October 14, 2011, 2:07 pm
A new effort will help college newspapers add paywalls to their Web sites, enabling editors to collect donations or charge subscription fees to frequent readers of online editions.
The digital-subscription company Press+ and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation will cover the start-up fees for adding a meter system to the first 50 campus papers that sign up.
So far, most of the newspapers interested in adopting the system do not plan to charge on-campus users, and many plan to simply ask for donations from off-campus readers rather than making payment mandatory.
The project follows recent high-profile moves by national and local newspapers, such as The New York Times and The Dallas Morning News, to require readers to pay for access to certain online content.
Boston University’s Daily Free Press introduced a system for donations a few weeks ago, and it has already…
September 15, 2011, 7:00 am
A game-changing e-textbook project at Indiana University—in which the university requires certain students to purchase e-textbooks and negotiates unusually low prices by promising publishers large numbers of sales—now has the participation of major textbook publishers, and university officials plan to expand the effort.
Today McGraw-Hill Higher Education announced that it has agreed to join the project, which has been in a pilot stage for more than a year. A handful of other publishers—John Wiley & Sons; Bedford, Freeman & Worth Publishing Group; W.W. Norton; and Flat World Knowledge—have signed on to the effort as well.
Here’s how it works: Students in a select group of courses are required to pay a materials fee, which gets them access to the assigned electronic textbooks or other readings for the course. The university essentially becomes the broker of the textbook sales…
September 14, 2011, 6:29 pm
The University of North Carolina has a special message for students who want to access the dorm’s Internet network: “UNC-CHAPEL HILL IS BLOCKING FILE-SHARING THROUGHOUT STUDENT HOUSING.”
That’s at the top of a Web page which pops up on laptops that have file-sharing programs, when they connect to the university’s network. Students aren’t allowed to access the Internet until they’ve uninstalled the offending software or request an exception that the university is calling a “hall pass.”
The pass is an agreement the student signs that says he or she has a file-sharing program but “any copyright violation linked to a device registered under my name will result in an automatic referral to the Dean of Students office.” They also agree to learn what does and does not violate copyright law.
Officials hope the new policy will both prevent students from getting into legal pickles and help…
September 13, 2011, 5:29 pm
Eighteen students will take an introductory teaching course at National-Louis University at a steep discount, thanks to the institution’s experiment with Groupon, a popular deals Web site. But the students have no guarantee that they will be accepted into the master’s program that the course is part of.
The students bought a discounted tuition voucher for the course, called
“Introduction to the Profession and the Craft of Teaching.” For the deal to kick in, a minimum of 15 participants had to buy in before the offer expired last Friday. The coupon-toting students will pay $950 to take the course, instead of the typical cost of $2,232—a savings of nearly 60 percent.
But they won’t be enrolled at the institution. Instead, each participant will be considered a “student at large,” said Nivine Megahed, the university’s president.
The at-large students will be taught in their own …
September 8, 2011, 4:10 pm
You’re a student whose latest stop on the campus-visit circuit is at Bradley University, in Peoria, Ill. Your tour guide brings you to “the Markin,” the institution’s newly renovated Markin Family Student Recreation Center.
But it’s summer break, so the Markin is almost empty. A couple of people are lifting weights, and both the pool and the climbing wall are closed.
Your tour guide asks you to turn to the iPad, which you were given when you arrived. A video pops up, showing the Markin at its buzzing best: an active weight room, a dance class in session, the intramural sports season in full competitive bloom.
Welcome to the tablet-integrated tour, which Bradley has pilot-tested and plans to use much more of in the coming months, though the logistics aren’t settled yet, university officials say. An iPad application designed by the university lets prospective students and parents …
August 15, 2011, 4:56 pm
More than 200 students at Cornell University have signed an online petition calling for the end of the university’s Internet bandwidth policy, which charges fees to students who exceed a monthly cap. Though the policy has been in place for nearly a decade, students argue that they now need more bandwidth than ever to take full advantage of the Internet, considering the popularity of video-streaming services like Netflix and video-conferencing systems like Skype.
Cristina A. Lara, a sophomore at Cornell studying industrial and labor relations, said that she began the petition last week, arguing that “charging students for Internet is ridiculous” considering how much students pay for tuition. Her goal is to persuade at least half of the university’s 13,000 undergraduates to sign on, she added.
Such disputes over the cost of campus Internet connections may become more common….