The Innovator Network

A collective of individuals, universities and employers committed to student-centered academic transformation. Curated and hosted by Education Design Lab, the Network fosters thoughtful dialogue, collaboration and solutions to challenges facing higher ed today.

The Learner Revolution

How Colleges Can Thrive in a Skills and Competencies Marketplace

Education Design Lab's 2019 white paper

Reflections from five years of applied human-centered design at 100+ institutions

The Learner Revolution Discussion

On Tuesday, March 19, 2019, we celebrated the Education Design Lab's five year anniversary by hosting a dinner and discussion about the future of work and the demand for new postsecondary education-to-workforce solutions.

Moderated by Kathleen deLaski, Founder and President of the Education Design Lab, and featuring George Mason University President, Ángel Cabrera, and Amazon Web Services Senior Manager of Worldwide Education Programs, Ken Eisner.

Discussants include Goodwill Industries International Senior Vice President of Strategy and Advancement, Wendi Copeland, Penn Foster CEO, Frank Britt, League for Innovation in the Community College President and CEO, and Lab board member, Rufus Glasper.

Engaging Learners Online in COVID-19: An Actionable Framework

May 7, 2020

A year ago, the Lab had just released The Learner Revolution, a whitepaper sharing learnings from five years of work with 125+ institutions on how higher ed leaders must position their institutions to improve learner outcomes, support learners’ economic mobility, and ultimately thrive in a rapidly changing landscape of learning options. Fast forward, and today COVID-19 has accelerated the forces necessitating these changes, most acutely impacting those students—like low-income learners, parent learners, first gen students, and others from historically underserved and underrepresented groups—who were already in need of a redesign of higher ed to enable their success.

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Why Micro-pathways

May 7, 2020

We didn’t need the coronavirus to get us pondering the question “Is college worth it?” But it certainly speeds up our need to find the alternatives. At the Lab, we argue that Micro-pathways will be an important bridge to the future in this new agile and uncertain age.

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Higher Ed’s Learner-centered Responses to the Pandemic

Apr 9, 2020

We continue to be inspired by the ways higher ed is responding to this moment on behalf of learners and communities. And we are hearing from our network how the design tools and methods we’ve shared over the years have helped them respond and adapt to the COVID-19 crisis. Many had already begun to pivot toward a fast-changing future, and now they are demonstrating resilience in the face of change. We’re heartened to see our institutional partners that have embraced student-centered solutions double-down on their values and commitment.

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We’re Asking Our Education Designers: How Might We Future?

Apr 8, 2020

At the Lab, we’ve long talked about the fast-changing learn-to-work ecosystem. In this series, we asked our education designers to share their thoughts on the dramatic shifts forced by the COVID-19 crisis.

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Resources During COVID-19: Supporting Single Mother Learners + Other High-need Students

Mar 26, 2020

In support of our Single Moms Success Design Challenge partners, we’ve compiled a short list of immediate relief resources that may help institutional leaders better support single parent learners and other high-need students during this especially difficult period.

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What is the Innovator Network?

We’re glad you asked. It’s a collective of individuals, universities and employers committed to student-centered academic transformation.

Curated and hosted by Education Design Lab, the Network fosters thoughtful dialogue, collaboration and solutions to challenges facing higher ed today. We hope you’ll join us.

Learn more or…

The Innovator Network is a place for you to form connections with similarly motivated colleagues in higher ed, as well as other higher ed institutions and industry. The Network also serves as a community and sounding board for issues and opportunities that you and your institution face.