Friday, February 02, 2007

Technology Marries Scholarship

Keeping with our marriage theme, I was impressed to learn about a new Masters in Bioethics program that truly marries technology and scholarship. Over the years, I have met so many attorneys, physicians and clergy who wished they could earn an advanced degree in bioethics but could not because of time, location, and lack of relevant programs.

Thanks to the innovative vision of the Alden March Bioethics Institute (Albany, NY), directed by Dr. Glenn McGee, we can all get top notch training. The new online program is outside the usual academic box with its use of podcasts, real-time internet resources (live chat with professors), and access to some of the best minds in bioethics (I’m not the only person who has pined for a class with Bonnie Steinbock - one of the world's leading scholars in reproductive ethics.)

Read here for more details:
AMBI's online programs will easily integrate into your busy schedule because we use the latest educational technologies. Working alongside our partner Apple, Inc., we've adopted iTunes University, which will give you supplementary materials alongside what you read. Unlike other graduate programs in bioethics, we provide thousands of hours of this material, ranging from case studies to weekly updates on bioethics to a direct link to The American Journal of Bioethics, the world's leading bioethics journal, edited at AMBI, where you will have special access to discussions about the key issues in bioethics.

Maybe a better way to say it is this: in the classroom, you can take notes and tape lectures from 30 yards away and talk with your colleagues - during the time you spend away from home and work. In our classes, you can watch the lectures (which are cut into manageable segments and filmed brilliantly by a veteran producer from NPR), and then hit rewind, and you can discuss matters of importance with faculty any time you want by online discussion board, and come to the faculty office to visit the professor, even if you live in China, without leaving your computer through the nation's only bioethics Online Office Hours, with live discussion one on one.

And because iTunes University uses Apple's iTunes, it works on any computer. Your free iPod, included with your enrollment, is a constantly updated fountain, from which flows debate, discussion, film, cases, even your own contributions (in some classes) to a Wikipedia (encyclopedia) about the issues you study. And it is all very to use. It is more trouble to go to a bookstore than to learn to use iTunes. All we ask is that you not fill the remaining space on your iPod with songs by Barry Manilow!
Dr. McGee, pioneer in bioethics blogging, has hit another home run. Beam me up.


Kelly Hills said...

They assure me that kissing up isn't actually necessary to get in... ;)

(I'm very excited about this. I've been quietly and impatiently waiting for all the snippets and pieces I've heard over the past few months to come together, and it's so much more than I could have hoped for! It's going to be, in a word, shiny!)

Kathryn Hinsch said...

As an old geek girl, I gotta *show the love* when someone uses technology in an incredibly innovative way. Glenn is one creative bioethics nerd.