Microcredentials in Higher Education—Strategizing the Journey at Your Institution

There is rapidly growing interest in higher education about microcredentials and badges. The why of adopting a microcredential strategy was explored in a recent WCET Frontiers blog, “Considering Your “Why”- How Developing a Microcredential Strategy Will Help Your Students (and Your University) Thrive.” Microcredentials create shorter-term pathways for learners and earners. Additionally, they can aid student recruitment and retention. Microcredentials can also connect pathways and career advancement. But how do you get a microcredential initiative started at your institution? Join this webcast on October 12 to hear from panelists eager to share their journey and answer your questions. The panelists will cover: 

  • Where to begin.
  • Who should be included in the conversations?
  • Engaging students.
  • Evaluating options for microcredentials, platforms, and badges.
  • Defining microcredentials and outcomes.
  • Determining governance structure.
  • And more.

This webcast will take place via Zoom and is free and open to all. Register to receive the recording.

Supporting Career Mobility for Frontline Learners

What do large companies that cover tuition costs for employees expect of the digital learning programs that educate them? How closely aligned are those expectations with the goals and needs of the working adults seeking to grow their skill sets and career mobility opportunities? Join this webcast for a discussion about how innovative companies are thinking beyond helping employees upskill into in-demand roles—and how innovative postsecondary programs play a critical role in creating and expanding access to career mobility pathways.

This webcast will take place via Zoom and is free and open to all. Register to receive the recording.

Stop the Madness! It’s Time to Strategically Evaluate Educational Technology and Tools

The proliferation of tools and technologies to support digital learning increased dramatically during the  pandemic. Many institutions adopted edtech at a rapid pace with the movement to remote online learning. Others have been adopting and implementing technology for supporting digital learning for several years. However, these technologies are often duplicative, inaccessible, and expensive to support. After all, how many polling products does one institution need?

Join our panelists for a conversation around strategically evaluating and auditing technology and tools to ensure that they are:

  • Institutionally supported.
  • Necessary, and not duplicative.
  • Accessible.
  • Utilized by students.
  • Familiar to faculty and staff.
  • Sustainable.
  • Safe.

This webcast will take place via Zoom and is free and open to all. Register to receive the recording.

Navigating the Confusing Array of Digital Learning Definitions

As students sign up for courses, they are faced with course delivery options such as online, remote, hybrid, hyflex, synchronous, and asynchronous – but how these are defined is not always clear, and they vary even within an institution and, sometimes, within a department.  

It is confusing for faculty and staff. Students are often left adrift. The remote learning explosion resulting from the pandemic only made it worse. 

To understand the scale and nuances of the issue, WCET collaborated with Nicole Johnson Research and Consulting and Bay View Analytics to conduct an open survey of digital learning faculty and staff. Definitions used successfully in Canadian Digital Learning Research Association (CDLRA) surveys were posed to respondents to gauge their agreement with them. The Online Learning Consortium (OLC), Quality Matters (QM), and the University Professional and Continuing Education Association (UPCEA) helped distribute the survey and is helping to disseminate the results.  

SAN Advanced Topics Workshop 2022 (Virtual)

Succession Planning for Compliance Continuity

Hosted by the State Authorization Network (SAN), this synchronous virtual workshop will support an institution/organization’s current efforts to address state and federal compliance management continuity in the event of a staff change and to address efficient collaboration within the institution/organization. Early Bird Rates through August 9, 2022. 50 Participant Spaces Available.

SAN and NC-SARA Webinar Series: State Authorization Foundations & Reciprocity

State & Federal Building Blocks for Out-of-State Activity Compliance

Part 1 of this webinar series is designed primarily for institution personnel (but open to the public) and will focus on the foundations of state authorization for out-of-state compliance and introduce reciprocity.

Presenters: Cheryl Dowd, Senior Director, State Authorization Network & WCET Policy Innovations and Kathryn Kerensky, Director, Digital Learning Policy & Compliance, State Authorization Network.

2022 Legislative Advisory Committee Meeting

WICHE’s Legislative Advisory Committee works to strengthen state policymaking in higher education in the West by engaging legislators who are appointed by the WICHE Commission in the discussion of relevant higher education issues and by seeking strategies for interstate collaboration. This year’s meeting takes place in-person on Wednesday, September 21 and Thursday, September 22 in Sacramento, California.

Developing Culturally Relevant OER with CC ECHO

The California Consortium for Equitable Change in Hispanic-Serving Institutions Open Educational Resources (CC ECHO) has implemented a diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) framework for Open Educational Resources. CC ECHO is an initiative, funded by the U.S. Department of Education Open Textbook Pilot Program, by which four California community colleges promote textbook affordability, student success, and diversity, equity, and inclusion to benefit all students. The program provides professional development for integrating DEI in OER and curriculum to create culturally relevant OER through a peer-reviewed process for twenty high-enrolled courses that have limited or no OER available.

We are thrilled to welcome a student moderator, Paul Medina, the Region Vii Regional Affairs Director for the Student Senate for the California Community Colleges. Paul also serves as the co-chair for our Distance Education committee and is a phenomenal student leader. Our panelists are Marty Alvarado, Executive Vice Chancellor, California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office and executive committee member of the Alliance, as well as two representatives from West Hills Community College District, Kelsey Smith, OER Librarian, and Ron Oxford, Librarian. Join your colleagues to hear more about one group is doing to advance equity and OER offerings in their state. There will be ample time to share the approach your state, system, and/or institutions are taking and to brainstorm new ideas with your peers.

This webinar is open to members of the Alliance and Forum.

LibreTexts OER Showcase and ED’s Open Textbook Pilot Grant Program

The Department of Education is currently accepting applications through July 25, 2022, for the Open Textbook Pilot Grant, which supports projects at eligible institutions of higher education to create new open textbooks and expand the use of open textbooks and course materials. Join WCET and NCOER for a conversation with Josh Halpern of LibreTexts, the 2018 awardee of the Open Textbook Pilot Grant. Today, LibreTexts’ interactive collection has expanded to nearly 400 textbooks and saved $31 million, serving 223 million students in 154 courses.

Join this webcast to learn about the grant process, LibreTexts’ free, open, online materials, and how using them can help students save money and increase access.

Designing Inclusive Classrooms: Recommendations on Where to Start

This webcast is hosted by WCET in partnership with Wiley University Services.

As higher ed continues to focus on ways to increase equity within our learning communities, one area in which we find challenges is within the coursework and classrooms themselves. Oftentimes, faculty and administrators want to address DE&I issues in their coursework, but they may not know where to start.

Join leaders from Northern Illinois University, University of New Haven, and Wiley University Services as we explore best practices and recommendations for designing more inclusive classrooms. This dynamic conversation will address a range of topics, including:

  • How a strong instructional design serves as the foundation for building an inclusive course.
  • Why expanding course materials to reflect diversity prepares students for their personal and professional lives.
  • Ways to prioritize student well-being and self-care behaviors.
  • Ideas on how to promote student support resources.