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Disruptive Innovation and Accreditation in Christian Higher Education for the Majority World ICETE Panama 2018


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Talk on Disruptive Innovation and Accreditation in Christian Higher Education for the Majority World at ICETE Panama on November 1, 2018 by Andrew Sears

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Disruptive Innovation and Accreditation in Christian Higher Education for the Majority World ICETE Panama 2018

  1. 1. Disruptive Innovation and Accreditation in Christian Higher Education for the Majority World Dr. Andrew Sears, President, City Vision University Dr. Walker Tzeng, Executive Director, World Evangelical Theological Institute Association ICETE's 2018 International Consultation - Panama City, Panama November 1, 2018 Slides and recording available at:
  2. 2. The Need 1: The Rise of Non-Western Christianity
  3. 3. The Need 2: Rapid Growth of Higher Education Globally 100 Million Students in 2000 263 Million Students in 2025 (84% of growth in the developing world) Sources Karaim, R. (2011). Expanding higher education: should every country have a world-class university. CQ Global Researcher, 5(22), 525–572. Lutz, W., & KC, S. K. (2013). Demography and Human Development: Education and Population Projections. UNDP-HDRO Occasional Papers, (2013/04). Retrieved from 137 Million New Students in Developing Countries by 2025 4.9 billion middle class globally by 2030
  4. 4. Is Education More Secular or Christian Globally? Perry L. Glanzer, "Dispersing the Light: The Status of Christian Higher Education around the Globe," Christian Scholar's Review 43 (2013): 321-43. Status of Global Mission 2014, Todd Johnson It depends on how you frame the question
  5. 5. The Majority of Christian Education is Alternative Education ACCREDITED EDUCATION NONTRADITIONAL, BUT ACCREDITABLE EDUCATION (GROWING DRAMATICALLY) Bible Colleges Christian Liberal Arts Colleges Christian Universities Seminaries Bible Institutes Ministry Experience Professional Experience Alternative Education Courses Bible Studies Sermons Missions Training Programs Christian Radio, TV, Websites, Books & Apps Small Groups NONTRADITIONAL, NON- ACCREDITABLE EDUCATION PRIMARILY PARACHURCH PRIMARILY CHURCH Correspondence & Continuing Ed Conferences
  6. 6. Industry Map: Supporting a Healthy Christian Tertiary Educational Ecosystem ACCREDITED HIGHER EDUCATION NONTRADITIONAL, BUT ACCREDITABLE EDUCATION MOOCs & Open Ed Udemy, Coursera, EdX, Futurelearn, Open2study, Open University, Udemy, Khan Academy, Duolingo Alison, YouTube, iTunesU, Open Learn, OLI Christian Mega Universities Liberty, Grand Canyon Christian Universities CCCU, IAPCHE, Overseas Council Paid Courseware Pearson, Mcgraw-Hill,, Skillshare, Pluralsight, Dream Degree Acrobatiq, Cengage, CogBooks, Flat World Bible Colleges ABHE Schools, ICETE, ATS Online Christian Universities CCCU, TRACS, DEAC, IAPCHE, ICHE Alternative Credit Providers Straighterline, Saylor, Ed4Online EdX, JumpCourse, Pearson, Sofia UC Irvine Extension, Modern States Christian Free & Open Courses,,, Global University Global Reach, Open Biola, Covenant Seminary, Regent Luxvera, Christian Leaders Institute, TransformingtheChurch,, Coram Deo, Multiply Movement, Commercial Christian Courseware Right Now Media, Lumerit, Logos Mobile Ed, Zondervan,, Ligonier Connect Bible Institutes 10’s of thousands globally Open Textbooks,,, Missions/Ministry Training i.e. YWAM U Nations Vocational Qualification Providers >50% of global market, 10’s of thousands of Training Centers Ministry & Professional Experience Prior Learning Assessment Christian Continuing Education,,,,,,,,,, Secular Partners Seminaries ATS TERTIARYEDUCATION Home School College Credit, Unaccredited Ordination Training Berean School, Lamp Seminary Church & Ministry Micro-Campuses Southeastern, Northwest, Kings University, Kirkland, Beulah Heights, CaCHE, Virtues Campus, Foundation University Secular Micro-campuses Kepler, Minerva, Coursera Learning Hubs, edX U.Lab, Khan Lab School, Bridge International Academies
  7. 7. We can’t repeat the mistakes of the past by expecting the majority world to wear the “suits” of Western accreditation, but there still must be appropriate standards and signals needed. Source: Wikipedia Article on Assimilation of Native Americans Higher Education vs. Tertiary Education vs. Vocational Education
  8. 8. Modular Degrees & Universities = Lego Cities Monolithic Bundled Degrees Today Unbundled Education (MOOCs & Courseware) = Lego Blocks Interoperable Standards Source: 3. Alternative Tertiary & Vocational Accreditation vs. Traditional University Accreditation Unbundled Qualifications & Alternative Credit Programs = Lego Kits
  9. 9. Vertical Integrated vs. Horizontal Modular Products Virtually Integrated Products = One Provider (expensive & seamless) Horizontal Modular Products = Multiple Providers (affordable & diverse) Traditional University Degrees Unbundled Qualifications & Awards
  10. 10. 4. Growth of Unbunded & Rebundled Education Industry Certifications Top-Up Degrees (City Vision, etc) University Courses Books & Paid Courseware 1.Christian Courseware, MOOCs, Apps & Open Educational Resources Internships & Missions Trips Alternative Ed Providers Vocational Qualifications (GC4) 4. Uncredentialed Local Coaches 3. Christian Worldview Program Designers Course market becomes more like book and software markets to reduce costs & improve quality 2. Credentialed Online Faculty Ordination Vertically Integrated University Virtually Integrated University Transformation is a core competency of the Church Horizontally Integrated Rebundled University Unbundled Christian Programs Faculty role is unbundled into 4 specialized positions DEGREE Church & Ministry Microcampuses Small Groups Mentoring Access to Opportunity (branding, licensing & quality assurance) Transformative Experience (primarily affective) Metacognition & Skills (psychomotor & high-level cognitive) Knowledge & Content (low-level cognitive) Alternative Accreditation
  11. 11. Dead Capital $9.3 trillion 400 million in India with No Identification Undocumented Alternative Education Trillions of $ of lost value? Why Now? Technology Is Enabling Centralized Record Keeping Needed to Document Alternative Education
  12. 12. Why Now? What’s driving this opportunity? 1. Rise of the global South ◦ Need new educational system and structures designed around the needs of the majority world 2. Increase in bi-vocational pastors globally ◦ Increased importance of government recognition of education credentials in second vocation 3. Growth of alternative tertiary & vocational accreditation systems ◦ Growth in globally transferable credentials priced affordably for the masses in the majority world ◦ 150 countries around the world now have national qualifications frameworks or NQFs 4. Growth of unbundled education ◦ Growth of MOOCs, mobile apps and open education ◦ Increased opportunity for combining national education and transnational education into globally recognized credentials Source:
  13. 13. How should we respond when some governments impose a sacred/secular divide through accreditation structures?  Option 1. Opt out of government system, with graduates having unrecognized credential locking them out of much of the economy?  Option 2. Participate in government system and be secularized?  Option 3. Be “wise as serpents” replicating the innovation of multinational corporations to comply with governments and have recognized credentials decreasing the sacred/secular divide
  14. 14. What Governments Try to Do with Theological Education Secular Sacred Theological Degrees (unrecognized accreditation) “Secular” Degrees (recognized accreditation) Alternative Accreditation Paths Is Theology the Queen of the Sciences or the Neglected Step-Child Relegated to a “Sacred Ghetto”?
  15. 15. Discussion Question If accreditation were built starting fresh today based on the needs of the majority world, how might it be different?
  16. 16. Part 2: Models of Alternative Accreditation Paths in Transnational Education
  17. 17. Accreditation: What Problem are You Trying to Solve?  Current Western Challenge (not the focus of this talk) ◦ How do you set standards so majority world students will be “ready” for a Western seminary education? (Quality Has Hard Constraint, Price Flexible)  Majority World Challenges (focus of this talk) ◦ What are standards for the best quality education at cost structure that makes it affordable within your local context? (Price Has Hard Constraint, Quality Flexible) ◦ Could we establish standards for differentiated accreditation to recognize more non-traditional but accreditable education? ◦ If ICETE standards are based around university-level education, what might ICETE standards look like at a level comparable to national vocational qualifications? ◦ What are standards that will assist schools in developing transnational partnerships to improve degree recognition outside the church in countries
  18. 18. Thesis: that having more tools to partner transnationally will dramatically strengthen theological education Hierarchy-based Partnerships ICETE 1.0 Network-based Partnerships ICETE 2.0? Image Source:
  19. 19. Recommendation for ICETE  Create a group to study what standards might provide a theological educational counterpart to the vocational qualification frameworks operating in 150 countries (similar to the online education group)  Primarily include Christian educators who have helped their organizations receive been through vocational qualifications frameworks  One potential outcome would be to provide recommendations for standards for ICETE regional accreditors that want to offer program level accreditation modeled on vocational qualifications
  20. 20. Potential Structure of ICETE Vocational Qualification Framework Level 3 Freshman Level 4 Sophomore $500-$5,000 $100-500 Governement Recognized and/or ICETE Regional Accreditor Traditional Accreditation Standards ICETE Regional Accreditor Vocational Qualification Framework University Degree (1 year) Level 5 Junior $100-500 $100-500
  21. 21. Program Level Qualifications & the ICETE Roman Roadmap 1. Identity and Purpose 2. Governance and Leadership 3. Human Resources 4. Community in Context 5. Educational Resources 6. Finances and Sustainability 7. Holistic Integration 8. Curriculum Development 9. Learning, Teaching and Assessment 10. Student Admissions 11. Graduation, Progression and Certification 12. Qualifications, Nomenclature and Credits Institutional Accreditation Program- Level Qualifications Course-Level Accreditation
  22. 22. Other Ideas for ICETE  Consider provide a “Universal Articulation Agreement” for ICETE members that want to, to accept each others credits within constraints of external accreditors and regulators.  Consider providing an international transcript evaluation service for a fee to ICETE members without government recognition (similar to World Evaluation Services)
  23. 23. Recommendations for Educators 1. If you are in a country where vocational qualifications for Bible and Ministry might be possible, consider that as an easier path to government recognized accreditation than typical higher education. 2. If government recognized accreditation would be helpful, but not viable in your country, consider transnational validation & top up partners. 3. Consider building part of your programs using free resources like MOOCs or ThirdMill can improve quality and provide paths to transnational accreditation 4. Use online faculty to meet requirements for credentialed faculty and provide uncredentialed coaches locally
  24. 24. Recommendations for Non-formal Academic Programs to Be “Friendly” to Alternative Accreditation 1. Have a student information system and learning management system. ◦ At the end of the day accreditors are like accountants need a paper trail for everything, and technology can provide that 2. Must have program level outcomes, course level outcomes & syllabi ◦ Preferably modeled on best practices of others 3. Strongly recommend estimating hours to complete each course ◦ i.e. 45 hours in class/lecture, 90 reading/study hours = 3 credit course in US 4. Quality of Assessments is important ◦ Many forms of alternative credit do not even consider faculty credentials 5. Need protections against fraud
  25. 25. Transnational Education vs. International Students  International student education relocates students from one country to another. ◦ More likely to result in cultural assimilation and “brain drain” ◦ Demand is slowing due to high cost and increase capacity of majority world  Transnational education is delivered in a country other than the country where the awarding organization is based. ◦ Typically without relocation of the student ◦ Demand is growing due to affordability
  26. 26. Source: Transnational Education Models
  27. 27. Source: (Transnational Assessment) (franchise, joint degrees) (Fly-in Faculty, etc.)
  28. 28. Tools and Models for Transnational and Alternative Credit Paths Theological Educators 1. ICETE Affiliate Accreditation 2. Articulation Agreements 3. National Vocational Qualifications 4. Transnational Validation 5. Prior Learning Portfolios 6-8. MOOCs, Coaching, Standarized Exams, Etc. See my Clayton Christensen Institute article (Part 1, Part 2)
  29. 29. Model 1. ICETE Affiliated Institution to Graduate Degree Graduate Degree Undergraduate Degree Government Recognized Accreditation ICETE Standards Articulation Agreement University Degree ICETE Affiliate Accreditation (not government recognized) Strength: accreditation is managed by Christians Weakness: limited portability of non-government recognized degrees
  30. 30. Model 2: Articulation of UofN to City Vision Degree City Vision Top Up Bachelor’s Degree YWAM University of the Nations (first 1 to 3 years) $4,500 US Recognized Accreditation Articulation Agreement or UK Qualification Validation University Degree Unaccredited Program in 130 Countries Strength: allows YWAM UofN to remain decentralized & flexible Weakness: limited ability recognize all UofN credits
  31. 31. Model 3: National Vocational Qualifications YWAM University of the Nations Australia Vocational Qualifications Accredited Program in Australia Strength: highly flexible government accreditation with global recognition Weakness: limited number of countries will provide religious vocational qualifications
  32. 32. Model 4a: Transnational Validation (Unaccredited US Institute) + Top-up City Vision Top Up Degree (one year online) Vision Leadership Institute Australia (validation + 4 courses) Vision International University (3 years undergraduate, US-based in 20+ countries)) $4,500 Validation University US Degree Unaccredited US Program Transfer Credit Accredited Australian Qualification $1,000 $2,000 Strength: allows vision to remain decentralized & flexible Weakness: can be confusing to student to have 3 institutions in their degree path
  33. 33. Model 4b: Transnational Validation (Unaccredited Kenyan College) + Top-up City Vision Top Up Degree (one year online) Qualifi UK Qualification (validation) Graffins College in Kenya (“secular” vocational qualification provider) $3,500 Validation University US Degree Unaccredited Kenyan Program Transfer Credit Accredited UK Qualification $100/year $500/year Strength: allows local schools to be flexible and affordable Weakness: can be challenging to ensure students are ready for US courses
  34. 34. Model 4c: ACE Credit Recommendation + Top-up City Vision Top Up Degree (one year online) ACE Credit Recommendation Faith Builders Educational Programs University US Degree Unaccredited US Program Transfer Credit Course Level Alternative Credit Strength: course credit acceptance at a large number of US schools Weakness: expensive to apply and no recognition outside of US
  35. 35. Model 5: Prior Learning Assessment Portfolio City Vision Online Degree World Impact’s The Urban Ministry Institute One Year Unaccredited Program $4,500 US Recognized Accreditation University Degree Unaccredited Use CAEL’s Prior Learning Assessment Portfolio Process for First Student then create Articulation Agreement Strength: allows TUMI to have non-credentialed group leaders Weakness: Prior learning assessment takes time
  36. 36. Model 6a: MOOC Free Third Millennium Seminary to City Vision Degree City Vision Online Degree Third Millennium Free Seminary as MOOC $4,500 US Recognized Accreditation University US Degree 100k+ students 100+ countries in 10+ languages Accredited Program Designed for ThirdMill Students Upload Study Guides + Exam Strength: combines scale/affordability of MOOCs with accredited degrees Weakness: both MOOC and degree program need to be designed to fit together
  37. 37. Model 6b: MOOC + Transnational Validation + Top-up City Vision Top Up Degree (one year online) Qualifi UK Qualification (validation) Saylor Academy (“secular” free MOOC general education course provider) $3,500 Validation University Degree Unaccredited Program Transfer Credit Accredited UK Qualification $100/year $250/year Strength: combines scale/affordability of MOOCs with accredited degrees Weakness: students have difficulty completing MOOC without support
  38. 38. Model 6c: MOOC Free Micromasters to Masters Degree City Vision MBA City Vision Non-credit Free 4 Course MOOC Micromasters in Education Management $9,600 US Recognized Accreditation University US Degree 10k+ students 80+ countries Accredited Program Designed for MOOC Students Upload Final Project Free Pay for Credit Strength: combines scale/affordability of MOOCs with accredited degrees Weakness: both MOOC and degree program need to be designed to fit together
  39. 39. Model 7: Standardized Exams + Top-up City Vision Top Up Degree Standardize Exam (Bible AP Exam, ABHE Exams, AP, CLEP, DSST, IB) Exam Prep Self-Study, Study Groups, Unaccredited Online Courses, MOOCs Validation University US Degree Transfer Credit Course Level Alternative Credit Strength: no requirements on content or faculty as long as student passes exam Weakness: can only cover a limited number of topics
  40. 40. Model 8: Local Coaching Partnerships City Vision Online Program Wheeler Mission Provides Local Coaching to City Vision Students Credentialed Faculty University Degree Coaches do not require credentials, but get paid for coaching Local Ministry Coaching Strength: allows for revenue sharing with non-credentialed group leaders Weakness: requires technology access to online faculty
  41. 41. Upcoming Free MOOC Courses for ICETE 1. Disruptive Innovation in Higher Education (now available) ◦ Theories and strategy of how higher education is being transformed 2. Implementing Alternative Credit Pathways ◦ Details of how to implement the models described in this 3. Online Instructional Design and Practice ◦ Intended for tech staff at traditional schools wanting to implement an online or blended education 4. Assessment and Accreditation ◦ Practical tools to help schools get government recognized accredidation
  42. 42.
  43. 43. Questions?
  44. 44. Appendix
  45. 45. LMS Platforms  Moodle ◦ Pro: cheap, Con: poor usability  Wordpress ( or others) ◦ Pro: one platform to maintain with website; Con: not as many features as Moodle or Canvas  Teachable ◦ Pro: user friendly, cloud-based system; Con: no recruitment of students, lack of integration into SIS, limited customization  Canvas (or Hosted Open Canvas ◦  Udemy ◦ Pro: attract general students; Con: no targeting of students, restricted features  Podia ◦ Pro: strong storefront and marketing features; Con: unsure (haven’t tested), limited customization  Open EdX ◦ Pro: strongest platform for MOOCs, Netflix-like course/video tracking & resume; Con: complex and costly to set up and maintain  Infusionsoft ◦ Best small business marketing automation platform, could be combined with course systems; Con: not designed for courses  Populi ◦ Pro: provides easy integration for accredited courses; Con: to costly at early stages of funnel, limited usability  Others: Learnworlds, Coursecraft, iTunesU, CreativeLive, Coursmos, Ed4online, ITPro.TV, Rukuku, Teachery, Thinkific, World Education, Gloo, Coach, Kajabi, Skillshare ◦ See
  46. 46. Source: Transnational Education By Program Graduate
  47. 47. Source: