Trend Watch for 2013: More of 2012

E-books, MOOCs, BYOD, Big Data. 2012 was full of trends that are changing the way students learn.  We see more attention being lavished on these topics in 2013 as administrators, students and the press debate the merits of new types of learning from joining a massive online course with 20,000 other students to very personalized experiences thanks to new data programs. Here are the top three trends we’ll be following and not-to-miss articles that hit on the key issues. What trends are you following this year?

Online Learning in Higher Education.  The 2012 Survey of Online Learning conducted by the Babson Survey Research Group reports that “32% of higher education students now take at least one course online” and that “77% of academic leaders rate the learning outcomes in online education as the same or superior to those in face-to-face classes.” And whether you are talking MOOCs or simply online course options, these findings have been steadily increasing since 2003 and experts believe 2013 will be no different.

E-books for libraries and schools. The access that e-books could supply is undeniable. Providing what ideally will be a cost effective option with the most up-to-date information would help students across all age groups learn better, faster. But we still don’t have it quite figured out. Libraries are still at odds with publishers and schools have a tough time getting clearance for what can be an overwhelming initial cost. But if we can get some of the basics figured out we may be able to take a huge step forward

Big data creating personalized experiences. Now that schools have the option to have classes, assignments, and a ton of other student activities online, the capability to track those actions is at their finger tips. The hard part is figuring out how to utilize that data to better the student. Monitoring when certain students become high risk for failing or recommending classes where students will be successful are just two examples of how big data can be used for student success. Once we figure out the how, the possibilities are endless.


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