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    #214837 - 04/24/15 07:26 AM Global Freshman Academy - edX/ASU
    75west Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/11/11
    Posts: 471
    I received a message on Global Freshman Academy today - that's the edX and ASU partnership - https://www.edx.org/gfa

    Personally, I am giving it serious thought for my ds. It's going to be a snip compared to the tuition and fees for a private school someone suggested. We're homeschooling anyway and it looks better, and cheaper, every day!

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    #214846 - 04/24/15 09:54 AM Re: Global Freshman Academy - edX/ASU [Re: 75west]
    Bostonian Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/14/10
    Posts: 2595
    Loc: MA
    Related article:

    The Upwardly Mobile Barista
    Starbucks and Arizona State University are collaborating to help cafe workers get college degrees. Is this a model for helping more Americans reach the middle class?


    by Amanda Ripley
    The Atlantic
    May 2015

    A summary and excerpt of the article is at http://www.joannejacobs.com/2015/04/the-upwardly-mobile-barista/ .

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    #214853 - 04/24/15 11:21 AM Re: Global Freshman Academy - edX/ASU [Re: 75west]
    DeeDee Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/16/10
    Posts: 2498
    Education happens (best, fastest) when people get meaningful, specific feedback on their work. Some people can learn well without external feedback; they are quite rare.

    The MOOC-ification that ASU is pursuing doesn't seem to me to be in most students' best interests.

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    #214857 - 04/24/15 11:38 AM Re: Global Freshman Academy - edX/ASU [Re: Bostonian]
    indigo Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/27/13
    Posts: 4262
    Thanks for sharing this inspirational article. I am a fan of opportunities for a person to pull his/herself up by the bootstraps, including working one's own way through college (as described for the baristas). This seems to typify the "American Dream" and the notion of being "upwardly mobile."

    Interestingly, 85% of applicants were admitted and are performing on par with other students. Some may say the 15% who are not admitted may be the most in need of assistance and there seems to be a gap in reaching them at this time (hopefully not a permanent or insurmountable gap). I do wonder whether they receive feedback on deficits which caused them to not be admitted at this time... implications for what steps they may wish to take before possibly applying again.

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    #214859 - 04/24/15 11:54 AM Re: Global Freshman Academy - edX/ASU [Re: 75west]
    indigo Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/27/13
    Posts: 4262
    I've seen online programs which range from poor quality to top-notch and excellent. I'm encouraged by the description of this Global Freshman Academy (edX and ASU partnership) program as they do not have a student pay up-front, but only after successful completion and if credit is desired. It seems a great opportunity to try-before-you-buy.

    I'd probably have my student inquire in advance (with parental coaching and assistance for his self-advocacy as needed) about the syllabus, grading policies, professor or teaching assistant office hours, and whether there is a cap on enrollment per class. These may help assess the amount of time per week your student may expect to devote to course material, and the level and frequency of feedback your student might receive.

    The mix of other students in an online course discussion forum can bring valuable diversity in thought and lived experience and be a tremendous asset to one's learning.

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    #214876 - 04/24/15 01:44 PM Re: Global Freshman Academy - edX/ASU [Re: 75west]
    Bostonian Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/14/10
    Posts: 2595
    Loc: MA
    Promising Full College Credit, Arizona State University Offers Online Freshman Program
    By TAMAR LEWIN
    New York Times
    APRIL 22, 2015

    Quote:
    “Leave your G.P.A., your SATs, your recommendations at home,” said Anant Agarwal, the chief executive of edX. “If you have the will to learn, just bring your Internet connection and yourself, and you can get a year of college credit.”

    It would be nice if MIT professor Agarwal could promote the initiative without being misleading. GPAs and SAT scores are (imperfectly) predictive of whether someone can do college level work. If they are so unimportant, Agarwal's institution should move to lottery admissions.

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    #214881 - 04/24/15 02:14 PM Re: Global Freshman Academy - edX/ASU [Re: Bostonian]
    DeeDee Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/16/10
    Posts: 2498
    Originally Posted By: Bostonian

    Quote:
    “Leave your G.P.A., your SATs, your recommendations at home,” said Anant Agarwal, the chief executive of edX. “If you have the will to learn, just bring your Internet connection and yourself, and you can get a year of college credit.”

    It would be nice if MIT professor Agarwal could promote the initiative without being misleading. GPAs and SAT scores are (imperfectly) predictive of whether someone can do college level work. If they are so unimportant, Agarwal's institution should move to lottery admissions.


    Indeed. If everybody could, everybody would. In reality, many who attempt this will fail, and the education received by many of the rest will be a poor substitute for actual instruction. (One of the articles cited below points out that this is a credit-laundering scheme: it won't be evident on the student's transcript that some courses had tens of thousands of students in them.)

    These moves by ASU and edX are not designed to increase student success; they are cost-saving measures that cheapen the valuable outcomes of higher education. In-person teaching may become what college used to be-- the thing the elite get-- while everybody else has to make do with teaching themselves or failing.

    Useful critical perspectives:

    https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2015...e-through-moocs

    http://suburbdad.blogspot.com/2015/04/what-problem-are-asu-and-edx-solving.html

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    #214884 - 04/24/15 02:43 PM Re: Global Freshman Academy - edX/ASU [Re: Bostonian]
    indigo Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/27/13
    Posts: 4262
    Quote:
    Quote:
    “Leave your G.P.A., your SATs, your recommendations at home,” said Anant Agarwal, the chief executive of edX. “If you have the will to learn, just bring your Internet connection and yourself, and you can get a year of college credit.”

    It would be nice if MIT professor Agarwal could promote the initiative without being misleading. GPAs and SAT scores are (imperfectly) predictive of whether someone can do college level work.
    While it is true that GPAs and SAT scores are predictive of college success, they may not be the only predictors of success in college - or in life. The program does not seem to be marketed to the traditional student, but rather as an outreach to individuals who might not have otherwise had the opportunity to take college courses (specifically the baristas mentioned in an article upthread), and to those who may not have taken an SAT exam, etc. Additionally the Global Freshman Academy may provide a great opportunity for a young gifted student to access higher level curriculum. Like all tools, this one can be used appropriately or inappropriately.

    Quote:
    ... Agarwal's institution should move to lottery admissions.
    When physical space for a class is not a concern therefore class sizes can be larger, there may be no need for a lottery.

    This thread reminds me a bit of the recent thread The University of Everywhere. The traditional high-school age students who choose the Global Freshman Academy may be students who believe they would prefer this format to large in-person lecture hall courses, experienced by many college Freshmen. Unlike traditional college, in which tuition contracts are signed in advance, if students do not like the Global Freshman Academy experience, they do *not* pay tuition.

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    #214904 - 04/25/15 01:05 AM Re: Global Freshman Academy - edX/ASU [Re: DeeDee]
    indigo Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/27/13
    Posts: 4262
    Originally Posted By: DeeDee
    If everybody could, everybody would.
    Beyond ability (the "could" part of the statement), there is motivation (the "would" part of the statement), and people are motivated by different things. As discussed frequently on the forums, some families believe the ivies are the right "fit". Although many students "could" enroll in Global Freshman Academy, not all "would". The program just provides one more option for a possible "fit" for some individuals who may otherwise fall through the cracks.

    Quote:
    In reality, many who attempt this will fail
    Possibly among those who sample a class and do not complete it, those with a growth mindset and/or an optimistic/resilient outlook will find that their lives are richer for the experience of having explored this option: they may have learned a bit about themselves, the subjects they enrolled for, and the program itself... with only an investment of their time, and no financial cost.

    Quote:
    ... the education received by many of the rest will be a poor substitute for actual instruction.
    This may depend, in part, on what they bring into the program? Rather than project negative outcomes, some may say it is wise to wait to see the outcomes and statistical summaries of the first cohort of this new outreach.

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    #214905 - 04/25/15 02:56 AM Re: Global Freshman Academy - edX/ASU [Re: 75west]
    madeinuk Offline
    Member

    Registered: 03/18/13
    Posts: 1448
    Loc: NJ
    Quote:

    outreach to individuals who might not have otherwise had the opportunity to take college courses (specifically the baristas mentioned in an article upthread)


    In NYC and many other places, I am sure these days, many baristas already have college degrees and come from 'privileged' middle class families...
    _________________________
    Become what you are

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    #214921 - 04/25/15 07:26 AM Re: Global Freshman Academy - edX/ASU [Re: madeinuk]
    indigo Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/27/13
    Posts: 4262
    Originally Posted By: madeinuk
    In NYC and many other places, I am sure these days, many baristas already have college degrees and come from 'privileged' middle class families...
    Most likely, those are not the individuals looking to apply for admission this program. However I believe you may be raising another critical issue... one of underemployment?

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    #214926 - 04/25/15 08:12 AM Re: Global Freshman Academy - edX/ASU [Re: indigo]
    stemfun Offline
    Member

    Registered: 01/23/12
    Posts: 100
    Quote:
    While it is true that GPAs and SAT scores are predictive of college success, they may not be the only predictors of success in college - or in life. The program does not seem to be marketed to the traditional student, but rather as an outreach to individuals who might not have otherwise had the opportunity to take college courses (specifically the baristas mentioned in an article upthread), and to those who may not have taken an SAT exam, etc. Additionally the Global Freshman Academy may provide a great opportunity for a young gifted student to access higher level curriculum. Like all tools, this one can be used appropriately.


    I agree this program is not for traditional student. Some people do not have the SATs and the time to go to a regular college, some have to work full time from a very young age. I think this provides opportunities for such people.

    It is also an opportunity for gifted kids. In some towns where there are no schools for gifted children and no options for acceleration within school and no access to community college or university course for kids that exhaust the regular curriculum in high school. Parents of gifted kids in places like this have to scramble continuously for opportunities to keep their children challenged. This provides gifted kids with the opportunity to take college level courses while they are in high school regardless of where they live.

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    #214959 - 04/25/15 06:07 PM Re: Global Freshman Academy - edX/ASU [Re: 75west]
    75west Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/11/11
    Posts: 471
    Thank you, thank you, thank you loubalou. Yes!!! Couldn't agree with you more.

    MA is a state that with zero funding for g/t services. A handful of towns and cities may have some form of g/t but not mine. No options for acceleration within the public and no access to community college or state colleges until age 14 either; even when dual enrollment kicks in, there is a host of restrictions. And with the cost of housing, transportation, and other living expenses being so high here, many parents do not see un/homeschooling as a viable alternative for their gifted kids due to the financial sacrifices and costs involved.

    For these reasons and others, the Global Freshman Academy will be a breath of fresh air. Yes, it's not a panacea but it's better than nothing.

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