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Higher Ed used as a mode of exercising “soft power” and one university’s attempt to order 1,200 hand-sanitizer stations. Here’s my latest roundup:

China surpasses western government African university scholarships

Financial Times, JUN 23 2020

The FT’s Andrew Jack reports on the Chinese government’s use of university scholarships as a mode of exercising “soft power” in Africa. UNESCO has released a report that shows how China’s government now offers more university scholarships to African students than the leading western governments combined.

The Radical Adjustment Of Higher Education

Forbes, JUN 23 2020

This article details the noteworthy MAPS Project, a higher education initiative funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The Project has launched the MAPS Dashboard, a large compilation of data and student surveys on Covid-19’s impact on higher education. Their work is engineered to help enable agile decision making during the pandemic; it is really worth checking out!

How MIT Is Crowdsourcing Its Reopening Plans for the Fall

EdSurge, JUN 19 2020

EdSurge describes MIT’s Herculean efforts to use the collective brain-power of their staff to formulate their plan for reopening in the fall. This included coordinating 69 different forums via Zoom, in which groups of ten or twelve would brainstorm ideas. The resulting report will be released later this month or in July.

Colleges Spend Millions to Prepare to Reopen Amid Coronavirus

Wall Street Journal,  JUN 24 2020

WSJ’s Melissa Korn details the efforts of higher education institutions to put in place procedures that will allow them to reopen in the fall. Measures such as ordering a mile’s worth of plexiglass may seem faintly amusing but could they be the new normal?

‘Better Every Semester’: How Faculty Use Open Educational Resources to Improve Courses

EdSurge, JUN 18 2020

Rebecca Koenig speaks with a number of Open Educational Resources advocates who put forward their case. Among the benefits of OER they detail are its low cost and adaptability over time. John Richards of the Harvard Graduate School of Education points out for instance that OER’s adaptability means that it is far quicker to evolve in response to reading data collected from students.  

Want more? Check out our announcement in support of Black Lives Matter from earlier this month, here.