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What Do Airbnb, Uber, and Some Higher Ed Innovations Really Have in Common?

“Airbnb for higher ed” and “Uber for higher ed” have become recurring buzz phrases in the higher education world. A piece on the topic that recently caught my attention describes ALEX, a platform developed by Harvard University students that connects employers and their individual employees with college classrooms that have unfilled seats. Employers can reduce their internal training costs, employees can improve their educational attainment and skills, and higher education…

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Higher Ed Themes of SXSWedu

Two weeks ago, I had the opportunity to attend SXSWedu, an education conference in Austin, Texas, focused on cutting edge practices and technology. I spent most of my time in Austin attending higher education panels and exhibits, and came away feeling that three major themes dominated this gathering of those at the vanguard of the field. The continually advancing field of student data analytics Several well-attended panels focused on how…

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Higher Education’s Free Agent Future

What happens when Professor Everybody teaches at the University of Everywhere? I’ve been grappling with this question for the last week after I heard talks at SXSWedu in Austin and then in Washington, DC about the coming free-agent, unbundled era of higher education. At SXSWedu—the education offshoot of the popular music and film festival—Jeff Young, a senior editor at The Chronicle of Higher Education, explained how the so-called “sharing economy”…

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