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National CrossTalk Summer 1999
News Editorial Other Voices Interview
  In This Issue
 
The British Open University, with an enrollment of more than 215,000 students in the United Kingdom and in other countries, is the most successful distance learning program in the world. Sir John Daniel, the universityís vice chancellor, discusses this non-traditional approach to higher education, and the Open Universityís expansion plans.

News
Distance Education
British Open University sets the standard worldwide

A New British Invasion?
Open University struggles in the United States

"Academic Audits"
American educators examine European practices

News from the Center

"California Virtual University"
Highly touted experiment falls short of expectations

Interview
Sir John Daniel
Sir John Daniel is vice chancellor of the Open University of Great Britain and is president of the United States Open University.

Other Voices
A College Degree is the Key
Higher education and the changing workforce

"Castles in a Bog"
Great university systems flourish where children fare badly

Are Academic Audits the Answer?
"Assessment movement" seeks to measure and improve student learning
  Open University tutor Dominic Newbold meets with students taking an “Introduction to the Humanities” class. Tutors are assigned to all Open University undergraduates.
  Open University tutor Dominic Newbold meets with students taking an "Introduction to the Humanities" class. Tutors are assigned to all Open University undergraduates.
THE FLAGSHIP CAMPUS of the largest university in Britain looks much like any other school. Groups of faculty, deep in discussion, stroll across manicured grass quadrangles between buildings of contrasting architectural styles. There are dining halls, a busy library, athletic fields, tennis courts and bulletin boards announcing special academic rates for magazine subscriptions. Exhaust pipes and chemical storage tanks sprout from modern science buildings. There's no place to park.

Just one thing, really, sets this peaceful place apart from more conventional university campuses: There aren't any students here. With the exception of a few doctoral candidates, the 215,000 students of Britain's Open University study at home or at work in one of the most successful models of distance education in the world....(continue)
 
 
   
Florida State University has adopted some of the British Open University's distance learning methods but has purchased few OU course materials.
Florida State University has adopted some of the British Open University's distance learning methods but has purchased few OU course materials.
 
THE BRITISH OPEN University, widely praised for expanding postsecondary educational opportunity in Great Britain and some other countries, is finding it hard to gain a foothold in the United States.

Some of the reasons can be found at Florida State University, the 31,000-student football power whose campus stands within a political shout from the state capitol.

Five years ago, when Florida State President Talbot (Sandy) D'Alemberte and Sir John Daniel, vice chancellor of the British Open University, exchanged visits, hopes were high that the two institutions would work closely together to fashion distance learning programs for Florida....(continue)
 
     

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