Tuesday, April 30, 2013

The auditing option

A little used benefit for older students.  At least, at my institution, auditing students seem to be rare.  From The New York Times.

Older Students Auditing Courses Find a Welcome on Campus

OLDER students audit courses at colleges and universities for many reasons. Some retirees prefer lecture halls to bingo parlors. Travelers might take history or geography classes to learn about future vacation destinations. A philosophy class might help a widow cope with grief. 
Then there is the cost — or lack of it. Many institutions across the country, including Ivy League universities and unheralded community colleges, offer older students free or discounted tuition. 
For Judith Sherman, who some years ago took a religion class at Princeton, auditing proved therapeutic. Like many retirees in college, Ms. Sherman, now 82, deliberately kept a low profile, rarely raising her hand. But once the class delved into the Holocaust, Ms. Sherman, who had survived the Ravensbrück concentration camp in Germany, felt obligated to speak up.
“This non-Jewish professor was really struggling to connect these privileged students to the Holocaust — and I was sitting there silently,” she recalled. She soon revealed her wartime nightmare to her professor, who invited her to lecture the class. She said her star turn at the lectern “was kind of a freeing experience.” 
“I felt as if I was no longer the only guardian of all these memories,” she said. 
Politicians freely dole out educational benefits to retirees, notes Prof. Frederic Jacobs at the School of Education, Teaching and Health of American University in Washington. They vote at higher rates than other groups, and mandated tuition waivers cost relatively little. Lawmakers usually stipulate that institutions offer such benefits only on a space-available basis.

Monday, April 29, 2013

AAACE 62nd Annual Conference

American Association for Adult and Continuing Education
Building Sustainable Futures Through Learning and Partnerships
November 5-8, 2013
Lexington, Kentucky

Plan to attend! - Submit your proposal!

The Conference

Plan to attend AAACE's 62nd Annual Conference at the Lexington Convention Center in Lexington, Kentucky, November 5-8, 2013. The 2013 AAACE Conference will include concurrent, roundtable, and poster sessions, as well as workshops and symposia, in such areas as: Workforce Development, Community, Non-Formal, Career, Continuing Professional, Health, Religious, Military and International Adult Education, as well as Distance and Adult Learning, Adult Numeracy and Literacy, Human Resource Development, Program Management, and other related areas. It is this wide array of sharing and learning that makes this conference unique!

Dedicated to the belief that lifelong learning contributes to human fulfillment and positive social change, AAACE envisions a more humane world made possible by the diverse practice of our members in helping adults acquire the knowledge, skills and values needed to lead productive and satisfying lives. Key in this aim is the development of partnerships that make us stronger as a discipline, allow us to reach more learners, and allow us to build foundations that will carry us into the future. The theme of this year's conference, "Building Sustainable Futures Through Learning and Partnerships" reflects the importance of looking to the future and of planning now for the directions we take tomorrow. Partnering with like-minded people and organizations can benefit us, as adult educators, and can also benefit our discipline, our learners, and society in general. Partnerships can make us stronger and better prepared for the future.

2013 Partners

Conference partners include the following:
  • Association for Continuing Higher Education (ACHE) (www.acheinc.org), an association of professionals dedicated to promoting excellence in continuing higher education
  • Adult Higher Education Alliance (AHEA) (www.ahea.org), an association of people from across the country engaged in action learning, reflection and discussion

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Not all failure is created equal

This tip from The Harvard Business Review via Time, advises leaders to separate dumb failure from smart failure.  Good advice.

Aim for Smart Failure
If you want to encourage people to take healthy risks, you need to make sure they’re not afraid to fail. The first step in doing that is defining what a smart failure — a thoughtful and well-planned project that for some reason didn’t work — looks like. Chances are that everyone in your organization knows what success is. Far fewer know what a smart failure is. Specify what guidelines, approaches, or processes characterize smart risk taking. Provide clear examples of both smart failures and dumb failures and discuss why they’re different. Point out what the smart ones have in common, so people know how to structure their experiments. If you don’t define it, all failure looks risky and that kind of mindset will kill creativity.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Scholarship opportunity for nontraditional students

Destiny Solutions is pleased to announce that applications are now open for the 2013-2014 Mary Cone Barrie Scholarship.

The Mary Cone Barrie Scholarship is named in honor of the late Dr. Mary Cone Barrie. Mary was the director of Continuing Studies at the University of Toronto and remains known for her attentiveness to student needs and a devotion to her instructors and staff. Destiny Solutions is proud to present a $2,500 scholarship to two dedicated non-traditional students in recognition of Mary’s great contributions to the field of adult education.

The Mary Cone Barrie Scholarship is available to any non-traditional student currently enrolled in a course or program at a Canadian or United States accredited college or university.
Please find below a link to a poster with more details on the scholarship and a short description you can post online for your students. Kindly forward these to the appropriate people so that your students can fully benefit from the Mary Cone Barrie Scholarship.

1. Click here to download the scholarship poster.
2. We appreciate your posting the following description on any scholarship pages that you may maintain:
  Mary Cone Barrie Scholarship, sponsored by Destiny Solutions

Destiny Solutions created the Mary Cone Barrie Scholarship to applaud the efforts of non-traditional students. The scholarship is available to any non-traditional student currently enrolled in a course or program at a Canadian or United States accredited college or university. Destiny Solutions awards two scholarships per year, each valued at $2,500.

Applications are due by July 12, 2013. For more information visit our website or contact:
Rachel Bosley
Marketing Associate
Destiny Solutions

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

ETSU to offer class for adults who wish to learn to play the piano

East Tennessee State University’s Office of Professional Development will offer a non-credit piano class designed for adults interested in learning to play the piano or in reviewing and refreshing their piano skills.

Participants will study the mechanics of playing the piano, develop music reading skills and gain an understanding of basic harmony and rhythm through the use of classical and popular melodies. No prior background in playing piano or reading music is required.

The $150 course begins Tuesday, May 21, and will meet from 6:30-8 p.m. every Tuesday and Thursday for six weeks, ending Thursday, June 27. The class will meet in ETSU’s Mathes Hall piano lab.

The instructor for the course will be Jerilyn Paolini, a member of ETSU’s music faculty since 2001. Paolini teaches individual and group piano classes and directs the ETSU Summer Piano Camp. She also regularly performs in music department concerts.

For further information or registration, call the Office of Professional Development at (800) 222-3878.

Monday, April 22, 2013

New ACHE award

The Rising Star Award was created to celebrate the achievements of staff new to the field of continuing higher education.

•            No more than 5 years experience in continuing education
•            Be employed at an ACHE member institution or organization, or have sponsorship from an ACHE institutional or organizational member
•            Either developed (or contributed to the development of) or extended an outstanding program or division within a CE unit. Examples:

o            a credit or non-credit program
o            a certificate program
o            extended the audience of a program
o            tapped a new audience

•          Or, conducted research or published on a topic that has led to the enhancement or advancement of the field of adult continuing education

Please go to www.acheinc.org/awards to nominate an outstanding new staff member for the ACHE Rising Star Award today! Submissions for this and all ACHE awards are due May 15, 2013.

If you have any questions at all about the Rising Star Award or any of our other awards, please contact ACHE Awards Chair Mary Bonhomme at bonhomme@fit.edu.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

ACHE South Conference
April 21-24, 2013
Partnering to Serve: Opportunities for All
The ACHE South 2013 Conference begins on Sunday
We continue to receive registrations and are experiencing an excellent turnout.  Don't miss out!  Join us in Florida to network and learn from your colleagues.

Register Now!

Sandestin App to enhance your visit
To get more from your Sandestin visit, consider downloading the "Explore Sandestin" app for iPhone or Android.

Florida Weather:
Yes, it will be warm and sunny for our conference.  Check the weather in Miramar!

View the Conference Website:  uwf.edu/ache

Somehow, Nashville is missing

But the rest of Tennessee is well represented in the ten worst cities for spring allergies.  Memphis, Knoxville, and Chattanooga all made the list.  Jackson, Mississippi, is the worst, with Knoxville second.  From Time.

The 10 Worst Spring Allergy Cities In The U.S.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

More on PLA

The other way to a college degree. PLA is so hot right now. Kevin Carey, writing in The Washington Monthly, explains why prior learning assessment will play a larger role in the higher education universe in the near future.

The Assets Between Your Ears
Deep in the recesses of my spam filter, among phishing lures and ads for unregulated “enhancing” pharmaceuticals, vaguely named online universities occasionally promise to transform my valuable personal and professional accomplishments into a convenient and inexpensive college degree. The pitch has been around for decades, quickly migrating from one form of cheap, marginal media—matchbook covers, the back pages of men’s magazines—to another. “Credit for life experience” is well-understood shorthand for “sketchy diploma mill that could get you fired from a real job in twenty years if you’re not careful.” 
It may also be a great idea whose time has finally come. 
The U.S. economy desperately needs more Americans with college credentials: by 2018, more than 60 percent of U.S. job openings will require some form of post-secondary education, according to the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce. Unfortunately, our existing system of colleges and universities doesn’t appear up to the challenge. The richest, most well-known schools have little interest in enrolling and graduating more students—prestige in higher education, after all, is measured by how many applicants you turn away. Many public colleges and universities have experienced severe budget cuts since the 2008 recession, resulting in higher prices and fewer course offerings for students. Some (although certainly not all) of the for-profit colleges that have grown rapidly over the last decade used questionable recruitment tactics to lure students into borrowing too much money for low-value degrees. The higher education industry as a whole is caught in an upward price spiral that makes pushing millions of new students through college a dauntingly expensive proposition. 
Meanwhile, after years of stagnant wages, and growing debt burdens, followed by a devastating recession, few families have the savings they would need to be able to send a student to school for that ever-more-expensive credential that might enhance his or her earnings power. A report by the Pew Charitable Trusts suggests that the 54 percent decline in home equity experienced by low- and middle-income families may have led to reduced college enrollment among the children of these families by as much as 30 percent. 
Which is why more people are starting to ask: Is there a way to get students legitimate college credit without the college itself?

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Another hot college right now

Is Thomas Edison State College.  The rising cost of higher education has students, particularly adult students, looking at nontraditional institutions like Thomas Edison--which mixes prior learning assessment with traditional coursework.  I used to work with students from this college way back in the 80's when I was an academic advisor, so it's been around a while.  While it's legit, there are a lot bad actors around as well.  From Tamar Lewin, writing in The New York Times.

Thomas Edison State College Pioneers Alternative Paths
Ms. Hunt estimated that her degree in business administration, plus a simultaneous associate degree in applied science, had cost her $5,300, including books and fees. There are almost as many routes to a Thomas Edison degree as there are students. In a way, that is the whole point of the college, a fully accredited, largely online public institution in Trenton founded in 1972 to provide a flexible way for adults to further their education. 
“We don’t care how or where the student learned, whether it was from spending three years in a monastery,” said George A. Pruitt, the college’s president, “as long as that learning is documented by some reliable assessment technique.” 
“Learning takes place continuously throughout our lives,” he said. “If you’re a success in the insurance industry, and you’re in the million-dollar round table, what difference does it make if you learned your skills at Prudential or at Wharton?” 
At a time when student debt has passed $1 trillion, such institutions seem to have, at the very least, impeccable timing. Thomas Edison, New Jersey’s second-largest public college, and two like-minded institutions — Charter Oak State College in Connecticut and the private, nonprofit Excelsior College in New York — are all growing. Thomas Edison’s graduating class last fall was a third bigger than the class five years earlier. And the idea of measuring students’ competency, not classroom hours, has become the cornerstone of newer institutions like Western Governors University in Utah.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Horrible bosses

Have you got one?  Geoffrey James, writing in Time, describes the bad ones...

9 Core Beliefs of Truly Horrible Bosses
A year ago, in 8 Core Beliefs of Extraordinary Bosses, I contrasted the great bosses with average ones. Many readers commented that what I described as an “average” boss was actually an awful boss. 
Not so! Truly horrible bosses have beliefs about work and management that are so dysfunctional that they can’t even be measured on that scale. Based upon my experience and observation, the absolute worst bosses believe the following: 
1. Management is command and control. 
Horrible bosses think their job is to order employees to do things and make certain that they do them. 
Smart bosses know that the job of managing is mostly helping employees be more successful and making difficult decision that employees can’t make on their own.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

The money store

Is closed for adult college students looking for financial aid.  Those seeking retraining, especially in non-degree programs, struggle.  From Steven Greenhouse, writing in The New York Times.

Financial Aid Is Scarce for Job-Training Certificates

IT was an unusually enthusiastic shout-out for the job certificate programs offered by many community colleges. A report found that men with nondegree certificates in computer/information services earned $72,498 a year on average — more money than 72 percent of men with associate’s degrees and more than 54 percent of men with bachelor’s degrees. 
That study, completed this past June by work force experts at Georgetown University, also found that women with such certificates earned more money than 75 percent of women with associate’s degrees and 64 percent of women with bachelor’s degrees. 
Certificates are the fastest-growing form of postsecondary credential, the Georgetown study said, prized by employers for equipping workers with skills in high demand. Last year, the nation’s colleges awarded one million such certificates — more than triple the 300,000 awarded in 1994 and more than one-fifth of all postsecondary credentials awarded last year. 
But as certificates grow in number and importance, many educators are calling attention to what they see as an overlooked problem in the nation’s efforts to upgrade workers’ skills and deal with soaring higher-education costs: Federal financial aid goes overwhelmingly to students in traditional degree programs, while little goes to the many students in noncredit certificate programs who may need it more. As many employers complain of difficulty finding applicants with the proper skills, many educators and economists say the government should make it easier for students to take certificate programs.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

At the PLA Task Force meeting

ETSU to host Commuter Fair

The majority of East Tennessee State University students – approximately 80 percent – are commuters, and an upcoming event will help these students learn more about campus services and area businesses that could benefit them.

A Commuter Fair will be held Thursday, April 11, from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. at the Amphitheatre adjacent to the D.P. Culp University Center.  In case of rain, the event will be moved to the following day – Friday, April 12 – at the same time and location.

This year’s fair will feature a “carnival” theme, with music, games, booths and human bowling for participants to enjoy.  A variety of ETSU departments, offices and organizations, as well as area businesses, will be on hand to provide details on services they offer.  Commuter safety information will also be available, and $400 in gas cards and other prizes will be given away.

The Commuter Fair is sponsored by Adult, Commuter and Transfer Services at ETSU.  For more information or special assistance for those with disabilities, contact Jennifer Rice at (423) 439-4899 or  ricejm@etsu.edu

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Continuing education grants available

The Grover J. Andrews Research Award: Request for Proposals
Application Deadline is Friday, April 19th!

IACET invites grant proposals for the Grover J. Andrews Research Award.  The grant is available to graduate students, faculty and practitioners in the field of continuing education and training.  

IACET established an endowment fund to support the Grover J. Andrews Research Award to recognize Grover J. Andrews, EdD for his visionary leadership and profound contributions to research in the field of continuing education and training.  His support for research, particularly within IACET, has led to quality improvements in the field currently employed in education programs for business, government, health care, professional and trade organizations, and labor unions.

The fund supports one or two projects per year, each resulting in an IACET publication. 

Submit your application electronically by 5 pm ET on April 19th, 2013 to:

Sara Meier
Executive Director, IACET

Proposals for Research Grants will be reviewed with funding decisions announced by May 15, 2013.

Contact Sara Meier (phone 703-506-3275 or e-mail smeier@iacet.org) with any questions regarding the application or submission process.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Save the date

Keys to the Future: Unlock the Potential
45th  Annual Conference
Tennessee Alliance for Continuing 
Higher Education

November 13 -15, 2013 
Hilton Memphis

Conference Fee:  $160
Hotel Rate:  $125 Single

Make plans now to join fellow TACHE members in Memphis this Fall for pre-conference workshops, keynote presentations, special presentations, and concurrent sessions designed to meet the needs of continuing higher education professionals.

For more information, visit TACHE.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

ETSU to host seventh annual Intermountain Brain Injury Conference

The seventh annual Intermountain Brain Injury Conference will be held Friday, April 5, from 7:45 a.m.-4:30 p.m. at the Crumley House Brain Injury Rehabilitation Center, 300 Urbana Road, Limestone. 

The event, which is a joint venture of East Tennessee State University’s Office of Professional Development, the ETSU Department of Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology, and Roth Neuropsychology and Behavioral Health Associates, is sponsored by the Brain Injury Associations of both Tennessee and North Carolina, as well as Durham-Hensley Health and Rehabilitation, National Seating and Mobility, and Sunrise Medical.

The day begins with registration at 7:45 a.m. and offers several informative sessions throughout the morning and afternoon. Amy Geddes, an occupational therapist with Peace Rehabilitation Center in Greenville, S.C., will be the keynote speaker.

Other speakers include Dawn Knight and Ashley Sheehy, graduate students in occupational therapy at Milligan College, who will share their experiences and Christy Fellers and Jill Smith, associate professors in Milligan’s occupational therapy graduate program, who will speak on “Do Try: Combining Personal Goals with Individual Needs for Effective Intervention.” Lindsay Greer, who is an ETSU alumna, and her Crumley House colleague, Pepper Basham, will present “Communication Strategies to Enhance Skill-Building and Independence.” Dr. Joshua Gibson, who received his doctorate in physical therapy from ETSU and is employed by Gentiva Home Health and fellow ETSU alumnus Darren Riggs, who is the physical coordinator for Crumley House, will offer “Physical Therapy for Traumatic Brain Injury Survivors.” Wayne Hunigan, who received his master’s degree from ETSU and served as director of Crumley House for 15 years, and Trea Adams, a former special needs children’s educator for the Washington County Board of Education and now a computer lab instructor at Crumley House, will speak on “Computerized Cognitive Training at the Crumley House Brain Injury Center.”

The fee for attending the conference is $80. Students may present their college identification and pay $30. Continuing education units and American Speech-Language-Hearing Association credits are available.

            For more information, for special assistance for those with disabilities, or to register, contact Angela McFall at (800) 222-3878 or mcfalla@etsu.edu.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Not many student learning outcomes

Listed in these syllabi from college courses taught by famous authors.  Celebrity (sigh).  Thanks to Emily Temple and The Atlantic for putting this list together.  My favorite is Linda Barry's hand drawn syllabi with coloring instructions. I guess I'm a visual learner.

'I Urge You to Drop E67-02': Course Syllabi by Famous Authors
Every once in a while, one of eminent professor and author David Foster Wallace's syllabi emerges on the Internet, and devotees head to their local bookstores. In that spirit, I've taken this opportunity to pull together a series of famous authors' syllabi and reading lists. Who needs to go to college when you've got a list of texts from the best and a public library?

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Eduventures webinar

After seeing years of strong growth rates, Eduventures research shows that online education enrollment growth is slowing down.  In this webinar, learn how you can beat the odds and remain competitive in a changing online education market.

Join Eduventures Vice President and Principal Analyst Richard Garrett for a discussion of key market trends, competitive and regulatory dynamics, the increasing focus on student outcomes, and our take on what you can expect in this market in 2013 and beyond.

Register Now

Date: April 4, 2013
Time: 2-2:45pm EST

States want you to graduate

But now expect you to pay for most of it.  In Tennessee, funding has switched from the state providing 60% of the cost of higher education few years ago to the current situation where students now pay 67%.  This flip flop is verified at PolitiFact. This trend particularly hurts adult students, since they have fewer options for financial aid than traditional aged students.  Fewer options and more responsibilities.  This comes from Daniel Luzer's blog in The Washington Monthly.

State Sources Now Provide Only Half of Public Higher Education Funding
Politicians like to talk about the importance of college, but state policymakers are spending less and less on higher education every year. 
We’re about to reach a turning point in higher education, and not a very good one. 
According to the latest report of the State Higher Education Executive Officers, tuition made up 47 percent of public colleges’ educational costs in 2012. Soon we’re about to be in a place where states provide less than half of the funding for America’s public colleges. 
It’s a pretty rapid decline. In 1987, the report tuition revenue was for about a quarter of college revenue. A decade ago tuition accounted for about a third of college funding. 
Average state and local per-pupil spending on higher education is now a mere $5,900 a year. That’s a 9 percent decline from 2011.

Monday, April 1, 2013


These range from being The Stinky Lunch Guy to being Debbie Downer.  From Salary.com.

11 Reasons Your Co-workers Hate You

Annoying Coworkers Make Office Life Miserable. 
You know who they are. 
Maybe it was something as huge as taking all the credit for a game-changing business idea, or something as small as chewing gum too loudly at their desks. But whatever the reason, we all have coworkers we absolutely hate. And some of us are that coworker -- whether we realize it or not. 
It's inevitable really. After all, you can't spend 40 hours a week with the same people day in and day out, trapped together in a confined area and forced to share space and resources, without developing a little bit of acrimony from time to time. We're human beings and bad days and isolated incidents are occasionally expected. But when those isolated bad days turn into regular occurences and start affecting others at work, that's a problem.