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Showing posts from September, 2010

"A" is for accreditation

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For-profit colleges under fire over value, accreditation
For Chelsi Miller, the wake-up call came when University of Utah officials said her credits wouldn't transfer from her old school.

Utah's flagship public university accepted her to its pre-med program last fall but said her courses at Everest College, a national for-profit institution with a campus in Salt Lake City, wouldn't count toward her bachelor's degree. That left Miller with a 3.9 grade-point average for an associate's degree that she says did nothing to advance her education and career goals. And, she has more than $30,000 in student-loan debt.

She says Everest misled her when it suggested her credits would transfer and misrepresented what it would cost her.

"I feel as if I had been sold a college experience from a used-car salesman," says Miller, 26, of Midvale, Utah, who last week filed a class-action lawsuit in state court with two other students accusing Corinthian Colleges, Everest'…

Allied Health Sciences Community College Visitation Day.

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This group loves adult students.

Lumina Foundation and Ivy Tech teaming up

With IU Continuing Education to produce more college graduates.

Lumina Foundation backs Ivy Tech program for adult degrees
Indianapolis-based Lumina Foundation is extending a hefty helping hand to adult students with “some college” but no degree today.

Lumina is announcing it will support an Ivy Tech Foundation project that will enable Ivy Tech to team up with the Indiana University Division of Continuing Studies to get more adults into degree programs in general studies.

Through the partnership, Ivy Tech expects to produce 1,000 new graduates with associate degrees transferable to Indiana University. And IU will have its own partnership with the Manufacturing Institute — to help students earn industry-recognized certifications.

Nationwide, Lumina is giving $14.8 million to adult education programs.

Ivy Tech Foundation will get $784,200 to be used on its 28 campuses and several instructional centers to re-enroll former students who left college with at least 45 credits and get them bac…

Noel-Levitz and CAEL study on adult learner satisfaction available

Nothing startling in the report, but it does a fine job of reminding us what adult learners feel is important.  The report breaks its findings down into Four-Year College and University findings and Community College findings.  I've listed below the link a list of challenges for the four-year group--challenges in areas of high importance to adult learners but low satisfaction as served by the institutions:

Adult Learner Satisfaction Priorities Report: 2010
Challenges (high importance/low satisfaction):

• My instructors provide timely feedback about my academic progress.
• I receive timely responses to my requests for help and information.
• Sufficient course offerings within my program of study are available each term.
• I am able to choose course delivery that fits my life circumstances.
• I receive the help I need to make decisions about courses and programs that interest me.
• Billing for tuition and fees is tailored to meet my specific needs.

Social notworking

D'oh.

6 Things You Should Never Reveal on Facebook
Your birth date and place. Sure, you can say what day you were born, but if you provide the year and where you were born too, you’ve just given identity thieves a key to stealing your financial life, said Givens. A study done by Carnegie Mellon showed that a date and place of birth could be used to predict most — and sometimes all — of the numbers in your Social Security number, she said.

Professor accused of peddling non-credit for credit

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We sometimes get requests to mix credit and non-credit students in the same class.  I typically refuse.  Technically, it can be done, as long the course requirements are not identical and that the credit students do--essentially--more academic work.  But I try to avoid it because it's always something that can bite you in the rear end.  Like here, at Portland State.  Of course, at PSU, the professor is accused of issuing his own transcripts.  Hmmm.  On the other hand, there is such a thing as non-credit transcripts.
PSU at odds with former business professor over international program
The institute offered the one-year, non-credit program in partnership with China's Dongbei University of Finance and Economics and three other Chinese universities, according to Mack's letter. Chinese students spent an undergraduate year taking classes at PSU. Mack said they paid reduced tuition because they were enrolled in a "non-credit certificate program."

But Molander represent…

More on for-profits

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More lawsuits target for-profit colleges
Disgruntled students, employees and shareholders have filed a flurry of lawsuits against for-profit colleges since a federal investigation last month found deceptive practices at 15 campuses.

The Government Accountability Office report was released Aug. 4, and class-action lawsuits have now been filed in California, Colorado, Arkansas and Utah by former students and employees, who argue in most cases that a school lied to them or misled them.

Some companies, including the University of Phoenix and Westwood College, closed campuses or launched internal investigations after the release of the report, which found that admissions officials in four cases encouraged applicants to commit fraud by lying on financial aid forms.

Shareholders have filed class-action lawsuits against at least five schools, noting the effect of the report on stock prices and citing securities fraud.

God help me I do love Top 10 lists

And as Spock shows, the goatee makes the evil twin...

Top 10 sexiest evil twins of all time!

Vote for worst, creepiest commercial, and so forth

But hurry.

Vote Here For Worst Ad In America 2010!
Now that the nominees have been announced for Consumerist's First Annual Worst Ad In America Awards, it's time to get your vote on!

You can only vote once, so choose wisely. Voting ends at 8 p.m. ET on Tuesday, 9/28/2010.

That's why we drink it here

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The Very Many Varieties of Beer.  This poster is availabe for purchase at the Pop Chart Lab site.

Can we keep offering online education on the cheap?

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Dean Dad points out the fallacy that online education increases capacity with minimal costs.  If you're content with poor student service, high non-completion rates, and dissatisfied students, that's probably true.  Quality online education requires technical and instructional support and the conversion of many student services from walk-in to Internet--from bricks to clicks as we used so say in our continuing education promotion.  That takes people, and people don't come cheap.
When “Degree” Becomes “Kind”
When changes like that happen, they upend “cost per student” calculations. When the marginal cost of another section is simply the cost of the adjunct who teaches it, the college comes out ahead with reasonable enrollments, even at our low tuition level. But when enrollment gains hit the point that you have to start adding staff in the library, the financial aid office, OSD, and the like, you fall behind again pretty quickly. That’s roughly where we are with online. The …
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see more Funny Graphs

The maddening halfalogue

Half a dialogue, I guess.

Why Hearing Half of a Cell-Phone Conversation Drives You Nuts
Public cell-phone conversations are maddening for a lot of reasons — their ubiquity, their volume (the conversational equivalent of a leaf blower), their banality ("I prefer the asparagus tips, but these were overcooked..."). But a new study published in the journal Psychological Science suggests that there might be something subtler at play: presented with half a conversation, our brains feel compelled to fill in the blanks.

Laura Emberson, a PhD candidate in psychology at Cornell University, came up with the idea to investigate the halfalogue when she was an undergraduate student commuting by bus and realized that she found it impossible to concentrate if someone was talking on a cell phone anywhere within earshot. In her recently completed study, she recorded a cell phone conversation between two people — first with both halves of the conversation audible, then again with only one half …

ETSU to hold opening celebration for centennial

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East Tennessee State University will officially begin its 100th anniversary observance – Partnerships, Promise, and Hope for 100 Years – during the Centennial Opening Celebration on Friday, Oct. 1, at 10 a.m. in the ETSU/Mountain States Health Alliance Athletic Center.
The program will include remarks from ETSU President Dr. Paul E. Stanton, Jr., a video presentation, and the announcement of the faculty and staff winners of the student choice awards contest. In addition, President Stanton will read the official centennial proclamation and sign commemorative copies to be given away following the program. A reception will also be held.
ETSU opened its doors on Oct. 2, 1911, as East Tennessee State Normal School with 29 students. This fall, enrollment passed 15,000 for the first time in the institution’s history. The university now has more than 100 degree programs, including 13 doctoral programs.
The public is invited to the event, and guests should enter the ETSU/MSHA Athletic Center on …

Save the date

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Florida hopes a flat-rate tuition will help progress towards degree

In Tennessee, we did the opposite in pursuit of more tuition dollars.  Even though the state passed legislation mandating that we increase the number of graduates from our colleges and universities.

Florida universities weigh flat-rate tuition system
Florida's state university system is mulling a one-size-fits-all tuition structure for full-time students -- an idea that could lead some to graduate sooner, but also carries the risk of students biting off more than they can chew.

Under the plan, which could receive receive final approval from the state Board of Governors as soon as November, full-time students at participating universities would pay a flat rate per semester, regardless of how many classes he or she actually takes.

The pricing structure, known as block tuition, is already the norm at private universities across the country, and has been adopted by some high-profile public universities as well, including The University of Texas at Austin and UCLA.

An exact pricing mo…

Continuing education job openings

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Even in tough times, colleges and universities are still hiring.Here are some continuing education jobs from the Chronicle of Higher Education and HigherEdJobs.com. The Catholic University of AmericaProgram Coordinator California State University San MarcosSenior Director, Programs Cochise College:Program Specialist, Center for Lifelong Learning University of Maryland, Baltimore CountyDirector RutgersDirector Angelo State UniversityDirector of Extended Studies Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyAssociate Director, Engagement and Outreach

ELPA First Annual Leadership Conference

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The Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis Department at ETSU starts its continuing education program for area school leaders.

The worst state for student loan defaults

Is also home of the largest for-profit university.  Hmmmm.

The worst state for student loan defaults
At 10.9%, Arizona has the highest rate of default on federal student loans in the country, says the U.S. Department of Education.

Between 2007 and 2008, about 24,531 borrowers defaulted on loans within two years after their first repayments came due. These borrowers attended 90 colleges in Arizona.

The worst offenders: students attending for-profit colleges. The state’s default rate could be so high because it’s home to the University of Phoenix – where 70% of defaulting borrowers attended.

On the other hand, Arizona’s public universities have some of the lowest default rates in the state (4% for the University of Arizona).

Spending biggest bucks

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To learn how to save big bucks.  Controversial study in Wisconsin.
More bucks for Bucky? UW mulls multimillion-dollar study to save money When UW-Madison leaders quietly made it known last month they were searching for a consultant to examine how the university might run more efficiently and effectively, the few faculty and staff on campus aware of the proposal may well have been a bit uneasy with the whole idea.
The world of higher education, after all, is not an enterprise with an easy-to-measure bottom line. Of course, with the state facing a projected budget shortfall of at least $2.7 billion, no one was going to speak out against a project designed to save a few bucks during these economically challenging times.
But after university administrators told faculty leaders last week that such an endeavor would likely cost UW-Madison at least $3 million, some on campus started to openly question the merits of such a project.

Things to do while in Albuquerque for the ACHE Conference

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Just kidding.  It's just hard for me to ignore a story like this one that appeared in the Chronicle of Higher Education
In Professor-Dominatrix Scandal, U. of New Mexico Feels the Pain Graduate students in the department were the first to take on phone-sex work, about five years ago. They found it locally at People Exchanging Power, an Albuquerque-based company that offers people with various sexual fetishes a support network, phone-sex services, and opportunities to rendezvous with some of its employees in real life.
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College still worth it?

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Yes.  You've probably heard about a new report from the College board affirming the benefits of completing college.  Lower unemployment, higher lifetime earnings, yada yada yada.  Brad Tuttle, writing in It's Your Money, summarizes the findings of that report and other data sources below.
College by the Numbers 4.6 vs. 10.3 The unemployment rates in August 2010 for workers 25 and older with, respectively, four-year college degrees and just with high school degrees, according to the WSJ, which also reports that the median duration for being unemployed was 18.4 weeks for college grads and 27.5 weeks for high school grads.

New continuing education leader at Trident

Godow named vice president at Trident Technical College
Trident Technical College has named Skip Godow vice president of its Division of Continuing Education and Economic Development.

Godow will direct the department that promotes economic development through custom-designed programs and consulting services, including licensure and certification, career renewal enhancement, professional and organizational development, and customized work force training for companies such as Boeing and Bosch.

In his most recent role as executive director and CEO of the Lowcountry Graduate Center, Godow helped develop 20 new doctoral, master’s, certificate and noncredit programs. During his tenure, the graduate center won the Charleston Regional Business Journal’s Innovator Award and the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce’s inaugural 1773 Award for excellence in education.

Sometimes I miss Iowa

Race to the top

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The usual suspects: West Virginia, Arkansas, Louisiana, Kentucky, Mississippi.  And oh yeah, Tennessee.

States With The Lowest Percentage Of College Degree Holders

Today is

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The First Day of Autumn.  Maybe.  There are some sites that suggest it starts tomorrow.
But I'm going to trust the U.S. Government (Tea Partiers feel free to object).  The spring equinox marks the first day of the spring season. On this day, the Sun is directly over the earth's equator, and daylight lasts 12 hours in the Northern Hemisphere and increasing. This day is typically recognized as March 21 in the Northern Hemisphere, and marks the first day of autumn in the Southern Hemisphere.  The summer solstice marks the first day of the summer season. On this day, the northern half of the Earth is tilted closest toward the Sun, and the Northern Hemisphere experiences the longest day (or most hours of daylight) of the year. This day is typically recognized as June 21 in the Northern Hemisphere, and marks the first day of winter in the Southern Hemisphere.

The autumnal equinox marks the first day of the fall season. On this day, the Sun is again directly over the earth's equa…
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Continuing your education

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Learn to turn down any free drink with brown in the title....
Bartender Secrets You Should Know When Candice Cook worked as a bartender in Washington, D.C., her bar offered a special free drink to especially ‘obnoxious customers’ called the Brown Squirrel. And by special, we mean the worst drink ever. It is essentially a free glass of leftovers.
“A Brown Squirrel is the draining board of the soda fountain as well as the mat where alcohol and other drinks are spilled, poured into a glass with cola and vodka,” Cook says. “It's pretty gross, and usually caused the obnoxious customer to leave, or at least stop being so obnoxious.”

Run the other way

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When you see these kinds of recruiting tactics.

Eight Ways to Avoid For-Profit School Scams
On one hand, this growth is good news for students: more options make it easier to find the massage-therapy certification that the local community college didn't offer or to take courses online instead of commuting to a classroom. But the profit motive can be a nasty thing: investigative reporters and government inspectors have caught for-profit colleges using all sorts of underhanded tactics that hit students in the pocketbook, from overcharging for classes to pushing applicants toward unnecessary education loans to exaggerating the prospects of getting a job with one of their degrees. In short, for-profits sometimes pull shenanigans that do not put students' interests first.

Top rankings becoming more elusive

UT and UK are among Southern universities rethinking goals amid recession
UK isn't the only university in the South shouldering the tough economic conditions just as it was getting started on a major push to move up the higher-Ed rankings. The University of Tennessee in Knoxville and Clemson University in South Carolina also have outlined such goals and are determined to keep them going despite the short-term pains. . . .

With a challenge from Tennessee governor Phil Bredesen, UT-Knoxville launched its plan earlier this year in the middle of the recession. Although there have been some cost-cutting efforts, such as a limit to the number of courses a student can drop, Chancellor Jimmy Cheek said waiting until conditions improved would simply put the school further behind.

Continuing education booming at UC-San Diego

UCSD looks for big enrollment in extended studies
The UC San Diego’s extended studies program has reported record enrollment for the last academic year and expects similar numbers in the upcoming academic year, which begins this week.

UCSD Extension served 55,598 students in the 2009-10 academic year, according to figures released last week.

The program offers classes in about 125 fields, including life sciences, engineering, accounting, information technology and the arts.

Classes are held nights and weekends on the La Jolla campus and in Mission Valley and Sorrento Mesa for the convenience of working students.

“All the trends are that enrollment will keep going up,” said spokesman Henry DeVries. “We see it as a jobless recovery. People are using UC Extension to bridge to new careers or to keep the jobs they have.

God help me I do love Top 10 lists

Today is

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International Talk Like a Pirate Day
How To Be Speakin' Pirate-Like

•Double up on all your adjectives and you'll be bountifully bombastic with your phrasing. Pirates never speak of "a big ship", they call it a "great, grand ship!" They never say never, they say "No nay ne'er!"•Drop all your "g"'s when you speak and you'll get words like "rowin'", "sailin'" and "fightin'". Dropping all of your "v"'s will get you words like "ne'er", "e'er" and "o'er".

•Instead of saying "I am", sailors say, "I be". Instead of saying "You are", sailors say, "You be". Instead of saying, "They are", sailors say, "They be". Ne'er speak in anythin' but the present tense!

Top five Hollywood lies about campus life

ETSU’s Alliance for Continued Learning to offer fall classes

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East Tennessee State University’s Alliance for Continued Learning (ACL) will offer a wide range of seminars and activities during the spring program beginning Tuesday, Sept. 21, and ending Wednesday, Oct. 27. Sessions begin at 10 a.m. every Tuesday and Wednesday.
To give new members an opportunity to become acquainted with the group, the ACL will welcome all participants on Tuesday, Sept. 21, at 9:30 a.m., in the meeting room provided by the Bank of Tennessee for the fall session at the Med Tech Branch, 100 Med Tech Parkway at North State of Franklin and Knob Creek roads. Dr. Wilsie Bishop, ETSU’s Vice President for Health Affairs and University Chief Operating Officer, and David Atchley, Senior Vice President at the bank, will offer remarks.
The fall lineup will include sessions featuring ETSU mathematics faculty member Dr. Rick Norwood presenting “Let’s Read the Funnies!” while Fred Sauceman, ETSU Executive Assistant to the President for University Relations, offers “The Swine-Centric…

Planning your first big conference?

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Dean Dad's advice to young faculty members

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Will They Still Need Me When I’m 64?
The people who will do well in the future system -- in which I’d expect to see such 20th century conceits as “credit hours” tied to “seat time” go the way of the typewriter -- will be those who can adapt to change as it unfolds. That doesn’t mean blindly adopting each new fad as it comes along; it means bringing that wonderful critical intelligence to bear on new possibilities.

A cliche of economic history is that the early railroads failed because they thought they were in the railroad industry, but they were actually in the transportation industry. Trucks ate their lunch. The educators who will thrive in the future will be those who understand that they aren’t in the Tenured Professor business; they’re educators. That may mean online delivery, or mediated delivery, or modular approaches, or structured group tutoring, or mentoring, or I don’t know what. But outside of the elites, the one strategy I can almost guarantee will lose is digging in your …

Lingerie?

Former St. John’s Dean Charged in $1 Million Scheme
On Wednesday, Ms. Chang, 57, was arrested at her 15-room colonial in Jamaica Estates and accused of embezzling about $1 million from the university, money that prosecutors said she used to pay for lingerie, trips to casinos and her son’s tuition bills. . . .

Ms. Chang’s lawyer, Todd Greenburg, in denying the charges against his client, said, “Every dime this woman spent was spent on behalf of St. John’s University, entertaining the people St. John’s University told her to entertain.”

Continuing education job openings

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Even in tough times, colleges and universities are still hiring.Here are some continuing education jobs from the Chronicle of Higher Education and HigherEdJobs.com. Cuesta College: Dean of Academic Affairs Workforce and Economic Development Arkansas State UniversityDean of Continuing Education and Community Outreach Eastern Kentucky UniversityAdult Ed Instructor Drexel UniversityProgram Administrator - Adult Education Corning Community CollegeAssistant Director of Continuing Education Saint Louis UniversityAssociate Dean - CEPS Harvard UniversityProgram Coordinator Dickinson State UniversityDirector, Office of Extended Learning Troy University:  Assistant Site Coordinator Southwest Minnesota State UniversityCollege Now Director

God help me I do love Top 10 lists

Foreign language continuing education

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We recently bought a license for Rosetta Stone and started offering noncredit classes in a variety of languages for native students, foreign students, faculty and staff, and the general public.  Response has been very good.  This is from the continuing education series in the New York Times.
Continuing Education for Foreign Languages
THEY may be preparing for a vacation in Europe, trying to communicate with colleagues abroad or immigrant clients at home or unlocking the skills, learned in college, that have retreated to an inaccessible part of the brain. For those aiming to learn a foreign language, continuing education courses can lead people toward fluency — or at least help them get by.

Three-month language classes at the University of California, Los Angeles, cost $480. At the New School, 13-week courses cost $590.

These days, online programs and CDs like Rosetta Stone and Pimsleur are grabbing the interest of people attracted by their convenience and relatively low cost. But more…

They thought it was funny

To flush all the toilets at the same time.

Hundreds of students evacuated after water main break at EKU

Making a presentation at ACHE or TACHE?

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Farhad Manjoo in Slate has some good PowerPoint advice.  PowerPoint is ubiquitous at continuing education conferences, so much so that conference planner routinely place projectors in all meeting rooms.  If you use the hotel's equipment, this is a huge expense.  ACHE recently figured it would be cheaper to buy projectors for the national conference, use them once, and give them away as door prizes than to use the hotel projectors.
Microsoft's PowerPoint isn't evil if you learn how to use it. So when should you reach for PowerPoint? Only when your talk satisfies two conditions, says Garr Reynolds, the author of Presentation Zen: Simple Ideas on Presentation Design and Delivery. The two iron laws of PowerPoint: You must be speaking to a large audience, and your topic must benefit from visuals. The visuals are key—your images and numbers must be of the sort that can be understood by people far away. You can't present a list of numbers or a complex math equation on a screen.…

The Bluegrass Ambassadors, one of 20 ETSU student bluegrass bands, performs at the Staff Convocation. ETSU has the only bluegrass program in the country.

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ETSU’s Office of Professional Development offers fall activities for the "Renaissance Child"

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East Tennessee State University’s Office of Professional Development will present the Renaissance Child Fall Enrichment Program Oct. 11-15 from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m.

The program is designed to give children ages 6-12 the opportunity to enjoy field trips, including ones to Fender’s Farm corn maze, Bays Mountain, Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park and Cooper’s Gem Stone Mine. Other activities will be held on the ETSU campus and will feature arts and crafts as well as safe science experiments.

Campers should bring a bag lunch with a beverage each day and wear “paint-friendly” clothing, tennis shoes and a sweater or jacket.

The program has limited enrollment and will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis. The fee for the full week is $145. A reduced fee of $130 is available for those with ETSU identification cards.

For further information, or to register, call the ETSU Office of Professional Development at (423) 439-8084. Details are available online at www.etsu.edu/renaissancec…

Motivation 101

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Motivating staff and faculty during times of cut-backs, reductions in force, frozen wages, and increased responsibilities is tough.  It's not enough to remind people that they should feel good about having a job. Steve Tobak, writing in BNET.com, reminds us of some basic principles.  While he is casting a wide net, I think these ten suggestions are particularly important for continuing education leaders to remember. (Although the English teacher in me needs to point out that in Number 3, the modifier dangles. You can't hold goals accountable.  Sometimes I hate myself.)
How to Seriously Motivate People
It’s entirely up to you, the manager, to provide an environment that will meet those conditions. It isn’t easy, but then, you’ve got to ask yourself what kind of manager you want to be? If the answer’s a great one, you’ll need these 10 techniques for seriously motivating your people:

1. Exhibit flawless work ethic. Lead by example. If you screw around, they’ll emulate you. Likewis…

Trust the beard!

Beardedness in advertising: effects on endorsers' credibility and purchase intention
In line with this approach, results show that bearded endorsers are perceived to be more credible and to have a positive influence on purchase intention, but these effects occur only in relation to specific kinds of advertised products. Theoretical and operational implications for communication strategies are discussed.

Race to the top

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Where you can pack heat and eat a nice meal in Nashville.
Website shows which Nashville restaurants allow, prohibit guns Along with hours, entrée prices, beer selections and smoking policies, diners and drinkers might want to know another key piece of information before choosing a restaurant or bar: Will anyone be packing?
A new website will try to answer that question, letting diners know which Nashville establishments allow guns inside and which ones prohibit them.
The site, http://www.gunfreediningtennessee.org/, made its debut Friday in response to a new state law that allows gun carry permit holders to bear arms in any establishment that serves alcohol unless the owner explicitly bans guns. Permit holders aren't allowed to drink while carrying.
Ray Friedman, a Vanderbilt University management professor, and his daughter, Toni, a Hume-Fogg High School student, started the website and a nonprofit organization, Gun Free Dining Tennessee.

Long live the clicker!

'The lecture is dead'
Twenty years ago, he thought he was doing a fine job lecturing medical students in physics from the front of the room. They did well on complicated tests, and his student evaluation scores were high.

"I thought, 'Eric, you are a great teacher,' " he said.

But then Mazur, now the dean of applied physics, read somewhere that students weren't getting much out of introductory physics classes. He decided to verbally quiz them on Newtonian physics.

They couldn't do it. They could regurgitate formulas, but they couldn't talk about the forces a heavy truck and a light car would have on each other when they collided.

"Nothing was internalized. Zero. Or next to zero," he recalled. "I almost fell out of my ivory tower."

So he began to develop a new approach, drawing upon experiments in the 1960s at Cornell, where three analog buttons were placed on armrests so physics students could answer questions in class.

By the …

A grasshopper walks into a college bar

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The bartender says, "Hey, we have a drink named after you!"  "Really," says the grasshopper.  "You have a drink named Bob?"  Ba-doom Pshh. Humor + Bugs + Higher Education = Great Learning Experience.
Best college class in the nation? Playboy magazine says it's at Oregon State
No surprise, this: For the editors of Playboy, bees do it.

Proof arrives with the news that those profound wordsmiths have dubbed an insect course the nation's best college class of 2010 because it combines humor with learning. Equally unsurprising: It's taught in that hotbed of erotica, Corvallis.

In "Far Side Entomology," which has infested Oregon State University's course catalog for more than two decades, students study the significant roles that insects play in human existence. But the course material isn't all dreary larva and pupa. Michael Burgett, a honeybee man and OSU professor emeritus, uses Gary Larson's hilarious "Far Side" in…

CAEL needs instructors

The Council for Adult and Experiential Learning is seeking part-time, as-needed faculty-credentialed individuals to serve as Independent Contractors with the online Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) Center.

CAEL is seeking multiple Course Instructors to teach a fully online course detailing the portfolio development process; this course will bear learning objectives equivalent to a three-credit, 100/1000-level undergraduate course. Course Instructors will be responsible for delivery of instruction for all assigned sections, and for evaluation and assignment of grades and related credit recommendations to enrolled students.

CAEL is also seeking numerous Faculty Assessors to review individual student portfolios. All submitted work will be reviewed for undergraduate-level learning. Candidates must follow CAEL principles in assessing student learning, and, must review student work with a level of rigor appropriate to regional accreditation.

Additional information about each position, inc…

Things to do this fall

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Two festivals are nearby.   The Foothills Fall Festival is in Maryville and the famous Wooly Worm Festival is across the mountains in Banner Elk, North Carolina.  We predict the severity of the winter weather around here by wooly worm coloration.
9 Fantastic Fall Festivals

More students attend Kentucky colleges and universities

Kentucky college enrollment hits all-time high
Enrollment in Kentucky's public and independent colleges and universities hit an all-time high this fall with 271,352 enrolled students, according to the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education.

Total fall enrollment increased by 3.8 percent over last year and 40.1 percent over the past 10 years, according to a preliminary fall enrollment report released Sunday at a meeting of the council.

Candidates speak out on TBR Chancellor

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Actually, I think Ramsey's comment is kind of funny.  Although wildly inaccurate.  You'd be surprised at how many McCain-Palin bumper stickers you still see on cars in the faculty/staff parking lots at universities in Tennessee.
Debate on Regents' selections heats up
In separate recent interviews, Haslam and Democratic gubernatorial nominee Mike McWherter recently indicated they were comfortable with Morgan serving as Regents chancellor — McWherter more enthusiastically than Haslam.

Bredesen said that nothing was wrong with selecting a higher education leader who lacks a doctorate degree and that knowledge of state government is a plus. He noted that UT has had 'three failed presidents' with academic credentials after prior state-centered presidents — Andy Holt, Ed Boling and Joe Johnson — were successful.

Ramsey said he questioned the way the board dropped the doctorate requirement, though supporting the principle that academic credentials may be overrated. Many in …

This is no way to get the college vote

But, of course, I can't speak for all the nuts.  Gingrich was speaking from Pella, Iowa; a lovely place.

Gingrich: University staffers are liberal ‘nuts’
Gingrich made the comment when asked about how to address political correctness in the education system. He advocated dumping teacher credentials in some situations to favor adjunct-type instructors. A practicing pharmacist, for example, probably could teach more effectively an hour a day than a chemistry teacher.

Citizen instructors also wouldn’t place pressure upon retirement systems or pay union dues and be able to teach freely, he said.

He continued:

“The other thing you also have to do is figure out how you’re going to take on political correctness in universities . . . They only recruit from people who are nuts. You end up with people who are so far to the left that they are literally not in contact with reality.”
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Continuing education job openings

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Even in tough times, colleges and universities are still hiring. Here are some continuing education jobs from The Chronicle of Higher Education and HigherEdJobs.com.

Western Washington University:  Vice Provost for Extended Education and Summer Programs

Stanford University:  Program Manager, Programs & Marketing - Executive Education

Manhattan College:  Director of Adult Undergraduate Education

Kern Community College District:  Director, Workforce Development

Missouri University of Science and Technology:  Coordinator, Continuing Education

Arizona Western College:  Director of Conferences and Events

Arkansas State University:  Training and Development Coordinator

Seemed like a good idea at the time

The Sarducci model of higher education

Outcome based.  Accelerated.  Cost-efficient.  High retention and graduation rates. Student centered.  State governments should get behind this.

Free webinar

The Future of Lifelong Learning & Technology Wednesday, September 15, 2010

1:00 PM (CST)

The field of continuing education and lifelong learning is in transition as it enters a new era of frugality. All programs (even once prosperous programs) must be focused more than ever on managing costs to survive and demonstrate self-sufficiency. Strategic investments in new technology along with more creative utilization of current staff and resources will be the keys to success.

Click here for more information or to register.

Plan to join William Draves of LERN and Cem Erdem of Augusoft as they discuss:

• The new economy and its impact on lifelong learning programs
• Paradigm shifts you will need to make to manage change and demonstrate success
• The influence of government and other international/global presences
• How strategic investments in technology can impact your bottom line

From my Urban Dictionary Calendar

Academic chicken
Phrase - refers to academic work of poor quality in which you are essentially daring your professor or teacher to give you a bad grade

I just submitted the worst paper I have ever written. It is nothing short of academic chicken.
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These jobs are going, boys

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And they ain't coming back.
Light bulb factory closes; End of era for U.S. means more jobs overseas During the recession, political and business leaders have held out the promise that American advances, particularly in green technology, might stem the decades-long decline in U.S. manufacturing jobs. But as the lighting industry shows, even when the government pushes companies toward environmental innovations and Americans come up with them, the manufacture of the next generation technology can still end up overseas.
What made the plant here vulnerable is, in part, a 2007 energy conservation measure passed by Congress that set standards essentially banning ordinary incandescents by 2014. The law will force millions of American households to switch to more efficient bulbs.
The resulting savings in energy and greenhouse-gas emissions are expected to be immense. But the move also had unintended consequences.
Rather than setting off a boom in the U.S. manufacture of replacement lights, th…

ASAE & the Center's Principles of Learning

Designed to reflect best practices in adult learning.  ASAE is the American Society of Association Executives.  If you've never visited their website, you should.  I came across this brief outline, which adult and continuing educators might find useful. 

ASAE & The Center's Seven Principles of Learning
A Framework for LearningAt ASAE & The Center, our approach to learning is different. As much as possible, we try to put the attention on the learner and the impact of the learning, not on a "speaker." To help us achieve this goal, we adhere to the following principles in the design, delivery, and evaluation of our programs.

1.  Learning involves both support and challenge. You'll be encouraged to take risks, question assumptions, and fully engage in the learning process.

2.  Learning involves changing both thinking and action. You'll examine your own beliefs and consider new perspectives, while being provided with the tools to put ideas into action.

3.  …

Welcome to

Lake Wobegon.

Survey: Most of us think we're hotter than average
In an msnbc.com/ELLE magazine survey, about 60 percent of men and women alike said they were pretty satisfied with the way they look, thank you very much — even though many of them admit that they wouldn’t exactly call their bodies “ideal.” (It’s worth noting that’s about the same percentage of Americans who are overweight.)

In fact, most of us think we're better-looking than average — between a 6 and a 7 on a 10-point scale — according to the online survey of nearly 26,000 msnbc.com and ELLE.com readers, ranging in age from 18 to 75. The survey was conducted by UCLA and California State University, Los Angeles, researchers.

The under-30s are an especially confident group: 28 percent of young women and 30 percent of young men rate themselves between an 8 and a 10.

For-profits and the G.I. Bill

Universities need to become as accessible as their for-profit competition to better serve veterans.  This is a market we can't lose. Who you gonna call?  Continuing education.

GI Bill tuition pouring into for-profit schools
For profit colleges are targeting soldiers and vets – and the US government’s footing the bill.

U.S. spending on veterans’ education will hit $9.5 billion this year thanks to additions to the GI Bill. But eight out of the top 10 colleges with the most Veterans Affairs-funded students are for-profit schools, like the University of Phoenix and the American Military University.

Students currently and formerly in the military are drawn to the flexible schedules and convenience of online courses and multiple campus locations. Some schools entice with tuition discounts for members of the armed forces.

For instance: Kaplan University lowers undergrad tuition by 55% for active-duty military and 38% for veterans.

In light of recent investigations into the underhanded rec…

Gambling on higher education

SDSU’s gaming institute focuses on tribal casinos
Michael Murray thought he would be working in a tropical paradise about now.

But that was before the 25-year-old, who grew up in Temecula and Santee, came across the Sycuan Institute on Tribal Gaming at San Diego State University.

“I went to San Diego State to do hotels,” Murray said. “I wanted to do a hotel in Hawaii.”

Instead of showing up for work on the shores of Oahu or Maui, Murray now heads to the eastern edge of El Cajon to start his overnight shift as a slot operations supervisor at Sycuan Casino.

And he says he couldn’t be happier about it.

“I like the people in slots, the people I work with and the guests,” Murray said. “The benefits are good. The pay is good. It doesn’t even seem like a job. It’s exactly what I wanted.”

The tribal gaming institute is part of SDSU’s School of Hospitality and Tourism Management. It was launched with a $5.5 million endowment from the Sycuan Band of Kumeyaay Indians in 2005.

The Blue Ridge Parkway is 75 years old

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Kathy and I drove topless on the parkway on Sunday.  We stopped a while in Little Switzwerland and Mount Mitchell.  It was a clear, sunny day--something relatively rare on the mountain.  Little did we know that the Parkway was turning 75.  This is one celebration, not too far from here.

Blue Ridge Heritage Days Honors Parkway Anniversary September 11 to 19
The Town of Blowing Rock will host a series of events and activities honoring the Blue Ridge Parkway’s 75th anniversary beginning Saturday, September 11, with Art in the Park. Events will continue through Sunday, September 19, and will include the street festival, the showing of Disney’s Cars as the Movie in the Moonlight, tours of downtown Blowing Rock and various musical performances.

The highlight of Blue Ridge Heritage Days will be the street festival, however, and tents on Main Street will house artists who will demonstrate everything from broom making to pottery turning. Entertainment will also be provided throughout the day a…