All posts by Labyrinth Learning

QuickBooks is changing – are you ready?

If you’re planning on teaching a QuickBooks course next year, we have news to share — and we’d like to hear from you in a survey.QB16_700x449

Intuit recently announced that educational site licensing (Lab Packs) and 140-day QuickBooks student trial software will not be available for QuickBooks Pro
2016. If you upgrade every year, or you had planned to upgrade to the 2016 edition, this may leave you in a bind.

We have learned that Intuit will be making available, for the first time, educational site licensing and 140-day student trial licensing for QuickBooks Online, Intuit’s cloud-based version of QuickBooks. We also learned that educational site licensing and student trial software will still be available for QuickBooks 2015.

What am I going to do now? This is a question that many of the educators we have spoken to have asked themselves. I know many start offering the newest version of QuickBooks in summer classes, and the rest all switch to a new version in Fall (if they were planning to switch.)

I’m sure the last thing you need is yet another decision to make, so let me help with a few scenarios for you to consider:

  • You buy retail QuickBooks 2016 licenses, one for each computer in your lab (and expect students to purchase this also if they want to work from home), or you teach only-online classes, and expect the students to purchase the software themselves. Estimated retail cost is $199.95.
  • You feel that this is a push to try QuickBooks Online, and you’re up for it. You’ll write new curriculum that teaches only the QuickBooks Online features (which may have features different from QuickBooks Pro) and find exercises that work within the QuickBooks Online environment.
  • You’ll stay with QuickBooks 2015, or upgrade to this if you were on a previous version, and see what Intuit does next year for 2017. You also explore QuickBooks Online, from both a feature standpoint as well as the publisher materials for curriculum.

Any way you look at it, you have to make a change. And most educators we spoke to had no idea that this was happening, and now don’t know quite what to do.

We want to ensure that Labyrinth Learning’s plans for QuickBooks materials align with the plans you have for your courses. We invite you take a brief survey about your QuickBooks course plans. Your input will help us make publishing decisions in this subject area.

Championing Study Abroad for the Future Workforce

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Currently, 9.4% of college students study abroad. In an effort to increase this number, the Institute of International Education recently held a Generation Study Abroad Summit. The goals of this event were to promote the benefits of studying abroad and increase the number of students who study abroad, as well as diversify the types of students who have access to the opportunity through its Generation Study Abroad Initiative.

In an increasingly global economy, participation in a study abroad program is a valuable experience for one’s employability. Immersion in a different culture can aid in the development of important job skills, such as problem-solving, teamwork, cultural awareness, intercultural skills, and fluency in a foreign language. The IIE wants to reach more students and encourage them to study abroad to gain intercultural competencies that will make them more competitive candidates in the workplace. They would especially like to reach more students who are historically underrepresented in study abroad, like racial minorities, first-generation college students, veterans, and students who have disabilities.

This year, over 350 colleges have signed on to the Generation Study Abroad Initiative, which aims to double the number of students who study abroad within the next decade. Through this initiative, colleges have committed to various goals like increasing financial support for underrepresented students, expanding their international program offerings, and expanding short-term programs, like internship and volunteer abroad programs.

Contact Labyrinth Learning today for more information about our textbook offerings and full solutions.

 

 

Office 2016 Now Available

blog2Microsoft’s Office Suite is a mature and much-used product. According to the Verge, there are approximately 1.2 billion Office users worldwide. Being a mature set of programs, Office 2016 doesn’t have many new features, but there are a few key changes and additions.

The most visual change in Office is the new look and feel of the program, including some changes to the program menus, that closely resemble Windows 10. However, even with these changes you will still find most of the tools you use in the same locations as the previous version of Office.

The “cloud” is a major focus of Office 2016. You will still be able to purchase a boxed copy of the software, but Microsoft is really pushing users to the cloud. When you subscribe to Office 365, you get 1 terabyte of space on OneDrive for each user, and the integration between Windows 10, OneDrive (Microsoft’s cloud storage) and Office 2016 becomes very tight. Also, saving and opening documents to the cloud has gotten a lot more seamless. The new Outlook, for example, just sends a link to attached documents that are saved to OneDrive. This allows for faster emails, less used space due to saving multiple copies of the same attachment, and the ability to edit the document after the link has been sent.

blog1

Office 2016 will be available on a variety of devices and computers.
This version of Office will be available across eight or more platforms including Android, Windows, and Mac devices. Your settings and documents will be available on whichever device you use.

The most exciting new feature is the collaboration feature in Word. When a document is stored on OneDrive, multiple people can edit that document at the same time. Google Docs has had this feature for years, but Word 2016 is a much more powerful program with even more complex tools.

Skype is now integrated into Office, and the new Microsoft Sway makes its debut in this version. Sway is a new online-only program for creating webpages and presentations. Think of it as Word and PowerPoint mashed together with some great special effects. You can use Sway for free (without buying Office) at https://sway.com/.

More information about Microsoft Office 2016 is available at https://products.office.com.

President Obama Gets the Ball Rolling on Free Education

Image courtesy of imagerymajestic at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Image courtesy of imagerymajestic at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

President Obama is working to gain support for his efforts to make community colleges free for qualifying students. At an event at Macomb Community College in Warren, Michigan, Obama announced the creation of a national advisory board to promote the idea that education should be free for any student willing to work hard to achieve their goals. It was in January of this year when he first announced his plan to spend $60 billion over a period of ten years to make community colleges free for students who maintain at least a 2.0 GPA.

In addition to free community college, Obama will announce a new round of federal grants meant to encourage a “learn as you earn” model where businesses hire apprentices who can learn skills on the job while earning a paycheck, rather than in a classroom. The administration will give $175 million in grants to partners, including colleges, private businesses, and labor organizations, for the purpose of hiring about 34,000 apprentices in various fields.

Give students the best education and job training for their dollar with our computer science and business and accounting solutions, which use the context of real-life business situations within lessons to emphasize the necessity of the skills being taught. To learn more, contact Labyrinth Learning today.