Update on Federal Regulations Impacting Distance Education During the Pandemic

photo of a groundhog

In Harold Ramis’ 1993 classic, Groundhog Day, Bill Murray portrays a television weatherman sent to cover Punxsutawney Phil on Groundhog Day who ends up repeating the day over and over again. At first, Murray’s character, Phil Connors, uses the time loop to his advantage—binge eating, having one night stands, committing robbery, and manipulating local residents […]

Read More

Open in a Time of Crisis

an open door

As an ongoing part of WCET’s efforts to help faculty and staff respond to the pandemic, today Tanya Spilovoy, our resident Open Educational Resources (OER) expert, takes a look at the role openness and OER can play as institutions move away from rushing to deliver remote instruction to more deliberately designed online courses for the […]

Read More

New Regulations #3: Direct Assessment and Competency-Based Education

comment bubbles

In case you missed it, the Department of Education finally released the last set of regulations from its epic 2019 negotiated rulemaking process on April 1st. And, no, it wasn’t an April Fool’s Day joke. This is the third and final part of WCET’s analysis of the proposed rules. Part one of our analysis details […]

Read More

New Regulations Review #2: Credit Hour, Title IV Eligibility, & What Exactly is a Week?

a link that says "comments"

On April 1st, the Department of Education finally released the last set of regulations from its epic 2019 negotiated rulemaking process. On April 3rd WCET posted an analysis of proposed changes to the definition of distance education including (finally) a proposed definition of regular and substantive interaction. Today we are examining several other aspects of […]

Read More

New Regulations Review #1: Regular & Substantive Interaction

A roller coaster cart filled with people about to go over a long drop

Much to everyone’s surprise, the Department of Education finally released the last set of regulations from last year’s negotiated rulemaking for public comment on April 1st (and it wasn’t an April Fool’s Day joke—we checked).  This post will examine the proposed changes to the distance education and credit hour definitions. We’ll have another post early […]

Read More

Keeping Accessibility in Mind During the COVID-19 Conversion of Courses

quote from text in an image: It is much, much harder to retrofit accessibility onto existing educational materials than it is to get it right the first time.

We welcome today’s guest post from Cyndi Rowland, Executive Director of WebAIM (at Utah State University) which empowers organizations to make their web content accessible to people with disabilities. Cyndi gives us great and compassionate advice for teachers and faculty suddenly thrust into teaching with technologies. Thank you for sharing your wisdom, Cyndi! — Russ […]

Read More

Support for Veterans Shown by Congress’ Quick Response to Preserve GI Benefits during COVID-19

The dynamic conversion of face-to-face courses to online format at post-secondary institutions nationwide due to the closing of campuses in response to the COVID-19 pandemic became a concern for our nation’s veterans who rely on GI Bill benefits. As we previously reported, institutions that provide GI Bill benefits to veterans for programs must follow a […]

Read More

GI Bill Guidance Provides Some Relief and Real Challenges for Veteran Students

American flag

***Updated 3/17/2020 2:50 PM MT time*** We are pleased to share that although the guidance we referenced in the article below was provided by the Veterans Administration (VA) on March 13, 2020, the VA rescinded this guidance. Senate Bill, S.3503, was introduced on March 16, 2020 and passed the same night. It is anticipated that […]

Read More