New partnerships are helping support women as they pursue STEM careers

January 8th, 2017

BY LAURA ASCIONE DEVANEY,eCampus News

Women are sorely lacking in the IT industry, and universities are taking notice and taking action with an influx of trending partnership-based programs designed to help get women in STEM–and help them stay there. When it comes to STEM, many women report experiencing negative stereotypes in class, and many say they lack female role models. Two-thirds of women in a recent CDW-G survey said they struggled with confidence. The survey included 300 women who are current STEM college students, recent graduates, and those who chose to leave technology, science and math programs. Forty-eight percent of survey respondents said being a woman in STEM made their higher education experience harder, and 46 percent said they considered switching fields in college.

http://www.ecampusnews.com/stem/trend-women-university-stem/

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Coursera Reveals Most Popular Online Courses of 2016

January 7th, 2017

by Business Wire

Programming, data science, machine learning, English, and learning fundamentals are among most sought after skills. Coursera, the global leader in online education, today announced the Most Popular Courses and Most Popular Specializations of 2016 based on enrollments from its 23 million registered learners. The annual lists reveal a distinct interest in building specific professional and personal skills – from coding to communications – to land some of today’s hottest jobs. “We see a strong preference for skills in the cutting edge technology professions like data science and computer programming. But we also see a desire for personal betterment reflected in the choice of topics such as modern psychology and learning fundamentals”

http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20161222005624/en/Coursera-Reveals-Popular-Online-Courses-2016

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WILL GAMIFICATION BE THE FUTURE OF EDUCATION?

January 7th, 2017

BY MATTHEW LYNCH, Tech Edvocate

The truth is, it’s already happening. The system of education is becoming more and more gamified every day. Gamification is simply bringing components of gaming-scores, rewards, and levels to non-gaming settings. In the classroom, this is becoming more and more prevalent. For instance, in the Uncommon Schools system, a coalition of charter schools spread across the Northeast, a paycheck system is used to monitor student behavior. These “scholar dollars” are given or taken away based on good or poor behavior. This gamified system shows rewards and demerits based on how well the students can behave; or how well they “play the game.”

http://www.thetechedvocate.org/will-gamification-be-the-future-of-education/

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The 5 Biggest Higher Education Tech Trends in 2016

January 7th, 2017

by Megan Bogardez Cortez, EdTech

Here’s the lowdown on what was interesting and innovative at universities this year. 1. Understanding the Power of Data; 2. Protecting Colleges from Growing Cybersecurity Threats; 3. Seeing the Valuable Potential for Virtual Reality; 4. Creating Robust Networks for Even More Devices; 5. Increasing Utilization of Cloud Services.

http://www.edtechmagazine.com/higher/article/2016/12/5-biggest-higher-education-tech-trends-2016

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Colleges announce tech trends for 2017

January 6th, 2017

by University Business

Campus technology leaders report significant new investment to come this year in the area of academic tech tools such as lecture capture, AV equipment and active classroom initiatives. It’s the third year in a row academic technology led the list of top significant investments in a UB survey. But while investment in internet/Wi-Fi infrastructure has been the second largest spending area in past years, network/data security grabbed that slot for 2017. Nearly three in 10 respondents say their institution suffered a cyberattack in the past year. Cloud computing/storage tied for second in anticipated spending for 2017, followed by internet/Wi-Fi.

https://www.universitybusiness.com/article/academic-tools-will-top-tech-spending-again-2017

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Smart Cybersecurity Plans Balance Long-Range Vision and Short-Term Agility

January 6th, 2017

by Bob Turner, EdTech Magazine

Bob Turner is the CISO at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he leads the development and delivery of a comprehensive information security and privacy program. There’s an inherent dilemma in effectively managing cybersecurity: IT organizations must dedicate the time and focus required for long-term strategic planning while maintaining the agility to meet evolving threats and take advantage of emerging technologies. Add in the ongoing need to review and revise strategic plans to reflect those changing risk and technology landscapes, and the task can seem herculean. The University of Wisconsin-Madison is one year into a five-year cybersecurity strategy; we published our first plan update in July 2016. The practices that worked and the lessons learned in Madison can easily apply to other institutions to make this high-stakes endeavor easier.

http://www.edtechmagazine.com/higher/article/2016/12/smart-cybersecurity-plans-balance-long-range-vision-and-short-term-agility

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The future of robotics: 10 predictions for 2017 and beyond

January 6th, 2017

By Bob Violino, ZD Net

What does the future hold for robotics? It’s hard to say, given the rapid pace of change in the field as well as in associated areas such as machine learning and artificial intelligence. But one thing seems certain: Robots will play an increasingly important role in business and life in general. Research firm International Data Corp’s (IDC) Manufacturing Insights Worldwide Commercial Robotics program recently unveiled its top 10 predictions for worldwide robotics for 2017 and beyond. The list has some interesting forecasts, and if they come true, they will likely have a significant impact on business and society.

http://www.zdnet.com/article/the-future-of-robotics/

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STEM TO STEAM: MORE THAN JUST A GOOD IDEA

January 5th, 2017

BY MATTHEW LYNCH, Tech Edvocate

Why Should Schools Transition from STEM to STEAM? The answer is a ‘no brainer.’ Sure, Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) are basic academic subjects and are important aspects of many careers, but they are subjects that favor the left, or analytical, side of the brain. It is the brain’s right side that adds the ‘A,’ or Arts. to STEAM. This is the side of the brain that deals with spatial awareness, visual imagery, art, music, and creativity – all attributes that support and enhance the application of STEM in the real world. Allen McConnell, in an article in Psychology Today, contends that “creation of strong and effective neural networks is a product of more than just [left brain] focused … lessons.” We need both. A study released on October 4, 2013, for example, found Albert Einstein’s brilliance may be linked to the fact that his brain hemispheres were extremely well-connected. The ability to use right brain creativity and left brain logic simultaneously may have been what made Einstein a genius.

http://www.thetechedvocate.org/stem-to-steam-more-than-just-a-good-idea/

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As cost of higher education soars, online learning emerges as most viable solution

January 5th, 2017

By: Aditya Malik, Financial Express

Technology has virtually touched almost every aspect of our lives today, and education is no exception. Disruptive innovation in the form of online learning is a catalyst to bring about a more equitable approach to high-quality education. Today’s generation is on a constant lookout to acquire new skills. Students are undertaking courses that enhance their learning and development according to their immediate needs, while leaving a window open to change their calling with online courses. Conservation of hours and money enables them to learn with a purpose and instils a sense of self-belief in them, creating a tangible impact in their professional life. Working executives are keen on embracing change, by increasingly choosing online certificate courses and programmes that enable them to acquire new skills and competencies to enhance their vocation.

http://www.financialexpress.com/jobs/as-cost-of-higher-education-soars-online-learning-emerges-as-most-viable-solution/509326/

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Indians are completing online courses faster than US students, reveals Udacity’s 2016 trends

January 5th, 2017

by ANUSHREE SINGH, Business Insider India

Leaders at Udacity, an education startup disrupting learning technologies globally, have observed trends related to online courses in Android, Machine Learning, and Data Analysis in India, US, and around the world this year. One of them is that Indians are completing online courses faster than their US counterparts.

http://www.businessinsider.in/indians-are-completing-online-courses-faster-than-us-students-reveals-udacitys-2016-trends/articleshow/56115923.cms

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The Blurry Definitions of Adaptive vs. Personalized Learning

January 5th, 2017

By A.J. O’Connell, Campus Technology

In June of 2015, leaders in adaptive learning hashed out the definitions of personalized and adaptive learning at a summit in Santa Fe, NM, hosted by WCET (the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education’s Cooperative for Educational Technologies). And now, more than a year later, the adaptive learning community has moved on. The terms have been defined: “personalized learning” is any customization of learning by an instructor, while “adaptive” refers to technology that monitors student progress in a course and uses that data to modify instruction in real time. The formal discussion of what those terms mean, at least among experts, is over.

https://campustechnology.com/articles/2016/12/20/the-blurry-definitions-of-adaptive-vs-personalized-learning.aspx

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If the U.S. Won’t Pay Its Teachers, China Will

January 4th, 2017

by Bloomberg News

VIPKid has raised $125 million and signed up 50,000 kids to study English, math and science online. Cindy Mi leans forward on a couch in her sun-filled Beijing office to explain how she first got interested in education. She loved English so much as a child that she spent her lunch money on books and magazines to practice. By 15, she was good enough that she began to tutor other students. At 17, she dropped out of high school to start a language-instruction company with her uncle. Today, Mi is 33 and founder of a startup that aims to give Chinese kids the kind of education American children receive in top U.S. schools. Called VIPKid, the company matches Chinese students aged five to 12 with predominantly North American instructors to study English, math, science and other subjects. Classes take place online, typically for two or three 25-minute sessions each week.

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-12-19/if-the-u-s-won-t-pay-its-teachers-china-will

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Creating cohorts: how to solve the online learning conundrum

January 4th, 2017

By Tim Sarchet, Personnel Today

If we accept that social interaction is key to teaching certain subjects, and that the current problem facing online learning experiences is effectiveness, then one thing matters more than anything else: cohorts. Learning in groups has long been a feature of effective learning and a core metric for measuring academic institutions. The QS World Universities Ranking attributes 20% of their overall assessment to faculty-student ratio, while the Times Higher Education World University Rankings assigns teaching quality, of which faculty-student ratio is one of the most important factors, 30% of their overall assessment. While there is some disagreement as to the optimum class size, it is hard to find any argument or research in favour of very large classes. Simply put, relatively small groups are hugely beneficial to learning outcomes, but while many companies may appreciate this, the perceived logistical and cost implications mean individually taken, web-based programmes continue to be the norm in business learning.

http://www.personneltoday.com/hr/creating-cohorts-solve-online-learning-conundrum/

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What Will Be The Next Trend In Online Education?

January 4th, 2017

by Ken Mazaika, Forbes

Delivery of the right content, at the right time, in the right medium. Let me explain through an example. Say you’re trying to learn about software development in a physical classroom. The quality of your experience would be limited by four key things: The structure/pacing of your course materials/outline. How fast/slow your classmates can learn software development. The mediums available to teach software development in a physical space. The depth of knowledge of your teacher in software development. When done correctly, online education has the power to break every single one of these limitations. It can flip the way we learn completely upside down by ushering in a brand new model. People sometimes refer to this as the student-led model, which, through technology, gives students the power to get the right content, at the right time, in the right medium.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/quora/2016/12/19/what-will-be-the-next-trend-in-online-education/#8be68a74e5bb

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These Are The ‘Most Popular’ Online Courses For IT Professionals

January 3rd, 2017

by Surajit Dasgupta, NDTV

Coursera has 1.8 million learners from India out of 23 million registered learners globally – its second largest base of online learners after the US.

The 10 Most Popular Coursera Courses of 2016 (based on total Indian enrollments):

1. Machine Learning – Stanford University

2. Programming for Everybody (Getting Started with Python) – University of Michigan

3. R Programming – Johns Hopkins University

4. Learning How to Learn: Powerful mental tools to help you master tough subjects – University of California, San Diego

5. The Data Scientist’s Toolbox – Johns Hopkins University

http://profit.ndtv.com/news/tech-media-telecom/article-these-are-the-most-popular-online-courses-for-it-professionals-1639820

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ED publishes final rules on distance education

January 3rd, 2017

by Jarrett Carter, Education dive

The U.S. Department of Education has finalized its guidance on colleges and universities offering online degrees in states and territories beyond their home location, requiring that schools receive authorization from every state where domestic students do, or could pursue degrees. The guidance allows for continuation of the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement, which allows degree offerings in 44 states so far. According to Inside Higher Ed, some observers are not sure if the new guidance will be maintained under the incoming Trump Administration, which has shared on the record a desire to rollback several key elements of educational regulation.

http://www.educationdive.com/news/ed-publishes-final-rules-on-distance-education/432747/

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Have You Hacked These Cognitive Tools?

January 3rd, 2017

by Mathew Lynch, Edvocate

Modern technology offers a plethora of cognitive tools for implementation in your classroom. You’re likely familiar with pedagogical tools and teaching resources, but you may also be wondering what exactly a “cognitive tool” is. Cognitive tools are tools what, when used outside of the classroom, play a role in productivity. They include word-processing programs, spreadsheets, and e-mail programs. Applied to the classroom, these become cognitive tools, because they improve the learning process, enhancing thinking and understanding. Let’s look at some examples:

http://www.theedadvocate.org/hacked-cognitive-tools/

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Teaching ‘Truthiness’: Professors Offer Course On How to Write Fake News

January 2nd, 2017

By Jeffrey R. Young, EdSurge

It sounds like a fake news story: Two professors plan a free online course on how to write fake news. But this course is real—as well as an act of satire. It’s called “How to Write and Read Fake News: Journalism in the Age of Trump,” and it’s being offered as a kind of performance art to draw attention to the problem of the influential falsehoods that are spreading online. The course is the latest offering from a long-running satirical project called UnderAcademy College, whose previous courses included “Grammar Porn” and “Underwater Procrastination and Advanced Desublimation Techniques.”

http://www.edsurge.com/news/2016-12-19-teaching-truthiness-professors-offer-course-on-how-to-write-fake-news

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Internet Use in Class Tied to Lower Test Scores

January 2nd, 2017

by Michigan State University

Michigan State University researchers studied laptop use in an introductory psychology course and found the average time spent browsing the web for non-class-related purposes was 37 minutes. Students spent the most time on social media, reading email, shopping for items such as clothes and watching videos. And their academic performance suffered. Internet use was a significant predictor of students’ final exam score even when their intelligence and motivation were taken into account, said Susan Ravizza, associate professor of psychology and lead author of the study. “The detrimental relationship associated with non-academic internet use,” Ravizza said, “raises questions about the policy of encouraging students to bring their laptops to class when they are unnecessary for class use.” Funded by the National Science Foundation, the findings are published online in the journal Psychological Science. The article is titled “Logged in and zoned out: How laptop internet use impacts classroom learning.”

http://msutoday.msu.edu/news/2016/internet-use-in-class-tied-to-lower-test-scores/

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Let there be light! Online platform lets students do science in real time

January 2nd, 2017

by Dyllan Furness, Digital Trends

Dubbed the Biology Cloud Lab, the interactive platform is designed to engage scientists of all ages by letting them remotely control LEDs around communities of light-responsive cells. Although the single-celled organisms (Euglena) depend on light to make energy, they retreat when the light source is too strong. By manipulating the light’s direction and intensity, users can watch the Euglena react in real time and, later, hypothesize about the cells’ behavior. “Classic microscopy is just passive observation,” Stanford assistant professor of bioengineering and co-lead of the project, Ingmar Reidel-Kruse, told Digital Trends. “The Cloud Lab is interactive, i.e. a user can push a button, turn on a light, and see a cell responding. That is a paradigm change, which enables a totally new type of firsthand experience.”

https://www.yahoo.com/tech/let-light-online-platform-lets-211339148.html

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Real world learning draws students to unconventional school

January 1st, 2017

by Associated Press

Three 10th-graders gathered in a pod working on a project they hope would ultimately lead to more civil discourse in America. “A lot of people are neglecting other points of view,” said Sam Humrichouse, 15, who lives in Meridian, reflecting upon the vitriolic campaign rhetoric the country experienced in the presidential campaign. He and his two classmates were at work on a plan to create a website where people could come, tell their stories and answer questions about their lives. As people visit the website, they would see the diversity in those stories and it would help “create an opportunity to practice civil discourse online,” said Harry Northrop, 14, of Boise.

http://www.ccenterdispatch.com/news/state/article_8760e00f-34d0-52ec-828a-b7a9fa4d9138.html

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