Report: Smartphone Surge Continues as PC Decline Slows

July 18th, 2014

By Joshua Bolkan, Campus Technology

Worldwide device shipments, including mobile phones, PCs, tablets and unltramobiles, are on pace to increase 4.2 percent this year over last to reach 2.4 billion units, according to the latest forecast from market research firm Gartner. That growth will be enabled, in part, “by a relative revival of the global PC market,” according to Ranjit Atwal, research director at Gartner. PC shipments, which include desktop, notebook and premium ultramobile devices, declined 9.5 percent in 2013, but are on pace to contract by only 2.9 percent this year, according to the company. Traditional PCs, which include desktops and notebooks, will continue to drop more quickly, declining 6.7 percent this year and 5.3 percent in 2015, according to the company.

http://campustechnology.com/articles/2014/07/07/report-smartphones-continue-to-surge-as-pc-decline-slows.aspx

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Teaching With Tech Across Borders

July 18th, 2014

By Elizabeth Redden, Inside Higher Ed

This type of teaching goes by many names – COIL, online intercultural exchange, virtual exchange, globally networked learning, telecollaboration. In this context they all mean more or less the same thing, and that thing is broad: the use of technology, any technology, from email to social media sites to video-chat software to blog platforms to wikis – to facilitate class discussions and do collaborative course assignments across national borders and time zones. The course exchanges can be synchronous or asynchronous, or involve a combination of both. COIL is often described as an alternative to study abroad, a low-cost, easy substitute of sorts for that 90 percent or so of undergraduates who never go overseas. Asked if it’s oversold in that way – after all, study abroad has been characterized as a particularly high-impact educational experience – Rubin said the problem with the language of “alternative” is it suggests a COIL class would be study abroad’s equal. Generally speaking it’s not, he said, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a potentially powerful learning opportunity in itself.

http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2014/07/09/faculty-use-internet-based-technologies-create-global-learning-opportunities

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What “open learning” looks like when it’s for kids who need it most

July 17th, 2014

by Mimi Ito, boingboing

We’ve heard a lot of talk these days about open educational resources and online courses and how these platforms can make high-quality learning available for all. The code.org campaign has been touting the potential of online courses to teach kids how to code. Khan Academy has been the darling of the tech industry because of its potential to disrupt existing models of educational content delivery. It turns out, though, that these offerings are mostly serving already wired, well off, and highly educated families. True “disruption” and access beyond the echo chamber of the digital elites requires more than creating sophisticated educational content and building high-end online learning platforms. We need to spend less effort escalating the tech and bandwidth intensiveness of these platforms and more on meeting diverse kids where they are in their local communities with the resources they have on hand.

http://boingboing.net/2014/07/07/what-open-learning-looks-l.html

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5 gaming dynamics that truly engage students

July 17th, 2014

By Laura Devaney, eSchool News

Students frequently walk away from homework when it is too difficult, but difficult games are another matter–kids walk away from games when they’re too easy. Difficult games present a positive challenge for students. A challenging task “stretches” a student’s brain, and the more a person expects his or her brain to do different things, the more pathways that person’s brain will develop. “Choice is a really important part of this equation, and gaming embodies choice–games are open-ended, and that’s part of the reason they’re so engaging for kids,” Kiang said.

http://www.eschoolnews.com/2014/07/07/gaming-engaging-students-365/

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Comprehensive research and case study analysis reveals 20 new findings about Flipped Learning

July 17th, 2014

By Meris Stansbury, eCampus News

As with all types of popular learning models that have the potential to be nothing more than a flash in the pan, it’s important to conduct thorough research on the model’s real potential. And according to a 2014 research and case study review, there are roughly 20 new things higher education faculty and leaders should know about Flipped Learning. The report, “2014: Extension of a Review of Flipped Learning [2],” conducted by George Mason University with the support of Pearson and the Flipped Learning Network [3](FLN), reviews current relevant research—both theory and empirical evidence—to learn more about Flipped Learning’s growth in education, and its effects on student learning faculty teaching.

http://www.ecampusnews.com/top-news/20-new-facts-flipped-learning-higher-ed/

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5 Tips For Keeping Your School iPads Safe (And Not Cracked)

July 16th, 2014

By Jason Cross, Edudemic

If you run a school that utilizes 1:1 technology tablets, you have no doubt had to deal with a few bumps and bruises. Especially if those tablets end up going home with students. Here are some tips for reducing tablet loss in your program.

http://www.edudemic.com/oops-cracked-pad/

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The Digital Lives of Teens: “If You Don’t Have a Plan for Them, They Will Have a Plan for You”

July 16th, 2014

by Matt Levinson, Edutopia

For schools, the challenge is how to bring together kids’ “native” knowledge regarding technology and teachers’ pedagogical experience without entering into a tug-of-war battle that teachers will inevitably and invariably lose when technology is in the ring. A colleague of mine from many years ago gave me sage advice regarding working with middle schoolers: “If you don’t have a plan for them, they will have a plan for you.” There is no truer statement when it comes to deploying technology in schools. Teachers have to design learning experiences around challenging problems where the technology is a tool that needs to be used to solve the problem. If technology sits idly on the side, kids will go in their own direction, gravitating toward games and other “distractions,” and teachers will feel “gamed” by the kids. The kids will make their own plan.

http://www.edutopia.org/blog/digital-teens-have-a-plan-matt-levinson

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How The World Really Connects To The Internet

July 16th, 2014

By Katie Lepi, Edudemic

The internet: Not just for first world countries anymore. While high speed, broadband access may be much more ubiquitous in more developed countries, internet infrastructure and broadband connectivity is much more widespread than you may be aware of. Over the last decade, huge strides have been made, meaning many more students across the globe are being connected to the vast network of students, teachers, and the world. The handy infographic linked below paints a pretty good picture of what internet connectivity looks like around the world. Take a look, and try to imagine how many more people you could be connecting with around the globe in just a few short years.

http://www.edudemic.com/world-connectivity-infographic/

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Apps vs Web Tools: Key Factoids To Know About Both Options

July 15th, 2014

By Katie Lepi, Edudemic

Using smartphones and tablets in the classroom isn’t necessarily innovative anymore. For some schools it is the norm, still others are just jumping on the bandwagon of using mobile devices (both in BYOD environments and in scenarios where schools supply the technology). That isn’t to say that a lot of classrooms aren’t using desktop and laptop computers anymore, but a lot of data is pointing to the fact that apps are the future, not the web. The handy infographic linked below takes a look at some interesting statistics on apps vs. web tools.

http://www.edudemic.com/apps-graphic/

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Udacity’s Nanodegrees: Edtech’s Challenge To College Credentials?

July 15th, 2014

by BERNADETTE TANSEY, Xconomy

Sometime next year, an AT&T executive may be sitting at a desk, trying to decide whether to hire that computer science major from a good college—or a whip-smart high school graduate who just passed five or six courses on mobile iOS development from an online catalog. The value of the college grad’s four-year degree will be backed up by a longstanding higher education establishment that includes universities themselves, as well as the independent accrediting agencies that oversee the quality of their instruction. The high school grad will hold a new kind of credential called a nanodegree, whose value has been vouched for by AT&T itself; the company designed the online coursework in partnership with educational technology startup Udacity.

http://www.xconomy.com/san-francisco/2014/07/02/udacitys-nanodegrees-edtechs-challenge-to-college-credentials/

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Disruptive Innovation And Education

July 15th, 2014

by Michael Horn, Forbes

What’s exciting here though is that through disruption, we have the opportunity to make a quality higher education fundamentally affordable and thereby allow many more people access to its benefits. The disruptions happening throughout education more generally afford us an opportunity to revisit how we cultivate children’s learning and futures—and hopefully allow us to do it in a way that is even better, given what we now know today. That’s not preordained either, of course, but we have the opportunity. It’s now all of our turn to shape it appropriately.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/michaelhorn/2014/07/02/disruptive-innovation-and-education/

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The Future Internet Is Not So Free Or Open, In Pew’s New Survey

July 14th, 2014

By ELISE HU, WUWF

What we know as the World Wide Web — the main way by which most of us access the Internet — just turned 25 this year. Its existence has allowed for all kinds of learning and free expression, coding and making, rule-breaking and platform-making. One American researcher even links the Internet to a decline in religious affiliation. An estimated 5 billion of us are expected to have Internet access in the next decade, but what will the Internet look like then? How easily will we be able to get, share and create with it? The Pew Research Center reached out to more than 1,400 tech industry leaders and academics, asking about the basic way the Internet will function come 2025.

http://wuwf.org/post/future-internet-not-so-free-or-open-pews-new-survey

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4 Tips for Getting to Know the Blended Instructional Model

July 14th, 2014
by Victor Small, Jr; Edutopia
The days of talking at students are finally over. I recall many a college class filled to the brim with students feverishly taking down notes, as our professor talked at us. Sounds familiar? Probably. Recently, I finished my Masters degree in what was a new environment for me: blended classes. The experience allowed me to further communicate with my colleagues and classmates in a manner that I hadn’t been accustomed to. Instead of reading each other’s notes and organizing study groups, we were posting in wikis and responding to discussion board posts. Instead of learning focused on facts and statistics that we needed to figure out how to memorize, our learning was focused on what we could do with the information presented.
http://www.edutopia.org/blog/getting-to-know-blended-learning-victor-small
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16 OER Sites Every Educator Should Know

July 14th, 2014

By Dian Schaffhauser, Campus Technology

Open educational resources not only save students from triple-digit (or more!) textbook costs, but they also allow instructors to mix-and-match content for a more personalized, engaging learning experience. Here are 16 resources that offer a wide range of content and tools to help implement OER in just about any course.

http://campustechnology.com/articles/2014/07/02/16-oer-sites-every-educator-should-know.aspx

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Researchers To Study How School Leaders Use Data To Inform Decisions

July 13th, 2014

By David Nagel, Campus Technology

The United States Department of Education has awarded $5 million to three universities to find out how (or whether) school and district leaders use research to inform their decisionmaking. The grant will fund the creation of a new center — dubbed the National Center for Research in Policy and Practice — whose aim is to study how research is currently used in schools and in what circumstances research is used to inform decisions. It will also look to find ways that education-related research “could be made more meaningful for educational leaders through long-term partnerships between researchers and practitioners.” Research will be conducted by investigators at the University of Colorado Boulder, the Center for Education Policy Research at Harvard University and the School of Education and Social Policy at Northwestern University.

http://campustechnology.com/articles/2014/07/01/researchers-to-study-how-school-leaders-use-data-to-inform-decisions.aspx

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Report: Universities Struggle To Provide Adequate Bandwidth

July 13th, 2014

By David Raths, Campus Technology

SIIA’s annual survey finds that bandwidth is not keeping up with demand at higher ed institution, but suggests progress on digital content, e-portfolios. As more classroom activities require Internet access, the number of college and university educators who believe they have access to adequate Internet bandwidth levels is declining, suggesting that bandwidth is not keeping up with demand, according to the most recent annual survey by the Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA). Yet educators noted improvements in other areas, including security measures and e-portfolios.

http://campustechnology.com/articles/2014/07/01/report-universities-struggle-to-provide-adequate-bandwidth.aspx

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For rural school districts, where is new tech training available? Online, of course

July 13th, 2014

By Alexandria Neason, Hechinger Report

For teachers in rural areas, technology training for classrooms can be elusive. It’s one reason why swarms of teachers, smartphones in hand, crowded around a small table covered in bar coded stickers at the annual International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) conference, eager to learn. They listened intently on Sunday as Terra Graves, a district technology specialist from Washoe County, N.V., explained how to scan quick response (QR) codes for a new massive open online course (MOOC) debuting this August, using Google Hangouts and Google Plus. “Having it online, being able to have them connect with other educators that teach their content really broadened their horizons,” said Graves, one of hundreds of educators who are gathering at ISTE in Atlanta to swap tips and solutions on digital learning.

http://hechingerreport.org/content/rural-school-districts-new-tech-training-available-online-course_16577/

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Facing New Technologies in the Classroom, Teachers Seek Help Online

July 12th, 2014

By Alexandria Neason, Games and Learning

One of the major challenges facing game developers hoping to get their tools used by teachers is the level to which teachers are comfortable using those technologies. In this story from the Hechinger Report, journalist Alexandria Neason reports from this week’s edtech conference in Atlanta about what some teachers are doing to answer the training gap.

http://www.gamesandlearning.org/2014/07/02/facing-new-technologies-in-the-classroom-teachers-seek-help-online/

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Android App and New Courses from Udacity

July 12th, 2014

by Sue Gee, iProgrammer

Udacity now has an Android version of its app that lets you study its online courses on your smartphone. There also a new course on developing your own apps for Android.  All Udacity courses are now available on Android for the first time, in a classroom specifically built and optimized for touch. You can stream lectures wherever your Android device goes, and test yourself with quick and fun quizzes and you learn on the go. One course that would seem very suitable to study in this way is Developing Android Apps: Android Fundamentals, an advanced 8-week course (assuming 6 hours per week) in which you’ll: “Build a cloud-connected Android app, and learn the tools, principles, and best practices of mobile and Android development that you’ll apply to your own projects.” This course is one of four new additions to the Udacity Course Catalog all of which are being developed in collaboration with Google.

http://www.i-programmer.info/news/150-training-a-education/7491-new-courses-and-android-app-from-udacity-.html

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Bing Delivers New Textbook And Online Course Search

July 12th, 2014

By Edwin Kee, Ubergizmo

Microsoft’s Bing search page has been updated in time for summer. In fact, a couple of new features have been unveiled along the way which will come in handy for folks who are on the lookout for online courses as well as recently published reading materials. The results will be displayed automatically in the side pane, which will be more natural to the human eye to read and figure out. A user will be able to perform a search for books while seeing the results appear over in the side pane. Just how is this going to be different from a standard search? Well, the side pane will show up an excerpt from the book, in addition to a link to a location where the book itself can be downloaded, alongside locations of where the title will be made available for loan for students (or interested parties) to borrow.

http://www.ubergizmo.com/2014/06/bing-textbook-online-course-search/

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12 Essentials of Prescriptive Analytics for Student Success

July 11th, 2014

By Dian Schaffhauser, Campus Technology

While predictive analytics have been an ed tech buzzword in recent years, they are but a midpoint in the evolution of data analytics in higher education. What began as descriptive analytics, the analysis of historical data to understand what has happened in the past, has matured into predictive analytics, the use historical data to develop models for helping to predict the future. Now, prescriptive analytics takes the prediction and prescribes recommendations or actions to influence what ends up happening in the future. It works by developing business rules that kick into action when certain conditions are present. For example, a prescriptive analytics-driven learning management system could recommend additional material or Web sites to a student with poor performance pertaining to a specific topic.

http://campustechnology.com/articles/2014/06/25/12-essentials-of-prescriptive-analytics-for-student-success.aspx

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