Startup model of higher ed propels Boise State's productivity
- The Chronicle of Higher Education reports on a pilot at Boise State University to offer unique degree and continuing learning models to meet workforce needs and spur research capacity.
- The college, which has established coding bootcamps and leadership training credentialing for students, visualizes experimentation and development as key elements in the academic strengthening process.
- Founding Dean Gordon Jones said there's "a level of conformity," in traditional liberal arts education, which he attributes to "perhaps, accreditation, or perhaps because a lot of power is concentrated down at the departmental level," he told the Chronicle. "There’s a lack of either vision, resolve, or interest in going far outside those boundaries."
Finding ways to incubate faculty and student ideas as part of the degree offering is a critical element of adding to the value of a degree, and making the case for increased support from public and private funding resources. Boise State uses a continuing education model to spur career preparation and networking, but for other institutions, the approach could be scaled to ensuring students are connected with working mentors, or that they can participate in research which strengthens skills in a specific discipline.
The goals for today's institutions are graduation, work placement and loan repayment. By increasing focus on the corporations and industries growing around the campus, institutions have a better chance of meeting all three metrics with changes in their academic approach.
- The Chronicle of Higher Education Boise State's innovation guru pushes a start-up approach as a model for change