Managing Online Programs


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Porto's presentation at the Distance Learning Administration conference - May, 2011 - Savannah, GA.

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  • Managing Online Programs

    1. 1. Managing online programs:Challenges, opportunities and recommendations<br />Stella C.S. Porto<br />( School of Management & Technology<br />University of Maryland University College<br />
    2. 2. Where are you in the landscape ?<br />What is your role as a manager?<br />What kind of organization you work for?<br />Universities, community colleges, k-12, corporate, military, government, non-profit…<br />Centralized vs decentralized<br />Online is mainstream or off-road?<br />What does your students’ profile look like?<br />How about your faculty: full-time, tenured or adjunct?<br />
    3. 3. The landscape for online program managers<br />Growth<br />Greater competition<br />More institutions<br />Within the same institution<br />Different groups<br />Larger spectrum of programs and models<br />Issues of quality still in the horizon<br />Scalability and costs<br />Growth in part-time faculty<br />
    4. 4. The landscape for online program managers<br />More complex supply chain<br />Specialized services<br />Competition<br />Organizations are more complex<br />Centralization vs decentralization<br />Internationalization, partnerships, etc. <br />DE is the response to government challenges<br />Can it live up to the challenge with quality?<br />
    5. 5. The landscape for online program managers<br />Increasing variety of technologies<br />Major shift to user generated content<br />Push for greater accessibility to information<br />Open content & open source<br />The force of mobile technologies<br />
    6. 6. Management and leadership have never been so important!<br />
    7. 7. Administration & Leadership<br />Instructional design & support<br />Consulting / Researching<br />Teaching<br />IT support <br />Distance Educator<br />A formidable repertoire of skills…<br />
    8. 8. A myriad of duties<br />needs assessment<br />market analysis<br />strategic planning<br />fitting technology needs<br />operationalizing ideas<br />resource mobilization<br />introducing online infrastructure<br />policy formulation, training and support for faculty<br />collaborating with partners<br />program evaluation and accreditation<br />mentoring the next generation of leaders <br />
    9. 9. Highlights for managers<br />
    10. 10. Learn the theories and develop as a practitioner…<br />
    11. 11. Learn the theories and develop as a practitioner…<br />In distance education it is still true that…<br />There is a complex balance between Theory & Practice<br />There is confusion between competencies and skills<br />The needs of the market are still blurred<br />Most employers’ are lacking the knowledge to understand the field and hire professionals <br />There is a culture of trial and error<br />
    12. 12. Learn the theories and develop as a practitioner…<br />
    13. 13. Lead the way… strategically<br />
    14. 14. Lead the way… strategically<br />Moving too quickly<br />Reactive mode<br />Need for planning<br />Need for reflection<br />
    15. 15. Defining vision, mission, goals and objectives<br />Determining priorities<br />Scanning the landscape trends and issues<br />Tracking emerging and sustainable technologies<br />Assessing available resources and financial needs<br />Lead the way… strategically<br />Leading organizational change<br />
    16. 16. Understand your level of influence and explore options<br />How big of a say do I have?<br />Staff development<br />marketing<br />technology<br />budget<br />
    17. 17. Understand your level of influence and explore options<br />Limited resources<br />High expectations for growth<br />Multiple and opposing goals<br />Distinct stakeholders<br />Be creative<br />Well-developed personal and communication skills<br />Find support in unexpected places<br />
    18. 18. Manage growth versus quality<br />
    19. 19. Learn the technology and use it well<br />“Technology is expensive, unpredictable and essential”<br />Risk of dependence on technology<br />Dichotomy between innovation and sustainability<br />Impact on support functions, maintenance and training<br />Dealing with fear<br />
    20. 20. Learn the technology and use it well<br />Field changing rapidly with increased demands on the institution<br />There needs to be space for experimentation alongside with strategies for adoption and sustainability<br />As an example, social media can be a catalyst tool…<br />Managers can become catalysts for change<br />
    21. 21. Focus on and support community building<br />Increased sense of ownership<br />PR & marketing<br />Support for success<br />Avoid feelings of isolation<br />Tracking professional landscape<br />
    22. 22. Final remarks<br />changes in the landscape of distance education+rapid advancements in technologies<br />+managing adjunct faculty at a distance<br />+<br />sharing of scarce institutional resources +growing competition from for and not for profits+high quality and global perspective or outreach <br /><ul><li>reality check on the challenges is a reminder of the work that continues
    23. 23. managers can affect directly many of the outcomes.
    24. 24. need for a process of critical self-reflection </li></ul>creative and efficient management strategies on all fronts<br />
    25. 25. Thank you… Any questions?<br />Slides can be found at questions to<br />
    26. 26. Photo attributions<br />Photo from (Slide 9)<br />Photo from (Slide 9)<br />Photo from (Slide 9)<br />Photo (Slide 14)<br />Photo: (slide 17)<br />Photo: (slide 19)<br />Photo (Slide 20)<br />