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Higher Education in the Digital Age

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Table of Contents

PREFACE AND ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ix CONTRIBUTORS xvii Part 1. Costs and Productivity in Higher Education 1 Cost Trends, the "Cost Disease," and Productivity in Higher Education 2 Factors Other Than the Cost Disease Pushing Up Educational Costs 9 Affordability 18 Is There a Serious Problem--Even a Crisis? 24 Notes 27 Part 2. Prospects for an Online Fix 43 Background 44 The Lack of Hard Evidence 46 The Need for Customizable, Sustainable Platforms (or Tool Kits) 55 The Need for New Mindsets--and Fresh Thinking about Decision-Making 62 What Must We Retain? 67 Appendix: The Online Learning Landscape 72 Notes 77 Discussion by Howard Gardner 97 Discussion by John Hennessy 109 William G. Bowen's Responses to Discussion Session Comments by Howard Gardner and John Hennessy 123 Discussion by Andrew Delbanco 129 Discussion by Daphne Koller 145 William G. Bowen's Responses to Discussion Session Comments by Andrew Delbanco and Daphne Koller 157 INDEX 163

About the Author

William G. Bowen is president emeritus of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and Princeton University and founding chairman of ITHAKA. He is the author or coauthor of many books, including the acclaimed best seller "The Shape of the River: Long-Term Consequences of Considering Race in College and University Admissions", "Crossing the Finish Line: Completing College at America's Public Universities", and "Lessons Learned: Reflections of a University President" (all Princeton).


"Higher Education in the Digital Age, frames the current and coming debates instead of answering questions about the future of online learning... Bowen worries online learning will leave students behind or that the solutions dreamed up at elite institutions will not work in a country with a higher education system that bears no great resemblance to the classes in Cambridge... Bowen also predicts coming debates about faculty governance and intellectual property as faculty members team up to teach courses or use an online course from another institution to aid them in their own classrooms."--Ry Rivard, Inside Higher Ed "A slim and highly readable volumne... The collection of voices provides a thoughtful and provocative discussion of the emergence of online education."--Richard D. Kahlenberg "Higher Education in the Digital Age is an elegant exposition of old-fashioned, gentlemanly and humane views and values, couched in concerns about the value of new educational technologies and their pedagogical and economic potential. It is worth reading for its beautiful prose and for its clear commitment to the continuing importance of teaching and pedagogy in higher education."--Miriam E. David, Times Higher Education "[Bowen] describes approaches to online learning, distinguishes the difference between useful and unnecessary educational practices, and encourages an evidence-based introduction to technology. Critical of unfounded attacks on digital learning, Bowen urges practitioners and critics to preserve the broad goals of education: developing values and upholding personal responsibility. This thoughtful analysis is complemented and expanded upon by responses from authoritative educators; extensive notes provide further exploration and valuable references... Highly recommended to educators and all who care about preserving the best characteristics of our higher education system."--Elizabeth Hayford, Library Journal starred review "Bowen's thought provoking book should be required reading for anyone having a stake in our educational future."--Rich Lewine, NACADA Journal "Higher Education in the Digital Age is peppered with research findings and data and is a timely examination of a problem and its possible solution from a highly regarded educator and economist who has served on the front lines."--Ray Bert, Civil Engineering "This is a blessedly measured book... After sifting the 'literally thousands' of studies on online learning, including his own, here's Bowen's takeaway: true across socio-economic lines. MOOCs don't transform education. But they don't harm it either."--Katharine Whittemore, Boston Globe

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