Friday, December 27, 2013

Not A Positive Trend

From the Harvard Business Review:

THE DAILY STAT: Harvard Business ReviewDecember 26, 2013

Students Get Lower Grades in Online Courses

Although students who take online courses in community colleges tend to be better prepared and more motivated than their classmates, a study by Di Xu and Shanna Smith Jaggars of Columbia University shows that the online format has a significant negative impact on students’ persistence in sticking with courses and on their course grades. For the typical student, taking a course online rather than in person would decrease his or her likelihood of course persistence by 7 percentage points, and if the student continued to the end of the course, would lower his or her final grade by more than 0.3 points on a 4-point scale. Before expanding online courses, colleges need to improve students’ time-management and independent-learning skills, the researchers say.
Personally I have never been a fan of online or even remote classrooms.  I first encountered this concept back in the early 80's taking some Master level Computer Science classes thru the U of Minn remote hooked that IBM supplied.  That never really worked for me.

Blogging and online forums do have their place, obviously .  However, when I went for my MBA a few years ago, to me there was no compromising on having classroom instruction.  The level of discussion in a classroom cannot compare at all to that which occurs in an online discussion.  I also have made friends and professional contacts that would be much harder to accomplish online.

Of course, with this study good to see that I also achieved much more than online as well ...

Monday, March 11, 2013

Another Lesson From Katrina

I was looking thru the monthly CIO magazine and who couldn't resist reading about an NBA team rebounding?  Minimal humor aside, it was good to see the aspect of DR branching out beyond what we generally consider mission critical businesses.

What was enlightening here, was that Tod Caflisch the VP of IT brought things he learned from Katrina to this new job.  The Hornets implemented a great DR plan, but the kicker was that the emergency generator runs on an alternative fuel.  Why?  During the aftermath of Katrina the emergency agencies had dibs on all the diesel fuel.  So, even those with high end DR plans ran out of juice because they could not get their hands on the diesel to keep their generators running.

So, all of you out there in areas that can have wide spread natural impacts, pay attention !!!  More lessons learned ...