edX and 2U are each proud to name Rice College a associate in reimagining schooling. Learn on for a dialog between Caroline Levander, Vice President for International and Digital Technique of Rice College, and Andrew Hermalyn, President of Partnerships at 2U.
A pioneer in digital schooling, Rice College has been an edX Constitution member since 2013. The establishment has collected greater than 850,800 whole enrollments and issued greater than 2,770 certificates by edX–excellent feats for a college that serves 4,000 undergraduates and 4,000 graduates on campus. Its 36 edX programs attain a spread of learners, overlaying a wide selection of subjects from “Drugs within the Digital Age” to “Faith and Hip Hop Tradition.”
Intent on driving innovation at scale, Rice launched its on-line MBA with 2U in 2018, and shortly after expanded the partnership to incorporate brief programs and boot camps for a complete of 15 on-line applications. By way of these partnerships, Rice is opening new doorways to alternative for individuals internationally and cultivating a various neighborhood of learners on-line the place all are welcome.
Now that 2U and edX have mixed, I requested Caroline Levander, vice chairman for international and digital technique at Rice College, to share her ideas on the worth of partnership, why increasing entry to numerous learners issues, and what the longer term holds for the at all times forward-thinking establishment.
Caroline, thanks for becoming a member of me. We return a very long time and I really like with the ability to name you a good friend–I’m thrilled to see the place we go along with 2U and edX. Rice was an early adopter within the digital schooling house and has embraced partnerships to attain its targets. Let’s discuss that. How is partnership ingrained in your technique? Why associate with organizations like 2U and edX?
Thanks, Andrew. We’ve been by all of it, and I look ahead to what’s to come back.
2U and edX are very totally different organizations with a shared ambition, for positive, however they range in construction and product. Our curiosity in partnering with each 2U and edX displays the college’s dedication to a really extensive and open method to partnership. We predict we will study quite a bit from–in addition to contribute meaningfully to–a variety of totally different enterprises throughout the for-profit and not-for-profit, constructed inside a college and never constructed inside a college surroundings. That’s been enlivening and necessary for Rice and the way we take into consideration innovation.
As a small and extremely selective establishment, we’re centered on making a larger influence by partnership. That’s measured in numerous methods.
With edX, we think about the academic experiences that weren’t credit score conferring initially, however which can be necessary for individuals throughout the globe concerned about studying. We have now a public-good mission of making extra open, high-quality academic content material, no matter the place persons are and what sort of entry they could in any other case have.
What’s shared between learners in 2U-powered applications and on edX is that they don’t seem to be the varieties of college students we usually interact with. They are usually working full-time or part-time with a spread of different life calls for and commitments that may preserve them from coming to campus. So we’re left with this problem of making high-quality choices for college students we wouldn’t have earlier expertise with, reaching these learners, and supporting them to attain their desired targets. 2U and edX every assist us meet that problem head-on. They’re aligned of their dedication to high-quality academic experiences for college students we possible wouldn’t have in any other case been in a position to contact.
“2U and edX every assist us meet that problem head-on. They’re aligned of their dedication to high-quality academic experiences for college students we possible wouldn’t have in any other case been in a position to contact.”
How do you measure the success of your partnerships with 2U and with edX?
At Rice, we’re within the variety of college students we’re serving with our totally different choices, but in addition who these college students are. The place are they residing? What are their demographics? How numerous are they? What drew them to the college? We’re devoted to creating a various scholar neighborhood.
I see the 2U-edX mixed alternative as one among larger diversification in each means–age, socioeconomic, racial, gender, and extra. That’s an everlasting precedence for the college. Whereas we’re not distinctive in that ambition, it speaks deep to the guts of Rice and our dedication to being accessible to everybody.
Greater than 859,100 learners have enrolled in academic choices from Rice by 2U and edX. That’s unimaginable. When you concentrate on the lives you might be altering, are there any specific school or scholar tales that come to thoughts?
I’ve an awesome story a couple of fantastic teacher of ours, Jason Hafner. He’s an award-winning tutorial who leads all the large introductory programs, however his legacy lies in an AP Physics course he developed alongside an area highschool AP Physics instructor in Texas. (It’s one of many top-performing programs on edX with greater than 58,000 enrollments.) The course is high-quality, artistic, and creative. For instance, when Jason was filming a sequence of physics experiments and demos for the course, he determined the easiest way to indicate momentum could be to throw a watermelon off the highest of one among Rice’s oldest, most iconic buildings. You wouldn’t suppose an AP Physics course could be a crowd-pleaser, however Jason turned an in a single day sensation due to his progressive method to instructing. He has described going to Starbucks and having teenage children come as much as him asking for his autograph. I feel it’s been actually revitalizing for his instructing profession to have this chance.
So far as college students go, I obtained an unimaginable e mail from the daddy of a ninth-grade scholar positioned in a small city on the Texas-Mexico border. He shared that he and his son began Jason’s AP Physics course collectively. The daddy hadn’t taken physics for many years, however he actually liked the training expertise together with his son. His son received lots of it, too: regardless that he was solely in ninth grade, his son took the AP Physics examination and scored a 3. That’s phenomenal, particularly provided that his son lives in a city the place excessive faculties don’t provide AP programs. We had been in a position to present that household with a set of experiences that they in any other case wouldn’t have had. Earlier than taking the course, the daddy mentioned he didn’t learn about Rice, however he was so grateful and impressed by it that he desires his son to think about Rice for faculty.
What I like about that scholar story is that it exhibits how our partnerships assist develop larger consciousness of the standard of a Rice schooling, which might result in an ever-more numerous applicant pool. Rice is a college that at all times struggles with its model recognition outdoors of the quick area, so for us, strengthening that’s vastly invaluable.
Have you ever seen a ripple impact out of your partnerships with 2U and edX? Has your expertise with both associate impacted how different Rice applications are delivered?
2U has actually helped us enhance our advertising and marketing sophistication. The group has been very beneficiant in sharing greatest practices and instructing us how to consider advertising and marketing–not only for MBA@Rice, however all Rice applications. I’ve discovered quick that when MBA@Rice thrives, all of Rice thrives, and when Rice has a wise on-line presence, MBA@Rice thrives. Advertising and marketing is a type of areas by which I feel universities might not be as mature. It’s been an awesome studying expertise with 2U.
On a macro stage, I look again on the experiences we’ve had with 2U and edX and suppose that the entire work we’ve executed collectively made the final 18 months of COVID a greater total expertise on our campus.
“I look again on the experiences we’ve had with 2U and edX and suppose that the entire work we’ve executed collectively made the final 18 months of COVID a greater total expertise on our campus.”!
Rice is a main instance of a college that’s forward-thinking and keen to spend money on progressive methods to fulfill the evolving wants of scholars. What would you say these wants at the moment are?
There’s a larger want for lodging. Scholar psychological well being is just not what it needs to be. We’ve had a critical uptick in requests for psych providers, and we’re not alone–it is a nationwide pattern. The final 12 months and a half has been actually onerous on the 18 to 21 age group.
Curiously, lots of the distinctive issues we discovered easy methods to do with our MBA@Rice diploma are coming in useful now as we consider serving to our learners. Scholar success and larger consolation on the teacher stage with being versatile on deadlines are simply two examples. We at the moment are rethinking what we do within the title of rigor on the undergraduate stage. We see worth in being extra adaptable and offering extra help. We all know it gained’t water down the expertise we provide.
Now that the edX acquisition has closed, how do you see this mix being highly effective for Rice and the schooling neighborhood at massive? What sorts of alternatives does this collaboration unlock?
It’s early days, however I’m curious how these two entities are greater than the sum of their components and the way all of the merchandise will allow one another. That’s the good alternative–to create an ecosystem the place persons are constantly studying.
It’s good to see this marriage of two fantastic organizations. I do know I, and lots of others, are watching with nice curiosity and nice enthusiasm for what the longer term holds.
“It’s good to see this marriage of two fantastic organizations. I do know I, and lots of others, are watching with nice curiosity and nice enthusiasm for what the longer term holds.”
With 2022 proper across the nook, the place do you see schooling going subsequent?
This pandemic suggests we’d like larger resilience constructed into our curriculum; we have to carry on studying once we can’t be in the identical room. That’s a giant takeaway for universities like mine.