Additional Blog Post: Keeping Up with the Technology in Higher Education

CEO's Must Know The Technology Impact On EducationAs the pandemic impacted all our lives in the past few years, many of the institutions used advanced technology to continue remote education. For some people, this remote learning experience might have turned into a very effective way of learning whereas others cannot wait to go back to classes where they can interact with each other in person. Even though it was challenging, it showed a great potential to discover non-traditional ways of learning. 

Remote learning can be very beneficial for the students who cannot make it to in person lectures, recording might provide extra resources for students to catch up. On the other hand many instructors needed to find alternative ways to deliver experiences where students need to be in person such as laboratory exercises, examinations or group activities. For example, simulation software can be used to complete exercises, or group activities can be run through virtual meeting and discussion boards. Remote learning is not something brand new, it has been already there via many online universities and online courses. However,  it was nearly the first time it was used on such a wide scale and forced us to incorporate various emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and virtual reality (VR).

AI can provide students the opportunity to personalize their educational experience by providing assistance in straightforward questions and administrational tasks, leaving more time to instructors and administrators to engage with students. In some schools like Georgia Tech, it is used to keep track of the students who are not performing well or answer repeated questions so as to decrease the workload of TAs [1]. Another technology that has been explored is VR. VR can be used to run lab exercises realistically without the restrictions of location or time. It can be also incorporated into teaching to provide a more exploratory and contextualized learning which can increase the engagement and motivations of students. For example, it can be used to run different scenarios which would not be possible due to material restrictions. 

On the other hand, increased use of technology comes up with extra issues such as privacy and security issues. I think as the use of technology increases the institutions are in more danger of security threats. It should be compulsory to train both and faculty in such dangers. I think that such training would also be useful for many of us in our private lives as well. 



Future of Higher Education

Is higher ed ready for the big edtech explosion? - Page 2 of 2 - eCampus News

( eCampus News )

As technology advances, affordable education materials without the constraints of time and location are easier to find. Even before the pandemic there were many online education opportunities, but the pandemic showed us that higher education, nearly in any field, does not have to be restricted by place and time. Therefore,  we can see that current traditional and institutional higher education will not be enough to meet the needs of the emerging global and digital economy very soon.

The two articles I read during my exploration of this topic bring a new perspective of what we can see in the future of higher education. The article “How Technology Is Changing the Future of Higher Education ” in the New York Times explains the new approaches in higher education as artificial intelligence, virtual reality, and other technologies develop. The second article “The Future of Higher Ed Is Occuring at the Margins” tells us about the five new realities of higher education that we need to prepare ourselves for. There were several interesting ideas mentioned in these two articles.


  1. More accessible and convenient education that is driven by the students will be in demand. So that the students can have control over what courses they take, how fast they progress and where they take their courses. This brings up the idea of subscription. For example, a student can subscribe for a course for 2 months and complete it in this duration without having to pay for other courses they are not interested in. We can see that many online course providers, like Coursera, follow such a system.
  2. The importance of certificates, microcredentials will increase as the importance of degrees decreases. As the dissemination of knowledge is very fast, learning new skills and updating current knowledge  will gain more importance than having a degree from years ago.
  3. Virtual teaching help will be more common. For example, Georgia Tech has been experimenting with virtual teaching assistants to answer discussion questions and students are generally unable to distinguish between real and virtual teaching assistants according to How Technology Is Changing the Future of Higher Education. Artificial intelligence can also be used for grading or even learning a new language. 
  4. The idea of a lifelong transcript that includes the experiences of the student and what they learn rather than the course names will be more common. These lifelong transcripts will be a digital record of what specific skills are learned. This digital record will make it easier for students to take control of what skills they want to improve and transfer their information. I guess LinkedIn can be seen as such a digital record where you can share your degrees, certificates, experiences, and etc. 


I wanted to describe the ideas mentioned in these two articles because they have very interesting points. Let me try to explain what I think about the each point above. More accessible and convenient education will definitely be more in demand and I think it is normal given the fast speed information dissemination around us. However, I think given such responsibility to college aged young adults might be challenging for some of them. I think the given structure with the curriculum was very needed in my experience and it might be for many others as well. 

Microcredentials  might be a great way to keep up with the new technology and knowledge without committing to going back to school. This idea also relates to the point four, the idea of lifelong transcripts. In that way, a person can continue to grow their experience and education during their whole life. Lastly, using AI as a virtual teaching assistant and a way of getting done with paperwork sounds very realistic. I think it would be a great way of improving efficiency in the classroom and give more time to instructors and real TAs to connect with students. I think that the ideas above are very interesting and we already see them happening around us. It will be exciting to see how current institutions respond to such changes in the upcoming years. 

Professional Development through Social Media in Higher Education

For this blog post, I chose the article “‘Like, comment, and share’ – professional development through social media in higher education: A systematic review” by Tian Luo, Candice Freeman, and Jill Stefaniak. This article was published on Springer in June 2020. It examines the social media communities for professional development of faculty in higher education. 

The complexity of higher education forces faculty to not only be experts on their discipline but also be very experienced in instructional methods and strategies. As we discussed in the lecture previously, there are two main parts of a faculty member’s responsibility: teaching and research. Higher education faculty members are expected to not only follow current trends in their respective field but also engage in professional learning environments to keep up with andragogical and instructional learning strategies.

Traditionally, professional development happens in conferences, courses, seminars, and workshops and they require the faculty members’ attendance. However, incorporating such activities into the busy schedules of the faculty members might be an obstacle. 

Social media offers a solution to this issue by offering professional learning opportunities without the temporal and geographical constraints. These professional communities can be divided into professional learning networks (PLNs) and online learning communities of practices (COPs). They both have great advantages for faculty members who want to develop themselves professionally around their personal schedule. 

Professional learning communities in social media are interactive and dynamic that are shaped by all the participants. Because of this nature, it can address the specific needs of the community. Online communities also provide efficiency by addressing the specific needs of the learners in the community. Another advantage of social media is that it is controlled by the learners. Participants can arrange their schedules because it is less structured and organic. This paper suggests that a more collaborative, social, and learner driven environment is more effective than traditional strategies.  

In conclusion, social media offers online communities where the learner can focus on topics of interest and develop their skills collaboratively without being bound to time and location. In my experience, social media is a great platform for finding communities for your interests. For example, I have been interested in baking and I found out many recipes to try. It is generally a very random experience like I am just scrolling on Instagram while I am on the bus and I see an interesting cake recipe. Later, I got to try it when I am home. I feel like the easiness of finding new recipes without spending time on it really help me to improve my baking skills. Similar benefits can be used by professionals to improve their teaching experiences. A teacher may not want to an obligatory seminar at the end of the day but may not mind listening to a podcast as they are driving back home. However, one thing to be concerned about is to be able to distinguish between correct and useful conversation, and misinformation in social media. But, it would be a topic for another blog because distinguishing between correct and misinformation is a very present concern for every social media user in this day and age.  Keeping these concerns in mind, I still think such kinds of online learning communities should be as helpful to the students as professional development communities are helpful to the faculty members in higher education. 

IEEE Open Access Journals

I chose to discuss the IEEE’s options for open access publishing which includes: Hybrid Journals, a Multidisciplinary Open Access Mega Journal, and fully Open Access Journals. The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, IEEE, is a global professional association for electronic engineering and electrical engineering based in New York City [1]. Its mission is to advance technological innovation and excellence for the benefit of humanity. 


The goal of all three journals is to provide authors’ research global exposure. On their website, it is emphasized that these journals are well-respected [2]. Another important point that is mentioned is that the review process is the same for all journals, traditional, open-access, and hybrid journals. Given that authors’ needs change throughout their careers, IEEE offers three different journal options:


  • Hybrid Journals

I knew that most IEEE journals are hybrid journals, consisting of both subscription-based publications and author-pays content (open access) based on my experience as a reader. These hybrid journals include a variety of disciplines such as aerospace, bioengineering, signal processing &analysis, etc.

  • Multidisciplinary Open Access Mega Journal

IEEE has different journals that are focused on different disciplines. However, IEEE Access is a multidisciplinary, electronic journal where all articles are author-pays. It also has a rapid peer review process which takes 4-6 weeks. It generally focuses on interdisciplinary articles because of its multidisciplinary nature. 

  • Fully Open Access Journals

IEEE also offers fully open access journals which all publish author-pays articles and online. One of the examples is the IEEE Photonics Journal by the IEEE Photonics Society which publishes research in photonics [3].


As I was reading about these journals, I realized that there are important factors to consider while choosing an open-access journal such as visibility, cost, prestige, and speed [4]. Since most open-access journals are free to read and online, they have more visibility than traditional journals. All the journals mentioned above have author-pays articles so they might be more expensive for someone to publish. IEEE is one of the largest organizations for electrical and electronics engineers with a great reputation. Its publications also are very well known with a high impact factor. Lastly, access to open-access journals is easy and fast since they are generally free and online. IEEE also offers a rapid peer-review process so that the articles can be published very quickly. 






Research Ethics: Case of Dr. Viravuth Yin

For my ethics blog post, I chose the case of Viravuth Yin, Ph.D. at the Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory. This research misconduct investigation was conducted by Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory (MDIBL) and the Office of Research Integrity (ORI). Dr. Yin’s research was funded by U.S. Public Health Service (PHS) funds, specifically the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS), National Institutes of Health (NIH). The respondent, Viravuth Yin, was found to be engaged in falsifying or fabricating data in several papers and manuscripts, reusing and/or relabeling some substances in experiments.

 This investigation was settled without any admission or denial of guilt by the respondent to prevent the further expenditure of time, finances, and other resources. As a result of this settlement, the respondent agreed to the points below:

  1. Respondent’s research will be supervised for 2 years.
  2. Requirements for Respondent’s supervision plan are:
    1. A committee of 2-3 senior faculty members will provide oversight for 2 years
    2. The committee will conduct a review of any PHS grant applications, manuscripts for publication, and abstracts
  3. Any institution employing the Respondent should have a certification to ORI that the data provided by Respondent are based on actual experiments or are legitimately derived and that the data, procedures, and methodology are provided accurately reported in any publication.
  4. Respondent should provide certification to ORI at the conclusion of the supervision period.
  5. Respondent should exclude himself voluntarily from serving in any advisory capacity to PHS for 2 years.
  6. Several papers will be retracted.


Data falsification and fabrication are unacceptable in any kind of research. I think that such misconduct is worse in this case because it was funded by U.S. Public Health Service (PHS) funds, specifically the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS), National Institutes of Health (NIH). The investigation was resolved with a settlement which makes me think that either the misconduct happen unintentionally and/or did not cause serious repercussions. Even though I am not really sure what is the procedure to follow in such investigations, I believe that if this misconduct was more serious, there would be a lawsuit or the Respondent would not be allowed to continue further research while funded by the same organization or apply for further grants. 

I think that if the misconduct was not that serious, even though it is unacceptable, it is a good approach to go to a settlement. Because the researcher who knows the details of the research would be continuing the research however under more direct observation and supervision. I also think that the requirements of the settlement seemed very reasonable. I agree that a supervision committee would be helpful to prevent further misconduct in the research and it is important to keep the future grant applications and publications under inspection. Moreover, it is necessary to retract already published papers that are affected by the misconduct.

Overall, It was interesting to read about this misconduct case. I found the settlement of the investigation reasonable. However, I would love to learn more about the background of this investigation to understand whether it is commonly encountered or was a very serious misconduct case. I would also like to learn more about the other settlement procedures of the same organization and other organizations as well.

Comparing Mission Statements

University of Rochester’s Mission Statement:

The University’s mission is to Learn, Discover, Heal, Create—and Make the World Ever Better. Embedded in that ideal are the values we share: equity, leadership, integrity, openness, respect, and accountability.’s%20mission%20is%20to,openness%2C%20respect%2C%20and%20accountability. (Links to an external site.)

Virginia Tech’s Mission


Inspired by our land-grant identity and guided by our motto, Ut Prosim (That I May Serve), Virginia Tech is an inclusive community of knowledge, discovery, and creativity dedicated to improving the quality of life and the human condition within the Commonwealth of Virginia and throughout the world. to an external site.


I chose the mission statements of the University of Rochester and Virginia Tech. I hope that I will have a better understanding of the mission and values of these universities as an alumna of the University of Rochester and a current graduate student of Virginia.

Both the University of Rochester and Virginia Tech are located in the USA but in different states New York and Virginia. The University of Rochester is a private research university with approximately 12,000 enrolled students. On the other hand, Virginia Tech is a public land-grant research university with a student body of 34,000.

In spite of the difference in their student body size, they are both R1 level research universities. Even though the word “research” is not used directly in both of these statements, the importance of research is emphasized by the value of discovery. Interestingly, other values such as knowledge (learning) and creativity are common in these statements as well. Although I believe all these values are equally important, I found it surprising that they both use nearly the same phrasing. They also mention the idea of making the world a better place. As it was mentioned in the article, “world” is one of the most common phrases that was used in their research. I think that this word is a good way of highlighting the global influence of the institution.

I also realized that both of these statements use the respective universities’ mottos: Ever Better (University of Rochester) and That I May Serve (Virginia Tech). Using the motto must be a great and concise way of conveying the universities’ priorities. Of course, there is a difference between their mottos. “Ever Better” emphasizes the importance of research and discovery in a more general sense in the University of Rochester’s mission. However, the motto “That I May Serve” highlights the pursuit of improving the condition and the lives of the people in the community and expanding to all over the world.

As the mottos are different, these mission statements are quite different even though they are approximately the same length. University of Rochester’s mission statement does not mention the structure of the school. However, it states the values of itself which can construct its identity. It feels like a more general statement rather than addressing specific issues. Whereas Virginia Tech’s statement is more direct about its identity, structure, and goal. We can learn that it is a land-grant university, with the aim of improving the quality of life and the human condition in the community.

Overall, I think that both of the mission statements highlight similar values. However, they have different approaches while doing so. One has a more idealistic phrasing whereas the other is more informative.