Educational Technology

March 29, 2017

From virtual reality to online libraries, how technology is revolutionizing education in GR

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BY MATTHEW RUSSELL, Rapid Growth

From virtual online classrooms built by such companies as Microsoft and Switch to the massive open online courses from providers like edX, Coursera and Udemy, and even distance learning programs facilitated by our own brick-and-mortar universities, the walls of modern classrooms are often anything but metaphor. While the blackboard may remain the same–although it comes in white and clear versions now, too–the substance of technology education has been significantly redesigned by the capabilities of the technology being used to educate. With updated equipment, new software and access to a library of online resources, the Grand Rapids Public Schools district is looking forward to added gains in learning this year.

http://www.rapidgrowthmedia.com/features/031617-technology-in-education.aspx

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On the Recognition of Quality Online Course Design in Promotion and Tenure

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:35 am

by Susan Bussmann, et al; OJDLA

Developing a quality online course is a significant commitment in time and effort and frequently requires learning new skills and pedagogical methods. Increasingly, faculty are expected to make this commitment, yet it may not be valued in their promotion and tenure process. This study sought to determine to what extent developing a “quality” online course (one that has been reviewed to a set of standards) receives credit in the promotion and tenure (P&T) process for all ranks. A survey across multiple disciplines at 19 western universities found that only 16 percent of the departments that completed the survey specifically include the development of a quality online course in their promotion and tenure documentation. Of the 19 institutions (including New Mexico State University), 15 were peers of New Mexico State University (NMSU), with three additional non-peer Western region IHEs being invited to take an online survey. Survey takers were given the option to volunteer for a more in-depth follow-up phone interview.

https://www.westga.edu/~distance/ojdla/spring201/bussmann_johnson%20_oliver_forsythe_grandjean_lebsock_luster201.html

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Tips for using iPads in the classroom

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:29 am

by Matthew Lynch, tech Edvocate

Open Colleges states that 81% of U.S teachers think that tablets can enrich the educational experience and that students believe so too. iPads can be very solitary and as colorful as the online world may be, classrooms need to be just as decorated. The displaying of art, achievements, and inspiration is particularly important in younger grades as it creates a space that is conducive to learning and pride. Technology brings with it exciting uses, but without preparation and realistic expectations, it also can fail in the most organized classroom. Educators need to have a reason to use an iPad and in turn, understand the new problems and procedures that come with it. Using an iPad may be a great education tool, but it needs to be milked for all it is worth if it is to make a difference in the classroom.

http://www.thetechedvocate.org/tips-for-using-ipads-in-the-classroom/

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March 28, 2017

Hour of Code Org Developing New, Free CS Course

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:41 am

By Dian Schaffhauser, THE Journal

Code.org, the organization behind Hour to Code, will shortly pilot a new middle school/lower high school introductory computer science course that will be free when it’s released. For a short time it’s also taking applications for free professional development to help teachers prepare. The new curriculum, “CS Discoveries,” is an introductory computer science course that is expected to be piloted in spring 2017 and rolled out fully in the summer. The new course embeds the “maker ethos” into its activities, which means students will get the chance to participate in the “physical act of creation” as they learn about the abstract aspects of computer science.

https://thejournal.com/articles/2017/03/16/hour-of-code-org-developing-new-free-cs-course.aspx

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Integrating Literacy into STEAM Lessons

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By Ann Lorey, THE Journal

Both Common Core and NGSS emphasize the importance of speaking, listening and communicating about mathematical and scientific concepts. Integrating literacy tools into STEAM subjects does more than help students and teachers fulfill objectives. Better literacy helps students identify and more thoroughly understand key concepts.

https://thejournal.com/articles/2017/03/16/integrating-literacy-into-steam-lessons.aspx

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Rethinking the Computer Lab of the Future

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:30 am

By Krissy Lukens, Scott Ryan, Campus Technology

The new room has three modes: presentation, collaboration and open lab. In presentation mode, the instructor’s device is displayed on all monitors in the room. The press of a button turns on all system equipment and switches all monitors to the same input. As soon as the instructor connects his or her own device – either through a wired connection like HDMI or wirelessly through Apple TV – everything is automated. In this mode, any image on the instructor’s device shows up on the main projection screen as well as the displays at student workstations. In place of a standard projection screen, a dual-surface board allows instructors and students to mark up whatever is displayed.

https://campustechnology.com/articles/2017/03/15/rethinking-the-computer-lab-of-the-future.aspx

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March 27, 2017

E-learning day a breeze for tech-savvy students

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By ALLEN LAMAN, the Herald

Wrapped in blankets and propped up on pillows, Jasper High School and Middle School students had the opportunity to attend virtual classes from home on Thursday. Teachers assembled lessons, each designed to take students 45 minutes to complete, prior to the special day of instruction, and kids could start working on the material on Wednesday afternoon. They had until 8 a.m. this morning to turn in the e-assignments — which will be graded like normal work. The assignments included short English essays, multiple-choice practice assessments, workout instructions for P.E. and short-answer musical reflections for band members.

https://duboiscountyherald.com/b/virtual-learning-day-a-breeze-for-tech-savvy-students

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OSU offers German Online Language courses to high school students across the country

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:36 am

by Oklahoma State University

For more than 30 years, Oklahoma State University has been meeting a need in high schools across the country. As language programs have become increasingly rare in physical classrooms, OSU has provided a German language distance learning class to help students meet their language requirements. The OSU German language course for high school students started in 1985 and was originally offered via satellite to classrooms. Currently, students can now experience the German Online course over the Internet, either in their school classrooms or on their own.

http://newsok.com/osu-offers-german-online-language-courses-to-high-school-students-across-the-country/article/5542092

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10 Tips for EdTech Entrepreneurs

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:31 am

by Matthew Lynch, tech Edvocate

Edtech entrepreneurs all set out with good intentions; to better education. While noble, these intentions are met with many obstacles and failure is easy. Only 14% of teachers use digital curricula weekly. So while the doors of opportunity seem open, the market is saturated with products that never make their way into the classroom. If edtech entrepreneurs are to flourish, they need to address the fears that educators have about technology while pushing innovation. Linked below are 10 Tips for EdTech Entrepreneurs

http://www.thetechedvocate.org/10-tips-for-edtech-entrepreneurs/

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March 26, 2017

Distance learning technology offers a bright future for higher ed capacity

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:39 am

by Jarrett Carter, Education Dive

Duke University and San Jose State University are two institutions which have broadened research and teaching capacity through distance communication technology. Video conferencing has allowed both schools to expose students to professional development opportunities and outreach to domestic and international partner institutions. Michigan State University takes the distance learning model to new heights with robotic training tools which accompany long-distance instruction and research work. In tandem with online learning platforms like MOOCs, schools like Harvard University are expanding content delivery to international audiences with real-time capacity to share and utilize information exposed through the tools.

http://www.educationdive.com/news/distance-learning-technology-offers-a-bright-future-for-higher-ed-capacity/438352/

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This laptop-bricking USB stick just got even more dangerous

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:36 am

by Zack Whittaker, ZD Net

Remember that USB stick that would destroy almost anything in its path, from laptops, photo booths, kiosks, to even cars? Now there’s a new version, and it’s even more dangerous than before. The makers of the USB Kill stick have created a more powerful version with a higher voltage and amp output, and a three-times faster pulse rate of up to 12 times a second. And, with microUSB, USB-C, and Lightning adapters, the USB Kill claims to be able to kill iPhones, iPads, and other devices, like phones, tablets, and digital cameras. USB Kill also comes in an “anonymous” model, which looks like an ordinary black USB stick — unlike the regular version that includes branding. This is another reason why you shouldn’t plug in USB sticks you find on the street. USB Kill still costs €49.95, or about $53 at the time of writing.

http://www.zdnet.com/article/this-weaponized-usb-stick-gets-even-more-dangerous/

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Province investing in new, innovative ways to teach and learn with technology

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:35 am

by Ontario

Ontario is supporting colleges and universities across the province in developing new and innovative approaches to online and technology-enabled learning that best meets the needs of Ontario students. This year, 45 recipients from universities and colleges across Ontario will receive a broad range of research and innovation grants through eCampusOntario to explore technology-enabled learning and highlight best practices in student engagement. Examples of funded projects include:

Studying the use of gaming as a teaching method in science-based fields.

Evaluating the impact of virtual simulations as a means to prepare nursing students for clinical practice, compared to more traditional approaches.

Creating an online space for Indigenous students to virtually gather, record and engage in stories from local Elders.

http://eriemedia.ca/ontario-boosting-digital-online-learning-students/

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March 25, 2017

Study: Half or more of community college students struggle to afford food, housing

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:40 am

by JON MARCUS, Hechinger Report

Two-thirds of students at American community colleges struggle to pay for food and half to find a stable place to live, according to a new survey billed as the biggest ever on the subject. About 14 percent of community college students are homeless, the survey shows. The figures reinforce earlier findings of smaller, regional studies, including one by the same research group. But with 33,000 students at 70 community colleges in 24 states, it’s the broadest look at the topic to date. While attention is focused on the price of tuition, said coauthor Sara Goldrick-Rab, a professor of higher education policy and sociology at Temple University, much of the cost of attending college goes to food, housing, and other expenses. And many students said they can’t afford those.

http://hechingerreport.org/study-half-community-college-students-struggle-afford-food-housing/

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Training Students to Outpace Automation

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by EMILY DERUY, ​The Atlantic

As more jobs become automated, companies are looking for employees who can essentially manage the machines doing the work. Where an employee used to be responsible for, say, feeding a panel onto a conveyor belt, now that employee is increasingly expected to work with coworkers to solve any problems that arise when the machine doing the job malfunctions. That requires good communication, critical-thinking, and time-management skills, and schools that used to focus strictly on technical instruction like welding now find themselves adapting curriculum to include more of these so-called “soft skills.” The result, proponents hope, is a set of adaptable graduates with the ability to succeed across a range of industries—meaning a set of graduates who won’t be left without options when the next recession hits.

https://www.theatlantic.com/education/archive/2017/03/training-students-to-outpace-automation/519162/

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16 issues driving higher education’s approach to teaching and learning

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:31 am

by Wyatt Kash, EdScoop

A new survey released by the EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative provides a framework for addressing the role of technology in improving postsecondary teaching and learning.Rising costs, aging computer systems and the changing demands of a more diverse, tech-savvy population are challenging long-standing approaches to teaching and learning at U.S. colleges and universities. For higher education leaders, faculty and students — and the technology teams trying to support them — the breadth of those challenges became clearer with the release this week of EDUCAUSE’s 2017 list of 16 “Key Issues in Teaching and Learning.” The list reflects the views of more than 900 members of the higher education community as part an annual survey by the EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative.

http://edscoop.com/16-issues-driving-higher-educations-approach-to-teaching-and-learning

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March 24, 2017

How technology is reshaping the university IT positions

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by Stephen Noonoo, Education Dive

The role of university IT leadership is being reshaped by analytics and the need to work across departments. Some schools are adding C-suite data management positions, or expanding the roles of existing IT leaders, according to EdTech Magazine. Brown University is now offering a masters of cybersecurity degree that will train tech leaders, not just in how to prevent threats, but how to work with and think like business leaders and colleagues with other job functions.

http://www.educationdive.com/news/how-technology-is-reshaping-the-university-it-positions/438105/

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Technical training prepares graduates for the automation era

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by Jarrett Carter, Education Dive

A recent study from the Society for College and University Planning suggests that the global workforce will lose more than 7 million jobs over the next five years, thanks to expansion in automation. A profile of Henry Ford College in The Atlantic showcases the ways the institution is reimagining its technical training program to address this issue through its “learning to learn” strategy, which officials believe offers students more comprehensive training modules for industry-specific job roles. Industrial changes can lead to increased costs for faculty, training technology and curriculum design, but articulation agreements with high schools and corporate partnerships can help to fill in gaps associated with industrial change and create new revenue models.

http://www.educationdive.com/news/technical-training-prepares-graduates-for-the-automation-era/438114/

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Credentialing remains a slow-growing process for higher ed

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:30 am

by Jarrett Carter, Education Dive

Credentialing and competency-based education models remain a relatively-small part of the matriculation process at most colleges and universities, but a new study suggests new ways institutions can more efficiently gauge prior learning and capacity in high-level subject matters. MOOCs and coding bootcamps can offer specific levels of learning and training, and when reviewed against common institutional standards or outsourced to third-party assessment companies, they can be a vital part of an academic transcript for an employer or graduate school. Pitfalls for assessment can include uneven record-keeping by various departments, or inconsistent values placed on differing alternative credit-bearing modules.

http://www.educationdive.com/news/credentialing-remains-a-slow-growing-process-for-higher-ed/438115/

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March 23, 2017

Oculus Intros Facebook Livestreaming to Samsung Gear VR, Adds 360-Degree Videos to Rooms

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By Sri Ravipati, THE Journal

Oculus last week released some updates to its mobile virtual reality (VR) platform, including more ways to virtually connect with friends on Facebook, as well as few functionality and features for the Samsung Gear VR headset. First, the company has introduced more content in Rooms, a virtual space where friends can privately convene that launched late last year. Rooms 1.2 has expanded its video selection with free content to watch from websites like Vimeo. It also allows users to watch 360-degree videos for the first time. Users and their friends can watch the videos in its new viewing dome (see image). In addition to content, Rooms has added voice search.

https://thejournal.com/articles/2017/03/13/oculus-intros-facebook-livestreaming-to-samsung-gear-vr-adds-360-degree-videos-to-rooms.aspx

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After the Planning Phase: 7 Tips for Implementing a Makerspace

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By Leila Meyer, THE Journal

Once a school district has completed the initial planning phase of their makerspace initiative — as described in a previous THE Journal article — it’s time to let teachers and students start tinkering, creating and designing. Here, our expert educators offer seven tips for successful makerspace implementation.

https://thejournal.com/articles/2017/03/09/7-tips-for-impleme

nting-a-makerspace.aspx

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GPA Versus Exam Scores: What’s Better in Predicting College Success?

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:32 am

By Dian Schaffhauser, THE Journal

High school grade point average serves as a better predictor of college success than standardized exam scores among students heading directly into higher ed from high school. But among those who delay their college entry, the same isn’t necessarily the case; it depends on the type of test and the subject under consideration. These findings came out of research undertaken by Education Northwest, one of 10 regional educational laboratories that do applied research to improve academic outcomes for students. The project was a follow-on to research undertaken last year by the same organization to examine developmental education placement rates and how well high school grade point average and exam performance predicted performance in college-level courses among first-time students entering two- and four-year programs at the University of Alaska system.

https://thejournal.com/articles/2017/03/09/gpa-versus-exam-scores.aspx

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