Higher Education News

How Republican and Democratic Wish Lists on Higher Education Stack Up

Chronicle of Higher Education - July 24, 2018 - 8:09pm
With the release on Tuesday of the House Democrats’ proposal to reauthorize the Higher Education Act, we can compare their priorities, head to head, with the Republicans’ competing legislation.
Categories: Higher Education News

What Is Academic Freedom? Statement That Alarmed Professors at U. of Texas Sets Off Debate

Chronicle of Higher Education - July 24, 2018 - 4:47pm
Lawyers representing the university in a lawsuit argued in January that such freedom, if it exists, belongs to the institution and not to individual professors. The president affirmed the principle, but the dispute continues.
Categories: Higher Education News

After George Mason Dust-Up, Koch Foundation Will Start Putting Its College Deals Online

Chronicle of Higher Education - July 24, 2018 - 4:33pm
Along with its transparency push, the foundation is publishing a "refined articulation" of its giving principles.
Categories: Higher Education News

Space Innovation Day Features Live Conversation with NASA Astronaut in Space

On Wednesday June 27th, 2018, the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum held Space Innovation Day, an event to celebrate space exploration, STEM education and students as makers. The event was co-developed by the museum and Future Engineers, a technology firm that is a current awardee of the U.S. Department of Education and Institute of Education Sciences’ Small Business Innovation Research Program (ED/IES SBIR).

In the morning, the event featured a live conversation (called a “downlink”) between NASA astronaut Serena Auñón-Chancellor on the International Space Station and Washington, D.C.-area students at the museum. After a brief introduction of Auñón-Chancellor as she floated around in the space station, students asked her a series of questions such as “What it is like to experience space?” and “What does it take to be an astronaut?”

A student at the Air and Space Museum talks to NASA astronaut Serena Auñón-Chancellor on the International Space Station. Photo Credit: (NASA/Aubrey Gemignani)

The morning also included on-stage interviews with three students who won the Future Engineers Two For the Crew ChallengeThrough this national competition, sponsored by the ASME Foundation with technical assistance from NASA, K-12 students submitted a digital design of an astronaut tool intended to be manufactured on the International Space Station using a 3-D Printer. This tool allows innovative solutions to be provided to the astronauts immediately and means that NASA does not need to ship tools into space. One of the student winners designed “2 Pliers + 1 Handle,” a set of tool parts including needle-nose and lineman’s pliers with attachable handles. The 3-D printed multi-purpose tool can be customized into many different configurations when in space.

Digital design of the 2 Pliers + 1 Handle tool.

The challenge competition was run through a web-based platform that Future Engineers is developing with the support of a 2017 award from ED/IES SBIR.  The platform provides an online hub for students to create and submit solutions to innovation design challenges. Future Engineers is planning to launch the school version of their platform in the 2018-19 school year, with the goal of bringing many different kinds of maker design challenges to classrooms around the country across many areas of STEM for grades K to 12.

Deanne Bell of ED/IES SBIR supported Future Engineers (standing with microphone to the left) talks to the student audience about the Two for the Crew Challenge. Photo Credit: (NASA/Aubrey Gemignani)

The afternoon of the event featured hands-on exhibits with educational opportunities for hundreds of students and museum attendees, including a 3-D design makerspace by Future Engineers, an augmented reality solar system experience by the Space Foundation and a virtual reality space station experience by NASA.

We look forward to more maker design challenge events in the future!


Edward Metz is a program officer at the Institute of Education Sciences.

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The U.S. Department of Education’s Small Business Innovation Research program, administered by the Institute of Education Sciences (IES), funds projects to develop education technology products designed to support students, teachers, or administrators in general or special education. The program emphasizes rigorous and relevant research to inform iterative development and to evaluate whether fully-developed products show promise for leading to the intended outcomes. The program also focuses on commercialization once the award period ends so that products can reach students and teachers and be sustained over time. ED/IES SBIR-supported products are currently used in thousands of schools around the country.

The post Space Innovation Day Features Live Conversation with NASA Astronaut in Space appeared first on ED.gov Blog.

Categories: Higher Education News

There’s a New Scholarly Take on Mizzou’s Race Crisis, and Its Leaders Don’t Fare Well

Chronicle of Higher Education - July 24, 2018 - 12:22pm
Ben Trachtenberg, a law professor and former faculty leader, says Mizzou’s infighting administrators missed opportunities to diffuse protests before they got out of control.
Categories: Higher Education News

Colleges Are Creating ‘a Generation of Sanctimonious, Sensitive, Supercilious Snowflakes,’ Sessions Says

Chronicle of Higher Education - July 24, 2018 - 12:15pm
In a speech on Tuesday, the attorney general said students were graduating not as “mature and well-informed adults” but as coddled kids.
Categories: Higher Education News

Workers in the Spotlight, Higher Ed on the Sidelines

Chronicle of Higher Education - July 24, 2018 - 10:32am
Education is a central pillar of the White House's national workforce strategy, unveiled last week. So why weren't academic leaders asked to provide any input?
Categories: Higher Education News

Want to Be an Activist in Residence? A Scholar and an Activist Explain How

Chronicle of Higher Education - July 23, 2018 - 4:42pm
Deva Woodly, an assistant professor of politics at the New School, lobbied administrators to let her bring an activist, Shanelle Matthews, into her world. The two talk about the new position and how it benefits both groups.
Categories: Higher Education News

No ‘Frasorority’ for Him: Citing Sexism, Members of Foreign-Service Fraternity Rebel Against Leader

Chronicle of Higher Education - July 23, 2018 - 4:15pm
Members and alumni of Delta Phi Epsilon, a national professional fraternity, are calling for the resignation of Terrence Boyle, who they say has expressed sexist and xenophobic beliefs.
Categories: Higher Education News

DeVos Will Join Turning Point USA, Conservative Campus Group, at Conference

Chronicle of Higher Education - July 23, 2018 - 3:30pm
The secretary of education will join the controversial group's leader at its High School Leadership Summit this week in Washington.
Categories: Higher Education News

Rap Is Art. So Why Do Some Academics Still Feel Like They Have to Defend It?

Chronicle of Higher Education - July 23, 2018 - 12:10pm
After an college administrator said rap was not real music, scholars of the music step up to defend their work.
Categories: Higher Education News

Baylor 'Set the Football Program on Fire' as Scapegoat in Sex-Assault Scandal, Says Ex-Athletic Director

Chronicle of Higher Education - July 22, 2018 - 1:33pm
In a lawsuit deposition, he names "bad actors," some of them still at the university, in what he sees as a cover-up.
Categories: Higher Education News

More Than 100 Ohio State Alumni Allege Abuse by Former University Sports Doctor

Chronicle of Higher Education - July 20, 2018 - 12:21pm
Investigators said on Friday that the allegations had emerged from interviews with more than 200 former students and staff members.
Categories: Higher Education News

As Grim Anniversary Nears, UVa Faculty Protest Appointment of Former Trump Official

Chronicle of Higher Education - July 20, 2018 - 12:13pm
Critics of Marc Short’s hiring cited his defense of the president’s comments about the “very fine people” who attended last year’s white-nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va.
Categories: Higher Education News

What Happens in the Classroom No Longer Stays in the Classroom. What Does That Mean for Teaching?

Chronicle of Higher Education - July 19, 2018 - 7:42pm
In an era of secret video recordings and online evaluations, the possibility of public judgment hovers over every instructor. That’s making the messy art of teaching even messier.
Categories: Higher Education News

How to Help Students Climb the Income Ladder

Chronicle of Higher Education - July 19, 2018 - 4:38pm
Marvin Krislov, president of Pace University, in New York, talks about how his institution seeks to improve the economic status of its students with an education that blends specific job skills and the broader benefits of the liberal arts.
Categories: Higher Education News

Transitions: U. of Minnesota President Will Step Down Next Year, Kentucky Community and Technical College System Selects New Leader

Chronicle of Higher Education - July 19, 2018 - 3:30pm
Kristin Williams will become chancellor of the Kentucky Community and Technical College System. Eric Kaler will step down after eight years of leading University of Minnesota-Twin Cities.
Categories: Higher Education News

#RethinkSchool: Flying Drones, Veterinary Care and a Chiropractic Clinic, All in a West Texas High School

U.S. Department of Education Blog | Ed.gov - July 19, 2018 - 12:52pm

“One of the workforce arguments is that we’re turning out folks that know how to color in the right bubble on a multiple-choice test, but they don’t know how to do anything,” said Dr. Kim Alexander, superintendent of the Roscoe Collegiate Independent School District in West Texas. In 2012, Superintendent Alexander and his district colleagues started to address this problem by creating an innovative series of apprentice partnerships with local businesses, and today it appears that Roscoe high school students know how to do everything.

Alexander, who is a Roscoe area native, has worked as an educator in the Roscoe District for 32 years, with the last 15 years as superintendent. In 2012, Roscoe was trying to become a STEM academy. “We wanted to have real-world relevance and real workforce readiness, and even job creation,” Alexander said. “One of the rural dilemmas is to have proximity to meaningful [student] apprenticeship opportunities. You have to partner with profitable businesses.”

Roscoe’s first business partnership started when the high school’s athletic trainer, who is a Roscoe alumnus and a chiropractor in Abilene, Texas agreed to use a gym dressing room to see chiropractic patients with Roscoe students as apprentices.

A veterinary technician (holding the dog) instructs Roscoe High School students who are working toward their veterinary-assistant certification. (Credit: Roscoe Collegiate Independent School District)

Other partnerships offering apprenticeships to students followed. “There’s a problem of a veterinary shortage for food animals in our region. So we got the concept of housing a mixed-animal veterinary clinic for educational purposes and for certified veterinary-assistant certification,” Alexander explained.

People in the community said that Roscoe was providing students with good workforce readiness in biomedical education but not offering much opportunity in engineering. Alexander said that’s when Roscoe came up with Edu-Drone. “Kids like the drones, and it’s just robotics in the air. That’s when we partnered with a local drone company that was working on a curriculum for FAA 107 commercial-drone certification. We had one of our business partners negotiate a deal to market our drone curriculum through [an office supply outlet]. Now at Roscoe, we do commercial drone flights for agricultural data collection, real-estate cinematography, topline, and windmill-blade inspection.”

Instructor Dusty White (right) watches a Roscoe High School student fly a drone above Roscoe Collegiate Center. The 11th-grade student received his unmanned aircraft vehicle pilot license at age 16. (Credit: Roscoe Collegiate Independent School District)

The U.S. Department of Education’s David Cantrell, director of School Support and Rural Programs, visited the Roscoe District recently, and he was impressed with the innovation. “[The district] received the Small Rural School Achievement Grant from my office for several years, and they’re doing some really creative things with their educational funds,” Cantrell said. “My team and I spent three days onsite talking with the superintendent and meeting community members, school staff, parent groups, student groups. It’s not like your typical K-12 school in an urban setting or any other rural district.” The Department of Education grant averages $25,000 per year, and the district has received the grant annually for the past 10 years.

In addition to business partnerships, Roscoe is starting a program to combine a high school diploma with earning a bachelor’s degree.

The story of Roscoe’s creative approach is spreading throughout the state, and beyond. It is only fitting that these innovative educators have the eyes of Texas upon them.


Joe Barison is a public affairs specialist in the Office of Communications and Outreach.

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Note: This is a post in our #RethinkSchool series. The series features innovative schools and stories from students, parents and educators highlighting efforts across the United States to rethink school. Check back on Thursdays for new posts in the series. The #RethinkSchool series presents examples of approaches schools, educators, families and others are using to rethink school in their individual and unique circumstances. Blog articles provide insights on the activities of schools, programs, grantees and other education stakeholders to promote continuing discussion of educational innovation and reform. The Department of Education does not endorse any educational product, service, curriculum or pedagogy.


The post #RethinkSchool: Flying Drones, Veterinary Care and a Chiropractic Clinic, All in a West Texas High School appeared first on ED.gov Blog.

Categories: Higher Education News

Some Colleges Cautiously Embrace Wikipedia

Chronicle of Higher Education - July 19, 2018 - 10:38am
The online encyclopedia, once scorned by academics, now pairs them with editors of its crowdsourced content.
Categories: Higher Education News

Running Class Discussions on Divisive Topics Is Tricky. Here's One Promising Approach.

Chronicle of Higher Education - July 19, 2018 - 8:13am
Conversations on hot-button issues often get stuck. But instructors can help students learn to break out of unproductive patterns.  
Categories: Higher Education News


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