5. May 2013 22:13
This post is by guest contributor Catherine Stevens.
Our mission here at Degreed is to make it easy to aggregate and certify all of your informal learning - including online classes, events you've attended, and books you've read. Coding bootcamps are another type of informal learning that you will soon be able to add to your Degreed profile. These bootcamps are intended for people with no coding experience whatsoever and provide a couple months of intensive coding instruction and practice, with a big emphasis on project-based, hands-on learning: students create apps and websites rather than just completing classes. In addition to programming instruction, these bootcamps also provide students with help interviewing and finding a job after graduating through their partnerships with companies looking to hire graduates. In fact, one of the reasons these bootcamps are so popular is because they boast a job acceptance rate of between 80 and 100% post-graduation.
Attending a coding bootcamp is a good idea if you want to quickly attain a good foundation of programming and get started in a career in software development because they provide everything you need to get . They’re located all over the world, each one varying in their curriculum, student demographic, and cost. Here's a brief overview of some of the major ones and what makes them unique:
In the coming months you'll be able to add these bootcamps to your Degreed learning profile.
4. May 2013 11:29
While some might quibble with a few of the statistics in this inforgraphic (put together by Knewton), the overall trend is hard to argue with:
Created by Knewton and Column Five Media
27. April 2013 11:31
Reid Hoffman is the co-founder of LinkedIn, an early employee at PayPal, a Venture Capitalist, and a thinker.
Last year he wrote “the start-up of you” (along with Entrepreneur Ben Casnocha), which aims to help workers apply a more entrepreneurial mindset to managing their careers.
Recently, Hoffman posted a surprisingly in-depth Executive Summary of the book on SlideShare. Check it out:
26. April 2013 10:40
These will be the best twenty minutes of your week:
Also, check out the New York Times’ one on one interview with Mitra.
23. April 2013 13:38
You love to learn and Degreed is here to help. Last month we launched a scholarship to help financially support our users in pursuit of their learning passions. The monthly $1,000 "Pursue Your Passion" scholarship is open to any Degreed user to be used in any way in the pursuit of their learning passion (see application for details & rules).
The winner of March's scholarship is... Ashleigh S. Ashleigh's essay:
Language and its use: that's my highest interest and my life's passion. The topic covers a broad set of human mysteries, and as a Linguistics major at the University of Georgia, I've studied these phenomena mostly in an academic setting.
I now have an opportunity for learning not in a classroom, but in a rainforest--I was accepted into UGA's Language and Culture Study Abroad program in Costa Rica. I will be organizing an "English Camp" for Costa Rican children while taking linguistics courses on-site and traveling. I have a chance to learn hands-on about Second Language Acquisition by helping children acquire English. This learning opportunity is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to step out of the classroom and into the world--to see language in action. I would spend Degreed's $1,000 scholarship on an opportunity to learn from an unfamiliar environment and see first-hand the magic of language interaction.
And March runner-ups include:
- Amanda O.: Sculpture Major, Product Innovation Minor, Art History Minor, Honors Student, Studied Art Restoration in Italy 2011, Art History in England 2013
- Allegra B.: I collect knowledge, facts, and fortune cookie slips.
- Catherine B.: Learning does not stop at a formal education, but is found in every new experience!
- Oscar C.: As a soon to be graduate from UCLA I am only just beginning my lifelong dedication to the study of cinema and the practice of film-making.
- Robert T.: Biologist by training, a Teacher from nature, and an Environmentalist at heart. I also create art, write short stories, and bake delicious brownies.
- Jacob W.: I interested in physiology and molecular and cellular biology. My interests include guitar and martial arts.
- James R.: I am passionate about learning all I can about universe at the pace I need to understand it. My goal is to expand humanity's knowledge of fundamental physics; to know the deepest and most elementary properties of reality.
- Kim F.: I am an aspiring optometrist by trade and an enthusiastic lifelong learner by nature. I’m interested in cultural anthropology, culinary arts, music, technology, and biological sciences.
18. April 2013 14:59
We just got done with a an exciting week at ASU Education Innovation Summit. One of the most interesting comments came from a session on "knowledge as currency" essentially about the future of the credential. An interesting question from the audience was made to the panel, "Would you consider DNA as a credential?"
The reigning credential is the college degree, which historically has been a refection of what you know, which is not part of your genetic makeup. Increasingly though, learners, universities, and employers are pushing for credentials around what you can do, not what you know. How much of "do" is reflected by your DNA? I certainly don't know. But the point as intended, I think was, will we one day just be able to prick your finger and immediately be able to know what you are capable of doing. Gattaca anyone?
One day we will be able to map your entire brain, know what you know. The world is moving there in steps. Degreed is a reflection of all of the inputs of your learning. Accredible and Parchment help verify those inputs. Assessments try to draw out a reflection of the knowledge already inside your brain; companies like Smarterer are making it easier to create infinite amounts of assessment. Mind maps, like The Brain, try and visually represent data the same way the brain stores it... in an endless web of connections. Collective knowledge is slowly being crowd sourced via sites like Wikipedia and Quora. Others, like Athena, are working to visually graph all knowledge.
Soon enough perhaps all it will take is a wave of the phone across your brain.
25. February 2013 08:44
The debate over the value of a college degree is louderthanever. And while both sides raise valid points, hidden amongst the arguing is one seemingly straightforward method of assessing a degree’s value: the job market.
Many students (and prospective students) find that favorable employment statistics make the decision to attend college an easy one, despite rapidly increasing costs. For instance, the US Department of Labor reported that January’s unemployment rate for college graduates was only 3.7%, compared to 8.1% for high school graduates.
The situation couldn’t be any clearer, right?
Not so fast.
Digging into the numbers, the Associated Press reports that 53% of college graduates under the age of 25 are either unemployed or underemployed (working at a job that doesn’t require a bachelor’s degree).
How do we account for the discrepancy between these statistics?
While it may be true that college graduates from a previous era are more gainfully employed than non-graduates, it is also true that these older graduates were welcomed into a better economic climate, paid less for college, dropped out at a lower rate, had much less student debt and had much fewer educational options (e.g., Coursera, Udacity, etc.). So lumping in their unemployment rate with that of recent graduates muddies the waters.
Simply put, these numbers include apples and oranges, but we only want to make orange juice.
The hidden costs of underemployment
While the costs of unemployment are obvious, it is easy to forget the latent economic and psychological costs of underemployment.
First, being underemployed is expensive, now and later. Now, because underemployed graduates are making less than they could be, and later, because in the future the underemployed may find it more difficult to compete for jobs with their underemployment histories (as compared to those that were “fully employed” directly out of college).
Second, the psychological impacts of underemployment can be just as damning. Those who are underemployed are often dispassionately working in jobs strictly for financial reasons (see: student debt crisis). Humans thrive on growth and challenges; being underemployed makes fulfilling those goals more difficult, and can decrease self-worth and quality of life.
Falling through the cracks
Most analyses fail to recognize the student group that is hit the hardest by unemployment: those who attend but do not graduate from college. According to a 2011 Harvard study, 44% of students do not receive a bachelor’s degree within six years. (Please read that last sentence again.) The US has the highest dropout rate in the industrialized world.
And while learning is obviously not an all-or-nothing endeavor, evidence reported by the New York Times suggests that employers treat it as such:
“One troubling trend hidden in all of these numbers is that the unemployment rate for those with some college but no degree — 7 percent — is not that much lower than that for people with no college at all.”
44% of students are forgoing work opportunities and paying to attend college, not graduating, receiving almost no economic benefit for having attended college yet accumulating unrelenting student debt. It’s cases like these that give context to the fact that student loan debt in the US is now more than one trillion (!) dollars.
What can we do?
In spite of some of the harsh realities of the labor market, there are some silver linings.
The world has never had such access to free, high quality learning resources (courtesy of the internet); almost anybody anywhere can learn anything about anything at any time. That is a powerful (and slightly confusing) concept. Additionally, there is now a lot of information available online about the ROI of a college degree.
Prospective students can make more informed decisions by checking a college’s graduation and job placement statistics before enrolling. The College Scorecard introduced by President Obama in his State of the Union address is a nice place to start.
Those who are looking to increase job prospects can take advantage of the incredible opportunity MOOCs have created by continuing their learning, especially of in-demand skills such as computer programming.
And we all can work to provide better information to employers about our educational backgrounds, in the form of quantified, normalized, nuanced and instructive data that better reflects lifelong learning (which is what we’re trying to achieve here at degreed).
The debate over the value of college will definitely rage on, and that’s a good thing; these questions are critical to our nation’s (and the world’s) future, and they deserve scrutiny. But pop economics and specious number crunching is not the way to make decisions. We need to dig deeper.
IMAGE VIA NYTIMES.COM
14. February 2013 16:38
So you fancy yourself a Sir Ken-loving, creativity-kissing, son-of-a-TED'str? But did your creativity survive the minefield that is formal education? Here is a fun Creativity Quiz to see how left vs. right brained you are. Me... I scored 48% left 52% right. Wait... does that mean I get an "A" because that is all that really matters.
And more from around the web, this beautiful campaign was created by Shalmor Avnon Amichay/Y&R Interactive Tel Aviv, Israel and is on adsoftheworld.com. Bet you wouldn't have pegged it a Mercedes-Benz campaign.
8. February 2013 08:48
I feel so lucky for the support and interest Degreed has found from around the world. This last week several of you, from countries dotting the globe, offered to help in our efforts to catalogue the data required to support international schools—big thanks! Already, we have an amazing community of learners and thinkers working to build Degreed and change to future of education.
Today, we are pleased to announce that we have launched the support of over 13,000 international universities on Degreed. This is a big first step towards making Degreed the global standard by which education is measured and tracked. This is a big first step towards "jailbreaking the degree" and empowering learners worldwide to access the best courses from around the globe and collectively make something of it. This is a big first step... with many more to come.
We are ready to spread the word across the globe. If you know editors, journalists, or bloggers please start sharing the message of how Degreed "jailbreaks the degree" and tell them why you are excited about what this means. Tell your friends about Degreed and how it might help them. And as always, let us know how we can help support you in your learning.
24. January 2013 11:37
I feel so lucky for the opportunity we have to change education. Degreed's mission is to "jailbreak the degree" so your education never has to end. Degreed does this by scoring and validating your lifelong education from any source, both formal and informal.
As a community our paths have crossed at different points early in this journey, including either:
The Degreed community is already growing worldwide. We are drawn together by the belief that education is too important to stay the way it is. Together, we have taken up the cause and we have an exciting future of possibilities ahead of us.
Today, we are pleased to announce the BETA launch of the Degreed, with our initial two products: the Digital Lifelong Diploma and the Learning Stream. The Digital Lifelong Diploma scores and validates the courses you have taken, formal (e.g. Harvard) and informal (e.g. MOOCs, Lynda.com, etc.). The Learning Stream allows you to reflect and get points for the articles you read daily. In everything we do, we hope to make Degreed a place where you can discover the best learning resources the world has to offer.
We still have a long ways to go. Up next--support for international schools and clearly defined levels, badges, and degree equivalents. We would like to hear what hopeful features are most important to you and invite you to see what you can break. We are standing by to help.