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College 2.0: An Entrepreneurial Approach to Reforming Higher Education - Overcoming Barriers and Fostering Innovation (Papers from the Entrepreneurship in Higher Education Retreat, December 2011)

College 2.0: An Entrepreneurial Approach to Reforming Higher Education - Overcoming Barriers and Fostering Innovation (Papers from the Entrepreneurship in Higher Education Retreat, December 2011)

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A far-reaching discussion is taking place in the United States about the challenges facing higher education and the possible forms postsecondary learning might take in the future. Notwithstanding the strengths of our best research institutions, the shortcomings of many U.S. colleges and universities are significant. There is growing evidence that they need to focus more effectively on student learning, improve completion rates, lower costs, make much better use of technology, boost productivity, improve delivery of instruction for nontraditional students, and take innovations to scale more quickly.

To make this happen—and to provide brand-new alternatives to traditional models—a more entrepreneurial approach to postsecondary education is sorely needed. But even as a period of unusual ferment in U.S. higher education gets under way, numerous barriers continue to slow innovation and thwart experimentation, both in traditional institutions and in start-up ventures.

In an effort to understand the nature of those barriers and to generate ideas for overcoming them, in December 2011 the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation convened a diverse group of analysts and practitioners for a two-day retreat in Palm Beach, Florida. Participants included Shai Reshef, founder of the University of the People; the management editor of The Economist; the founders of startups 2tor, Inc. and StraighterLine; senior leaders of nontraditional universities such as Olin College and Western Governors University; the president and CEO of Kaplan, Inc.; the directors of education policy at the American Enterprise Institute, the Brookings Institution, and the Center for American Progress; and professors who both study and participate in postsecondary reform initiatives.

The gathering, part of the Kauffman Foundation’s Law, Innovation and Growth series, was organized into panels addressing six broad themes: Tackling Campus-Level Obstacles to Innovation; Rethinking Accreditation; Streamlining State and Federal Regulations; Improving Incentives to Boost Academic Productivity; Filling Information Gaps about Student-Learning and Job-Market Outcomes; and Overcoming Barriers to Taking Innovation to Scale. The aim was not to limit discussion to these issues, but simply to provide provisional categories that might foster wide-ranging conversation.

Each participant prepared a short background paper and presentation linked to one of the retreat’s themes. The resulting essays are collected in this report, organized by theme. (A full list of authors can be found on page 7.) These thoughtful analyses offer a window into how a range of articulate thinkers and doers approach the question of what is wrong with U.S. higher education, and how it ought to be fixed.
A far-reaching discussion is taking place in the United States about the challenges facing higher education and the possible forms postsecondary learning might take in the future. Notwithstanding the strengths of our best research institutions, the shortcomings of many U.S. colleges and universities are significant. There is growing evidence that they need to focus more effectively on student learning, improve completion rates, lower costs, make much better use of technology, boost productivity, improve delivery of instruction for nontraditional students, and take innovations to scale more quickly.

To make this happen—and to provide brand-new alternatives to traditional models—a more entrepreneurial approach to postsecondary education is sorely needed. But even as a period of unusual ferment in U.S. higher education gets under way, numerous barriers continue to slow innovation and thwart experimentation, both in traditional institutions and in start-up ventures.

In an effort to understand the nature of those barriers and to generate ideas for overcoming them, in December 2011 the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation convened a diverse group of analysts and practitioners for a two-day retreat in Palm Beach, Florida. Participants included Shai Reshef, founder of the University of the People; the management editor of The Economist; the founders of startups 2tor, Inc. and StraighterLine; senior leaders of nontraditional universities such as Olin College and Western Governors University; the president and CEO of Kaplan, Inc.; the directors of education policy at the American Enterprise Institute, the Brookings Institution, and the Center for American Progress; and professors who both study and participate in postsecondary reform initiatives.

The gathering, part of the Kauffman Foundation’s Law, Innovation and Growth series, was organized into panels addressing six broad themes: Tackling Campus-Level Obstacles to Innovation; Rethinking Accreditation; Streamlining State and Federal Regulations; Improving Incentives to Boost Academic Productivity; Filling Information Gaps about Student-Learning and Job-Market Outcomes; and Overcoming Barriers to Taking Innovation to Scale. The aim was not to limit discussion to these issues, but simply to provide provisional categories that might foster wide-ranging conversation.

Each participant prepared a short background paper and presentation linked to one of the retreat’s themes. The resulting essays are collected in this report, organized by theme. (A full list of authors can be found on page 7.) These thoughtful analyses offer a window into how a range of articulate thinkers and doers approach the question of what is wrong with U.S. higher education, and how it ought to be fixed.

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College 2.0: An Entrepreneurial Approachto Reorming Higher Education
Overcoming Barriers and Fostering Innovation
Papers rom the Entrepreneurship in Higher Education Retreat | June 2012
 
© 2012 by the Ewing Marion Kauman Foundation. All rights reserved.
College 2.0: An Entrepreneurial Approachto Reorming Higher Education
Overcoming Barriers and Fostering Innovation
Papers rom the Entrepreneurship in Higher Education Retreat | December 2011
 June 2012
 
College 2.0: An Entrepreneurial Approach to Reforming Higher Education: Overcoming Barriers and Fostering Innovation
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A ar-reaching discussion is taking place in the United Statesabout the challenges acing higher education and the possible ormspostsecondary learning might take in the uture. Notwithstanding thestrengths o our best research institutions, the shortcomings o manyU.S. colleges and universities are signicant. There is growing evidencethat they need to ocus more eectively on student learning, improvecompletion rates, lower costs, make much better use o technology,boost productivity, improve delivery o instruction or nontraditionalstudents, and take innovations to scale more quickly.To make this happen—and to provide brand-new alternatives totraditional models—a more entrepreneurial approach to postsecondaryeducation is sorely needed. But even as a period o unusual ermentin U.S. higher education gets under way, numerous barriers continueto slow innovation and thwart experimentation, both in traditionalinstitutions and in start-up ventures.In an eort to understand the nature o those barriers and togenerate ideas or overcoming them, in December 2011 the EwingMarion Kauman Foundation convened a diverse group o analysts andpractitioners or a two-day retreat in Palm Beach, Florida. Participantsincluded Shai Reshe, ounder o the University o the People; themanagement editor o
The Economist 
; the ounders o startups 2tor,Inc. and StraighterLine; senior leaders o nontraditional universitiessuch as Olin College and Western Governors University; the presidentand CEO o Kaplan, Inc.; the directors o education policy at theAmerican Enterprise Institute, the Brookings Institution, and the Centeror American Progress; and proessors who both study and participatein postsecondary reorm initiatives.The gathering, part o the Kauman Foundation’s Law, Innovationand Growth series, was organized into panels addressing six broadthemes: Tackling Campus-Level Obstacles to Innovation; RethinkingAccreditation; Streamlining State and Federal Regulations; ImprovingIncentives to Boost Academic Productivity; Filling Inormation Gapsabout Student-Learning and Job-Market Outcomes; and OvercomingBarriers to Taking Innovation to Scale. The aim was not to limitdiscussion to these issues, but simply to provide provisional categoriesthat might oster wide-ranging conversation.Each participant prepared a short background paper andpresentation linked to one o the retreat’s themes. The resulting essaysare collected in this report, organized by theme. (A ull list o authorscan be ound ollowing this introduction, on page 7.) These thoughtulanalyses oer a window into how a range o articulate thinkersand doers approach the question o what is wrong with U.S. highereducation, and how it ought to be xed.The group did not emerge rom the Kauman retreat with aunanimous maniesto or policy platorm. That is no surprise: evena group o reormers o varying stripes is not guaranteed to reachconsensus on issues ranging rom rethinking accreditation to measuringperormance outcomes. At the same time, group members did ndcommon ground on many broad areas o reorm. This introductiongives an overview o the six themes discussed during the retreat (andaddressed in the essays in this volume), ollowed by an outline o thebroad areas o consensus that marked the proceedings.
Who Will Be Most Aected By Change?
Which postsecondary institutions are most likely to be aectedby the much-discussed orces o disruption aecting colleges anduniversities? David Breneman o the University o Virginia oered ananswer at the outset o the discussion that was broadly accepted byparticipants: elite institutions have much less to ear rom a newlycompetitive era than do the broad range o nonselective colleges anduniversities attended by more than 90 percent o American students.As he writes in his essay, “All Williams College has to do is attract itstarget o roughly 600 students each year to be successul.” By contrast,
Entrepreneurship in Higher Education Retreat
Ben Wildavsky and Robert E. Litan, Ewing Marion Kauman Foundation
INTRODUCTION

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