TO GRADUATE BECAUSE REQUIRED CLASSES GOT CANCELLED”? These days, more and more students are unable to graduate through no fault of their own. But you don’t have to be a victim: Barry Lenson has useful advice for any student who wants to graduate on time…and on their own terms. Read Full Post
Online Education in The News
Why Stanford’s Free Online Education Experiment is Booming
Occupy Colleges.org, 11/27/11
According to this post on Occupy Colleges.org, Stanford University has been experimenting by offering its 3 most popular computer science courses online, to the public, for free. The results? Over 200,000 people signed up, with the “Introduction to Artificial Intelligence” course attracting 160,000 students! The “free” students don’t receive credit for the course, but nearly 35,000 of those who signed up for the course are sticking with it, along with the 175 Stanford students who are paying for it and will receive credit. And the experiment has been so successful that Stanford is planning on offering 7 more courses beginning in January. Read Full Article
Online Classes Growing in Popularity at University of Alaska Fairbanks
Fairbanks Daily News-Miner, Jeff Richardson, 11/27/11
More than half of the students at the University of Alaska in Fairbanks are taking at least one online course this semester, a record for the University. Online class enrollment has climbed from 3% in 2001 to 18% in 2010. According to the director of the UAF Center for Distance Education, Alex Hwu, the trend is growing because it allows students to learn on their own terms. If a student wants to watch a lecture at 1 a.m. or email a professor while on vacation, those conveniences are part of the online experience. “Students and faculty can be independent of space and time. They don’t ever need to be in the classroom.” While the trend isn’t unique to Alaska, says Hwu, the fact that so many students in Alaska live in remote areas off the road system makes it a greater necessity. Read Full Article
Fine-Tuning the Perfect Employee
The Wall Street Journal, Lauren Weber, 12/5/11
Many companies cut back on employee training and tuition assistance programs during the economic downturn. But all that is changing, according to this article in The Wall Street Journal. One reason: despite high unemployment, it’s not always easy to find workers with the skills for the open jobs. Westinghouse Electric Co., the nuclear energy company, is one company that uses online classes, and they’re not alone. In 2010, U.S. employers spent 36% more on learning and development than in 2009. Read Full Article
(Editor’s Note: StraighterLine also offers a Tuition Assistance program for employers and employees.)
Burck’s Blast: Announcing CEO Corner
Last issue, we told you about our “coming soon” website feature, CEO Corner. It’s where you’ll be able to read the best of Burck’s writings, written for or published by leaders in the educational space including The Chronicle of Higher Education, The Pope Center for Higher Education Policy, the American Enterprise Institute, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and more.
Well, CEO Corner is live and running, with articles, columns, book chapters, and even Burck’s Twitter feed. Visit CEO Corner here.