Friday, July 27, 2012

How to take your academic support services online

Every educational institution strives to enhance student achievementincrease student retention, and boost graduation rates. While there are many ways to improve these elements individually, one factor that impacts all of them is the quality of academic support that institutions provide their students.

Vi To, 
Director of Sales and Tutoring Solutions for Smarthinking, talked about this topic in depth at Post University's Online Learning Conference 2012During his presentation, Vi discussed the industry's move to personalize students' academic experiences, and how a key to achieving this goal is to provide the support and services students need, when they need it.

This, Vi said, is a challenge ideally addressed by taking academic support services online. 
Online academic support services can provide the anytime-anywhere access, immediate assistance, and robust tutoring support students need to excel.

 has a great deal of experience creating academic services programs and building student support teams from the years he spent with several educational institutions. He's brought his experience to bear at Smarthinking, which is a part of Pearson and provides research-based online tutoring technologies and services. 

Watch Vi's presentation, where he gives great insight into how to chose online academic support technologies, how to plan their implementation, and how to roll out online academic support across your institution.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

How higher education can be a turning point in addiction recovery

Post University MSHSV student, Steven Kuhn
When Steven Kuhn was undergoing addiction recovery, he kept a journal where he wrote about the ups and downs he experienced on his journey. It was therapeutic to express his thoughts, struggles, and successes as he forged a new path in life. Steven's journal was so well-written and poignant that his family encouraged him to turn it into a book and publish it.

Steven began reaching out to publishers, but received rejection letter after rejection letter. He decided to put his book on the back burner, and instead focus on another goal: obtaining his master's degree in human services from Post University. He had started attending Post because he wanted to begin a new career in the chemical dependency field and help other people overcome their addiction issues.

While attending Post University, Steven experienced one of the most important turning points in his path to a new life. Not only was his goal of completing his master's degree coming to fruition, but his instructors were bolstering him with support and inspiration to publish his book. They pushed Steven to achieve nothing less than excellence.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Next cartoon caption contest offers prizes from Omaha Steaks and more!

What's better than gourmet grilling meats for your next barbecues? Gourmet meats and bragging rights! The grand prize winner of our summer cartoon caption context will receive a prize pack of gourmet grilling meats from Omaha Steaks for their next summer BBQ, and other prizes!

You know the drill if you've entered our cartoon caption contests before. Just slip on your thinking cap and devise the funniest caption to go with our newest cartoon contributed by Dave Blazek. Dave is the creator and artist behind the "Loose Parts" cartoon strip and the mastermind behind our Ex Post Facto comics.

Here's the cartoon:

Take a good look. What do you see? Who's saying what? And why the heck is that mummy in the admissions office? Come up with the most creative punch line you can!

We'll review the entries, and the one that gets us rolling on the floor laughing will win:

Friday, July 20, 2012

Study finds how to make online discussions efficient yet valuable

We've written before on our blog about the importance of creating online discussion forums that balance quality with workload. It's crucial that these discussions provide students with a valuable learning experience, while keeping this task manageable for both them and instructors.

That's why we conducted a year-long study exploring the perceived workload and value of online discussions for our online MBA students and instructors. Our goal was to understand if our students believed these discussions were insightful and useful, and whether the workload was manageable and matched the value they were receiving.

Likewise, we wanted to ascertain how our instructors were managing to evaluate the hundreds of entries in the forum, and if they believed the discussions were helping students improve their competency in the subject matter at hand.

Banking pro tells how to make your MBA degree pay dividends for your career

If you ask Selena Smith if her MBA degree from Post University was worth the investment, she won't tell you "yes." Rather, she'll tell you her MBA degree has "paid dividends" for her career in the banking industry. Why? We won't let the cat out of the bag. Instead watch our Skypecast with Selena to find out from her first hand.

When you tune in, you'll hear Selena talk about how she was a member of the Army Reserves for eight years after high school before transitioning to the banking industry. When she joined the Webster Bank team in Waterbury, Conn., she soon realized she needed to build her educational background to move forward in her field. What happened next spurred significant changes in Selena's professional life, and led her to where she is today.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Some of the best resources for institutions entering online education

Nearly every day I read in the news about the growth in online education. Usually the story is covering one of two situations: more educational institutions are starting to add online learning modules to their academic programs, or a new online education start-up is launching or receiving venture capital funding.

An example of each story crossed my desk recently, and I wanted to highlight them. First, Inside Higher Ed's Steve Kolowich wrote about new online learning initiatives that top-rated liberal arts colleges are implementing. He covered how some professors at Bryn Mawr College and Wesleyan University are piloting online courses developed by Carnegie Mellon University’s Open Learning Initiative (OLI).

As a team of educators who have been at the forefront of the online education revolution, we recognize many of the challenges these and other institutions are probably facing, such as how to analyze and evaluate online learning technologies, how to develop an online learning program that best meets students' needs and results in strong learning outcomes, and how to implement and support the chosen program.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Media spotlight Post University's advice on online education, preschools, and more

Summer is in full swing, but that doesn't mean Post University faculty and staff members have taken a vacation from sharing their knowledge and advice. Our experts have provided their insights on topics from choosing the right preschool, to avoiding common pitfalls when implementing online learning. We wanted to round up some of those latest news stories to share some of their ideas and suggestions:

FIRST START: How to pick the right preschool for your child
"Online education catering to business." Frank Mulgrew, President of the Online Education Institute of Post University, was interviewed for a piece on the growth and importance of online learning, which ran in the Hartford Business Journal. For more of Frank's thoughts on the future of education, flip over to our blog and read a post about who's driving today's higher ed evolution.

"6 Tips for Finding the Right Preschool." Our own Jane Bailey, Dean of Post University's School of Education, contributed an article to allParenting with tips on how to choose a preschool that will foster your child's creativity. Jump over to the article to read her insights. For more tips, flip back to our blog post on how to find a preschool that nurtures a child's creativity.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Why Twitter can be the easiest social media platform to use in the classroom

Educators continue to lag behind other professionals when it comes to social media adoption. One significant reason for this lag may be education's tendency to cling to traditional learning approaches. However, I also see educators who are interested in using social media, but don't know how to begin using the technologies in ways that enrich learning.

Blogging can seem daunting to some educators. Facebook can present challenges with how to balance your professional persona with your personal persona. Google+ might sound confusing.

My advice for educators who want to use social media in positive ways, but don't know where to begin? Pick up Twitter.

In my experience, Twitter is perhaps the easiest social media technology to learn and begin incorporating into the classroom. It has a lower barrier to entry, because the user interface is relatively simple. And most of your students are probably on Twitter already, and many are proficient at using it.