Friday, October 15, 2010

Gates Foundation launches $20 million program to expand technology use

Liz Exo’s Blog Post:
This article focuses on the advancements in technology use that the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation plans to fund to help with college readiness and completion. The Gates Foundation really wants to help out with this cause because, although access to higher education has become more available, by age 30 fewer than half of Americans have earned a college degree. So by funding the use of up-to-date technology for postsecondary education, we can hopefully increase the amount of students that earn a college degree.
Here is the proposal that addresses some specific challenges that should be taken on in the postsecondary education world:
1. Increase the use of “blended learning models” (this means combining face-to-face learning with online learning)
2. Strengthen students’ engagement through interactive technology
3. Support the availability of high-quality open courseware
4. Help institutions, instructors, and students benefit from learning analytics, which can monitor student progress and customize personal support.

2 comments:

medwards said...

I think it's great that the Bill &
Melinda Gates Foundation wants to help increase college readiness and completion and I also think that increasing the use of technology in the classroom is almost always a good thing, but I am confused as to why they are focusing on increasing technology in the postsecondary education world.Wouldn't it make more sense to fund technology in elementary and high school classrooms in order to engage and educate children so that they are prepared to enter the postsecondary education world?

eschmidt said...

I agree with Mary's comment. Though it is wonderful that Bill and Melinda Gates are being proactive in the need to have more people graduate college, I'm not sure that I see the correlation between having more and better technology in colleges and getting more students enrolled in these types of institutions. As Mary pointed out, I think it would make a lot more sense to fund technology programs for elementary and high school programs so that students learn skills that will enable them to be well equipped in the post-secondary world.
In order to get more students enrolled and graduating colleges and universities we are going to need to start at the elementary, middle and high school levels.