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Live Updates: Latest News on Coronavirus and Higher Education

Posted by centraluniversity on March 3, 2021 at 5:35 PM Comments comments (1153)

Rice University Sued Over Online Classes

A student at Rice University has filed a suit against the university saying the university should not have charged full tuition rates when most of the education was delivered online, The Houston Chronicle reported. The suit seeks to be a class action.


"Plaintiff and the members of the class have all paid for tuition for a first-rate education and on-campus, in-person educational experiences, with all the appurtenant benefits offered by a first-rate university. Instead, students like plaintiff were provided a materially different and insufficient alternative, which constitutes a breach of the contracts entered into by plaintiff with the university," the suit said.


Students enrolled at Rice this fall for a mix of in-person, hybrid and online courses. But many facilities -- libraries, labs and study rooms -- were closed. The university boasts that it offers students "an unconventional culture,” the suit said.


A Rice spokesman said the university does not comment on litigation." target="_blank">Story from Inside Higher Ed, Writer, -- Scott Jaschik

Ways To Prepare For Your 1st Semester In College

Posted by centraluniversity on October 11, 2020 at 5:05 PM Comments comments (40)


Prepare for online classes

Mel Brown M.Ed

Online campus tours, online instructional videos, and online advising sessions are some of the buzz words that first year students are seeing. This year's freshman experience will be unique in numerous ways. Checking college's website frequently for updates can prepare students for online classes and social distancing. Here's a list of things all students should acquire when completing online courses successfully and research school resources before problems arise.

Get ready early.

 Transitioning from high school to college can place a lot of pressure on students, and the class of Fall 2020 freshmen class are facing new challenges as the coronavirus pandemic forces  many colleges to fully online or hybrid classes. For those stressing over this new life chapter This is very stressful for most students, and today's uncertainties, there are ways to prepare before starting those first classes. The following tips can help incoming freshmen get organized and build a foundation for college success.

Pay attention during Orientation.

 First year orientation usually begins  within in the weeks before classes start, but this year, it may be postponed or held entirely online. Still, it's a great way for students to get acclimated and ask plenty of questions. Realize that everyone is trying to make friends and adjust to a new environment, so don't be shy. After orientation, many schools offer unique first-year experiences that help students further connect with their classmates and college community.

Read and read again.

College coursework consists of  more reading  than is required in high school. Students should start getting used to the increased workload by not only reading books, but major related blogs, forums, and websites during high school and the summer before college. What you read is not as important as how much, but it helps to select recommendations for your intended college major or areas of academic and personal interest.

Polish social, people and soft skills.

College pushes students to develop strong communication skills. Students should be ready for  communicating with professors to team projects, an ability to share ideas clearly and work collaboratively will serve students well. This includes examining social issues; many students will work closely with people from different backgrounds and life experiences, so they should consider taking advantage of diversity and inclusion classes, books, blogs, and websites. In addition, leadership and problem-solving skills will be important qualities when it comes time to apply for jobs and internships during school and after graduation. With that in mind, students should consider enrolling in courses that teach soft skills once school begins.

Embrace time-management tools.

Balancing the academic and social demands of college can be a challenge for even the most diligent student. But there are plenty of digital tools designed for students, and a little organization can go a long way in making sure time is used wisely. Smartphone apps and tools can help students limit time on entertainment and social media, and can help keep study schedules on track.

Keep in touch with the financial aid office.

If a family's financial situation changes in the months before freshman year, there are options to get more help to pay for college. Financial aid appeals requesting more aid may become more common as American families experience unemployment and reduced work hours resulting from the economic impacts of the coronavirus outbreak. Stay in touch with the financial aid office and ask for more financial support if it's needed.

Don't be afraid of professors.

Establishing a relationship with professors can go a long way in helping students succeed. Once students have selected their classes, they should consider emailing a handful of instructors or seeing if they can talk via videoconferencing or a phone call this summer. Make sure to be respectful and mature in all communications with professors and other academic staff.

Get involved as soon as you can.

College provides a number of opportunities for students to explore existing interests or embark on new hobbies. Whether it's joining a musical ensemble or getting involved in social issues, many schools make it easy to get involved. Having a plan of action before arriving will help students select meaningful activities and ensure they don't miss any important sign-up dates or meetings once school starts.

Know that help is nearby.

Incoming freshmen should be aware that many colleges have offices dedicated to helping students brainstorm and write essays. Students having difficulty in a class or who just want to speak with a professor one-on-one should take advantage of open office hours. School libraries can also offer knowledgeable staff and study resources to help students. These options can be especially valuable for international students who might be struggling with English language skills.

Find college success resources.

The college journey doesn't end after freshman year, and U.S. News has a wealth of information on everything from finding scholarships to how to write a resume for opportunities like internships. You can also get the latest news by following U.S. News Education on social media, including Facebook and Twitter.

*Informaton gathered from