OET Releases HigherEd Supplement to National Education Technology Plan


Wayne Mitchell, Online Learning Consortium

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Earlier this week, Jeffrey R. Young and Tony Wan took to the EdSurge News blog to scribe a somewhat critical look at a new report developed by the Obama administration’s Office of Educational Technology. Slipped in just before the government transitions from Obama’s leadership, the 60 pages report, Reimagining the Role of Technology in Higher Education, is a supplement to the previous release, the “National Education Technology Plan (NETP),” which focused primarily on K-12 institutions.  

Meant to encourage colleges and universities to take a more holistic look at their innovations around technology, “Reimagining the Role of Technology in Higher Education” builds on the five principles put detailed by the NETP — learning, teaching, leadership, assessment, and infrastructure. The new report examines these principles in the context of higher education and supports the NETP’s assertion that technology must serve the needs of all students, including those from diverse socioeconomic and racial backgrounds, students with disabilities, first-generation students, and adult learners.

Young and Wong echoed industry leaders who believe that although the content of the report is compelling and inspiring, the timing of its release is surprising given the expectation that innovation leadership will soon shift from the federal to state level during the Trump administration.  

The EdSurge blog post — and the report itself — are filled with cases and examples from a variety of institution types. The Online Learning Consortium’s Board of Directors President, Marie Cini, and our CEO and Executive Director, Kathleen S. Ives, were both involved in the research behind this report.


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