The wired tower: perspectives on the impact of the Internet by Matthew Serbin Pittinsky

By Matthew Serbin Pittinsky

Every person concurs that the web is profoundly altering greater schooling -- yet how? Which affects are long term and basic; that are temporary and shortly to be forgotten? within the stressed out Tower, lecturers, top govt schooling figures, enterprise thinkers and funding pros come jointly to evaluate the realities of the web in larger schooling. In a sequence of formerly unpublished essays edited by way of Blackboard, Inc., CEO Matthew Pittinsky, those specialists think about each key factor concerning the web in greater schooling. The essayists supply new insights into concerns together with: strengthening the relationships among campus and on-line studying; comparing Web-based studying and making sure caliber criteria; delivering greater help for college students and college; new suggestions for on-line path improvement, layout, and supply; the company chance that exists; the position of presidency in fostering this area.

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Traditional collegiate life may become the province of only the most affluent in our society who have the leisure and money to afford it. Every person will have an educational passport. In the future, each person’s education will occur not only in a cornucopia of different settings and geographic locales, but also via a plethora of different educational providers. As traditional degrees lose importance, the nation will need to establish a central bureau that records each person’s educational achievements––however and wherever they were gained––and that provides documentation.

All of these things are now being done by other educational providers as well––publishing companies, television networks, software makers, for-profit educators, and e-learning companies, to name a few. The university is different than every one of them in ways that should be prized. The university is not market-driven in the manner that other for-profit educators must be. This means it does not give the public simply what it asks for, but also what the university believes the public needs. This must seem arrogant, but in plain English––or maybe just distilled academese––it translates into an organization that is not engaged only in vocational training, but instead in educating the whole person for a full life.

The second danger is that traditional higher education will rush into, or worse yet, will be pushed headlong into the new digital economy and abandon what is sacred about higher education, those things that no other social institution is capable of providing. This would rob higher education of its very reason for being. Let’s consider what is sacred. Universities engage in three activities: discovery and creation of new knowledge, Chapter 2 • Higher Education 27 preservation and dissemination of knowledge, and application of knowledge to solving social problems.

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