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 […]

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Fall and Beyond: Higher Education in the Age of COVID-19 and Other Disasters

fall colored leaves fall on ground

Even before the COVID-19 global pandemic, higher education was struggling to make sense of what David La Piana and Melissa Mendes call a VUCA world in The Nonprofit Strategy Revolution: Real-Time Strategic Planning in a Rapid-Response World. Originally coined by the US military to describe a post-Cold War world, VUCA stands for: Volatile– The world […]

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Licensing Certification and Dispersed Students, Oh My! 

Photo of the united states in the dark with lights showing heavy populated areas

Institutions have juggled many issues to maintain educational continuity during the pandemic. WCET has addressed accessibility, Veterans benefits, crisis coordination, Open Educational Resources, the U.S. Department of Education’s ability to exercise enforcement discretion for Title IV eligibility , and more! However, we must now address the issue of institutional management of state licensing board requirements […]

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Communicating About the Crisis – with Help from Cowboy Joe

A pony with a cover that says Cowboy Joe University of Wyoming, posing with two women in cowboy hats

Today’s installment of What’s Next comes from Katie Carroll, Assistant Director of Admissions from the University of Wyoming. Katie shares with us how Wyoming is using Cowboy Joe, the institution’s chatbot, to help students, faculty, and staff navigate many of the challenges resulting from the pandemic. As the need for answering questions and providing information […]

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Promising Practices for Navigating “What’s Next”

I have long marveled at how quickly and effectively WCET pivots to support its members when we most need assistance. Remember the announcement of new guidelines that regional accreditors were going to use to evaluate distance education (CRAC-2001)? State authorization enforcement by the Department of Education? WCET helped us navigate around those icebergs. The Coronavirus […]

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Considering the Future, Now! 

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I don’t know about you, but the last few weeks (months?) have felt surreal. Not only on a professional level, but on a personal one as well. That uncanny feeling I have about ‘these times’ has continued as our local and state leaders and our federal governments are discussing what it will take to start […]

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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 […]

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

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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 […]

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What’s Next? #2: Wichita State and Broward College Move Forward on an Uncharted Journey

photo of the night sky with the words "What's next?"

Today we provide our second installment of the “What’s Next” stories, featuring the experiences of colleges and universities moving from the initial rapid deployment phase to the next phase of planning for how to deal with the reality of medium-term impacts of COVID-19. Using Russ Poulin’s metaphor, just as we have just finished bailing out […]

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