WASHINGTON, D.C.—New business models that harness technology and
innovation are the key to reforming—and transforming—higher education in
the United States.
Despite enormous financial pressures and public mistrust, “pockets of
genius” on some campuses are already ramping up the value and
cost-effectiveness of education, argues author Susan Aldridge in the new
book, Wired for Success: Real-World Solutions for Transforming Higher Education.
Aldridge is president of Drexel University Online; the book was
commissioned and published by the American Association of State Colleges
and Universities (AASCU), where Aldridge was a senior fellow in
2013. She and co-author Kathleen Harvatt use their extensive research
and experience to offer practical advice on the revolutionary
transformation reshaping higher education. They explore the learning
experiences, environments and technologies; institutional structures;
and strategies that are being led by academic “gazelles”–fast-running
thought leaders at public and private colleges and universities across
Aldridge and Harvatt use case studies to highlight new e-learning,
financing, and pricing business models; effective outsourcing of
selected programs and services; virtual and physically combined
campuses; co-branding; and the formation of partnerships and consortia
to increase value and reduce costs. They also outline strategies for
helping faculty members to adapt to different learning styles and new
technologies, families to choose colleges on more than price and
proximity, and presidents to break away from the ratings wars.
The book also focuses on identifying and overcoming the full spectrum
of obstacles to long-term success, such as an “addiction to
tradition,” “MOOC Mania,” test obsession, and over-emphasis on job
Stephen Joel Trachtenberg, president emeritus, George Washington University, says Wired for Success “irresistibly
makes the case for innovation and clearly states why we can’t stay
where we are…[It] is inspirational and intimidating, an imperative read
for every stakeholder in the higher education community.”
Prior to serving as a senior fellow at AASCU, Aldridge
was president of the online University of Maryland University College,
the largest public university in the nation. Harvatt has had an
extensive career in communications, public relations, and higher
education research. Wired for Success is available through AASCU’s online bookstore for $20.99, plus shipping, and will be available electronically through the Kindle Store on Amazon.com.
AASCU is a Washington, D.C.-based higher education association of more than 400 public colleges, universities, and systems whose members share a learning- and teaching-centered culture, a historic commitment to underserved student populations, and a dedication to research and creativity that advances their regions’ economic progress and cultural development.