Thursday, July 26, 2012 - 1:45pm


Dobbs Ferry, N.Y. – July 26, 2012 – Mercy College is recognized in the cover story of this month's issue of Campus Technology magazine announcing the 2012 Innovator Awards. The annual awards shine a light on 10 programs that are models of technology innovation on campus.

Mercy College is honored as a leader in the “Teaching and Learning” category for its role in project Kaleidoscope, one of just ten projects to be recognized from more than 350 entries. Each entry was reviewed by an independent panel of reviewers, with only three awards bestowed in the “Teaching and Learning” category.

“Mercy College is pleased to be recognized as one of the elite institutions in the country for our cutting-edge programs, such as Kaleidoscope and PACT, that create new avenues for student success,” said Mercy College President Dr. Kimberly R. Cline.

Kaleidoscope aims to reduce the cost of education and improve student outcomes using Open Educational Resources (OER). The program implements a set of fully open general education courses across eight colleges that are dramatically reducing textbook costs and allowing collaborative improvement of course design. Learning modules are housed in online tools that enable data collection and learning analytics across institutions. Embedded assessments allow for careful monitoring of student learning, which research shows significantly advances student success, especially for students in the first year of college.

The program began in May 2011 with funding from a Next Generation Learning Challenges grant through Educause and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Since its implementation, Kaleidoscope has shown significant improvements in student success in courses and, in some cases, as much as doubling the level of course completion and improving post course assessments.

OER and open education platforms are becoming more prevalent in higher education. With project Kaleidoscope, Mercy College and its partners join the ranks of MIT, Carnegie Mellon University (PA), Brigham Young University (UT) and Creative Commons—institutions that have been early supporters of and frontrunners in the OER movement.  

A key reason for Kaleidoscope’s international attention is that it is known as the first project to demonstrate at scale the potential for OER to be implemented without millions of dollars of investment.

“Our work with Kaleidoscope represents what Mercy College cares about – innovative programs that support student success and help keep the cost of college affordable for all,” said Mercy College Dean of Libraries, Academic Technology and Online Learning, Dr. Braddlee. “The College Technology 2012 Innovators Award is shared by everyone at Mercy College for agreeing to try something new and different.”

Presentation of Campus Technology 2012 Innovator Award to Project Kaleidoscope, represented by M.L. Bettino (Cerritos College), Kim Thanos (Thanos Partners), Nancy Pawlyshyn (Mercy College), Dean Braddlee (Mercy College).

The Innovators Award honor comes at a time of tremendous momentum at Mercy College, recently named a College of Distinction for the second consecutive year; a Smart Choice by “Peterson’s Honors Programs and Colleges Guide”; and a Best Bet in Higher Education by “Cool College Guide.” The visionary PACT program, the first of its kind, was featured as a Best Practice by the National Association of Colleges and Employers and now serves as a nationally recognized model for student mentoring.

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About Mercy College Founded in 1950, Mercy College is a private, not-for-profit higher education institution that offers more than 90 undergraduate and graduate degree and certificate programs within five prestigious schools: Business, Education, Health and Natural Sciences, Liberal Arts and Social and Behavioral Sciences. Mercy College offers an engaging and personalized learning experience that includes the College’s revolutionary Personalized Achievement Contract (PACT) program. The Mercy College PACT is the first program of its kind and now serves as a nationally recognized model for mentoring. 877-MERCY-GO.