Higher Education Hack: From Transaction to Transformation
By Willette Brye Lamar
September 18, 2019

Has higher education devolved into a mere transaction, in which students exchange money, complete assignments, and “jump through instructor hoops” for credits and degrees? Do the discipline silos in higher education disadvantage learners who are entering an increasingly interdisciplinary workforce? For Dr. Maria Andersen (a.k.a. Busynessgirl and Coursetune Inc. CEO), the answer to both questions is an emphatic, “Yes!” 

This month marks TEN years since she wrote the article, Hacking Higher Education. Dr. Andersen proposed an “education hack” intended to move higher education from a transactional model to a transformational model by

  • Creating a list of “21st century universally-transferable—from community college to university—interdisciplinary courses”
  • Incentivizing, in the form of a federal education stipend, for colleges to adopt the interdisciplinary courses 

Andersen provided examples of 21st century interdisciplinary courses:

  • Design and Digital Presentations (Graphic Design + Communication)
  • Chemistry of Nutrition (Chemistry + Health & PE)
  • How Computers Think (CIS + Philosophy)

What do you think about this proposed education hack? Would it improve higher education, better prepare students for the workforce, produce better thinkers and problem solvers?  Read Andersen’s full article here. 

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