The recent Online Learning Consortium (OLC) conference featured sessions focused on a variety of professional development and best practices-related topics, including: innovations, tools and technologies; institutional strategies and globalization; learner services and support; learning effectiveness; professional development and support; and research. Two that stood out were “The Power of Storytelling to Inspire and Engage” by Matthew Luhn from Pixar and “Human Exploration from Earth to Mars: Becoming Interplanetary” by Dr. Dava Newman from NASA and MIT.
EdSurge recently hosted a live thought leadership video discussion led by Jeffrey Young, an EdSurge senior fellow. This live video featured Dr. Mark Milliron, co-founder and chief learning officer of Civitas Learning and Dr. Candace Thille, a professor at Stanford University. The focus of the video was “Who Controls AI In Higher Education And Why It Matters.”
Since the transcript is available at the EdSurge site, my focus here is to reflect upon what I heard and concluded. I first discussed this topic as part of my related Educause posts, primarily because of the conference’s focus on technology and its essential and continually emerging role in higher education.
Educause conducts an annual survey of its constituents prioritizing the top 10 information technology (IT) issues for the year. These issues are reported during a conference session that includes a panel of higher education executives who respond to these issues and priorities. (Pictures provided here were taken during the presentation at Educause during the Top Ten Issues sessions at their conference, held November 2, 2017 in Philadelphia.)
These issues were then categorized into four themes: students, data, planning and funding, and security, which were presented for group discussion.
At a recent Educause 2017 conference, I had the opportunity to listen to theoretical futurist, physicist and author Dr. Michio Kaku and also listened to an EdSurge conference on artificial intelligence. But what do all of these technological changes mean for us in higher education? In this post on the future of higher education, I will address the potential implications in three areas: program currency and relevance; preparing students for the future; and the changing role of faculty.
As I discussed previously, the recent Presidents' Forum in part, and Educause 2017 in large part, focused on the topic of emerging and rapidly evolving learning technology. This week, I use an experiential learning framework approach to report my learnings and related reflections, i.e., what does this mean for higher education today and in the future? What do we do? What actions or follow-up are needed to advance these ideas?
Educause provided a wealth of informative and engaging ideas on multiple topics and areas. While attending Educause, I also had the opportunity to listen in on an EdSurge conference on artificial intelligence, hosted by EdSurge Editor Jeffrey Young and featuring Dr. Candace Thille from the Stanford Graduate School of Education and Civitas Learning Co-Founder & Chief Learning Officer Dr. Mark Milliron. Noteworthy takeaways from each program included the following.
At the October Presidents’ Forum, Dr. Merodie Hancock, president of SUNY Empire State College, led a panel discussion on a topic about which I am passionate -- addressing the need for development of leaders for today and the future to advance the digital and alternative learning environment. Questions addressed by the panel and participants included: How do we prepare leaders for the nontraditional environment? How do we build skills sets (and also define them) to work across institutions in our industry? How do we build policy skills in our emerging leaders to enable them to work with regulators and accreditors? How do we engage emerging leaders in pre-lobbying and/or train them in how the politics of higher education work and how to influence change in this world? To what opportunities do we need to expose emerging leaders in navigating the diversity of voices embedded in leading higher education today, and for the future?
In this discussion of leadership development, I was reminded that we as leaders need to model the way. Transparency, truth, and authenticity were characteristics that came to mind as the various panelists and participants spoke.