Empowering Future Learning
Walden was founded to give working professionals the opportunity to earn advanced degrees. At the time, it was a radical idea. But it was also a necessary one. Over the 50 years since, we’ve empowered tens of thousands of working professionals to become the kinds of scholar-practitioners who make a real and positive difference in the world. As we move into our next half century, our commitment to working professionals won’t change. But that doesn’t mean we’ll be standing still. At Walden, we’ve always embraced innovations in learning and teaching. In the 1970s, we pioneered distance learning at the graduate level. In the 1990s, we became one of the first universities to offer graduate degrees fully online. As we move into the 2020s, we’ll be embracing additional ways to expand access to higher education and provide the tools our students and faculty need to succeed. Read on to learn about a few of our plans.
New Course Formats
Not every student learns in the same way or has the same level of flexibility in their schedule. To make higher education more feasible and accessible to more people around the world, we’re creating new classroom and learning formats.
Already available in several programs, Tempo Learning® is a competency-based learning format that allows students to customize the pace of their learning and use real-world work experience to potentially speed up their progress. Its highly flexible format and focus on real-world skills and knowledge makes it an excellent option for working professionals who lack the time or desire to take classes in a more traditional online format.
Also providing added flexibility are our One-Credit MSED option and microlearning certificates. These options allow students to learn a small amount of information at a time and focus on knowledge they can immediately apply to their careers. Students can move quickly through learning objectives or move at a slower pace, allowing them to better fit learning into their lives.
New Learning Methods
The last decade has seen an explosion in technology, particularly in the fields of artificial intelligence and virtual reality. At Walden, we’re working with these technologies to provide incredible advances in education. Instead of sitting in front of a laptop and reading articles or watching videos, students will soon be partaking in immersive learning experiences.
Already, we’re using virtual reality and simulation technology in a variety of programs. By the end of this decade, every Walden student will participate in courses using similar technology and enjoy such advances as AI-driven learning assistance. Through this technology, our students will acquire more hands-on learning and receive more support than ever before. To read more about these technologies, head to the Technology-Growth page.
New Ways to Connect
Since our first summer session, Walden students have always formed strong bonds with each other and our faculty. Now that we have students all over the world, those connections span the globe. And we’re working to ensure our community can continue to connect and form new connections in the years ahead.
In addition to the technology we’re employing to make our classrooms even more interactive, we’re building a network of students, alumni, faculty, and staff through social media and other platforms. For example, we already have dozens of highly active Facebook groups designed for everything from the Walden community at large to specific degree paths.
For students with disabilities, we’ll continue to employ the latest assistive technology so that no one is left out or left behind. It’s all part of creating the most inclusive and connected community possible. A strong, diverse community is the number one reason we’ve lasted 50 years—and empowering that wonderful community with forward-thinking learning formats, methods, and assistance is how we’ll last another 50 and beyond.