Techno-News Blog

December 31, 2014

Top 10 Ways iPads Are Key to Teaching Kids With Learning Disabilities

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By Leah Levy, edudemic

By now, saying that “the iPad is a great tool for customizing the classroom” wouldn’t exactly be breaking news. But while this holds true for every student, each of whom learns in their own way, iPads are truly a lifeline for students with learning disabilities and the people who work hand-in-hand with them. For these students, iPads act as a translation, communication, and individualization tool with unrivaled effectiveness. In so doing, these devices reduce frustration, build confidence, and, well, just work in teaching students the skills they need to learn to thrive.

http://www.edudemic.com/top-10-ways-ipads-are-key-to-teaching-kids-with-learning-disabilities/

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Anthropomorphic Technology: Making Online Education Social

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By Edudemic

The advent of online education has been a wonderful gift for both educators and students. It has allowed teachers to reach out to students in other parts of the globe and has allowed students to form a study group without actually being together physically. Online education is permitting students who live in a rural or isolated area to attend classes from the comfort of their own home and it has added to home school curriculums across America. However, there is one drawback to all of this innovative technology: The lack of socialization. Most problems have a solution if the creative thinkers of the world spend time to search for it. What is the solution to this particular drawback. There are several ways that online education can become more social and more closely mimic the benefits of an in-person education.

http://www.edudemic.com/making-online-education-social/

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Online Education: A Potential Solution For Students In Nigeria’s Troubled Northeast

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by Sahara Reporters

An independent evaluation and assessment conducted by the Coalition of Civil Society Groups (CCSG) has determined that over 194,664 students have been forced to stay out of school due to insecurity. According to CCSG President Etuk Bassey Williams the school closings will cause Nigeria to fail in meeting its 2015 benchmarks for primary school enrollment with less than 80 percent enrollment of school-aged children.

http://saharareporters.com/2014/12/22/online-education-potential-solution-students-nigeria%E2%80%99s-troubled-northeast

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December 30, 2014

Chromebook: Three things Google must do in 2015

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By James Kendrick, ZD Net

The Chromebook has evolved nicely, resulting in acceptance by schools and some enterprises. Even so, there are three things Google must do next year to make it a better solution. Having used Chromebooks since they first appeared, it’s clear to me that they are a good solution. They can be used for both work and play, and they are more capable than many realize.

http://www.zdnet.com/article/chromebook-three-things-google-must-do-in-2015/

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2015: Year of the Windows renaissance?

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By Larry Seltzer, ZD Net

After largely avoiding Windows 8, I really got to like Windows 8.1. When Windows 10 comes along I’ll feel a lot better about it and so, I suspect, will everyone else. I’ve heard many people say the same thing I concluded not long after I spent some time with Windows 10: If only this is what Windows 8 had been, things would have been different.I think Windows 10 will accelerate the rehabilitation of Windows’ public image. If you follow the Technical Preview you can see clearly that Microsoft is trying to listen to the customers and make Windows 10 the OS you want to use. It has the best of Windows 7 mixed into the good parts of Windows 8, and it uses Microsoft’s cloud services, like OneDrive, extensively.

http://www.zdnet.com/article/2015-year-of-the-windows-renaissance/

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New Online Education Credit Transfer Program Can Facilitate Degree Completion

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By Bryan Lawver, US News

A new initiative from the American Council on Education (ACE) could make it easier for low-income and adult students to complete their degrees. More than 31 million Americans have some college education but no degree, according to the organization, and its plan to expand the number of colleges accepting transfer credits from online courses could help them finish school. The new initiative, which is launching with 25 pilot schools, would allow students to transfer credits earned through low-cost or free online education courses to other universities. Institutions across the country, including the Metropolitan State University of Denver, Northern Arizona University and the University of Baltimore, have signed on to join the pilot group. The schools in the first cohort include two-year and four-year, public and private, and nonprofit and for-profit schools.

http://www.usnewsuniversitydirectory.com/articles/new-online-education-credit-transfer-program-can-f_14556.aspx#.VJn2zsAXs

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December 29, 2014

Eduventures Reveals Top Predictions for Higher Education

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by Eduventures

Eduventure analysts have highlighted six predictions that will most impact the higher education landscape in 2015.

1.    Competency-based direct assessment will pick up steam

2.    Higher ed spending on information technology will exceed $45 billion.

3.    Online learning will grow modestly.

4.    Debt will bubble over.

See the URL for more:

http://www.virtual-strategy.com/2014/12/23/eduventures-reveals-top-predictions-higher-education

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Internet of things: Impact on learning and knowledge management

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By: Uma Ganesh, Financial Express

Internet of Things (IoT) is being viewed as the next big disruptor that would change the way businesses are transacted, customer needs are identified and serviced. The IoT refers to communication between ‘things’ containing embedded technology connected via wireless networks without the need for human interfaces. It is important to note that the number of objects connected to the Internet—including smartphones has already exceeded the number of people on earth. According to Gartner, there will be nearly 26 billion wireless devices connected to the Internet by 2020.Internet of Things (IoT) is being viewed as the next big disruptor that would change the way businesses are transacted, customer needs are identified and serviced. The IoT refers to communication between ‘things’ containing embedded technology connected via wireless networks without the need for human interfaces. It is important to note that the number of objects connected to the Internet—including smartphones has already exceeded the number of people on earth. According to Gartner, there will be nearly 26 billion wireless devices connected to the Internet by 2020.

http://www.financialexpress.com/article/industry/tech/internet-of-things-impact-on-learning-and-knowledge-management/21816/

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Coding educator boasts 80% employment for grads

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By Keith Button, Education Dive

Code Fellows, a trade school offering an eight-week program for students to build their coding and development skills to a professional level, reports that 80% of its graduates received a job offer within three months. The average starting salary for those graduates: $75,600, according to U.S. News & World Report. The Seattle company also says that 18% of its graduates have created their own companies.

http://www.educationdive.com/news/coding-educator-boasts-80-employment-for-grads/346813/

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December 28, 2014

Virtually the Same?: Student Perceptions of the Equivalence of Online Classes to Face-to-Face Classes

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by Carrie Anne Platt, et al; JOLT

Given the increasing number of online courses and the established association between student perceptions of learning environments and academic outcomes, this study investigated student perceptions of the equivalence of online classes and face-to-face classes. In contrast to previous studies on student perceptions of equivalence, which primarily used specific online classes as points of reference, this study focused on students’ perceptions of online courses in general. Overall, students did not perceive online and face-to-face classes to be equivalent, but previous exposure to online classes was positively associated with perceptions of general equivalence, comparative flexibility, comparative knowledge gained, and comparative level of interaction in online versus face-to-face classes. The final part of the paper applies these findings to the educational setting by discussing their implications for programs seeking to expand online course offerings.

http://jolt.merlot.org/vol10no3/Platt_0914.pdf

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Instructor Utilization Of Podcasts In The Online Learning Environment

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by Supawan Supanakorn-Davila and Doris U. Bolliger, JOLT

The utilization of podcasts in online learning environments has become common in higher education. The study examined how instructors used podcasts to deliver instructional material and instructors’ experiences with the use of podcasts in online courses. Twenty-five instructors who taught fully online courses at a research university in the United States completed the Instructional Use of Podcasts Survey. Instructors utilized different file types for a variety of purposes in their courses. Instructors shared several benefits and issues pertaining to podcast use in online teaching. Results provide the field with a better understanding of instructors’ use of podcasts and offer guidance to those who may consider the utilization of podcasts in online courses.

http://jolt.merlot.org/vol10no3/Supanakorn-Davila_0914.pdf

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13 higher ed tech tools and approaches to watch in 2015

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By Keith Button, Education Dive

Higher education technology businesses can get lost in the weeds after their launch has passed and they’re no longer in the startup or seed funding mode. College administrators and their IT staffs can labor in relative anonymity as they try to improve their learning technology and approaches for students. Sometimes recognition through awards, or top 10 or 20 lists, can supply just what a company needs for a marketing boost or what a college needs to shine a light on its progress. Here are 13 ed tech tools and approaches from companies and institutions that you should keep on your radar due to their recent recognition.

http://www.educationdive.com/news/13-higher-ed-tech-tools-and-approaches-to-watch-in-2015/336102/

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December 27, 2014

4 ways to ensure your university app connects with students

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By Dan Friedman, eCampusNews

Program director gives best practices on how to design with students in mind for optimal engagement. There is no doubt that today’s college student is tech-obsessed, with some studies citing that students are carrying on average seven devices around campus. In order to meet students where they are, we educators need to go mobile. To succeed, however, we have to do this in a way that meets the young person’s desires for functionality and the institutions need for sharing important content. Plus the design also needs to be cool.

http://www.ecampusnews.com/top-news/app-design-students-018/

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SETDA launches digital learning implementation guide

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by eSchool News

Free online resource helps states and districts plan for, implement smart digital learning initiatives: digital-SETDA, a new and free resource addressing six focus areas aims to help school leaders implement digital learning initiatives effectively. The Guide to Implementing Digital Learning (GIDL), from the State Educational Technology Directors Association (SETDA), is a free web-based resource to support school and district leaders as they work to ensure that investments in digital learning spark positive results. “Digital learning is more important today than ever before. Our students are digital natives and when students utilize technology in the classroom, they are true 21st century learners,” said Tom Luna, Idaho’s superintendent of public instruction.

http://www.eschoolnews.com/2014/12/19/setda-digital-implementation-022/

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Top 10 of 2014, No. 10: Mobile devices and mobile learning

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by eSchool News

Each year, the eSchool News editors compile 10 of the most influential ed-tech developments and examine how those topics dominated K-12 ed-tech conversations. No. 10 on our list for 2014 is mobile learning. This year, educators focused on putting mobile devices in students’ hands in an effort to help them learn valuable technology skills that will carry them through college and the workforce. Initiatives such as one-to-one pilots and bring-your-own-device programs popped up in more and more districts across the nation as school leaders sought to personalize learning and extend technology’s benefits and opportunities to all students.

http://www.eschoolnews.com/2014/12/22/top-10-mobile-292/

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December 26, 2014

What MOOCs Teach Us – Daphne Koller

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by Technology Review
One early prediction about MOOCs was that they would undermine or even replace the traditional college education—an idea we at Coursera never endorsed. And it hasn’t happened—only 15 percent of our current learners are college age. How do we create an educational experience suited to this very different population? First, we can share our knowledge about learner interests with our university partners, who can experiment with new courses, new subject areas, and hands-on projects that align with problem-­solving in real-world settings. We also need to find the right delivery method. Working adults have many demands on their time; they have to structure their learning around their lives, rather than the other way around. For this reason, we’re making the transition to an on-demand model that lets people engage with the content at their own pace. Finally, we need to educate people on the value of this new type of credential.
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From Cartoons to College Courses: Professors Use The Simpsons To Reach Students

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by Eric Carrell, LearnU

Professor Richard Pioreck of Hofstra University, says that he prefers to use “The Simpsons” and it’s unique way of referencing important literary works as a way to engage his students in their learning. His conviction that incorporating the perpetual elementary students, Bart and Lisa, as well as baby sister Maggie, dad Homer and mom Marg, as a part of his curriculum is pretty strong. So strong in fact, that he is phasing into a new online course in the spring semester entitled “The D’oh of Homer”, which will feature major literary works that have been referenced at some point in the shows lengthy history. Students can expect to cover the work of Edgar Allan Poe, Charles Dickens and more.

http://www.learnu.org/from-cartoons-to-college-courses-professors-use-the-simpsons-to-reach-students/

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Schools replace snow days with online classes

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by Bailey Loosemore,Courier Journal

On a Monday morning in November, Louisville awoke to it’s first snow day of the school year. With a layer of white covering lawns and roadways, Mercy Academy geometry teacher Amy Wheatley scrapped that day’s plan and came up with a new one — a video lesson her students could view without leaving their homes. She determined what type of problem they’d be tasked with solving, filmed a video of herself working through an example and uploaded it to an online classroom program, Edmodo. Then, she waited for questions to come via email.

http://www.courier-journal.com/story/news/local/southeast/2014/12/18/schools-replace-snow-days-online-classes/20603225/

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December 25, 2014

Review: Sony Digital Paper

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By David Nagel, Campus Technology

Sony Digital PaperSony’s Digital Paper is probably unique in the tech universe. It’s a device that comes in a tablet form factor, but it’s decidedly unlike any tablet on the market. Sony digital paper is a purpose-built device for reviewing and annotating PDF documents. It doesn’t run games. It doesn’t run apps. It can’t connect to an online bookstore or even read e-books in common formats like epub. It doesn’t play music. It doesn’t have a mic, camera or speakers.

http://campustechnology.com/articles/2014/12/15/review-sony-digital-paper.aspx

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The 5 Most Popular Educational Apps of 2014

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By Graphite – Common Sense Media

These are five top-rated apps from Common Sense Graphite’s “Best Ed Tech of 2014″ list. For complete reviews, and for each app’s “Learning Rating,” visit the Graphite website.

http://thejournal.com/articles/2014/12/17/the-top-5-apps-of-2014.aspx

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Creating the Technology Framework for Personalized Learning

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By Sonya Wrisley, THE Journal

To realize her vision of learning where students work in “makeries” and “collaboratories,” the principal of a new school needed a BYOD program and an adaptable personalized learning platform. The curriculum at D39C emphasizes self-paced, personalized learning; listening to understand; collaboration; creativity; and critical thinking in all subject areas. Integrating subject areas within projects is a key part of our process, since this approach encourages students to make connections in their learning. To help students discover their particular talents and interests, we dedicate the afternoons to exploring different topics. We then design related projects that will progressively build on students’ fluencies and skills. Each morning at D39C is designated as “integrated learning time,” when students participate in projects or small-group instruction. The afternoon is for “Deep Dives and Explorations,” three-to-12 week projects (depending on the grade) that can include computer coding, stop-motion animation, furniture design, musical theater, engineering, video-making or any activity that grabs a student’s interest.

http://thejournal.com/articles/2014/12/18/creating-the-technology-framework-for-personalized-learning.aspx

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