Notes in the Margins: Boomers, Udacity and the recession

Schools Master a New Market U.S. business schools are trying to master a new corner of the market: specialized master’s degrees. (The Wall Street Journal)

Is Sebastian Thrun’s Udacity the future of higher education? By utilizing online videos and educational resources, Thrun’s class was being accessed by students from all corners of the world. Of all the students taking Thrun’s class globally and at Stanford, the top 410 students were online. The 411th top performer was a Stanford student. “We just found over 400 people in the world who outperformed the top Stanford student,” Thrun said. (CNN via University Business)

How are top public universities governed? When the University of Virginia Board of Visitors unexpectedly announced this month that President Teresa Sullivan had agreed to step down, the response from some students was: The board of what? (The Washington Post)

The Liberal Arts and the Great Recession The Great Recession will end some day and the labor market for college graduates may recover, even if it does not return to the levels it reached during past periods of prosperity. Still, the current adversary relationship between the liberal arts and career concerns should disappear. Instead, a reformed liberal arts curriculum should teach critical thinking and other skills that undergraduates can actually learn as well as job related courses that help students achieve fulfilling and socially useful careers. (The Huffington Post via NAICU)

Online Education for Boomers Colleges, start-ups and nonprofits are rushing to tap a mix of Web services and software to open online educational ventures. One Silicon Valley start-up is teaming with UCLA to reach baby boomers looking to upgrade their skills. (The Wall Street Journal)

  • hftfiawh

    Did you notice, Alex, how different the U of M’s governing model is from that of most of the boards named in the WaPo article? Beyond being considerably smaller (or perhaps BECAUSE it is smaller), it also embraces a shared governance model that is far more effective (IMHO). Of course, that stems in part from the results of the tenure wars 15 odd years ago, but I would say that U of M has a model that many other schools could learn from.