Notes in the Margins: Fragrances, prof pay and turning away from MOOCs

How Much Is a Professor Worth? A book to be published this month examines academic salaries, contracts and benefits in publicly funded universities in 28 countries. It depicts a world increasingly divided “into two categories — brain drain and brain gain,” as countries with more resources siphon off academic talent from poorer countries. (The New York Times)

States fight for in-state tuition for student veterans Since 2009, there has been more than a 17% increase in the number of veterans using their G.I. Bill benefits. As this number grows, some states are trying to change the residency requirement. (USA Today)

Colleges Dabble in Fragrances Smelling Opportunity, Colleges Are Coming Out With Their Own Colognes and Perfumes (The Wall Street Journal)

9 Reasons Why Being An Adjunct Faculty Member Is Terrible Yet, despite research that shows adjuncts do a good job of teaching, these part-time instructors must deal with a mountain of difficulties. (The Huffington Post)

Udacity’s Sebastian Thrun, godfather of free online education, changes course So why is he pivoting away from MOOCs? “The sort of simplistic suggestion that MOOCs are going to disrupt the entire education system is very premature.” (Fast Company)

  • Jay Sieling

    Fascinating and comprehensive piece on Sebastian Thrun and his pivot from tradition MOOC to corporate training. It will be interesting to see if the Georgia Tech pilot will have improved retention and completion rates. I think he has properly addressed one of the key issues with massive courses: student engagement. Even with the improved courses…making it a “really good course” the completion rates were not stellar. Offering credits helped immensely and perhaps pushed him to the pivot point and the current direction of sponsored corporate training. The focus is all about workforce readiness, which is also a key component of Chancellor Rosenstone’s strategy for MnSCU.

    He also had an interesting view of the role of liberal arts. It should be lifelong education, not everything in one set time frame. As one who teaches in the Liberal Arts, I wonder how this may change the landscape of higher ed. More “community” in the community college perhaps.