University of Texas launches first all-digital, no-paper textbook degree program

(25 August 2015, Austin, Texas)  Entering freshmen enrolled in the new biomedical sciences degree program at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley will never have to buy a traditional textbook.

Instead, their course materials will be delivered to them on iPads, which they’ll receive at orientation on 26 August 2015. And that’s just the first indication that this degree program will not be business – or in this case – higher education as usual.

The biomedical sciences degree marks the official launch of the UT System’s competency-based education initiative, an ambitious and sweeping mission to reimagine and personalize courses to increase student success and access. The degree uses elements of competency-based education.

Competency-based education allows students to advance through courses based on their ability to master knowledge and skills. Students are held to clearly defined and rigorous expectations but can move through a course at a pace that ensures their success. Courses will be delivered in a hybrid format, a combination of online, classroom, laboratory or clinical time.

All classroom and online content can be accessed with iPads via TEx (Total Educational Experience), a revolutionary, mobile-first, application designed by the UT System to boost student engagement and retention.

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