Discontinuing the ‘free’ certificates has been one of the most difficult decisions we’ve made,” wrote Sebastian Thrun, Udacity’s founder, in a blog post about the policy change. “We know that many of our hardworking students can’t afford to pay for classes. At the same time, we cannot hope that our certificates will ever carry great value if we don’t make this change.

Udacity Will No Longer Offer Free Certificates – Wired Campus - Blogs - The Chronicle of Higher Education

Lawmakers back Tennessee Promise plan for free tuition

Gov. Bill Haslam’s proposal to provide free community college received the overwhelming endorsement of state lawmakers Tuesday night, passing the House of Representatives on an 87-8 vote.

The House joined the Senate in approving “Tennessee Promise,” the plan Haslam laid out in February to cover the full cost of two-year college for every high school graduate starting in fall 2015.

» via The Tennessean

Unfortunately, most teachers are not in a position to share excitement with students. About 70% are classified as disengaged, which puts them on par with the workforce as a whole. This is surprising in some ways, because teachers score close to the top on measures that indicate that they find meaning in their life and see work as a calling. Unfortunately, the structures that teachers are working in–which may include high-stakes standardized testing and value-added formulas that evaluate their performance based on outside factors–seem to tug against their happiness. “The real bummer is they don’t feel their opinions matter,” Busteed says. K-12 teachers scored dead last among 12 occupational groups in agreeing with the statement that their opinions count at work, and also dead last on “My supervisor creates an open and trusting environment.” K-12 teachers scored dead last among 12 occupational groups in agreeing with the statement that their opinions count at work, and also dead last on “My supervisor creates an open and trusting environment.”

How Engaged Are Students and Teachers in American Schools? | MindShift

What we’re concerned about is the death spiral — this continuing downward momentum for some institutions,” said Susan Fitzgerald, an analyst at Moody’s Investors Service in New York. “We will see more closures than in the past.

Small U.S. Colleges Battle Death Spiral as Enrollment Drops - Bloomberg

"When you are dealing with so many different sources of information and so many different offices that need to be involved in the response to a problem, there has to be a reporting structure that brings it all together," Mr. McRobbie says. The changes mean that the university now has uniform response procedures—a tool kit, Mr. Bruhn calls it—that can be applied to cybersecurity and physical-security incidents alike. "It is that structure that provides us with a huge amount of comfort because we know even if it is a one-off sort of incident, we have a structure that is amoeba-like enough that it can cover just about anything that can happen," he says.

Indiana U. Puts IT and Safety Under One Umbrella - Technology - The Chronicle of Higher Education

The part-timers are often considered “invisible faculty,” because they rarely participate in academic life and typically bolt from campus the moment class ends. That researchers still know little about them — or how well they do their jobs — is especially startling given that a little more than half of all college faculty members are now part-timers, and they far outnumber full-time faculty members on most community college campuses.

The College Faculty Crisis - NYTimes.com

Most people in my discipline," said James Grossman, executive director of the American Historical Association, "if they hear the words ‘authentic assessment,’ ‘high-impact educational practices,’ or ‘essential learning outcomes’ will run as fast as they can in the opposite direction." That is especially the case, Mr. Grossman said, at top-tier research universities. "Nobody is going to flunk the University of Texas or Princeton on their next round of accreditation," he said, "so no faculty member is going to take it seriously, which means this gobbledygook is something they simply have to forebear for a certain period of time.

Educators Point to a ‘Crisis of Mediocre Teaching’ - Graduate Students - The Chronicle of Higher Education

As daunting financial pressures force newspapers around the country to shut down or severely trim staff and budgets, a new model has emerged in many communities in which college journalism students increasingly make up for the lack of in-depth coverage by local papers.

Local News, Off College Presses - NYTimes.com

The bill, in the Florida Senate, would require that undergraduate course textbooks remain in use for at least three years at state institutions, unless a professor successfully appealed to administrators to change course materials more frequently. The bill would also require professors to post assigned textbooks at least two weeks before registration for a new term, forcing them to choose course materials up to seven months before the first day of class. Supporters of the bill, SB 530, say it would lower financial barriers to higher education for students who struggle to afford rising textbook costs, which they attribute in part to frequent turnover in course materials. But professors worry that the bill would force them to teach dated research and entangle them in onerous regulations.

Professors Would Have to Use Same Textbook for 3 Years Under Florida Bill - Administration - The Chronicle of Higher Education