I wrote this letter to a colleague this morning. I don’t know why I don’t embrace the epistolary style more often in writing blog posts. I feel like all my posts are to my few but fine audience.
Jane,I just finished reading an article in Wired about “microcredentialing”.I have always considered ideas like this as pandering and the death knell for the university, but I am changing my mind. It would take almost no effort to transform my comp classes into microcredential classes. For example, instead of teaching E100, I might have a comp class where I might teach the following among other things:1. How to summarize a journal article2. How to create a useable research question3. How to interview someone online4. Using Zotero as a research tool5. How to critique an argument6. A zillion other processes, skills, and concepts to be learned and combinedThere would be no grades, only credentials or no credentials. You could combine this with MIT’s blockchain credentialling system to get a whole new way for students to earn cred. The useful thing about this is that even students who drop out might earn something for their money instead of nothing.It is not hard to look at a syllabus and do this. I worry about gen ed as a sustainable model. I would love to work with CITL on a pilot of this in the classroom. Unfortunately, this kind of alternative learning model, like the C19 virus, would be deeply subversive, but it might be what the university needs to survive another millenium. Just wanted to do a little blue sky moment while I was thinking on it because I knew you might be an attentive ear. Thanks.Terry