Cut the bull: The demise of the Baccalaureate has been greatly exaggerated

  Courtesy of Redbubble After one-too-many "news" posts on IHE about plagiarism and "rigor" I decided to stop subscribing to IHE's RSS feed.  Idiocies that used to be a comment left in an actual news article (one which you could ignore) now have been promoted as opinion pieces on IHE.  To put it quite simply the junk-to-treasure ratio is now completely off on that site and there is no longer value to keep checking it as part of my regular news feed. That said, there was an article back in August (wow, a month went by!) by Ray Schroeder that I wanted to respond to. The article is titled Demise of the Baccalaureate Degree  and it provokes the reader with the following lede "Overpriced, outdated and no longer required by an increasing number of employers, is the baccalaureate in a death spiral?"  Let me just say that this is BS, right now. Go ahead and read it, if you'd like, and come back after that. It's disheartening to see a leader in distance

Pondering on counteroffers

I don't often get to put on my HR/management/talent development hat, but I came across this interesting tweet this past week that got me thinking .  I started to write a tweet reply to it, but it got too lengthy (so here we are - back in the blog😁). A week or so ago I met with some former colleagues and mentors (folks who've already retired), which also reminded me of the mini scramble when I resigned a position years ago, and when counteroffers were considered. The text of the tweet (for posterity) is as follows: Resigned today. Current employer is scrambling to counter.  This is my PSA to those with the power to promote - don’t wait until your best employees want to leave to give them an offer that shows you value them. I couldn't agree more with the sentiments expressed by the tweet.  When someone resigns they most likely have another job already lined up and are least likely to take you up on your counteroffer. At this point, you've already lost your valued employ

Coming out of the cave

I am sure there are other metaphors out there but emerging from the monastic cave seemed to be the first metaphor that came to mind.  Apparently, it's common, because there is a meme for it! Maybe Laura Gibbs can suggest other folklore tales and metaphors that are not cave-based 😄. In any case, this past week I've been thinking: How does one get re-inducted into their various social networks after such a prolonged absence? Prior to starting my doctoral journey, I was quite active in a variety of communities on the web.  Some were MOOC-based, others were things like Virtually Connecting , and others were just  banter on Twitter that led to blogging, and in return led to more discussion, banter, critical thinking, and so on.  There was even academic research and publishing in there somewhere.  With my entry into a doctoral program, I ended up putting a lot of things on the back burner. I still followed friends on Twitter and posted from time to time (or retweeted interesting thi

A more hospitable airport lounge?

Airport Lounge (looks inviting, yet it's temporary) I'm back, baby! (just picture me as Frank Constanza from Seinfeld 😂) OK, dissertation done(ish)  [just waiting for final approvals], and oral defense passed.  So, I guess I have some more free time to blog, and MOOC [if a MOOC were to become available 😉].  It's been a rather...interesting 18 months.  I've been wanting to work fully remote for years and I got my wish.  I just wish that we didn't need to have a global pandemic as the reason for it.  This fall, we're slated to return to campus, and I am a bit apprehensive. More on that perhaps in future blog posts. For now, I wanted to write some thoughts that came by reading my friend Lance's most recent [unpublished] IHE piece.  You can read the entire piece, titled "Instructional Designers on Campuses" here . There's no doubt that we've learned a lot during this pandemic. How much learning loss  administrators and faculty experience, onc

Just about a month to go...

It's been a while since I've blogged about...anything, really! After a lot of writing, feedback, editing, some more feedback, some more editing, my dissertation is finally ready to be defended.  Since Dissertation Defense is a "DD", it reminded me a bit of the Dunkin' Donuts logo, so here's my New England mind thought it would be fun to create a logo to riff off the Dunks logo (how locals refer to Dunkin' Donuts). The first date of available availability was July 7, and I took it.  The 07/07 was a nice reduplication.  In retrospect, I should have chosen the 14th, so I could have 07/14/21 😂. Oh well, maybe for the next doctoral degree (ROFL). At the moment I am spending time reviewing what I submitted, taking notes, making a plan for the presentation, and getting ready for the 2 hours of questions.  With five (5) people on my examination committee and 20 minutes given to each member (and another 20 for me to present), that's going to be a long one. Mor

Rhizo22: The rMOOC that might be?

  Wonder what's in this... It's been a crazy seven days.  As part of my narrative inquiry into collaborations that occurred in rhizo14 and rhizo15 (or collaborations that sprung up from the work that started there), I am writing a fictional account of a newbie rhizo-learner (sort of how I was a newbie back in rhizo14) who gets to meet rhizo-alumni from past courses and ask them about their collaborations.  This newbie is simultaneously my avatar, but also a persona that encapsulates some common features of the people I connected with to learn more about their experiences. I find the flexibility that narrative inquiry affords a bit freeing.  I can more easily change names, places, and situations, but I still can get to the main ideas that emerged from my conversations with rhizo14 alumni and collaborators.  Anyway, my fictional rhizo course that takes place in 2022 (June 2022, to be exact). I could have made up all the weekly provocation titles, and the course tagline, but it&#

OK, where's my script writer?

It's been a busy October thus far in dissertation research land .  How do I know?  My memo doc for October is already at 40 pages (single-spaced) in length, and it's only October 6th! The September and August memo docs are sparse by comparison! Just as a "previously on AK's Dissertation Adventure", I am examining collaboration in Rhizo14 (and to some extent Rhizo15) using Narrative Inquiry as my method. Memo documents are my interim texts, which are essentially my ongoing analysis, reflection, thoughts, and quarantining my own views as a researcher; but they sound cooler when using the Narrative Inquiry lingo of interim texts .  I like the term because I feel like it denotes something on-going, reflective, iterative, and in the midst;  whereas "data analysis" feels more sterile. Anyway, my free time is spent looking at field texts (my "data"), making notes in the margin, jotting down names of actors, actions, plots, motivations, and thoughts. 

And just like that, it's fall! (or Autumn, same deal)

It's hard to believe, but the summer is in the rearview mirror.  Next week the fall semester begins and as I look back over the summer  I see some things I learned (or observed) in these coronatimes: The FoMo is still strong! I thought I had beaten back FoMo (fear of missing out) but I guess not :-).  This summer many conferences made the switch to online this summer due to the ongoing pandemic and their registration was free.  This made them accessible both in terms of place (online) and cost (free) for me.  So I registered.  I might have registered for far too many because there weren't enough hours to participate synchronously and attend everything I wanted to.  Luckily most sessions were recorded, so I was able to go back and review recordings of things I missed.  Between the Connected Learning Conference, IABL Conference, OLC Ideate, Bb World,'s conference (and a few more that I can't remember at the moment), I got more Professional Development done this

Graduate admissions process pondering

This post has been brewing in my head for a couple of years now. Since I am waiting for IRB clearance for my dissertation I thought it would be a good time to jot things down and see what others think.  I usually tend to have people in my network who either teach or work in some sort of instructional designer (or faculty developer) capacity.  I don't (think) I know too many people in the higher education administration aspects of my work to discuss these kinds of things with (so I may just be speaking to no one 😝). Anyway, one thing that's been gnawing at me for the past number of years is how one enters into graduate programs.  I'll focus more on the master's level for a few reasons.  I manage an MA program, I teach for an MEd program, and from observation, I've seen that masters programs probably don't have as many administrative constraints: for example, [virtual] classroom space, working with a cohort model that's more tightly integrated [as co

HyFlex is not what we need (for Fall 2020)

HyFlex (Hybrid Flexible) is a way of designing courses for (what I call) ultimate flexibility.  It takes both ends of the teaching spectrum, fully face-to-face, and fully online-asynchronous and it bridges the gap.  Back in the day, I learned about this model of course design by taking an OLC workshop with Brian himself, but you can learn more about the model in his free ebook .  I liked the model at the time (and I still do), because it gave more options to learners in the ways they wanted to participate in the course. They could come to class, they could participate online synchronously, and they could just be asynchronous, or a mix of any one of those depending on the week. Quite a few people on twitter, including @karenraycosta, were pondering whether they don't like HyFlex (in general), or the implementations of HyFlex that we are seeing. Heck, It seems like HyFlex has become the white label flex model for universities because some of them are creating their own brands o