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News 02-21-2003

Syllabus Radio: Log on and Listen

This week: Doug Peterson of the University of South Dakota discusses ways to implement and integrate PDAs in college courses. Click on for a complete list of interviews with established leaders, creative thinkers, and education technology experts in higher education from around the country.

Wharton Extends Simulation-Based Learning Method

The University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business signed an agreement with educational publisher Pearson Addison Wesley to produce a series of interactive software simulations for business, finance, and economics education. The series is based on the principle that students need to learn through experience developed in real-world, real-time scenarios. Wharton MBAs currently have access to 15 software simulations, including: Wharton Securities Exchange, a real-time trading environment; Fare Game, an airline price simulation; the Online Trading and Investment Simulator, which allows student "fund managers" to buy and sell equities using real-time market data; and Oil Production Equilibrium (OPEQ), a simulation that puts students in the sh'es of decision makers from oil-producing nations. Pearson Addison Wesley will distribute the software.

NYU Deal to Offer Project Management Certification

New York University’s School of Continuing and Professional Studies (NYU SCPS) has signed a deal with executive training firm International Institute for Learning (ILL) to offer joint programs in project management certification. To date, the programs have generated a nearly 100 percent pass rate for those taking the Project Management Professional exam from the Project Management Institute. With NYU’s participation, students will earn a certificate from NYU SCPS, a university transcript, and letter grades, credentials that meet many tuition remission and reimbursement requirements. The two organizations said the joint project would help authenticate project management education among rank-and-file business organizations.

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In Tough Economy, Collegis Claims Record Numbers

Collegis Inc., which provides eLearning services to higher education, said it posted record revenues in 2002: $95 million, up 35 percent from its 2001 results. The growth, in the face of a slow economy and state budget cuts, was propelled by new business agreements with 36 clients in 2002. New higher education clients signed by Collegis in 2002 include: Loyola Marymount University (Calif.), Claremont Graduate University (Calif.), Seattle University (Wash.), University of Bridgeport (Conn.), Merrimack College (Mass.), and the Community College of Philadelphia. Also, the company entered 2003 with nearly $86 million of revenues in contractual backlog to be realized throughout the course of the year.

UCSF Biomed Facility Designed to Encourage Collaboration

The architects of UCSF Genentech Hall, a freshly minted biomedical research and teaching building that anchors the University of California-San Francisco's new Mission Bay campus, said their design was intended to foster collaboration between researchers. Designed by the San Francisco office of SmithGroup, the building will house about 900 faculty, students, and staff. "In addition to providing highly efficient and adaptable laboratories, the building is designed to encourage contact among the disciplines," said William Diefenbach, the principal architect for the project. "Researchers from interdisciplinary fields of study will work next to each other, instead of in separate labs, and will have the opportunity to collaborate and share ideas and information."

Deals, Contracts, Awards in Higher Education

DISTANCE LEARNING—The African Virtual University (AVU), a "university beyond borders" extending higher education to under-served sub-Saharan Africa, picked WebCT Campus Edition course management system for its distance learning platform. With WebCT, the AVU will begin migrating its satellite-based distance learning programs to the Web, making them more convenient, cost-effective, and pervasive.

VISUALIZATION—Ghent University, a leading institution of higher education in the Benelux region of Belgium, Luxembourg, Netherlands, signed a deal to use SolidWorks three-dimensional computer-added design (3-D CAD) software in its engineering design curriculum. Using the software, a team of two students working in cooperation with the school's department of medicine redesigned a dentist chair in only a few weeks, a feat that would have required almost a full semester using 2-D. About 100 Ghent University students and 15 faculty members are currently using and learning SolidWorks.

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