Higher Education in the Digital Age

Princeton University Press
3

Two of the most visible and important trends in higher education today are its exploding costs and the rapid expansion of online learning. Could the growth in online courses slow the rising cost of college and help solve the crisis of affordability? In this short and incisive book, William G. Bowen, one of the foremost experts on the intersection of education and economics, explains why, despite his earlier skepticism, he now believes technology has the potential to help rein in costs without negatively affecting student learning. As a former president of Princeton University, an economist, and author of many books on education, including the acclaimed bestseller The Shape of the River, Bowen speaks with unique expertise on the subject.

Surveying the dizzying array of new technology-based teaching and learning initiatives, including the highly publicized emergence of "massive open online courses" (MOOCs), Bowen argues that such technologies could transform traditional higher education--allowing it at last to curb rising costs by increasing productivity, while preserving quality and protecting core values. But the challenges, which are organizational and philosophical as much as technological, are daunting. They include providing hard evidence of whether online education is cost-effective in various settings, rethinking the governance and decision-making structures of higher education, and developing customizable technological platforms. Yet, Bowen remains optimistic that the potential payoff is great.

Based on the 2012 Tanner Lectures on Human Values, delivered at Stanford University, the book includes responses from Stanford president John Hennessy, Harvard University psychologist Howard Gardner, Columbia University literature professor Andrew Delbanco, and Coursera cofounder Daphne Koller.

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About the author

William G. Bowen is president emeritus of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and Princeton University and founding chairman of ITHAKA. He is the author or coauthor of many books, including the acclaimed best seller The Shape of the River: Long-Term Consequences of Considering Race in College and University Admissions, Crossing the Finish Line: Completing College at America's Public Universities, and Lessons Learned: Reflections of a University President (all Princeton).

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Reviews

4.7
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Additional Information

Publisher
Princeton University Press
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Published on
Apr 7, 2013
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Pages
192
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ISBN
9781400847204
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
Business & Economics / Economics / General
Business & Economics / Education
Education / Administration / Higher
Education / Distance, Open & Online Education
Education / Finance
Education / General
Education / Higher
Education / Home Schooling
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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William G. Bowen
Ever the Leader gathers together selected speeches and writings from one of the great scholars and commentators of higher education. William G. Bowen’s career at Princeton University—from economics professor to provost to a sixteen-year tenure as president—was marked by extraordinary accomplishments during times of great change, both at the university and in the country. But it was in Bowen’s second act, as president of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and founding chairman of ITHAKA, that he took the lessons he learned as a highly productive leader of one of the nation’s most esteemed universities and applied them to a broader set of problems in higher education. This volume of work from Bowen’s later career captures this expansion of his thought and influence.

Comprising remarks and articles on the subjects of university values, educational opportunity, college sports, technology, and colleagues and peers in higher education leadership, Ever the Leader is more than just a concise distillation of Bowen’s research and thinking on some of the most urgent issues of the day—it is a portrait of leadership in action. The selected papers, talks, and articles exemplify Bowen’s commitment and singular ability to communicate strong, persuasive arguments for change, and to motivate others to engage with the truly hard questions facing higher education leaders.

Filled with formidable insights, Ever the Leader will be required reading for university presidents, policymakers, and all those who carry on the struggle for equity and excellence in higher education.

William G. Bowen
On the occasion of the 250th anniversary of Princeton University, leading educators and commentators participated in a symposium jointly sponsored by Princeton and The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Universities and Their Leadership is a collection of original essays from presenters at the Princeton Conference on Higher Education. Individually, these essays discuss aspects of contemporary higher education in the U.S. Taken together, they offer a useful perspective on issues that face American universities as they enter the twenty-first century.

The opening essay, "The University and Its Critics" by Frank Rhodes, confronts criticisms of the American university, examines how universities have changed over recent decades, and suggests a plan of action to restore public confidence and strengthen bonds of community within universities. "On the Accountability of Higher Education in the United States," by Martin Trow, deals with the critical issue of responsibility. Harold Shapiro's essay, "University Presidents--Then and Now," blends personal insights with a historical account of changes over time in the roles of university presidents. In commenting on Shapiro's paper, Hanna Gray draws on her experiences as a university president and her training as a historian to demonstrate that university presidents have always operated under constraints. Henry Rosovsky and Inge-Lise Ameer collaborate in the essay "A Neglected Topic: Professional Conduct of College and University Teachers," to which Amy Gutmann responds in an essay entitled "How Can Universities Teach Professional Ethics?" Oliver Fulton contributes a cross-cultural perspective in "Unity or Fragmentation, Convergence or Diversity: The Academic Profession in Comparative Perspective in the Era of Mass Higher Education." Daniel J. Kevles's essay, "A Time for Audacity: What the Past Has to Teach the Present about Science and the Federal Government," considers the historical partnership between the scientific community and the government. In reaction, Frank Press in "New Policies for New Times" comments on the shifting actions of major political parties in supporting research, and Maxine Singer, in her essay "On the Future of America's Scientific Enterprise," surveys opportunities and problems that have been created by recent scientific advances.

William G. Bowen
Two of the most visible and important trends in higher education today are its exploding costs and the rapid expansion of online learning. Could the growth in online courses slow the rising cost of college and help solve the crisis of affordability? In this short and incisive book, William G. Bowen, one of the foremost experts on the intersection of education and economics, explains why, despite his earlier skepticism, he now believes technology has the potential to help rein in costs without negatively affecting student learning. As a former president of Princeton University, an economist, and author of many books on education, including the acclaimed bestseller The Shape of the River, Bowen speaks with unique expertise on the subject.

Surveying the dizzying array of new technology-based teaching and learning initiatives, including the highly publicized emergence of "massive open online courses" (MOOCs), Bowen argues that such technologies could transform traditional higher education--allowing it at last to curb rising costs by increasing productivity, while preserving quality and protecting core values. But the challenges, which are organizational and philosophical as much as technological, are daunting. They include providing hard evidence of whether online education is cost-effective in various settings, rethinking the governance and decision-making structures of higher education, and developing customizable technological platforms. Yet, Bowen remains optimistic that the potential payoff is great.

Based on the 2012 Tanner Lectures on Human Values, delivered at Stanford University, the book includes responses from Stanford president John Hennessy, Harvard University psychologist Howard Gardner, Columbia University literature professor Andrew Delbanco, and Coursera cofounder Daphne Koller.

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