Techno-News Blog

September 22, 2019

A Syllabus for Regulating Student Data Privacy?

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Emily Bruemmer, Megan Siekkinen, Davis Wright Tremaine LLP – JDSupra

The start of the new school year is approaching and a number of education vendors have already received their homework assignments. U.S. Senators Richard Durbin (D-Ill.), Edward Markey (D-Mass.), and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) recently sent two letters—one to education technology companies (EdTech) and another to data brokers—expressing “concern about the vast amount of data being collected about our nation’s students” and posing a list of questions to which responses were requested by this past Tuesday (September 3). The letters reflect increased legislative concern over the amount of students’ sensitive personal data being retained and sold to third parties without the knowledge of either the students or their parents, particularly where such data is later used for targeted advertising.

https://www.jdsupra.com/legalnews/a-syllabus-for-regulating-student-data-23186/

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IBM Study: The Skills Gap is Not a Myth, But Can Be Addressed with Real Solutions

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Yahoo Finance

In the next three years, as many as 120 million workers in the world’s 12 largest economies may need to be retrained or reskilled as a result of AI and intelligent automation, according to a new IBM (NYSE: IBM) Institute for Business Value (IBV) study. In addition, only 41 percent of CEOs surveyed say that they have the people, skills and resources required to execute their business strategies. The study, which includes input from more than 5,670 global executives in 48 countries, points to compounding challenges that require a fundamental shift in how companies meet and manage changing workforce needs throughout all levels of the enterprise.

https://finance.yahoo.com/news/ibm-study-skills-gap-not-121500889.html

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Teacher, student drew on experience to create mental wellness course at Sask. distance education centre

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Bryan Eneas, CBC News

A distance learning centre based in Kenaston, Sask., has developed a course to help its students learn about mental wellness — including their own mental health, and the mental health of those around them. Elaina Guilmette is a teacher at the Sun West Distance Learning Centre who helped design the mental wellness class.

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/saskatchewan/sunwest-distance-learning-mental-wellness-1.5274635

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September 21, 2019

Six Reasons Why Online Programs are the Future of Education

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Costa Rica News

In the future, will having a degree even matter? According to Harvard business school professor Clayton Christensen, half of all traditional colleges are unlikely to even exist in ten years’ time due to the increase of online study. Therefore, it’s becoming clearer to many that the future of education lies in institutions embracing the idea of online learning and online programs. Here are some reasons to support online education as the future of learning.

https://thecostaricanews.com/six-reasons-why-online-programs-are-the-future-of-education/

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Berkeley County Schools to use online learning pilot to make up missed classes

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By Jenna Schiferl, Post and Courier
Students will use the chromebooks for remote inclement weather makeup days. It is just a few weeks into the new school year and severe weather has already caused Lowcountry students to miss class. But this year, Berkeley County students have a new way to make up for missed instructional time. The Berkeley County School District is one of 10 school districts approved for the second phase of a S.C. Department of Education eLearning pilot.
Hurricane Dorian caused Berkeley to close all schools Tuesday through Friday. They will open as normal on Monday. District spokesperson Katie Tanner emphasized that missed school work is not made up during the storm. Instead, students will work from home on designated instructional makeup days.

https://www.postandcourier.com/hurricanewire/berkeley-county-schools-to-use-online-learning-pilot-to-make/article_ef78867c-d0ce-11e9-a5d5-a3251f7ad7db.html

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Success at Scale: The growth of large-scale online programs

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Stephen G. Pelletier, Unbound

In an era when many colleges and universities struggle to meet their enrollment targets, a few institutions have leapfrogged over that calculus by adding large online programs that quickly enroll hundreds—or sometimes thousands—of new students. That kind of success warrants a closer look.  [ed note: This is an especially important and under-reported movement in higher education]

https://unbound.upcea.edu/leadership-strategy/credentialing/success-at-scale-the-growth-of-large-scale-online-programs/

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September 20, 2019

Citing sources: University Libraries serve key role supporting student research

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Jill Stockton and McKenna Lambert, Nevada Today

Subject librarians have specific areas of expertise and are trained information literacy experts. They know how to spot fake news and are always available to help students find and verify the credible sources they need for their academic work, or for personal areas of interest. The University Libraries also supports student success by sharing lessons online with students. Librarians have created numerous short online modules that are available through WebCampus in the Canvas “Commons.”

https://www.unr.edu/nevada-today/news/2019/information-literacy

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Will AI replace university lecturers? Not if we make it clear why humans matter

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Mark Haw, the Guardian

Many UK universities are struggling financially, but there’s one option that is rarely discussed: replacing lecturers with artificial intelligence (AI) machines. This might sound like sci-fi – after all, the lists of occupations vulnerable to AI rarely include teaching, which is still seen as too creative for computers. But a growing database of information harvested from online courses – clickstreams, eye-tracking and even emotion-detection – could make AI lecturers a common feature in the near future.

https://www.theguardian.com/education/2019/sep/06/will-ai-replace-university-lecturers-not-if-we-make-it-clear-why-humans-matter

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Giving those with disabilities an advantage with an online education

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Mitch Rankin, Cryptopolitan

In some of the world’s poorest countries, up to 95% of children with disabilities are out of school, despite education being a basic human right. In developed countries, this rate is not much lower at 90%. Almost 93 million children are out of school because of a disability. These students are excluded because of discrimination, lack of training in inclusive teaching methods among teachers, and a lack of accessible schools catering to their needs. The internet creates an environment free from discrimination and can level the playing field and allow disabled students an equal opportunity to a good education.

https://www.cryptopolitan.com/giving-the-disabled-an-advantage-with-an-online-education/

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September 19, 2019

Preparing for Tomorrow With Online Professional Development

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By Ray Schroeder, Inside Higher Ed
We are entering the fourth industrial revolution, in which jobs and careers are changing at a dizzying pace. The impact in the working world is profound. Overall in the U.S., the average number of years that an employee stayed with an employer as of last year was 4.2. For most people in this emerging fourth industrial revolution, professional development is not an option; it is a necessity. But that doesn’t mean it should be chore. In fact Mary Shindler, senior program manager on the learning and development team at LinkedIn, says, “Data is showing that team members who engage in learning are found to be happier and feel more satisfied in their careers.”

https://www.insidehighered.com/digital-learning/blogs/online-trending-now/preparing-tomorrow-online-professional-development

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Tech giants and 2-year colleges are teaming up to teach in-demand skills

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Kelly Field, Education Dive
Amazon isn’t the only tech giant actively shaping the programs that will train its future employees and customers. Google, Facebook and Apple also are collaborating with colleges as more companies face a shortage of skilled workers who can navigate an ever-evolving tech landscape. In some cases, the companies are covering the costs of the programs for students; in most, they earn no revenue. College officials say the partnerships help ensure their students graduate with the skills and knowledge employers want, as well as get priority for internships and jobs. Tech leaders say colleges — and two-year colleges, in particular — provide access to a diverse pool of candidates for jobs that don’t require a bachelor’s degree. They also have important connections to K-12 schools and four-year colleges.

https://www.educationdive.com/news/tech-giants-and-2-year-colleges-are-teaming-up-to-teach-in-demand-skills/562225/

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Aristo A.I. scores ‘A’ on 8th-grade science test

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STEPHEN JOHNSON, Big Think

An A.I. named Aristo was able to use its language and logic skills to pass a standardized exam with flying colors. Could you score an ‘A’ on an eighth-grade science test? If so, you’re in the same league as Aristo, an artificial intelligence system whose remarkable language and logic skills highlight recent progress in the A.I. industry. Now, thanks to improved “language models” driven by neural networks, systems like Aristo are becoming much better at predicting language and understanding how to apply it to solve logic-based tasks.

https://bigthink.com/technology-innovation/aristo-ai-test

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September 18, 2019

Changing the Equation: Empowering Adult Learners with Edtech

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Luminary Labs, US Dept of Ed

These case studies — featuring diverse stakeholders, actions and approaches, and lessons learned — prove there is not a single prescriptive path to supporting successful adult learning. Administrators, educators, and funders can apply the insights that work best in their unique contexts to advance adult education in their own communities.

https://lincs.ed.gov/publications/pdf/advancing_math_market_scan_08_22_2019.pdf

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USB4 is ready: Twice as fast, smaller, and hitting devices in 2020

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Liam Tung, ZDNet

Devices with new speedier Thunderbolt 3-based USB4 should reach the market in the second half of 2020.  USB4 is the next major version of the USB, which gains a major speed boost thanks to Intel licensing its Thunderbolt 3 protocol to the USB Promoter Group on a royalty-free basis. This group includes Apple, HP, Intel, Microsoft, and Texas Instruments. USB4 will enable 40Gbps speeds equivalent to Thunderbolt 3, which is currently found in high-end computers like the MacBook Pro and peripherals.

https://www.zdnet.com/article/usb4-is-ready-twice-as-fast-smaller-and-hitting-devices-in-2020/

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Forget email: Scammers use CEO voice ‘deepfakes’ to con workers into wiring cash

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Liam Tung, ZDNet
AI-generated audio was used to trick a CEO into wiring $243,000 to a scammer’s bank account. The Wall Street Journal reports that the CEO of an unnamed UK-based energy company thought he was talking on the phone with his boss, the CEO of the German parent company, who’d asked him to urgently transfer €220,000 ($243,000) to a Hungarian supplier. However, the UK CEO was in fact taking instructions from a scammer who’d used AI-powered voice technology to impersonate the German CEO. The UK-based CEO became suspicious when the fraudster called a third time requesting a second transfer and noticed the call was from an Austrian number.

https://www.zdnet.com/article/forget-email-scammers-use-ceo-voice-deepfakes-to-con-workers-into-wiring-cash/

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September 17, 2019

Can Calbright reinvent online community college?

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By Wayne D’Orio, Education Dive
California’s newest public college is beginning an experiment this fall that could change how higher education serves a coveted class of students: working adults without degrees. Called Calbright, the free online community college is starting slow, offering noncredit classes with curriculum designed to teach skills requested by area companies. But less than a month before it is expected to open, Calbright is raising more questions than it has answered. Those include how it will mesh with California’s existing 114 community colleges, the extent to which it will be able to reach the underserved students it is targeting and whether it will impact online education for working adults beyond the state.
https://www.educationdive.com/news/can-calbright-reinvent-online-community-college/562147/

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Why 5G requires new approaches to cybersecurity

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Tom Wheeler and David Simpson, Brookings

5G will be a physical overhaul of our essential networks that will have decades-long impact. Because 5G is the conversion to a mostly all-software network, future upgrades will be software updates much like the current upgrades to your smartphone. Because of the cyber vulnerabilities of software, the tougher part of the real 5G “race” is to retool how we secure the most important network of the 21st century and the ecosystem of devices and applications that sprout from that network.

https://www.brookings.edu/research/why-5g-requires-new-approaches-to-cybersecurity/

 

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10 facts about Americans and Twitter

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BY ADAM HUGHES AND STEFAN WOJCIK, Pew Fact Tank

Today, millions of Americans use Twitter to break and comment on news, disseminate official pronouncements, organize campaigns and protests or just let their friends know what’s on their minds. Here are 10 facts about Americans and Twitter, based on recent Pew Research Center surveys and other studies:

https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2019/08/02/10-facts-about-americans-and-twitter/

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September 16, 2019

Is Virtual Reality the Future of Online Learning?

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Stephen Gossett, Builtin

He based his hunch on American educator Edgar Dale’s well-known but controversially non-scientific theory dubbed the Cone of Experience, which posits that people remember far more about something through direct experience of it as opposed to just reading, seeing or hearing about it. And early research indicates that Chacon’s instincts about VR were correct. A Penn State University study found that students who used immersive virtual reality to accomplish a task did so more than twice as fast as students who used traditional computer programs.

https://builtin.com/edtech/virtual-reality-in-education

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Wi-Fi 6 is barely here, but Wi-Fi 7 is already on the way

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Stephen Shankland, CNET
Wi-Fi 6 is just now arriving in phones, laptops and network equipment. But engineers are already turning their attention to what’ll come next: Wi-Fi 7. With speeds as high as 30 gigabits per second, the next generation of Wi-Fi promises better streaming video, longer range and fewer problems with traffic congestion. The change will come in a series of steps, beginning with improvements to Wi-Fi 6, that lay the groundwork for the expected arrival of Wi-Fi 7 in 2024.

https://www.cnet.com/news/wi-fi-6-is-barely-here-but-wi-fi-7-is-already-on-the-way/

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The advantages of social media for college presidents

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By: Marylouise Fennell and Scott D. Miller, University Business

When Scott Miller was appointed president of Bethany College in 2007, he and Marylouise Fennell created and tested a long-term social media strategy. The strategy focused on reinforcing the brand of a nationally ranked liberal arts college in a rural section of West Virginia, and on further engaging an already loyal base of alumni and friends. In 2015, Miller was appointed president of Virginia Wesleyan University. Here, he has established multiple social media platforms that he uses as president. This is in addition to his visibility through regular e-cards, e-blasts and opinion pieces; monthly presidential e- letters; a weekly online newsletter; and online commentaries for The Virginian- Pilot, HuffPost and other news outlets. Among his platforms are Flickr, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and a daily blog about campus life that feeds into the university’s website.

https://universitybusiness.com/ub-op-ed-the-advantages-of-social-media-for-college-presidents

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