Techno-News Blog

April 7, 2018

IoT Has Arrived (Just Not in the Way You Expected)

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By Dian Schaffhauser, THE Journal

Forget about sensors everywhere. The Internet of Things is really about networked devices making our lives easier. According to Steve Burt, the applications for IoT in the school environment currently most often involve lighting, climate control and transportation. Burt is the director of strategy for Clarity Innovations, a professional services firm that consults with education agencies, organizations and companies on technology. So far, he noted, retail is a far better venue for IoT usage than education, collecting data “to help them essentially do their job, selling things better.”

https://thejournal.com/articles/2018/03/22/iot-has-arrived.aspx

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A lifeline to learning: Leveraging technology to support education for refugees

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by the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization Published

The issue of provision of education and related services for refugees is complex and multifaceted. With a record number of 65 million individuals who were forcibly displaced worldwide in 2016, the magnitude of the refugee and displacement crises is unprecedented (UNHCR, 2017). Particularly alarming is that children make up more than half of the 22.5 million refugees, i.e. those individuals who fled their countries to seek protection elsewhere. The repercussions in the field of education can be quite severe. Immediate, strategic and sustainable educational responses are required to ensure that refugees and displaced populations have access to equitable and inclusive quality education and lifelong learning opportunities. In this report, the analysis of mobile learning projects and practices is structured alongside ten education-related challenges,1 grouped into three main categories:

https://reliefweb.int/report/world/lifeline-learning-leveraging-technology-support-education-refugees

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The Third Education Revolution

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by Jeffrey Selingo, The Atlantic

The world of work is undergoing a massive shift. Not since the dawn of the Industrial Revolution in the 18th and 19th centuries and the Information Age that followed in the last century has the scale of disruption taking place in the workforce been so evident. An oft-cited 2013 study from the University of Oxford predicted that nearly half of American jobs—including real-estate brokers, insurance underwriters, and loan officers—were at risk of being taken over by computers within the next two decades. Just last fall, the McKinsey Global Institute released a report that estimated a third of American workers may have to change jobs by 2030 because of artificial intelligence.  More than a century has passed since the universal high-school movement took off in the United States and 50 years since the college-for-all movement began. Those first two waves of education helped the U.S. build the world’s most successful economy. Now it’s clear a third wave in the evolution of education is needed to compete in a new economy in which learning can never end.

https://www.theatlantic.com/education/archive/2018/03/the-third-education-revolution/556091/

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April 6, 2018

If you want to understand Blockchain, try to understand Switzerland

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by Jeremy Epstein, ClickZ

In our latest guest post from Jeremy Epstein, he takes a high-level view of Switzerland’s decentralized governance model, which gives us a sneak peek into what blockchain-based governance may enable at global scale.  Ethereum is the world’s second most valuable cryptocurrency after Bitcoin, with a total market cap of $75 billion dollars.  This new economic paradigm relies on blockchain, or more accurately distributed ledger, technology. What makes Buterin’s invention so special is that it takes the fundamental innovation of Bitcoin – that you can immediately have total trust in another entity without a third-party vouching for that entity- and adds a powerful layer.

If you want to understand Blockchain, try to understand Switzerland

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What video games can teach educators about student engagement

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by Matthew Lynch, Tech Edvocate

Teachers have long competed with video games when it comes to maintaining the focus of their students. Children are more likely to head home at the end of a long day and zone out in front of a mindless video game than they are to complete another math worksheet. The research supports the fact that gamification can sustain interest far better than the traditional teaching methods that many educators would rather employ. What can these games teach modern educators about student motivation? Here are a few of the key points that teachers need to take note of regarding student engagement.

http://www.thetechedvocate.org/video-games-can-teach-educators-motivation-student-engagement/

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Inflategate? After losing its #1 U.S. News ranking, Temple’s online MBA program faces many challenges

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by Erin Arvedlund, Inquirer

After scaling the heights, Temple’s online MBA program has hit a low point: The school topped U.S. News’ rankings for four straight years but then was completely dropped from the magazine’s prestigious national rankings this year for misrepresenting its data. A Temple MBA student is now suing the university, alleging that he and others were defrauded. And the Jones Day law firm has been hired to investigate what went wrong. The reversal threatens to tarnish the fast-growing online MBA program.

http://www.philly.com/philly/business/temples-online-mba-program-sued-u-s-news-rankings-jones-day-law-firm-investigation-20180322.html

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April 5, 2018

10 Tips for Up-and-Coming CIOs

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By Rhea Kelly, Campus Technology

What does it mean to be a higher education chief information officer? For those aspiring to the position, it can be a daunting combination of technical know-how and business savvy, diplomacy and communication, management skills and more. We asked IT leaders at colleges and universities across the country what advice they would give someone looking to become a CIO — what they have learned from serving in the role, what newbies should watch out for, what is most important to know. Here’s what they said.

https://campustechnology.com/articles/2018/03/22/10-tips-for-up-and-coming-cios.aspx

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Hosting a Twitter chat in your classroom

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by Matthew Lynch, Tech Edvocate

Today, teachers often face an uphill battle against digital distractions in the classroom. In particular, students tend to get sidetracked by social media, such as Snapchat, Instagram, and Twitter. So instead of waging war against social media, why not turn it into a teaching tool? Repurposing social media for educational use might sound impossible, but it’s actually pretty simple. One easy, effective way to utilize social media is to host a class Twitter chat in your classroom.

http://www.thetechedvocate.org/hosting-a-class-twitter-chat-in-your-classroom/

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Need a Teaching Assistant? AI to the Rescue

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by Matthew Lynch, Tech Edvocate

Keeping up with the grade book, student correspondence, and the daily minutiae of teaching can be a serious drain. For many educators, there simply aren’t enough hours in the day to do everything well. Unfortunately, budget cuts and constraints often prevent teachers from hiring an assistant that they truly need. With the advances made in modern science, there may soon be a new option for teachers to consider. Your next teaching assistant could very well be a programmed machine that could help you to interact with students using artificial intelligence. The AI teaching assistants can cut down on the costs of a real assistant and save educators valuable time on grading and answering questions.

http://www.thetechedvocate.org/need-teaching-assistant-artificial-intelligence-rescue/

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April 4, 2018

Is there still time to save the Open University from slow strangulation?

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by Steven Rose, the Guardian

The report that the Open University plans to axe more than a third of its courses and slash its teaching staff makes grim reading for anyone who cares about the consequences for its original mission of making tertiary education open to all. Of course, the cuts must be set in the context of what has been happening to higher education as a whole, but there is clearly a danger that the OU’s unique contribution to public education over the half-century since it was created will be lost.

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/mar/23/open-university-cut-staff-courses-tertiary-education

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Spike Lee to launch online class for filmmakers

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by Najja Parker The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

The Atlanta-born director is partnering with MasterClass, a platform that hosts dozens of celebrity-led tutorials, to educate up-and-coming artists about the craft. For $90, Lee will discuss the technicalities of writing stories, collaborating with actors, choosing music, financing and picking the best camera angles. He will also take a critical look at the current film industry, sharing his personal experiences and advising filmmakers how to overcome hurdles within the field. “There are no absolute truths in filmmaking and no one way to be a filmmaker,” Lee said in a statement. “I’ve learned in 30 years things that I can give back. I’m teaching this MasterClass because very few people get to sit in my classes at NYU, so this is an opportunity for me to share what I’ve learned with as many students as possible, no matter where they are in their film career.”

https://www.ajc.com/news/world/spike-lee-launch-first-online-class-for-filmmakers/EDlmlYsrpbSFwXZYqbNZ7J/

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Study offers insight into the adult learner profile

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By Jarrett Carter, Education Dive
The Chronicle of Higher Education has produced a new report profiling the growth of adult learners as a critical part of the American college student profile. According to the executive summary, about 80 million people between the ages of 25 through 65 have earned high school diplomas but have not earned a college degree. About 15 million adult learners have earned at least an associate’s degree.  When compared to traditional college student profiles, a majority of adult learners are African-American women who attend college part time and receive Pell Grant funding support.  The report highlights several areas of emphasis for institutions to help adult learners persist and complete degrees. Child care and supporting financial aid programs, the report authors say, is a critical element of helping students to become stable in degree pursuit.

https://www.educationdive.com/news/study-offers-insight-into-the-adult-learner-profile/519710/

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April 3, 2018

Diversity drives progress— in business and higher ed

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by David Steele-Figueredo, Education Dive

Today, Apple claims that “diverse teams make innovation possible.” A key to the power of diversity is opinion diversity. It helps to shape the answer to a problem or issue.  While gender and ethnic diversity has evolved from a business imperative to a moral and social imperative, today’s higher education system has been comparatively slow to emphasize the importance of a diverse, multicultural experience.  In the last 15 years, however, higher education has prioritized creating an inclusive climate and valuing the richness of different perspectives. To a large extent, the diversity trend has been driven by colleges to prepare our workforce for multinational understanding, and to recognize the increasing number of women and minorities in positions of power.

https://www.universitybusiness.com/article/diversity-drives-progress-business-and-higher-ed

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Navigating online professional degrees — potential and caution

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By Shalina Chatlani, Education Dive
When it comes to the future of learning, a debate rages within higher education circles over the question of whether certain types of curriculum can be scaled through digital technologies, as an alternative to the traditional residential classroom setting. A number of institutions already have invested in online bachelor’s and master’s degree programs — and now, there has emerged a number of professional degree programs online. The questions surrounding this trend are largely the same as with other iterations of the cyber classroom, but there’s something different about this type of education that begs this question: Does earning a professional credential in an online environment offer students the quality education they need to be considered expert practitioners in their fields, especially when the experiential learning component is reduced?

https://www.educationdive.com/news/navigating-online-professional-degrees-potential-and-caution/518847/

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Enhancing Learning with Robots

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by Michigan State University
Michigan State University is leading the way in the research and use of robots in higher education online classes. To help advance online learning, MSU researchers are using robots to help distance learners feel more connected in their classes. Christine Greenhow, MSU associate professor of educational psychology and educational technology, was one of the first in higher education to put robots to work in the classroom. Her studies have found that using robots can contribute to a better, richer learning experience for both remote and in-class students and their professors.

https://msutoday.msu.edu/feature/2018/enhancing-learning-with-robots/

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April 2, 2018

Best Practices for Rollout of a Digital Device

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by Matthew Lynch, Tech Edvocate

When a school district decides to implement more edtech in their curriculum, it comes with a major hurdle everyone must face. How can you roll out all of these digital devices at once with the greatest success rates? This is one of the key issues at the heart of edtech programs in their early stages. However, it is crucial to handle this now so that your school district can take advantage of these helpful devices in the near future. Fortunately, plenty of school districts are already paving the way for the best practices in a digital device rollout. Following the example set by others can help you to implement your own rollout more effectively. You can take a few tips from some of these key concepts to help your device implementation move more smoothly.

http://www.thetechedvocate.org/best-practices-for-a-digital-device-rollout/

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How to flip your STEM classroom

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by Matthew Lynch, Tech Edvocate

In a flipped classroom, students watch recorded lectures or review material for homework and complete assignments, labs, and tests in class. This individualizes learning for students, allowing students to move at their own pace. It also provides teachers with the opportunity to work one-on-one with students who need more support, and students can easily catch up on missed lessons. Using this classroom model, students learn content outside of the classroom, freeing up class time to engage in hands-on, collaborative application. One variation on the flipped classroom is to provide instruction on one or two days of the week, devoting the rest of the week to student-centered, self-paced activities based on the content you’ve delivered.

http://www.thetechedvocate.org/flip-stem-classroom/

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April 1, 2018

Opinion: How The MOOC Became A Cash Cow For Business Schools

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by Marco De Novellis, Business Because

Although the global MOOCs market is predicted to grow by more than 30% annually between 2018 and 2022—according to market research firm Technavio—the freebie days are over. This month, Coursera announced the launch of six new online degrees in partnership with universities, including its first ever bachelor’s program. The MOOC, in its original form, is under threat. Resuscitated, remodeled, exploited by business schools, what we may refer to as MOOCs today are less open and more affordable online courses.

https://www.businessbecause.com/news/opinion/5156/opinion-mooc-cash-cow-business-schools

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5 Ways EdTech Can Help Universities Connect with Their Students

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by Matthew Lynch, Tech Edvocate

Educational technology is reinventing all aspects of learning, but this is especially true in the college setting. EdTech is improving higher education at a rapid pace around the country and allowing students to keep up with course material in a way that is most accessible to them.

http://www.thetechedvocate.org/5-ways-universities-can-use-edtech-to-better-connect-with-their-students/

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How EdTech Makes Learning More Accessible

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by Matthew Lynch, Tech Edvocate

In education, material that is “accessible” meets the needs of students from a wide variety of backgrounds, abilities, and learning styles. Based on this definition, it’s clear that accessibility is vital. All students, at all ability levels and from all backgrounds, should be able to understand and learn from the content delivered in a classroom. Fortunately, the influx of edtech has made learning more accessible than ever before. Here are just a few ways that edtech makes learning more accessible:

http://www.thetechedvocate.org/edtech-makes-learning-accessible/

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March 31, 2018

This Professor Uses Virtual Labs to Teach Real-World IT Skills That Employers Want

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By Wendy McMahon, EdSurge

Steph YoungGonzaga credits online learning with enriching her education and helping establish herself as an IT thought leader.  YoungGonzaga recently returned to her roots. She pivoted her career in order to focus on supporting students who, just as she did, are pursuing their education online.  As Assistant Professor and Program Chair at the Forbes School of Business and Technology at Ashford University—a fully online university—she developed the new Master of Information Systems Management degree program. Today, she’s focused on giving students the hands-on experience and peer connections they need to become the the next wave of IT leaders. A key part of her arsenal? Virtual labs.

https://www.edsurge.com/news/2018-03-12-this-professor-uses-virtual-labs-to-teach-real-world-it-skills-that-employers-want

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