Monday, March 31, 2008

Another April conference

The 2008 MPAEA conference will be held in Salt Lake City, Utah on April 23-26 at the Downtown Radisson.

Contact board member Scott Greenfield for more information at (801) 402-0700 or email

For Conference Registration, go to

Spring cleaning

I spent this morning organizing my office and clearing my desk. Here's a picture of my C File.
I fully expect to need something I've tossed within the week, but I plan on being out of the office a lot in April so people won't be able to find me to ask for stuff I can't find...

Continuing your education

I've stored my coffee in the refrigerator for years, but after reading this--no more!

The worst place for your coffee: the refrigerator or freezer

Think that you're preserving freshness by stashing it in the fridge? Think again. Every time you take it out of the fridge or freezer, you expose it to fluctuating temperatures, which produces condensation. "The moisture leeches out flavor — it's like brewing a cup of coffee each time," says John McGregor, PhD, a professor in the department of food science and human nutrition at Clemson University. The best spot to store beans or grounds: in an opaque, airtight container kept on the counter or in the pantry.

More from The 16 Worst Places to Stash Your Stuff at

Summer school meeting in April

The Southern, Middle States and Northeastern Regions of the North American Association of Summer Sessions are holding a joint conference in April.

Sail Into Summer!

April 23 - 25, 2008

Sheraton Waterside Hotel, Norfolk, VA

The conference will use the roundtable format to discuss ideas and strategies to help your respective schools. Topics will focus on the conference theme and on areas that are vital to having a successful summer. The conference will be held in the busy port of Norfolk, Virginia. Norfolk is home to the world's largest naval base, and is a city rich in Virginia and United States history. Nautical themes are found in every facet of this city, making it the perfect place to "Sail into Summer!" For information see

Saturday, March 29, 2008

"Lousy Smarch weather..."

I was echoing Homer Simpson as Kathy and I walked bundled up in the cool, overcast weather this morning at Willow Springs Park. For more Simpson's quotes, see the A.V. Club's Beyond "D'oh!": Simpsons Quotes For Everyday Use at

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Continuing education and the recession

Although it’s unclear whether we are actually in a recession, the next academic year looks troubling. It’s conventional wisdom that higher education and continuing education do well in poor economic times because (1) people who cannot find jobs return to school to increase skills and (2) people afraid of losing jobs return to update and learn new skills. High gas prices may increase enrollments in continuing education programs, especially online and outreach programs where students do not have to drive to campus. I expect the University of Phoenix to start touting high gasoline prices as another reason to enroll at their institution.

Education is often seen as a relatively recession proof area (although salaries are often tied to the economy). Teacher education programs may thrive, and Rachel Zupek at lists education as its top recession-proof job:
With more teachers retiring and an increasing number of students enrolling
in grades K-12, the demand for skilled teachers is rising. The National Center for Education Statistics predicts that in the next eight years, 2.8 million teachers must join the existing 3.2 million teachers because of retirements, higher enrollment and teacher turnover.
And Randall Hansen, at QuintCareers.Com, gives this advice in Seven Strategies to Recession-Proof Your Career: Build Your Future Regardless of Health of the Economy:

Focus on Professional Development Opportunities. A hallmark of successful people is that they never stop learning more about their profession/industry/career. Dispensable employees are those who still insist on doing the job as it has always traditionally been done while indispensable employees are on the cutting-edge of their profession. Find conferences that offer seminars in which you can learn new ways to perform your job -- or do it better. Consider additional training, certifications, and degrees. Continuing education is required in certain fields (healthcare, education), but it’s truly vital to your professional growth and success as well -- and not just for trying to save this job, but for yourself.
Young continuing education professionals may well worry about positioning themselves to weather poor economic times. Our conferences and meetings must focus on giving them the skills to do so.

Tennessee Tech's Susan Elkins

Recently had lunch with Susan Elkins, Vice President for Extended Programs and Regional Development at Tennessee Technological University, as I was passing through Cookeville. A longtime friend and colleague, Susan just may be the hardest working educator in continuing education. Just as an example of what she's doing beyond her normal job responsibilities, Susan is currently deeply involved with three large conferences. She's co-chairing the ACHE National Conference and meeting that occurs in November, she's helped plan the ACHE South meeting that starts next month in Tunica, and she's working to contract keynoters for the TACHE conference in Memphis, also next November. She is past president of TACHE and the TTU Chapter of Phi Delta Kappa, and she is a graduate of the Tennessee Board of Regents Leadership Institute and the University of Tennessee Leadership Institute. She will become Chair of ACHE South in two years. Susan, it's been great working with you on a state and national level.

You can visit TTU's School of Interdisciplinary Studies & Extended Education at

Wednesday, March 26, 2008


ACHE President Chris Dougherty recently visited the ACHE South Regional Conference. See the story and a picture at his blog at


I'm in Nashville for the RODP Undergraduate Curriculum Committee meeting. If you've never visited, here's the skyline. Find more Nashville pictures from Chip Curley at

Monday, March 24, 2008

More principles

From the Southern Regional Educational Board's Principles of Good Practice for Electronic Campuses.

Curriculum and Instruction
  • Each program or course of study results in learning appropriate to the rigor and breadth of the degree or certificate awarded.
  • A degree or certificate program or course offered electronically is coherent and complete.
  • The course or program provides for appropriate interaction between faculty and students and among students.
  • Qualified faculty provide appropriate supervision of the program or course that is offered electronically.
  • Academic standards for all programs or courses offered electronically are the same as those for other courses or programs delivered at the institution where they originate.
  • Student learning in programs or courses delivered electronically should be
    comparable to student learning in programs or courses offered at the campus where they originate.

Institutional Context and Commitment

Role and Mission
  • The program or course is consistent with the institution’s role and mission.
  • Review and approval processes ensure the appropriateness of the technology being used to meet program or course objectives.

Students and Student Services

  • The program or course provides students with clear, complete and timely
    information on the curriculum, course and degree requirements, nature of
    faculty/student interaction, prerequisite technology competencies and skills, technical equipment requirements, availability of academic support
    services, financial aid resources, and costs and payment policies.
  • Enrolled students have reasonable and adequate access to student services
    and resources appropriate to support their learning.
  • The institution has admission/acceptance criteria to assess whether the
    student has the background, knowledge and technical skills required for
    undertaking the course or program.
  • Advertising, recruiting and admissions materials clearly and accurately
    represent the program and the services available.

Faculty Support

  • The program or course provides faculty support services specifically related to teaching via an electronic system.
  • The institution ensures appropriate training for faculty who teach using technology.
  • The program or course provides faculty with adequate equipment, software and communications for interaction with students, institutions and other faculty.
Resources for Learning
  • The program or course ensures that appropriate learning resources are available to students.
  • The program or course evaluates the adequacy of access to learning resources and the cost to students for access to those resources.
  • It also documents the use of electronic resources.
Commitment to Support
  • Policies for faculty evaluation include appropriate recognition of teaching
    and scholarly activities related to programs or courses offered electronically.
  • The institution demonstrates a commitment to ongoing support, both financial
    and technical, and to continuation of the program or course for a period
    sufficient for students to complete a degree or certificate.

Evaluation and Assessment
  • The institution evaluates program and course effectiveness, including
    assessments of student learning, student retention, and student and faculty
  • At the completion of the program or course, the institution provides for
    assessment and documentation of student achievement in each course.
  • Program or course announcements and electronic catalog entries provide
    appropriate information.

Elaboration of the Principles

These principles serve as guidelines for colleges and universities participating in the Electronic Campus. These guidelines will be defined further and will address expanded topics as the Electronic Campus grows. The first of these amendments is titled “Principles for Electronic Campus Library Services.”

Download Principles of Good Practice (PDF format)

Principles of good practice

Doing some quick-and-dirty research on best practices in continuing education. Here's an oldie but a goodie, one I've used in program evaluation self-studies. I've taken this from the Adult Higher Education Alliance website but it's available at other places as well.

The Principles of Good Practice for Alternative and External Degree Programs for Adults were published in 1990. Download the Principles of Good Practice (PDF/84KB).


Principle 1: Mission Statement
The program has a mission statement that reflects an educational philosophy, goals, purposes, and general intent and that clearly complements the institutional mission.

Principle 2: Personnel - Faculty and Academic Professionals
Faculty and academic professionals working in alternative and external degree programs share a commitment to serve adult learners and have the attitudes, knowledge, and skills required to teach, advise, counsel, and assist such students.

Principle 3: Learning Outcomes
Clearly articulated programmatic learning outcomes frame the comprehensive curriculum as well as specific learning experiences; in developing these outcomes the program incorporates general student goals.

Principle 4: Learning Experiences
The program is designed to provide diverse learning experiences that respond to the characteristics and contexts of adult learners while meeting established academic standards.

Principle 5: Assessment of Student Learning
The assessment of a student's learning is based on the achievement of comprehensive and specific learning outcomes.

Principle 6: Student Services
The policies, procedures, and practices of the program take into account the conditions and circumstances of adult learners and promote the success of those students.

Principle 7: Program Administration
The administrative structures and the human, fiscal, and learning resources are sufficient, appropriate, and stable for accomplishing the program mission.

Principle 8: Program Evaluation
Evaluation of the program involves faculty, academic professionals, administrators, and students on a continuing, systematic basis to assure quality and standards, and to stimulate program improvement.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Call for proposals


57th International Conference
American Association for Adult & Continuing Education
November 11 - 14, 2008
Denver, Colorado

Share your expertise, your successful programs, or your research with a collegial audience.

We encourage you to submit a proposal for a concurrent session or roundtable discussion. Our conference participants are practitioners, graduate students, instructors, faculty, academic advisors and/or administrators of adult and continuing education programs that include the workplace, educational institutions, educational organizations, government, military, and community programs.

Submit online by May 18, 2008 at

If you have questions, please contact our Program Team: Clare Klunk, Jean Fleming, Lilian Hill, Linda Sayre, and Mary Cooper, at

Death rays

Not content with the death of Steve Irwin, stingrays have claimed another victim, killing a woman on a boat in the Florida Keys. Be afraid. Be very afraid.
While attending the ACHE Annual Conference and Meeting this fall, you can tempt fate and impress your colleagues by petting stingrays at Stingray Reef at Opry Mills Mall in Nashville.

What's up with this early Easter?

Today is Good Friday and I am enjoying a day off from work. Easter is Sunday, and it's the earliest Easter in some time. (You may have gotten the email.) March 22 is the earliest Easter can take place and April 25 the latest. According to, the last time Easter fell so early was 1913, and the next time will be in 2160.

Determining Easter's date is complicated. According to Wikipedia:

the canonical rule is that Easter day is the first Sunday after the 14th day of the lunar month (the nominal full moon) that falls on or after 21 March (nominally the day of
the vernal equinox). For determining the feast, Christian churches settled on a method to define a reckoned "ecclesiastical" full moon, rather than observations of the true Moon as the Jews did at the time. Eastern Orthodox Christians calculate the fixed date of 21 March according to the Julian Calendar rather than the modern Gregorian Calendar, and observe the additional rule that Easter may not precede or coincide with the first day of the Jewish Passover.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Call for proposals

The IACE Hall of Fame has contacted ACHE about hosting their Symposium at our Annual Conference and Meeting in Philadelphia in 2009. It's a rather eclectic collection of individuals--many prominent scholars on the academic side of our field but also some folks with somewhat ... mmmm... shallower credentials. But Hall of Fames are like that, as Pete Rose would attest. I would encourage you to look at their website and think about worthy ACHE members for nomination. Someone like Bill Barton from the University of Tennessee, who I believe was president of both ACHE and UCEA comes to mind. And recently retired Wayne Whelan. And Carol Aslanian. I think we can come up with several worthy names. Please let me know your thoughts on including them in Philadelphia. Here's the information about their current call...

International Adult and Continuing Education Hall of Fame

University of Oklahoma
Norman, Oklahoma
September 7-9, 2008

Extending the Reach of Adult and Continuing Education:
Forging New Collaborations

On behalf of the Symposium and Induction committee, we wish to invite both members of the Hall, as well as colleagues in the profession of adult and continuing education to consider participation in the September Symposium. You are invited to submit a paper proposal on the topic of “Extending the Reach of Adult and Continuing Education: Forging New Collaborations”. These papers should link to the broader philosophy of Dr. Thurman White both from historical and contemporary perspectives. The symposium will feature a series of events that will be a tribute to the legacy of Dr. White. The symposium committee will review submitted proposals and make final selections.

We welcome proposals with the above focus submitted by May 1, 2008 to:

Dr. Carol Kasworm at

The Proposal should present the following elements: Topic or theme, abstract of key points of the paper, and specific connections – either historic or contemporary–with the philosophy of Dr. White, and significance to the field of adult and continuing education, author information including name, affiliation, contact information.

We would welcome both individual and group presentations. Authors of selected papers will be required to attend the Symposium in Norman, Oklahoma.

If you have any questions, please contact either Dr. Carol Kasworm,
or Dr. Karen Watkins,

For further information, please note the Hall of Fame website:

Please note this specific article on the key efforts of Dr. White at University of Oklahoma

Call for proposals

The Adult Higher Education Alliance has issued a call for proposals for its conference next fall.

Call for Proposals
Animating Change in Adult Higher Education
To animate is to give life, to inspire, to cause motion and to make spirited. To animate through adult education is to enliven the dialogue and include voices in the room that are not often heard. To animate through adult education is to increase participation and democratization within our institutions and in our communities. Adult higher education’s purpose is to expand our lives--and life is achieved through participation in community.

Deadline for submission of proposals: Friday May 16th, 2008

At the heart of the Adult Higher Education Alliance (AHEA) is our commitment to promote creative and effective teaching and learning opportunities for adults. Central to that mission is the goal of fostering a rich exchange of ideas about theories and practices relevant to our adult students and to our own development as professionals. For more than 25 years, the annual conference of “The Alliance” has been an important opportunity for professionals in adult higher education to share resources and information, to stimulate practitioner research, to become aware of work outside our own institutions, and, above all, to share ideas and experiences that help us critically reflect on our everyday activities.

Monday, March 17, 2008

LERN in Nashville


Fred Bayley is conducting a one-day seminar from LERN next week.

Vanderbilt University, Nashville
Tuesday, March 25

For more information go to

Thursday, March 13, 2008

TACHE planning

President Sue Fulmer starts the TACHE Executive Committee meeting. It's held in conjunction with the 2008 conference planning committee meeting on the campus of Volunteer State Community College. It's the 40th annual meeting of the organization. That's half of Sam Brackstone, TACHE Treasurer, on the right.

Continuing your education

I'm at the TACHE conference planning meeting in Galletin, TN. In the meantime, here's the number two best opening lyric in rock and roll, according to Spinner:

"I was born in a cross-fire hurricane"--The Rolling Stones' 'Jumpin' Jack Flash'

Monday, March 10, 2008

Save the date

2008 Annual Conference and Meeting
Nashville, TN
November 8 - 11
Opryland Hotel

To promote this fall's conference, I'll be highlighting scenes from Music City. Here is the statue of Athena, found in the Parthenon (Y'all may have thought the Parthenon was in Greece...).
Notes the Encyclopedia Mythica:
Athena, the Greek goddess of wisdom, war, the arts, industry, justice and skill. She was the favorite child of Zeus. She had sprung fully grown out of her father's head. Her mother was Metis, goddess of wisdom and Zeus' first wife. In fear that Metis would bear a son mightier than himself. Zeus swallowed her and she began to make a robe and helmet for her daughter. The hammering of the helmet caused Zeus great pain in the form of headaches and he cried out in agony. Skilled Hephaestus ran to his father and split his skull open and from it emerged Athena, fully grown and wearing her mother's robe and helmet. She is the virgin mother of Erichthnonius.
Find out more about the conference at

Continuing your education

Seven Stupid Thinking Errors You Probably Make

  1. Confirmation Bias

  2. Hindsight Bias

  3. Clustering Illusion

  4. Recency Effect
And the rest at....

Friday, March 7, 2008

North Carolina continuing educators to hear one of ETSU's own

Brenda White Wright, here pictured with me at the ACHE Annual Meeting in Los Angeles, will be speaking at the North Carolina Adult Education Association conference next week. Brenda entered our adult degree program when I first started at ETSU nearly 2o years ago and is now close to finishing her doctorate. She's a tremendous speaker and the folks across the mountains will be thunderstruck! I understand ACHE rising star Jeffery Alejandro was instrumental in bringing her in.
2008 NCAEA Conference
Adult education programs: Do they work for working adults?
East Carolina University
Greenville, North Carolina
March 12-14, 2008
For more information on Wright click here.
REGISTER HERE: Click here to download registration form.
CONTACTS: Jeffery Alejandro, NCAEA Conference Chair

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Rolling on the river

Don't miss the Dinner Cruise aboard the Tunica Queen!

ACHE South 2008 Conference

April 7 - 9, 2008 · Tunica, Mississippi

Join your fellow ACHE South members at the Chair's Reception at the RiverPark and Museum before boarding the Tunica Queen for a spectacular 12-mile view of a legendary Delta sunset on the mighty Mississippi River on Monday, April 7. Bring some type of wrap for the cruise-the wind off the Mississippi River could be brisk! The attire for this event is informal.
To learn more about the RiverPark and Museum and the Tunica Queen, visit the ACHE 2008 Conference website at Reservations must be made by March 1, 2008, to receive the ACHE South 2008 Conference group rate. Reservation requests after this date will be honored on a space-and-rate availability basis so register now at at

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

The perfect mint

Energy+breath mint. These mints were the hit of the last meeting I attended. What better boost in the afternoon after a cup of coffee?