Ubiquitous learning could push the term 'online' out of education
- Craig Weidemann and Karen Pollack, provosts at Penn State University, believe the maturation of online learning and otherwise innovative models have made the delivery mode for education irrelevant.
- For University Business, the pair writes that we are in a new era of ubiquitous learning, and 10 years from now the “online” label won’t even exist as learning happens immersively and without location mattering much.
- This shift will force institutions to think about technology, facilities, and their student bodies differently, and it is happening already as a growing number of high school graduates choose alternative options for higher education.
The history of higher education is a history of innovation. While ed tech disruptors take advantage of a narrative of stagnation, traditional colleges and universities have changed the way they operate and developed new systems for recruiting students, teaching, and supporting them as new technologies take a central place in higher education. Surely that evolution will continue.
Many campuses have used new learning models to increase access, opening their courses to people who needed greater flexibility and different timelines. Another important shift in higher education in recent years has been a focus on student success and the responsibilities colleges have to foster it. Congress is looking for greater accountability in the form of accreditation and financial aid reform. Colleges are looking to data analytics to help develop far-reaching, impactful programs. As more opportunities open for students, a consensus is forming around providing opportunities that give them a chance to succeed.