C2 June 8, 2005

C2 Strategic C-level Discussions on Technology

June 8, 2005
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From the Top

Online Piracy, Ethical Behavior, and the Unintended Consequences of Technology

By Diane Barbour,
Rochester Institute of Technology (NY)

Are We Fighting the Right Battle, but in the Wrong Place?

I read with interest Graham Spanier’s article “Piracy on the Seas of Higher Education” in the 4/27/2005 issue of C2. Like many other university administrators I am concerned about the lack of ethical behavior and the misuse of university resources by our students as they engage in peer-to-peer file sharing of copyrighted materials. Having acted on the recommendation of the Education Task Force of the Joint Committee of the Higher Education and Entertainment Communities, my institution engaged an online music service as a way to offer a legal alternative for music. The service was heavily marketed to students and parents during orientation sessions and throughout the academic year. One year later, however, only a very small percentage (approximately 8 percent) of students who could use the service (the service is not available for Macintosh users) have signed up for the service (which, I might add, is currently at no cost to the student).

Despite this marginal success with the legitimate online music service, we will continue to market and offer the service and we hope to add an online movie service from the same vendor in the fall. We will also continue our educational programs on protecting intellectual property and we will insist that students sign our Computer Code of Conduct. The reality is, for the time that our students are part of this community we will need to provide them with both academic and entertainment services.

Students who have been served subp'enas for illegal file sharing admit they were engaging in an illegal activity. However, they contend that, while they will no longer engage in this activity, their friends (who were lucky enough not to get caught) will not be deterred from continuing to use the i2hub and other file sharing programs. The change in behavior of our students after being sued was driven by the economic impact (most students indicated they would be paying the fines themselves from summer earnings), not by a renewed appreciation of copyright laws and a desire to preserve the intellectual property of the artists.

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Need to Know

Who’s Got the 'Savvy’?

St. Petersburg College (FL) and York Technical College (SC) shared first place in a ranking of the top 10 most “digitally savvy” community colleges for 2005 by the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC). The list was based on the second Digital Community Colleges Survey, which examined how colleges are using technology to streamline operations and better serve students, faculty, and staff. More than 200 community colleges participating in the survey were grouped in three categories based on city and student population. In the large/urban category, St. Petersburg and York shared first place. In the mid/suburban category, Indian River Community College (FL) earned the top position. Tompkins Cortland Community College (NY) was named first place in the small/rural category.

Even More Open (Source)

This week and next, more than 650 attendees from 14 countries are gathering in Baltimore to attend Community Source Week (www.communitysourceweek.org). Organized by three pillars of community source in higher ed—uPortal by JA-SIG, the Open Source Portfolio Initiative (OSPI), and the SAKAI Project—CSW05 is bringing developers from higher education and the larger open source community together during a full week of conferences co-located by the three organizations.

Test It Out

The Educational Testing Services said that 3,000 students from all 23 California State University campuses took its new Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Literacy Assessment as part of a large-scale assessment project. The simulation-based test measures university and college students’ abilities to “define, access, manage, integrate, evaluate, create, and communicate information in a technological environment.” The CSU students are among about 8,000 students nationwide who will take the test, which ETS will use to provide institutional-level aggregate score reports measuring the performance of particular groups.

Blackboard's 'Caliper' to Harvest CMS Data

Blackboard Inc. has unveiled a product development effort—codenamed “Caliper”—to harness data from course management systems to address assessment goals in traditional and eLearning programs. “Caliper spawned from an obvious need across the educational spectrum to streamline the process of measuring course, program, and institutional effectiveness,” said Blackboard chairman Matt Pittinsky. “With policymakers and accreditation boards mandating the measurement of student outcomes, the time is ripe for a system like Caliper. We have a unique opportunity to translate the data tracked in course management systems and other technologies into a useful framework for all stakeholders in the education community.”

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Who's Where

New Chancellor

Michael V. Drake, M.D. has been appointed to be the 5th chancellor of the University of California-Irvine campus. Currently UC’s vice president for health affairs, Drake assumes the role July 1, continuing a long career at the UC.

New President

Loyola College (MD) trustees have elected Rev. Brian Linnane as that institution’s 24th president. Linnane is leaving his role as assistant dean and associate professor at the College of the Holy Cross (MA) and will start at Loyola in July.

New President, New Chancellor

The University of Redlands (CA) has identified a new president to begin his term this coming fall. Stuart Dorsey will join Redlands after completing his role as vice president for academic affairs at the University of Evansville (IN). Current President James R. Appleton will then become the Redlands’ chancellor.

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May 25, 2005 The Internet, the Pope, and the iPod
By Tracy Mitrano, Director of IT Policy and Computer Law and Policy
Cornell University (NY)

May 11, 2005 Overcoming the Biggest Barrier to Student Success
By Ron Bleed, vice chancellor IT
Maricopa Community Colleges

April 27, 2005: Piracy on the Seas of Higher Education
By Graham Spanier, President, Penn State University
More archives

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