January 2013

  • California Begins to Look Online to Solve Their Problems

    Jeffrey Simons

    By Jeffrey Simons I was checking out a new page on Facebook dedicated to what’s going on in California, called, appropriately, California’s Community College Crisis Center. And I came across two articles about how some California schools are finally turning to online education to help address their problems. The first, “CA Community College Experiments with Online Degree Partnerships“ is a blog post on the website, CollegeInsurrection.com. It talks about how “California’s Coastline Community College is set to create low-cost, online bachelor’s degree pathways where students can enroll simultaneously at one of three public universities, none of which are in California.” Their goal is to cut their waitlist in half and en ...

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  • California Dips Its Toes Into Online Education

    Jeffrey Simons

    By Jeffrey Simons The higher education community is all abuzz about the news out of California Wednesday. As part of a trial program for the California State University System, San Jose State University is beginning to experiment with MOOCs. Inside Higher Ed, The Chronicle of Higher Education, and Tech Crunch each have their own take on the news, and we recommend you take a look at all three. In short, SJSU will be creating a pilot program of 3 online introductory level MOOCS (Massive Open Online Courses) for their students that will award academic credit and will only cost $150. The pilot is small, with 100 students per course. The courses will be taught by their own professors, but will exist on the Udacity platform. Udacity will al ...

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  • Four Traits of Great Professors

    Barry Lenson

    What makes for a great professor? Whether you’re taking a class online or in a classroom, here are some traits to look for . . . Current knowledge. If you are taking a science course like Environmental Science, it’s obvious that your professor should be current with the latest trends and research.  But up-to-date knowledge is just as important if you are studying religion, anthropology, or even psychology, where your professor should be aware of the latest theories, trends, and scholarship. Great communication skills. A superior professor needs the ability to listen to questions and answer them. If all a professor can do is spout knowledge, he or she is not doing a good job of cultivating students. Discipline. This is a two-way ...

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  • Community Colleges in Crisis: Did You Know there’s a Crisis in California?

    Barry Lenson

    The City College of San Francisco, the largest college in California, is only the latest community college in California to shift into full crisis mode. Here are the outlines of the crisis, as reported in “City College Of San Francisco Asks For Extension To Prevent Shutdown,” an article by Aaron Sankin that was published on Huffington Post on January 9th.  Last November voters in San Francisco voted to increase funding for City College. However, the college was only given until March 15, 2013, to implement 14 improvements to get its finances organized.  One problem? The school has been spending a 92% of its operating budget on payroll and benefits and has to correct that. It has become clear that City College will not be abl ...

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  • What Are the Parts of a Cell?

    Barry Lenson

    Sooner or later in your school years, you are going to have to pass a test that asks you to name the parts of a cell. (NOT a cellphone, the other kind of cell.) The funny thing is, at some point it might actually be useful to know how a cell functions, and what its parts are. The most basic thing to remember is that a cell exists mostly to take in oxygen and nutrients so it can go on living. And it if goes on living, it can help the plant or animal where it lives function in a better way. When the cells in your body are healthy, for example, they are better able to resist disease. They are less likely to become cancerous. And they are also better equipped to perform their functions. (The cells in your spinal cord, your brain, your mu ...

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