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10 Hottest Ed-Tech Stories of 2012

Articles about how free online courses, or MOOCs, could disrupt higher education dominated the headlines last year here at the Wired Campus blog, and they were the most popular with readers as well. Several articles about e-textbooks also topped our list of most-read articles of 2012, highlighting what has been a time of change, and anxiety, for colleges and universities.

Coursera and Udacity appear most frequently in this year’s top headlines. Both offer MOOCs, or massive open online courses, and both were founded by Stanford University computer-science professors who are now on leave. Together, they now claim more than two million students, though some of those sign up but never complete work in the courses.

The most popular episode of our monthly Tech Therapy podcast highlights another anxiety among college leaders—how much raw time all this personal technology use eats up. The podcast includes a classic line by Freeman Hrabowski III, president of the University of Maryland-Baltimore County, about how frequently he uses his smartphone: “I am connected to this device for communication in the same way that I am always connected to my mind,” he said. “I’m constantly expressing or receiving.” Whatever he’s doing is working: Mr. Hrabowski was named by Time Magazine as one of the 100 most influential people of 2012.

Here are the 10 top Wired Campus stories:

1. Stanford Professor Gives Up Teaching Position, Hopes to Reach 500,000 Students at Online Start-Up

2. Could Many Universities Follow Borders Bookstores Into Oblivion?

3. Minnesota Gives Coursera the Boot, Citing a Decades-Old Law

4. Khan Academy Founder Proposes a New Type of College

5. Elsevier Publishing Boycott Gathers Steam Among Academics

6. Coursera Announces Big Expansion, Adding 17 Universities

7. 3 Major Publishers Sue Open-Education Textbook Start-Up

8. Students Find E-Textbooks ‘Clumsy’ and Don’t Use Their Interactive Features

9. Now E-Textbooks Can Report Back on Students’ Reading Habits

10. Udacity Cancels Free Online Math Course, Citing Low Quality

And here are the three most popular Tech Therapy episodes:

1. Campus Leaders Drink Big Gulps of Technology

2. Giving Everyone at College a ‘Domain of One’s Own’

3. Why the Man With the Open-Source Tattoo Now Works for Blackboard

[Image: A tag cloud of the above headlines, made with Wordle.net.]

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