College presidents: there's value in online courses
The impact of the Internet on a university education is real.
About half of college presidents say that their online university courses provide the same educational value as those that students take in physical classrooms, but only a third of Americans feel the same, according to a new Pew Research Center report released yesterday.
(Mind you, in my view, it behooves college presidents to trumpet the value in their online courses, partly because such courses offer flexibility and attract non-traditional students. Also, the profit margins of such courses are generally higher.)
The survey showed that more than three quarters of institutions now offer online courses. Half of the presidents believes that most of their students will be taking courses online.
Some other findings direct from the report:
• 15% of college presidents say most of their current undergraduate students have taken a class online, and 50% predict that 10 years from now most of their students will take classes online.
• Nearly two-thirds of college presidents (62%) anticipate that 10 years from now, more than half of the textbooks used by their undergraduate students will be entirely digital.
• Most college presidents (55%) say that plagiarism in students’ papers has increased over the past 10 years. Among those who have seen an increase in plagiarism, 89% say computers and the internet have played a major role.
• The leaders of the nation’s colleges and universities are a tech-savvy group. Nearly nine-in-ten (87%) use a smartphone daily, 83% use a desktop computer and 65% use a laptop.
• College presidents are ahead of the curve on some of the newer digital technologies: Fully half (49%) use a tablet computer such as an iPad at least occasionally, and 42% use an e-reader such as a Kindle or Nook.
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