Posted by: clholoman | July 23, 2010

Currency devaluation

Just a short note, since I promised an entry today.* One of the things our liason with the NYS Ed Dept. talked about a lot during the visit was the interest that office has in “guaranteeing the integrity of credits.” And that’s an admirable goal, since the credit hour really is the basic currency of higher education. Obviously, since faculty and student workloads etc. are based there.

But I was also reading an article by a “futurist” (can I get that job?) critiquing the current state of higher education and its future viability and one of his points was that credits are a currency in another sense–students accumulate them and then cash them in for a degree. This only makes sense, of course, if the credit hour is more than simply a measure of time, but also reflects student learning (NOT professor teaching!). But there may be a real disconnect between what we want students to learn and the structure of a traditional semester course. So how do we accommodate that in a system that is based on a pretty inflexible currency?

Reading over, this all seems pretty obvious to me, so sorry about that. Perhaps we can unpack that more soon.

*First example of blog fail. I thought I posted this on the 21st as promised, but I guess I only saved it as a draft.

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