All posts by Goldie Blumenstyk


New Grant Will Create Prizes for Faculty Using Digital Courseware

Orlando, Fla.— The Online Learning Consortium, in a move to encourage professors to develop and use digital courseware, will offer new prizes for faculty-led teams that advance and adopt sophisticated online courses with “a strong pedagogical focus and a sustained impact on student success in gateway courses,” the organization announced at its conference here last week.

The organization, formerly known as the Sloan Consortium, said it would award up to 10 prizes of $10,000 each to the faculty te…


A Top Proponent of Higher-Ed Disruption Moves to Put His Theories Into Practice


Michael B. Horn

After years of preaching “disruptive innovation” for higher education, one of the most visible proponents of the theory is going to try a little disrupting of his own. Michael B. Horn, a co-founder of the Clayton Christensen Institute for Disruptive Innovation, stepped down on Friday as director of its education program to begin working more directly with companies in the education market.

Mr. Horn will also become principal consultant with Entangled Solutions, an arm of a San Fr…


Company Offers Cash Prizes to Lure Professors to Teach MOOCs

Scottsdale, Ariz. — A German course-platform company, looking to help kick-start the MOOC movement in Europe, is inviting professors and others interested in creating and offering massive open online courses to compete in its contest for a chance to win one of 10 MOOC Production Fellowships—and with it, a prize of 25,000 euros.

Applicants have until April 30 to apply. Iversity, the Berlin-based company sponsoring the fellowships, will hold online voting for the finalists through May 23.



National Labor College Ends Joint Venture With For-Profit Partner

The National Labor College has ended its five-year distance-education partnership with a subsidiary of the Princeton Review after just 18 months, in an agreement that allows the nonprofit college to keep $15-million of the $25-million in capital investment that the company had promised to the joint venture.

Initially the venture was to be a joint operation of the college, which is affiliated with the A.F.L.- C.I.O. and offers programs for union members, and Penn Foster Education Group. Penn Fost…


Manhattan’s Silicon Valley Envy

Even New York City gets Silicon Valley envy. Mayor Michael Bloomberg says the city’s economy is too dependent on finance—and universities from around the world (and a few right in NYC) are jockeying for the chance to build a new graduate “applied sciences” campus in the city to help it attract and keep computer scientists, software engineers, and other techies. The competition has Stanford and Cornell Universities vying for the biggest prize, a choice site on Roosevelt Island, which both say the…


For Academic Inventors, a Way to Trust, but Verify

Orlando — Sure, it’s an exaggeration to say that all academic inventors think that their university technology-transfer offices don’t do enough pitching to get their inventions into commercial use, or that all tech-transfer folks think academics have an unrealistic (read: inflated) view of how attractive their inventions might be to companies and investors.

But that problem does often hang over such enterprises. And even under the best of circumstances, few would disagree that it would be bette…


If Education Is Crucial to the Economic Turnaround, How Does Your Community Stack Up?

As states and communities begin to look into ways they might engineer an economic turnaround, will regions where people are better educated have a leg up?

It’s an argument many publicly funded colleges may choose to make this year as they press their states for money. And now a new Web site from the Lumina Foundation — showing county-by-county data on the educational levels of adults — could help the institutions make that case.

The site includes state-by-state data on the educational levels o…