End of winter quarter

What a way to close an exciting week! The Buckeye basketball team begins it’s run in the NCAA tournament this afternoon in Cleveland, the weather has turned from the Ohio winter to the Ohio spring, finals are over, and I am very excited to go with a friend to see phenomenal blues guitarist Joe Bonamassa in concert. On Sunday, I have the honor of participating in the Winter Commencement ceremonies at the Schott, where approximately 1800 of our students will receive their diplomas.

This week has also brought us quite a number of issues to get our arms around. We have been in touch with all 13 of our OSU students studying abroad in Japan, and we are closely watching the situation as it continues to unfold after the devastating earthquake and tsunami. While our attention is focused on the safety of our students, our thoughts are with everyone who has been so dramatically affected by this tragedy.

The governor has presented his proposed budget, which we have awaited with a great deal of interest. The importance of higher education to our state has been underscored in the budget, but the economic reality gives us some pause as we determine how we continue to provide an excellent education for our students with fewer resources available to do it. Also from the state level, the Chancellor of the Board of Regents this week issued a directive that will require us to consider academic equivalence for military experiences, as the state continues its commitment to fulfill the GI Promise and welcome our veterans to our campus.

As you may know, this year has been designated the year of eLearning at Ohio State, and we are taking every opportunity that we can to look at how technology can positively impact the teaching and learning that happens on our campus. We have been engaging in many discussions around the development of mobile applications that our faculty and students can take advantage of to engage with educational resources and content. Electronic publications and eTextbooks have also been at the top of our discussions, as we look to emerging technology as a way to reduce the financial impact on our students. New and revised distance courses, hybrid courses, and technology-enriched courses are of interest as we also convert to semesters. This conversion has also given us an opportunity to look at tools that our advisors can use to help in their interactions with the students will be impacted by the calendar shift. The completion of the Transitional Academic Plan, or TAP is an essential part of each student’s planning as he or she looks at schedules necessary to assure progress to degree.

Any feedback regarding how technology can impact our experiences here at OSU is welcomed!

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