Updates from the SOURCE on Community College  
Issues, Trends & Strategies    
Published by
The Roueche Graduate Center, National American University  
in partnership with Lorenzo Associates, Inc.  
 VOLUME 5, ISSUE 3 - February 8, 2015

""It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you don't stop." - Confucius  
In This Issue





Reports & Articles 


02/04/2015: What Can We Learn From the Badging Movement?, by Chris Berdik, The Hechinger Report - The pilot project for Student Reporting Labs, a video journalism curriculum developed by PBS Newshour, ran into the same "what now?" problems as PASA did. In response, the developers whittled down sixteen badges to six, job-focused certifications, such as "video editor" and "social media producer." This year, Newshour producers will review the work students submit for each badge. If they approve it, an email will go to the PBS station nearest the school saying that the Newshour rates this student job-ready, and a good candidate for future job and internship opportunities.

02/01/2015: Appealing to an Older Demographic, by Matt Reed, Inside Higher Ed - If community colleges in the Northeast and Midwest are going to thrive, they're going to have to learn to appeal to an older demographic.

01/29/2015: Sticking With Credit Hour, by Paul Fain, Inside Higher Ed - The credit hour is an inadequate unit for measuring student learning. Yet no better replacement for higher education's gold standard has emerged, and getting rid of it right now would be risky.

01/29/2015: Dan Walters: Governor Aims to Reform California's Higher Education System, by Dan Walters, San Jose Mercury News, Opinion - Brown contends that it's time for California's higher education to modernize, becoming thriftier, more efficient through technology - online classes, for instance - and more integrated. He wants colleges to be judged and be financed by how quickly and efficiently they produce graduates.

01/28/2015: National Initiative Aims to Lift Minority Men, by Jamal Eric Watson, Diverse - The initiative is being spearheaded by Drs. J. Luke Wood and Frank Harris III, co-directors of the Minority Male Community College Collaborative (M2C3) at San Diego State University. Wood and Harris are experts on the experiences of minority students at community colleges.

01/27/2015: A Day Without Adjuncts, by Colleen Flaherty, Inside Higher Ed - Adjuncts sometimes say they make up higher education's invisible class. So an idea pitched on social media a few months ago struck a chord: What would happen if adjuncts across the country turned that invisibility on its head by all walking out on the same day? National Adjunct Walkout Day, proposed for Feb. 25, immediately gained support, and adjuncts continue to use social media and other means of communication to plan what the protest will look like on their campuses.

01/27/2015: 7 Reasons Why Community Colleges Are Necessary for America's Prosperity, by Chris Peak, NationSwell - Some question whether his proposal for free tuition is the best use of limited cash, but setting politics aside, there's no denying that the nation's 1,130 community colleges play a vital role in higher education. Here's why they're essential to our success.

01/27/2015: Immigration Policy Poses Unique Challenge for Undocumented Undergrads, by Kathy Wyer, Phys Org - Nearly a quarter of a million undocumented undergraduates, who largely come from low-income families and work their way through college, are experiencing unique challenges and high levels of stress as they struggle to succeed in higher education, according to a UCLA study.

01/2015: The Landscape of Competency-based Education, by Robert Kelchen, American Enterprise Institute - Competency-based education (CBE), broadly defined as a form of higher education in which credit is provided on the basis of student learning rather than credit or clock hours, has begun to catch the attention of federal and state policymakers, foundations, and colleges. Among the model's promising features are its potential to lower college costs and serve adult students in need of flexibility.


To view our entire Miscellaneous Resources sectionclick here.

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01/12/2015: Infographic: 2015 Top 10 IT Issues, EDUCAUSE - A look into EDUCAUSE research on the 2015 list of the most intriguing ideas in higher education IT. For 15 years, higher education IT leaders have used the EDUCAUSE Top 10 IT Issues to calibrate their IT-related activities and inform their strategic planning.


To view our entire Statistics-Oriented Resources section, click here.

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Online Education

Reports & Articles


02/01/2015: 5 Myths About Open Online Courses at Scale, by Joshua Kim, Inside Higher Ed - Everyone in higher education seems to have a set of strong opinions about open online education at scale. What have we actually learned from participating in this movement? What are the biggest myths about open online courses at scale?

01/30/2015: Experts Debate Graduation Rates for Online Students, by Devon Haynie, U.S. News & World Report, Education - Studies show online students may have lower completion rates than on-campus students, but the data are complex.

01/28/2015: 4 Lessons for Serving Adult Learners Online, by Dian Schaffhauser, Campus Technology - Recently, Excelsior president John Ebersole shared four lessons his online-only college has learned for helping adult learners succeed in earning their degrees.

01/27/2015: Why Online Learning Needs to Get Serious About Apps, by Ryan Craig, VentureBeat, Education - Last month, New Oriental Education, China's largest provider of private educational services, and Tencent, the leading texting provider in China with nearly 500 million users on its WeChat app, agreed to launch an integrated, chat-centric education service. The question every university should be asking is: What does this mean for online learning?


To view our entire Online Education section, click here.

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College Readiness

Reports & Articles


02/2015: Let's Get Real: Deeper Learning and the Power of the Workplace, by  Nancy Hoffman, Jobs For The Future - If "readiness" requires such ambitious and multidimensional kinds of teaching and learning, then what will it take to help students become genuinely prepared for life after high school, and what are the implications for policy and practice?

01/29/2015: Kentucky is Barely 'Back', by Jim Waters, Watchdog.org - The only stable college-readiness statistics available for the period are from the ACT college entrance test, which shows only a minimal, 5 percent increase in readiness for college between 2011 and 2014. Among 2014 Kentucky grads scarcely more than one in three showed college readiness on the ACT.

01/29/2015: Expanding Postsecondary and Career Readiness in Rural Areas, by Ashley Pierson,  Education Northwest - Rural schools face different types of challenges in preparing students for successful postsecondary education and career experiences than we often hear about in our typically urban-centered research and policy discussions. Most of education research takes place in an urban setting, and we often don't know if what works in that context will translate.

01/28/2015: College Prep Paths for High School Grads, by Rishawn Biddle, Dropout Nation - Fifty percent of high school seniors who express no interest in any form of higher education eventually end up in traditional colleges, community colleges, and technical schools within eight years of graduating. This finding, courtesy of a report released this week by the William T. Grant Foundation, offers another important reason why we must provide all of our children with the college-preparatory curricula they need so they can choose their own path to lifelong success.


To view our entire College Readiness section, click here.

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Remedial Education

Reports & Articles


01/29/2015: Learning from a Bold Experiment, by Shouping Hu, Inside Higher Ed - Some concerns have emerged since the Florida reform was implemented in the fall of 2014. For example, The Chronicle of Higher Education described "headaches" such as a drastic decline in students enrolling in developmental education courses, challenges faculty members face and other issues regarding student decisions and choices.

01/26/2015: More Than 25% of Students at Minnesota's Colleges Must Take Remedial Classes, by Beth Hawkins, Tom Nehil and Alan Palazzolo, MinnPost - A MinnPost analysis of state data found that between 2006 and 2012, the most recent year for which figures are available, at least one in four Minnesota public-high-school graduates who went to Minnesota colleges/universities needed remedial classes there. 


To view our entire Remedial Education section, click here.

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College Completion

Reports & Articles


01/30/2015: Here's How 2 Greater Cincinnati Colleges are Teaming Up to Make It Easier to Earn a Degree, by Andy Brownfield, Cincinnati Business Courier - Gateway Community & Technical College and Thomas More College announced an agreement on Jan. 29 to make it easier for Gateway students to get a four-year degree from Thomas More.

01/27/2015: Community College Students Need More Support to Be Successful, Research Finds, by Caralee Adams, Education Week, College Bound - Recent research highlights the need to provide extra support to community college students, many of whom are low-income, first in their families to attend college, and have limited access to career advice.

01/23/2015: Study Finds Small Words Can Predict Future Collegiate Success, by Alexandra Samuels, USA Today, College - Researchers at the University of Texas at Austin have found that admissions essays can reveal more than just your personality, however. In a new study, When Small Words Foretell Academic Success: The Case of College Admissions Essays, researchers found specific words can correlate to a better college performance and higher GPA.


To view our entire College Completion section, click here. 

Workforce Development

Reports & Articles


01/30/2015: Skills and Jobs in the Digital Economy, by Irving Wladawsky-Berger, The Wall Street Journal, CIO Journal - Smart machines increasingly are being applied to activities that not long ago were viewed as the exclusive domain of humans. Just over the last decade, automation and technology advances has made many job skills irrelevant.  But other skills, such as facility with technology, are more important than ever.

01/26/2015: Science & Engineering Degree Attainment: 2004-2014, National Student ClearinghouseŽ Research Center™ - From 2004 to 2014, science and engineering degrees increased in prevalence for both genders. The trend was driven by growth in the so-called "hard sciences."

01/26/2015: Why Are So Many College Students Failing to Gain Job Skills Before Graduation?, by Jeffrey J. Selingo, The Washington Post - Enterprise, like many employers, still finds today's college graduates severely lacking in some basic skills, particularly problem solving, decision making, and the ability to prioritize tasks.  


To view our entire Workforce Development section, click here.

Technology Adoption

Reports & Articles


02/01/2015: Dealing with Inappropriate Emails From Students, by Natascha Chtena, Inside Higher Ed - Students are often unaware that what they write in an email could adversely affect them. Most of them grew up in a world of instant messaging, LMFAOs, and Nyan Cats, a world that treats emails less like letters and more like texts.Thus email can be an opportunity for students to learn proper communication techniques and for us to model professional email etiquette.

01/29/2015: Iowa College Adopts New LMS To Move Beyond 'Managing' Learning, by Dian Schaffhauser, Campus Technology - An Iowa college is replacing its legacy learning management system (LMS) in an effort to move from managing learning to improving it. Kirkwood Community College, which has about 23,400 students, is adopting D2L's Brightspace. The new LMS, nicknamed "Talon" for the school's mascot, an eagle, will be fully in place by fall 2015.  


To view our entire Technology Adoption section, click here.

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Data Analysis & Assessment

Reports & Articles  


01/30/2015: Counting Students Equally?, by Michael Stratford, Inside Higher Ed - Department officials said they are exploring the possibility of using a statistical model to predict a college's graduation rate and graduates' earnings based on the demographics of its student body. They would then compare colleges' statistically expected outcomes to their actual outcomes.  

01/28/2015: Test Anxiety, by Colleen Flaherty, Inside Higher Ed - Faculty are being tasked with choosing just how Purdue will assess gains in critical thinking and other skills after four years there, and the assessment process needs to start soon - by the fall. 


To view our entire Data Analysis & Assessment section, click here.

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Funding & Economics

Reports & Articles


01/30/2015: The True Costs Of Community College, by Tylyn Hardamon, NPR, Higher Ed - Community college students also tend to be more financially independent than kids at four-year schools and have lower incomes. To help pay for rent, food and transportation, students have jobs that prevent the majority of them from going to school full-time. And that means it'll take them longer to graduate.

01/24/2015: A Quiet Revolution in Helping Lift the Burden of Student Debt, by Kevin Carey, The New York Times, The Upshot - A couple of little-noticed legislative tweaks to a small, obscure loan repayment program - revisions made under two very different presidents - appear to have created the conditions for far-reaching changes in how a college education is bought and paid for. The result may make it much easier for students to get out from under their debts.

01/22/2015: No Value for Students, by Jennifer Wang, U.S. News & World Report - Some members of Congress are trying to change the accounting rules for federal student loans to so-called "fair value accounting." But fair value accounting is far from fair. It would make student loans appear more expensive for the federal government than they actually are.  


To view our entire Funding & Economics section, click here.

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Transfer & Articulation

Reports & Articles


01/15/2015: Spotlight on Innovation: Increasing Transfer and Completion Rates through Regional Partnerships in the SUNY Oswego Area, by Lisa Cook, Academic Impressions - Leaders at SUNY Oswego are partnering with Onondaga Community College, Mohawk Valley Community College, Cayuga Community College, and the community organization On Point for College to use the $2.88 million FITW funding to improve degree attainment through the Transfer Gateways and Completion program.

01/2015: What We Know About Transfer, Community College Research Center (CCRC) - Most entering community college students intend to transfer and earn a bachelor's degree - so many that four-year institutions would not be able to accommodate them all as incoming freshmen. Community colleges greatly expand our nation's postsecondary capacity, serving as the entry point to higher education for over 40 percent of U.S. undergraduates.


To view our entire Transfer & Articulation section, click here.

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