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Friday, November 4 • 1:40pm - 2:05pm
College Affordability, Social Justice and the Case for an Ethic of Openness

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Higher education is approaching a period of transformation unlike anything experienced since the Enlightenment era. The long held belief that college is a privilege is being questioned not only by a generation of young adults seeking the opportunities of previous generations, but also by the top contenders of a political party seeking to hold the highest position in our nation. The assertion that college is a right, and as such must be made available and affordable to all citizens brings with it a host of assumptions, questions and dilemmas.

The ethics of education is among the most talked about issues in the run up to our next presidential election. Proposals for tuition free community college, tuition free public colleges and universities, and student loan forgiveness are grounded in a theory of Social Justice. What seems to be missing from these crucial discussions is the fact that educational leaders and activists have been addressing the ethics of education through the concept of Openness.

This presentation will give a brief history of some of the key transitions in education from Ancient Greece through modern times, and highlight ethical theory as it applies to educational opportunity. The idea that college affordability is a social justice issue that has been largely influenced by the open education movement will be presented, and participants will be invited to share their own thoughts on how open education redefine higher education for the 21st century.

avatar for Wm. Preston James

Wm. Preston James

Director, Northern Virginia Community College
I have worked in higher education for 20 years… as faculty, administrator, and consultant. As Director of Instructional Services at NOVA, I oversee the online learning and educational technology services, manage instructional training and certification, and lead the OER initiative... Read More →

Friday November 4, 2016 1:40pm - 2:05pm EDT