About samsw

Bill received a BBA and MBA from Ohio University and a JD from the University of Santa Clara. Bill’s career includes four years in the Air Force where he received the Bronze Star, and 25 years in management positions in Silicon Valley. Bill started his business career in the early 70s at Fairchild Semiconductor and he was literally at ground zero during the early years of the computer revolution. Bill has been involved in several start up operations and one turn around. Bill’s positions included VP of Marketing and Sales, VP of Operations and General Manager of a key division of a Fortune 500 company, LSI Logic. Bill has just completed a two year assignment as the Associate Provost for Information Technology and Chief Information Officer for Ohio University and is now an Executive in Residence for the University Outreach and Regional Campuses of Ohio University where his focus is on virtual worlds. Additionally Bill is the Program Director for a $5 million U.S. Department of Labor WIRED grant for work force development in Interactive Digital Technology. Bill has also facilitated corporate training programs for the Ohio University Without Boundaries program and has taught senior and graduate level e-business management classes for the colleges of business and engineering. In addition to academic pursuits Bill is also a member of the eTech Ohio Commission a state agency which oversees the K-12 IT infrastructure as well as the Public Broadcasting System in connecting technology and education for the benefit of the citizens of Ohio. Between his management and academic careers Bill and his wife spent two years sailing their 46-foot boat, Camelot, across the south pacific.

EPIC 2020

EPIC 2020, stands for the proposition that the education of the world will change dramatically for the better during this decade. This site attempts to provide ideas that shatter the paradigm that the future will be anything like the past. The site is also my individual effort to provide a reasonably comprehensible resource of materials and tools related to online learning.  If you would like to be kept current please join the EPIC 2020 Facebook group in the upper right. The EPIC 2020 video below was created as an out of the box stimulus to think in new ways about education.

Comments from Martin Van Der Werf, The College of Education Blog“Will higher education collapse in this manner? No, this is far too simplistic. But are there grains of truth and seeds of nightmares in this? I would argue Yes. This video should inspire a mixture of guffaws, inspiration, and feelings of dread in just about anyone who watches it. So, if nothing else, Sams has succeeded in starting a dialogue that any college thinking seriously about its future needs to have.”

Bill’s Blog:

I am doing a sort of weekly blog on various concepts related to education that can be found at Skilled Up. Here are summaries of the posts and direct links. For full disclosure I am also an advisor to Skilled Up.

Sensory Overload: We are genetically designed to sense colors, forms, movement and sound as well as tastes and smells. Words and numbers — creations of only a few thousand years ago — have served us well until now, but perhaps we are now approaching a point of returning to our innate senses

Knowledge: Just in Case to Just in Time: How many times can you recall having asked a teacher ‘Why do I need to know this?’ only to be told ‘because someday you will need it’? I’d argue that Just in Case knowledge is a massive waste of resources — and in my own experience a large portion of what I learned in obtaining three degrees has either never been needed or was forgotten long ago.

Accounting for Human Capital: While there are well-established principles for accounting for tangible items of production there is a gapping hole in our ability to account for intangible items of production such as people. As we move into the knowledge economy, this shortfall in our collective accounting becomes a critical problem. Without a rigorous way to do this, we cannot provide a feedback loop that enables rational and proactive decisions that enhance the value and productive application of human capital.

All You Need is Knol: There is a truism in business that you only get what you measure. When you apply this to education it’s no wonder that we have the current problems.

ISO 2020: The Importance of Standards in Education: If education were more like industry, students would be getting a better, faster and cheaper education than they now enjoy, with the data to back it up.

Holistic Enhancement: How to Value Human Capital: The idea of Holistic Enhancement, which I introduced recently, lays out a conceptual survey of the types of units and tools of measurement that should be in a definition of personal and organizational human capital.

The concept of Holistic Enhancement was introduced at a COIL Fisher Speaker Series at Penn State in March of 2013. Here is the link to my presentation.

Is a Degree an Investment? No. The degree as investment reasoning confuses selection bias with causation, ignores the depreciation rate of knowledge, and assumes that the value of a degree does not go obsolete.

Pay It Forward: This is a different way to provide funding for education and is based not on paying back a loan but rather on paying forward for others based on your success.

Educate for Mastery Rather Than Mediocrity: Designing courses based on the bell curve institutionalizes mediocrity based on limiting the time of instruction. Taking the time for mastery is the better paradigm.

The Right Question: When we ask the wrong question about education it is impossible to get the right answer.

Connected Learning is a short video piece on “Might the information age free us to pursue learning centered on individuals and not institutions?” Link.