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Curated content on higher education presented by the Society for College and University Planning (SCUP).
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New Directions for Higher Education: Q&A with CAEL’s Tate on Prior Learning, Competency-Based Ed

New Directions for Higher Education: Q&A with CAEL’s Tate on Prior Learning, Competency-Based Ed | SCUP Links |

DiSalvio: Some note that the greatest risk to traditional higher education is the growing interest in competency-based or prior-learning education models. Could you explain the source of this alarm?

Tate: I think the source of the alarm is different for prior-learning assessment than it is for competency-based education. On the prior-learning assessment side, what most people are concerned about is that it will take students away from the classroom. The fear is that it will reduce the participation of students in courses. And further, that the faculty will have less of a role in the students’ education because so much of the learning will be coming from outside the classroom.

The quality question that is frequently raised is: “How do we know that the student really has this knowledge?” But when you get under that question, you find that the concern is really that the faculty will not have the same control over a student’s learning as they would if it were under their auspices in their classrooms, internships or research. So there is some reasonable amount of alarm over faculty loss of control. Usually that makes its way into a quality argument. But it’s often really about the issue of control, rather than quality.

On the financial side, there is fear that prior-learning assessment will diminish full-time equivalent enrollment generation. The financial concern and the faculty concern are very closely related. The financial issue is related to the potential loss of credits—and revenue—generated within the institution. These are legitimate concerns, but what we try to demonstrate is that people, in fact, don’t take fewer credits, but rather tend to take more credits because they stay in school longer and are more likely to graduate. They tend to persist and this means the institution will not lose the revenue.

Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

Good interview. DiSalvio interviews Pamela Tate, president and CEO of the Council for Adult and Experiential Learning (CAEL).

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Tough Love—Bottom-Line Quality Standards for Colleges

Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

The proposal’s metrics are similar to those that the Obama administration has floated as possible standards for the college ratings system it is currently developing. But instead of universal ratings, the Education Trust paper calls for a focus on the worst-performing institutions in each category.

“We support the president’s college ratings proposal in concept,” Dannenberg said in an interview. But, he said, it’s a challenge figuring out how to do that accurately.

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Great (Un-funded) Expectations: Integration, Innovation and Collaboration for Quality, Sustainable Higher Education

Great (Un-funded) Expectations: Integration, Innovation and Collaboration for Quality, Sustainable Higher Education | SCUP Links |

Scholarship Applications
Deadline: August 22

Early-Bird Registration
Deadline: September 24

Sign up to be a convener!

Join us in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, for the 2014 North Central Regional Conference! This conference will focus on innovative approaches to challenging planning contexts.

We will showcase ways institutions and organizations are managing in an environment of increasing compliance requirements, regulation, accountability, and ever-shrinking funding levels. By taking an integrated planning approach, they will also show you how to leverage synergies across the campus to operate effectively and efficiently while they support the core mission of higher education.

As a higher education leader, you are constantly faced with evolving—and in some cases revolutionizing—financial, academic, physical, and infrastructure practices to meet the challenges of today and tomorrow. The challenges have prompted new approaches and innovative solutions that defy traditional planning models. These new advances are re-shaping everything from partnerships, to new models of delivery, and sustainability. Let’s explore and examine new approaches to planning together, and learn from the experiences of other thought leaders in higher education.

The SCUP North Central Conference Planning Committee invites policy makers, higher ed leaders, and organizations to engage in an imperative dialogue and look at ways to position our institutions for a successful, sustainable future. 

Join us in Canada!

Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

Registration is open!

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