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Academic Partnerships to Launch Third-Generation Online Instructional Model for Higher Education

Submitted by on April 22, 2015 – 1:17 pmNo Comment


DALLAS, April 21, 2015

Academic Partnerships 3.0 Key Facts

  • Technology-driven solution
  • Enhanced interaction between faculty and students
  • Peer-to-peer collaboration
  • Face-to-face environment in cyberspace
  • Global 24/7 access in multiple languages
  • Revenue-sharing with faculty who participate

Academic Partnerships, a global provider of online services for higher education, announced today it will launch Academic Partnerships 3.0 (AP 3.0), a blended online instructional model that will revolutionize faculty and student interaction as part of the online learning experience. The company will also share a portion of its revenue with faculty who participate in AP 3.0, recognizing their important role in this new instructional model.

Key enhancements for this third-generation model include an increase in the quality of faculty interaction with their online students – providing the means to employ the Socratic teaching method in online learning – as well as new technologies that enhance collaboration and peer-to-peer engagement.

The development of AP 3.0 was guided by the extensive body of research that demonstrates the effectiveness of blended learning, which combines synchronous and asynchronous instruction. According to Academic Partnerships Chairman Randy Best, AP 3.0 represents a major service upgrade and will facilitate more high-touch interaction than either strictly online or strictly on-campus instruction delivers today, increasing the value proposition universities will be able to provide their online students at no additional charge from Academic Partnerships.

“The evolution of online learning that began in the mid-1990s replicated the classroom on the Internet, and then progressed to its next generation – 2.0 – by 2005, condensing courses to facilitate greater scale. However, both iterations reduced direct faculty interaction with students and decreased peer engagement,” said Best. “Recent innovations in technology have enabled us to develop AP 3.0, with real-time, team-based learning and faculty-led Socratic Circles, creating a face-to-face environment in cyberspace for the first time.”

Through a series of strategic partnerships with several cutting-edge tech companies, Academic Partnerships will leapfrog the industry’s incremental pace of improvements to the quality of online learning by creating a four-dimensional classroom – with access to instruction and interaction available regardless of location, time and language. One new technology incorporated in AP 3.0 supports course delivery in multiple languages, which enables the international distribution of online programs. The same technology also makes courses accessible on all types of computers and mobile devices.

“We anticipate that AP 3.0 will increase completion rates and corresponding revenue for our partner universities,” Best said. “Accordingly, we will reward participating faculty of record with a stipend for their important role in this new blended instructional model.” Academic Partnerships expects that these payments could amount to several million dollars annually.

Clayton Christensen, a professor at the Harvard Business School, commented: “This innovation from Academic Partnerships can significantly raise the bar for the effectiveness and quality of learning online. AP 3.0 brings back the best of teaching by personalizing the relationship between faculty and their students.”

Academic Partnerships has begun discussing the rollout of AP 3.0 with its partner universities and is receiving enthusiastic support. The company recently announced the addition of 40 new Specializations developed at the Judge Business School and Queens’ College at the University of Cambridge, the UCLA Anderson School of Management, the University of Southern California Marshall School of Business, and Rice University’s Jesse H. Jones Graduate School of Business.

AP 3.0 will be launched in the early fall of this year with additional components being announced shortly thereafter.


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