Archive for August 12, 2013

NCAA now will count CS towards eligibility

The NCAA has now revised their eligibility criteria, in favor of computer science: http://fs.ncaa.org/Docs/eligibility_center/CoreCourseInfo/Common_Core_Course_Questions/engage.html.  The NCAA does an audit of an athlete’s high school classes, to decide if they really did complete a high school degree (e.g., rather than four years of gym all day every day).  Computer science did not used to count.  Under the new criteria, computer science can count if the state recognizes it as counting.  This is a win, and as I understand it, this is due to the efforts of Hadi Partovi and Code.org.

August 12, 2013 at 1:58 am 1 comment

Reforming higher education via improvements (choose one): in learning or in economics

I’m interested in the discussions about corporate involvement in higher education, but am still trying to understand all the issues (e.g., who has a bigger stake and greater responsibility for higher education, industry or government).  The point made below is one that I have definite opinions about.   If we’re trying to improve higher education, why not try to make it more effective rather than just lower cost?  I disagree with the below that we have to have 16:1 student:teacher ratios to have effective learning. We can increase those student numbers, with good pedagogy, to still get good learning — if we really do focus on good learning.  Why is all the focus on getting rid of the faculty?  Reducing the labor costs by simply removing the labor is unlikely to produce a good product.

There is a lot wrong in this apples to oranges com­par­i­son, but the point is obvious—cutting labor costs is the path to “edu­ca­tion reform,” not research and improved ped­a­gogy. This is “reform” we need to reject when applied to pub­lic edu­ca­tion. I say this with­out reser­va­tion: when it comes to edu­ca­tion, you pay for what is most effec­tive. Period. If small class sizes pro­duce bet­ter teach­ing and learn­ing, then that’s what you sup­port when appro­pri­ate. What­ever your approach, stop con­flat­ing eco­nomic restruc­tur­ing and edu­ca­tion reform; it’s dishonest.

via Citizen Gates | Sad Iron.

August 12, 2013 at 1:54 am Leave a comment


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