Letter to the Editor
There were several ambiguities in the Feb. 7 article “Online higher education company gains popularity” describing the company 2tor, which is partnering with USC’s Rosser School of Education to deliver teaching certification online.
We have two types of problems with the article — the nature of the article and the misrepresentations. The article starts as a prospectus or infomercial for 2tor. It goes on to undermine the teaching certification program we have with Chatham with an inaccurate statement about the program: “...to make this happen, students must know in their first year that they want to pursue this route, and it is rarely used.” At no point did the author check with anyone involved with the program. She implied that one has to know in the first year led to the “rare use.” It also does not convey the nature of state certification for teaching.
The opinions of one of us (Jones) were solicited to contribute perspective on online learning and to comment on 2tor. The article was not submitted to me before publication, otherwise I would have demanded that my name and contribution be removed, given the promotional tone of most of the article, for which the only other source was the on-campus commercial representative of 2tor.
Using The Tartan for this sort of promotion of external commercial enterprises by students under the guise of legitimate journalism is extremely unfortunate, to say the least. This undermining of the mission of The Tartan strikes us as a problem equal in import to that of the confusing message of institutional affiliation of an educational startup.
Chris Jones, Professor, Modern Languages
Indira Nair, Vice Provost for Education
Editor’s Note: The Tartan does not submit articles to sources before publication, following standards of the media industry.