Students themselves are insisting on more direct linkages with employers that enable them to secure better jobs upon graduation. The demographic profile of college students is also shifting. By 2020, it is expected that 42 percent of all college students will be 25 years or older. These nontraditional students have work and family responsibilities and are looking for affordable, flexible and targeted learning pathways that enable them to complete their degrees faster. They also seek lifelong learning programs that enable them to continuously update their skills in order to remain competitive in a constantly changing market (Weise and Christensen, 2014).
Meanwhile, advances in technology have transformed the way education is delivered and accessed. Content has become ubiquitous, freely available to anyone with a laptop, tablet or smartphone. Faculty members are no longer required to be on campus and can teach from anywhere in the world using videoconferencing and similar means of communication. Similarly, students can take online classes off campus, from any location in the world.
The inefficiencies of the current higher education system, the changing nature of demand and major advances in digital technology have led to a search for a new system in higher education, one that is simpler, more con...
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...t is basically a six-year program that can be completed at different stages. Open Loop Universities’ introduction video states: “Stanford is not just a time in your life, it is a lifetime”.
2. Axis Flip: The objective of this initiative is to fill the current skill gap and emphasize competency-based education. It involves the launch of undergraduate teaching hubs built around competencies, with a dean appointed to each. In the context of this initiative, “the deans of Scientific Analysis, Quantitative Reasoning, Social Inquiry, Moral & Ethical Reasoning, Aesthetic Interpretation, Creative Confidence, and Communication Effectiveness created physical hubs to which faculty co-located for periods of time to develop new courses and teach those courses.” Transcripts, in this case, will be replaced by skill prints as skills become independent variables (Axis Flip, 2015).
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