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Ten with Ken (Video)

Ken Steele is Canada's most trusted higher ed monitor and futurist, and in this webcast he rounds up emerging trends, research data, best practices and innovative new ideas for higher education. (For HD version see YouTube, DailyMotion, Vimeo or Facebook. Audio only podcast version available separately.)
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Now displaying: 2018

For more information about Ken Steele's speaking and facilitation services, an archive of articles and white papers, and a database of bright ideas, please visit www.eduvation.ca

This podcast is also available on iTunes or on YouTube. For exclusive early access to future episodes, please subscribe to our free email newsletter, the Eduvation Loop

Jul 17, 2018

In September, the 10K crew went on location to the 2017 Ontario Universities’ Fair, to interview a dozen higher ed leaders about trends in innovation.

Celia Ross began teaching French Literature at Algoma in 1982, became Dean in 1997, and served as President from 1998 until 2010 – 12 busy years in which Algoma gained its independence from Laurentian University, and signed the Covenant with Shingwauk Education Trust. When her successor resigned in 2016, the board of governors appointed Celia Acting President until a search could be completed.  (Asima Vezina, formerly the board chair, was appointed President in October 2017).

In this special bonus episode, Ken asks Celia to answer 3 key questions about higher ed innovation.

 

Innovations at Algoma?

Algoma University is particularly noteworthy for its partnerships with First Nations peoples. The University is in a former Indian Residential School building, but is working to change the paradigm of education from colonial to a “two-way dialogue.” As a small university, Algoma demonstrates the continuing value of small undergraduate seminars from first year onward – although now it utilizes videoconferencing and other technologies to create small groups across a wide geography. Algoma’s Institute for Community-Based Research gives students research and volunteer experience, and even leads to paid internships. Again, the philosophy is one of collaboration, in which the communities grow their own solutions.

 

The Decade Ahead?

In a world of rapidly advancing automation and globalization, Celia predicts that university students will be increasingly international, and seek ever-narrower specializations. At the same time, with coming labour market disruptions, Celia anticipates that students will turn to their educations to bring meaning to their lives, resulting in a renaissance of interest in Philosophy, Religious Studies, the Humanities and Fine Arts. She also sees exciting developments in First Nations education coming thanks to Ontario’s funding of the Aboriginal Institutes Consortium.  Universities will need to ensure that a diverse range of students feels comfortable on our campuses, and that all our students come to understand other cultures and histories. We need to be forerunners in the fight against ignorance and racism. Over the next decade, universities will increasingly partner with colleges, industry and other communities: “the days of the ivory tower are gone.”

 

Culture of Innovation?

Celia observes that it can be challenging to nurture a culture of innovation on campus. We need to value the innovators on campus, no matter how difficult or demanding they may seem. Leaders need to make time to discuss the big ideas, either in a strategic plan consultation process or during an off-site strategic retreat. Especially for isolated institutions, it is very important to bring in external speakers to spark new ideas. Our students are being encouraged to think innovatively, and you can see them becoming the leaders of tomorrow.

 

Watch for more interviews soon, or to be sure you don’t miss them, join more than 15,000 Ten with Ken subscribers and followers on any of a dozen platforms. Stay in the Loop by subscribing to our free email newsletter at http://eduvation.ca/subscribe/

Jun 25, 2018

In September, the 10K crew went on location to the 2017 Ontario Universities’ Fair, to interview a dozen higher ed leaders about trends in innovation.

At the time, Brian Stevenson was finishing his term as President & Vice-Chancellor at Lakehead University. (Moira McPherson replaced him as interim President in January 2018). Brian’s extensive higher ed administrative experience includes founding the Canadian Studies program at ITAM in Mexico, serving as AVP International at uAlberta, Provost at uWinnipeg, and most recently President at Lakehead (2010-17).  In this special bonus episode, Ken asks Brian to answer 3 key questions about higher ed innovation.

 

Innovations at Lakehead?

Brian starts by describing Lakehead’s new “Student Central,” a brand-new one-stop student services office that aims to help students focus on academic studies instead of bureaucratic paperwork. He then observes that Lakehead has been a leader in Indigenous higher ed for decades, from Canada’s first Vice-Provost Aboriginal Initiatives and Truth & Reconciliation Chair, to mandatory Indigenous courses and extensive support services for Indigenous students. Lakehead’s “Achievement Program” reaches out to students starting in grade 4, bringing them to campus and setting aside scholarship funds for them. Lakehead has immersive telepresence technology connecting its two campuses in Thunder Bay and Orillia, allowing professors to co-teach students on both campuses. And Lakehead has extensive partnerships with Confederation College and Georgian College, to create seamless collaborative programs that offer students “the best of both worlds.”

 

The Decade Ahead?

Over the next ten years, Brian predicts that higher ed will make more effective use of technology for distance education, offer more experiential and work-integrated learning opportunities, and increasingly make use of technology and active learning pedagogies in the classroom. Key to encouraging faculty to adopt effective approaches will be the expansion of campus centres, like Lakehead’s new Teaching & Learning Commons. Universities will also work to promote entrepreneurship, not just among business students but across the campus, through programs like Lakehead’s Entrepreneurship Certificate. Brian also emphasizes that internationalization will be critical for universities, not just to recruit students and generate revenue, but more importantly to expose local students to global experience, other languages, and global citizenship.

 

Culture of Innovation?

Brian believes that universities are “hotbeds of innovation,” because they are not only disseminators of knowledge but also creators of knowledge, through innovative research. First and foremost, to nurture a culture of innovation, higher ed leaders need to LISTEN to students, faculty and staff across campus: ultimately the sustainable innovations won’t come from senior administration, but will arise from those working on the front lines. Leaders also need to promote strategic partnerships, with other educational institutions, the private sector, non-profits, municipalities, and international organizations and institutions. Universities are social agents for positive change, Brian says, primarily because of those external partnerships.

 

Watch for more interviews soon, or to be sure you don’t miss them, join more than 15,000 Ten with Ken subscribers and followers on any of a dozen platforms. Stay in the Loop by subscribing to our free email newsletter at http://eduvation.ca/subscribe/

Jun 16, 2018

In September, the 10K crew went on location to the 2017 Ontario Universities’ Fair, to interview a dozen higher ed leaders about trends in innovation.

Leo Groarke holds a PhD in Philosophy from Western, and has experience as Provost at the University of Windsor, and founding Principal of the Wilfrid Laurier campus in Brantford. Since 2014, he has served as President & Vice-Chancellor of Trent University. In this special bonus episode, Ken asks Leo to answer 3 key questions about higher ed innovation.

 

Innovations at Trent?

Leo observes that Trent is proudly focused on the undergraduate experience, and is starting to return to its roots of federated colleges, modelled after Oxford and Cambridge. Trent is revitalizing humanities programs by offering a wide range of double degrees, and has partnered with Swansea University in Wales to offer an international Law and Arts dual degree. The renowned Bata Library is currently undergoing a $20-million renovation, and will remove half of its print collection to make room for an entrepreneurship centre, research and active learning classrooms. And finally, Trent is developing an 85-acre research park focused on environmental science and green industry. The park will generate revenue, advance research, and offer students experiential learning opportunities.

 

The Decade Ahead?

Leo predicts Internationalization will be very significant for Canadian universities over the next 5-10 years, and not just for revenue but to build global understanding. Likewise Indigenization will be a big priority, although Trent has been working at this since the 1970s when it launched Canada’s first Indigenous Studies programs.  Trent’s Indigenous Environmental Science program, in particular, tries to marry the Eurocentric, scientific perspective with Indigenous ways of knowing. Leo dismisses MOOCs as overhyped, having had marginal effect on most university programs, but he notes the growing emphasis on applied learning and work experience: the Ontario government wants 100% of undergraduates to get experiential learning opportunities. But Leo cautions that universities also play an important role as places for reflection. The decade ahead will be “tough times for universities,” thanks to pressure on demographics and government funding, but “necessity is the mother of invention” and universities are good at recreating themselves in useful ways.

 

Culture of Innovation?

Ken suggests that academic culture tends to reinforce “zero fault tolerance,” which can make it difficult to encourage innovation or entrepreneurial approaches. Leo agrees that universities don’t tolerate mistakes well, and that in itself is a mistake: even failed experiments can lead to crucial insights that move knowledge forward. Universities put too much emphasis on grades for admission, attracting students who have never experienced failure, and are unwilling to take risks. Even researchers tend to be cautious in order to attract funding and pass peer review: the system is stacked against radical disruptive ideas. Higher ed leaders need to support innovators on campus, provide them with budget and moral support. When you have creative people, there is a great deal of opportunity for universities launching innovative new programs. 

 

Watch for more interviews soon, or to be sure you don’t miss them, join more than 15,000 Ten with Ken subscribers and followers on any of a dozen platforms. Stay in the Loop by subscribing to our free email newsletter at http://eduvation.ca/subscribe/

 

Jun 8, 2018

In September, the 10K crew went on location to the 2017 Ontario Universities’ Fair, to interview a dozen higher ed leaders about trends in innovation.

Janice O’Farrell is the Associate Vice-President Enrolment Management at Carleton University, and has 24 years of experience in higher education. In this special bonus episode, Ken asks Janice to answer 3 key questions about higher ed innovation.

 

Innovations at Carleton?

Janice starts with several examples of Carleton’s commitment to community engagement and community-based learning opportunities for students, bringing the classroom to the community. This year, Carleton held 75 “Campus to Community Days” in which students went out to serve local agencies, and students and faculty went abroad on the “Alternative Spring Break” program to construct a school in central America, and work on water conservation efforts in Alberta. Carleton is also considered a Canadian leader for its Residence Curriculum programs, which help students develop self-awareness and positive relationship skills. And Carleton has been developing new programs to meet industry needs, like the Bachelor of Media Production and Design, which combines creative writing with technical skills. Carleton also has several collaborative programs with Algonquin College, like the Bachelor of IT in Photonics and the BIT in Information Resource Management. Students are simultaneously admitted to both the university and the college, take courses at both institutions, and graduate in 4 years with a degree and an advanced diploma. Even more innovative is Carleton’s partnership with dot-com company Shopify, in which Comp Sci students work full-time for 4 years, take courses onsite at the company, and earn $160,000 in salary, tuition, and perks. Carleton has also developed its “Degree Audit” to a 3-colour scorecard to help students determine if they are on-track to graduation.

 

The Decade Ahead?

Janice predicts greater emphasis on preparing students to address societal challenges like mental health, homelessness and poverty, and more opportunities to bring the classroom into the real world, through partnerships with industry and community service learning opportunities. She expects we will continue to see more diverse program delivery methods and program lengths, stacked and laddered credentials, and more transfer options between college and university and vice-versa. Collaborative degree programs are a great opportunity for colleges and universities to play together nicely “in the same sandbox.”

 

Culture of Innovation?

Janice believes that universities are drivers of change in science and society, but “not necessarily for ourselves.” To nurture a culture of innovation on campus, leadership needs a compelling vision, needs to be open and transparent, and needs to engage the campus community. There must be an allowance to try new things, to take some risks, and to think outside the box – and there also have to be adequate resources available. Since 2012, the “Carleton Leader” program has brought together faculty and admin staff from “the sidelines, the front lines, and the cutting edge” to work together for 6 months on a “wicked” problem like student engagement or the value of a university degree. Janice believes the cross-campus representation on those task forces provide the key benefit to drive innovative ideas. She concludes by observing that this is an exciting time for universities, and that we need to embrace the opportunity to do new things creatively, rather than being fearful of change.

 

Watch for more interviews soon, or to be sure you don’t miss them, join more than 15,000 Ten with Ken subscribers and followers on any of a dozen platforms. Stay in the Loop by subscribing to our free email newsletter at http://eduvation.ca/subscribe/

 

May 18, 2018

In September, the 10K crew went on location to the 2017 Ontario Universities’ Fair, to interview a dozen higher ed leaders about trends in innovation.

Benoit-Antoine Bacon holds a PhD in neuropsychology, and has 14 years of experience in university administration at Bishop’s University (2004-2013), Concordia University Montreal (2013-16), and Queen’s University (2016-18). After this interview, he was appointed President and Vice-Chancellor of Carleton University, effective July 1 2018.

Ken had a wide-ranging, hour-long discussion with Benoit, which has been edited down to just 11 minutes in this special bonus episode, to focus on 3 key questions about higher ed innovation.

 

Innovations at Queen’s?

Benoit starts with Queen’s new $100-million Innovation & Wellness Centre, which will combine centralized student health and wellness supports, and custom-designed entrepreneurship and innovation space. He also points to a brand new mental health initiative to “embed” counselors in faculty and residence offices. Queen’s has also been investing $1 million+ every year in new active learning classrooms, like those in Ellis Hall, and is finding them in great demand and having significant impact on student learning.  There is also international attention on Queen’s “Major Maps,” which outline extracurricular and experiential opportunities to enhance every undergraduate degree, and potential career outcomes.

 

The Decade Ahead?

Benoit emphasizes that the convergence of geopolitical, technological and societal pressures will make the next ten years absolutely critical, and identifies 4 things that will be key. In an increasingly global and diverse world, universities have a central role in fostering inclusion and helping people live together. Curricula, hiring, and even university symbols need to be reconsidered in a diverse and inclusive environment – not just to be nice, but because institutional success depends on attracting and retaining the world’s best talent. Universities also have to decide whether they will be local or global in their focus. The NYU “transnational” model is impressive but likely unique. Universities also need to take a fully-integrated, strategic approach to digital technologies, often appointing an academic CIO or a Vice-Provost Digital Planning. Research will continue to become more and more interdisciplinary in order to address the world’s big challenges and issues. But Benoit believes the biggest disruption over the next 10 years will be a shift toward measuring student learning outcomes and skills instead of traditional inputs.

 

Culture of Innovation?

Benoit believes senior leaders need to avoid blocking innovation, instead creating a culture of “saying yes.” In fact, risk-aversion might be the greatest risk that universities run today, so leaders need to shift to a culture of intelligent, measured risk-taking. Benoit says that “everything starts with hiring” for innovation instead of the status quo, from the top on down. Benoit concludes that there are many things you can do to shift institutional culture quicker than people might think.

 

Watch for more interviews soon, or to be sure you don’t miss them, join more than 15,000 Ten with Ken subscribers and followers on any of a dozen platforms. Stay in the Loop by subscribing to our free email newsletter at http://eduvation.ca/subscribe/

May 11, 2018

In September, the 10K crew went on location to the 2017 Ontario Universities’ Fair, to interview a dozen higher ed leaders about trends in innovation.

Sara Diamond has worked in higher education for 3 decades, at BC’s Emily Carr University of Art + Design, Alberta’s Banff Centre, and Ontario’s OCAD University, where she has been President since 2005. In this special bonus episode, edited to 10 minutes, Ken asks Sara 3 key questions about higher ed innovation.

Innovations at OCAD?

Sara proudly points to OCADU’s new Academic Plan, which brings together STEAM+D – Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (or Medicine) with Art and Design in a powerful interdisciplinary combination. All OCAD students will be provided with basic programming skills so they can be “digital citizens.” OCADU also has a strong focus on Indigenous knowledge, culture and creativity, and “decolonization” is OCAD’s first guiding principle. OCAD has diversified its curriculum and built a cosmopolitan campus, with international students from around the world. And OCAD is opening several new buildings, including the waterfront Campus for the Connected World, and the Centre for Emerging Artists & Designers, both of which will focus on new experiential and work-integrated learning opportunities for students. OCAD’s business incubator for recent graduates, the Imagination Catalyst, has a very high success rate launching new ventures. And OCAD is partnering with UOIT to bring together design and hard science for STEAM+D.

The Decade Ahead?

Over the next decade, Sara predicts a world of continuous learning in which universities offer increasingly flexible degrees, badges and stackable microcredentials, as well as flexible timetables for working and entrepreneurial students. Digital delivery will intensify, but the “sociality” of learning will continue to bring students together in one place to learn. She also anticipates some really dynamic “international aggregates of institutions” offering students trans-national learning experiences and credentials. And Sara projects ongoing and increasing investment in “blue-sky” investigator-driven research, and the increasing importance of artificial intelligence in the “expressive economy.”

Culture of Innovation?

Sara emphasizes that university leaders must support the integration of research and teaching, and maintain curricular openness to new learning. They must be “militant proponents of diversity”, be highly collaborative across campus, and also reinforce the “porosity” of the university, building partnerships with industry and external organizations to help build their communities. Ultimately, Sara observes, university research can help solve the world’s big problems, so long as we stay “at the coal face” of the real world.


Watch for more interviews soon, or to be sure you don’t miss them, join more than 15,000 Ten with Ken subscribers and followers on any of a dozen platforms. Stay in the Loop by subscribing to our free email newsletter at http://eduvation.ca/subscribe/

May 4, 2018

In September, the 10K crew went on location to the 2017 Ontario Universities’ Fair, to interview a dozen higher ed leaders about trends in innovation.

Pierre Zundel has served as a university leader for almost a decade, first as President of the University of Sudbury (2009-2016), then as Provost and VP Academic at Laurentian University (2016-17), and since August 2017 as Laurentian’s Interim President. In this special bonus episode, edited to 8 minutes, Ken asks Pierre 3 key questions about higher ed innovation.

Innovations at Laurentian?

First and foremost, Laurentian has been a leader in introducing Indigenous content across the curriculum, has more than 25 indigenous faculty members, and a spectacular new Indigenous Sharing & Learning Centre. Laurentian has recently completed an ambitious renovation of more than 60 classrooms and labs, and created a new Welcome Centre to integrate student services. Laurentian excels at developing college pathways and partnerships, particularly with Cambrian College and Collège Boréal in Sudbury.

The Decade Ahead?

Over the next decade, Pierre predicts that all Canadian universities will be working to figure out the part they can play in reconciliation with Indigenous peoples. Moreover, universities will become more “porous,” with more community and industry connections, more work-integrated learning and co-op education – particularly in programs like the Arts, where co-op has been uncommon in the past. Pierre anticipates growth in student mental health programs, open textbooks, blended delivery, just-in-time tutoring, and predictive analytics based on “big data” to launch early interventions and student supports.

Culture of Innovation?

Pierre identifies 3 things campus leaders can do to foster a culture of innovation. 1) Firstly, leaders can showcase good innovative ideas or good attempts, whether successful or not.  2) Secondly, they can run interference, helping to create space for innovation by preventing resistance from shutting it down early.  3) And thirdly, leaders have to make it possible to fail, so that we learn from failed attempts instead of focusing on laying blame.

Pierre emphasizes that universities may be “as conservative as cats” but they are also hugely creative places!

 

Watch for more interviews soon, or to be sure you don’t miss them, join more than 15,000 Ten with Ken subscribers and followers on any of a dozen platforms. Stay in the Loop by subscribing to our free email newsletter at http://eduvation.ca/subscribe/

Apr 29, 2018

In September, the 10K crew went on location to the 2017 Ontario Universities’ Fair, to interview a dozen higher ed leaders about trends in innovation.

Catherine Newell Kelly was appointed Registrar at the University of Waterloo just a month before this interview, after serving for two decades as Director of Waterloo’s Centre for Extended Learning, as well as stints as Executive Director of eCampus Ontario and President of CAUCE and OCULL. In this special bonus episode, edited to 7 minutes, Ken asks Cathy 3 key questions.

Innovations at Waterloo?

Cathy emphasizes Waterloo’s liberal intellectual property policies, and its roots in co-operative education, and its co-op program has grown to be the largest in Canada, with students earning $253 million a year. Waterloo is pushing the envelope to make experiential learning more flexible, like the EDGE experiential learning certificate program for non-co-op students. Waterloo’s Velocity is the largest free start-up incubator in the world. After 50 years in online learning, Waterloo is exploring Labster and Riipen to bring laboratory and co-op work experiences to online students.

The Decade Ahead?

Cathy predicts that university-business partnerships will become much more important, with the government’s emphasis on work-integrated learning. Transformative research, which changes what we know, will grow, and interdisciplinarity will continue to drive research and teaching. Universities will also need to enhance the flexibility of program delivery and structure for adult learners and working students.

Culture of Innovation?

Cathy believes that senior leadership has to foster a culture of entrepreneurship on campus, in which students, staff and faculty feel safe enough to take strategic risks.


Watch for more interviews soon, or to be sure you don’t miss them, join more than 15,000 Ten with Ken subscribers and followers on any of a dozen platforms. Stay in the Loop by subscribing to our free email newsletter at http://eduvation.ca/subscribe/

Apr 21, 2018

In September, the 10K crew went on location to the 2017 Ontario Universities’ Fair, to interview a dozen higher ed leaders about trends in innovation.  

Alan Wildeman has served as the President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Windsor for a full decade.  (He was appointed in July 2008 and recently announced his retirement for the end of June 2018.)  In this special bonus episode, edited to 7 minutes, Ken asks Alan 3 key questions.

 

Innovations at Windsor?

Alan points to his university’s community engagement and new downtown facilities in heritage buildings. Innovative cross-border collaborative degrees with the University of Detroit-Mercy, such as the dual juris doctor (law degree) and Visual Arts – Architecture pathways. And the Sexual Assault Bystander Initiative, piloted last year, which will be rolled out to every incoming first-year student by Fall 2018.

 

The Decade Ahead?

Alan predicts steadily increasing interdisciplinarity, such as between computing and automotive engineering, or environmental science and the social sciences. He also observes that the steadily growing diversity of Canada and of its campuses, particularly the University of Windsor, will become a major engine of innovation in academe and the economy.

 

Culture of Innovation?

Alan observes that university leaders don’t have all the answers, but need to set the conditions and context for creative people to unleash their own potential for innovation. For example, Windsor’s SPF50 Strategic Priorities Fund is allowing them to hire 50 tenure-track faculty in priority areas, injecting fresh ideas and new diversity among the faculty. Windsor has also put in place a $1 million curriculum reform and development fund, to conduct market research, develop new courses and interdisciplinary programs.

 

Watch for more interviews soon, or to be sure you don’t miss them, join more than 15,000 Ten with Ken subscribers and followers on any of a dozen platforms. Stay in the Loop by subscribing to our free email newsletter at http://eduvation.ca/subscribe/

Feb 27, 2018

Ken Steele interviews 12 university presidents and senior administrators about the innovations most likely to transform higher education over the coming decade, for a series called "Towards 2028."

In this episode, we discuss active learning pedagogies and classrooms, online and blended delivery, immersive telepresence, virtual reality and augmented reality, and the centrality of libraries to an institution-wide strategic approach to IT planning. We hear about pilot projects at the University of Waterloo testing Labster, a VR simulation of a chemistry lab, and Riipen, an online clearinghouse of work experience opportunities for students. 

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