Educational Technology

April 24, 2017

USU-Online to offer accelerated course options

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

by Mitch Henline, Cache Valley Daily

For students already competent in their field of study, Utah State University-Online is making it possible to get through courses faster – or just test out of them altogether. Starting this summer, USU-Online will be offering a limited number of its courses with accelerated options. At the professor’s discretion, three methods will be offered: A student can take a comprehensive assessment, complete a comprehensive project or complete the course material at a faster pace. USU’s distance education manager Kevin Shanley said competency-based education is a growing trend across the country.

http://www.cachevalleydaily.com/news/local/article_ef59fda8-2147-11e7-957b-9f4bc4e2bc2f.html

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5 EdTech Tools

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

by Matthew Lynch, Tech Edvocate

With thousands of edtech products on the market, consumers are met with the daunting task of picking out products that address the needs of their students, better teaching practices or make the schooling experience better. With over $537 million spent on K12 education in 2015, there is no doubt that this industry is booming and that teaching establishments are investing in edtech more than ever. So, in the hopes of bringing to light some of the best edtech tools in the industry; below are 5 edtech tools that everyone should be using. Some are age specific, but most can be adapted to any classroom.

http://www.thetechedvocate.org/5-edtech-tools-everyone-education-using/

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April 23, 2017

Non-profit organization works to end country-wide teacher shortage

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

by WMBF

The education nonprofit American Board for the Certification of Teacher Excellence hosted a meeting in Socastee Saturday to inform the public of their online program that certifies users to become teachers in one year. To qualify for the program, you must have any bachelor’s degree from any accredited university. Once registered for the program, all the courses are online. Users just need to take two exams at the end of the year to complete their certification. One of the exams tests individuals on the structure of a classroom and the routines of being a teacher, such as lesson planning. The other exam is targeted specifically to which subject the user plans on teaching. Once the online course is completed and both tests are passed, the user is now a certified teacher (ed. note:  ONLY IN 11 STATES) and can begin work in the county of their choice.

http://www.wmbfnews.com/story/35103348/non-profit-organization-works-to-end-country-wide-teacher-shortage

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Online lessons helping Forbes Road student come back from kidney transplant

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

by JAMIE MARTINES, Trib Live

On a snowy Friday morning in April, 16-year-old Jarrod Danka settled in at a desk in the cozy den of his family’s home in Natrona Heights. The 10th-grader had a 9 a.m. conference call, and he was running a few minutes late. Within moments, his teacher’s face popped up on a computer screen, and the two chatted about Jarrod’s recent assignments and plans for tackling future lessons. He’s excited to work in a rapidly changing field that will give him a chance to keep learning and master evolving technologies. For the past five weeks, online learning and video conference calls have been part of Jarrod’s daily routine. It’s how he keeps up with his studies at the Forbes Road Career and Technical Center in Monroeville while he recovers from a second kidney transplant.

http://triblive.com/local/allegheny/12161707-74/on-line-lessons-helping-forbes-road-student-come-back-from-kidney-transplant

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Lacking a teacher, Atlantic City High School offers chemistry on computers

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

by DIANE D’AMICO, Press of Atlantic City

he school district advertised three times for a certified chemistry teacher last summer and fall, and three times they failed to get a candidate to accept the job. So they turned to Edmentum, a provider of online courses, to fill the gap. This year, four classes at the high school are being taught via the online course, with backup support from a teacher. “This is the way of the future,” said Assistant Superintendent Sherry Yahn, who said they are looking at other online programs. Not everyone is happy with the shift. Students in the chemistry classes didn’t mind being able to work at their own pace, but almost all interviewed said they would prefer a live teacher.

http://www.pressofatlanticcity.com/education/lacking-a-teacher-atlantic-city-high-school-offers-chemistry-on/article_d8c9c325-0455-5627-b4ec-59602e2a1923.html

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April 22, 2017

Exploring the Benefits and Downsides of Online Courses

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

by Christina Laderoute, UMass Lowell Connector

According to Mary Barrett, the associate director of Student Services, some benefits of online courses include their extensive flexibility. If a student has access to a computer, they can take classes from anywhere. Online courses provide higher education access to a wider range of students. Julian Zamudio, a senior computer engineering major, says he took online classes during the summer of his junior year, as well as this semester. Zamudio says that the benefits of taking online classes is that “[you are] able to do work under your own time under the restricted timeframe that you have to do it within.” When asked if he would recommend online courses, Zamudio says “Only for winter and summer seasons, because you are away from the distractions of your fellow peers and school activities. Also, you have more control of your comfort setting over the summer and winter and you are only engaged in those [online] classes.

http://umlconnector.com/2017/04/exploring-the-benefits-and-downsides-of-online-courses/

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13 epic stats and facts from The State of Social webinar

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

by Andrew Warren-Payne, ClickZ

On March 23, ClickZ Intelligence held the webinar ‘The State of Social 2017’ in association with Tracx. As part of the presentation, a huge number of stats and facts were shared about social media, both as a whole and in relation to individual networks. Practical tips given by National Geographic’s Mia Vallo and Shell’s Matt Owen helped demonstrate to viewers how they can apply these to their strategy. So what were the most interesting stats shared in the webinar? We’ve listed 13 of our favorites below.

https://www.clickz.com/13-epic-stats-and-facts-from-the-state-of-social-webinar/110510/

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Using Google Cardboard to Simulate Virtual Learning Experiences

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

By Matthew Lynch, Tech Edvocate

The reason that many teachers strive for a more virtual experience instead of the traditional talking points is that the interaction makes the lesson more memorable to the students. Google Cardboard is an interesting and very low-cost solution to creating a virtual experience. You can compare it to the Oculus Rift, but without the $600 price tag for each unit. As the name suggests, the product is from Google, and it is made entirely of cardboard. You construct the equipment (fold the cardboard) into the shape of goggles. Download the app you want to use in your virtual reality lesson, and place the phone within the frame, and you can start seeing the world from the app. It helps you feel like you are in the locations being displayed or are experiencing the events taking place.

http://www.thetechedvocate.org/using-google-cardboard-simulate-virtual-learning-experiences/

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April 21, 2017

State Progress on K-12 Computer Science Ed Policies: ‘We Have a Long Way to Go’

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

By Dian Schaffhauser, THE Journal

If understanding of computer science is essential to being an informed citizen, then it makes sense that every child needs an education in the use of computing devices and software, digital literacy and computational processing. That’s the premise of a new report developed by half a dozen organizations that undertook a state-by-state survey of the current state of K-12 CS education. The report, titled “State of the States Landscape Report: State-Level Policies Supporting Equitable K–12 Computer Science Education,” was released during a workshop led by Google, the Education Development Center (EDC), and the Massachusetts Computing Attainment Network (MassCAN) on Google’s Cambridge campus.

https://thejournal.com/articles/2017/04/10/state-progress-on-k12-computer-science-ed-policies.aspx

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Why Gen Z needs librarians now more than ever

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

By GINNY BOUGHTER, eSchool News

Whether guiding research or introducing new technology, today’s librarian gives Gen Z the skills and tools they need to move from ‘getting it right now’ to ‘getting it right.’Librarians and media specialists are in a unique position within schools, since they are very often the person responsible for introducing students to new technologies, and are also on the front lines when it comes to connecting students to meaningful sources for research. Today’s students have never known a world without the smartphone or tablet, and many of them have been using these devices independently since infancy. The answers to their questions have never been more than a click of a button away. In this brave new world of technological innovation and free-flowing information, librarians are now tasked with teaching these digital natives how to navigate these waters with discernment, while still taking full advantage of the opportunities these tools afford them.

http://www.eschoolnews.com/2017/04/10/gen-z-needs-librarians/

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Indiana U Students Save $3.5 Million Through Digital Textbook Program

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

by Campus Technology

Indiana University (IU) is out with a numbers update for its eText initiative that delivers digital course materials to students: In the 2016-17 academic year, IU students saved an estimated $3.5 million more than what they would have otherwise spent on traditional programs, according to a campus official. The program uses an inclusive-access model that delivers digital course materials directly to students in time for their first day of class. More than 40,000 IU students purchased at least one digital textbook through the initiative in the same academic year. The university launched eText as a pilot in 2009. IU partnered with more than 20 higher ed publishers to drive costs down, while expanding catalogs and providing more options for teachers and students.

https://campustechnology.com/articles/2017/04/06/indiana-u-students-save-3-5-million-through-digital-textbook-program.aspx

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April 20, 2017

Teaching and Learning Get Personal With Change to Proficiency-Based Grading

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

by Nora Doyle-Burr, Valley News

Instead of receiving traditional letter grades, students in seventh and eighth grades, and in ninth grade in the core courses of science, social studies and English, were evaluated in certain skills by their mastery — beginning, approaching, proficient and distinguished. Woodstock’s change in its grading system is linked to an imminent statewide change in graduation requirements and an accompanying push to emphasize a more personalized approach to teaching and learning. If Woodstock’s recent experience is any guide, other Vermont school districts should expect hiccups during the transition. In a proficiency-based system, teachers rely on standards such as the Common Core, Next Generation Science Standards and state Education Quality Standards to determine which skills they expect students to master. They use rubrics and “I can” statements to show students what they need to be able to do to become proficient in each skill.

http://www.vnews.com/Woodstock-Middle-and-High-Schools-Try-New-Grading-System-8548745

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How to Implement Blended Learning in the K-12 Classroom

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

by Matthew Lynch, tech Edvocate

First and foremost, educators need to know their students. Teachers at the K-12 level must be aware of the level of access to technology their students have at home. Blended learning will look very different in a school where the majority of students don’t have access to high-speed internet at home versus a school where every student can log in at home. For classrooms where most students can’t get online from home, blended learning is still an option. Teachers can set up a schedule where students alternate between digital and traditional learning modes in the classroom. Two or three days a week could be devoted to completing online activities, while the remaining days might look like a more traditional classroom.

http://www.thetechedvocate.org/implement-blended-learning-k-12-classrooms/

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WV Legislature passes home-school, virtual education bills

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

by Ryan Quinn, Gazette-Mail

Lawmakers Saturday completed legislation giving home-schoolers access to public vocational education centers, giving them access to public school sports and allowing county public school systems to offer home-schoolers and others full-time K-12 virtual education — while getting state funding for it. Saturday was the last day of the regular legislative session. Gov. Jim Justice still hasn’t signed or vetoed any of the bills that were finished by midnight.

http://www.wvgazettemail.com/news-education/20170408/wv-legislature-passes-home-school-virtual-education-bills

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April 19, 2017

Using the ‘virtual’ to change the ‘reality’ of education

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

BY CAMERON PROBERT, TRI-CITY HERALD

Jonah Firestone, a Washington State University assistant professor of science education, wants to use the equipment to explore ways that virtual reality can help students, teachers and the education process. “The lab is designed to look at the melding of virtual and augmented reality into education,” he said. The Virtual Integrated Technology for Assessment Learning laboratory opened recently with the help of a $50,000 grant from the WSU Tri-Cities chancellor’s office. Firestone, who spent 20 years teaching in public and private schools, said he became more interested in the role of technological advances in the classroom during his career. Virtual reality is just the latest form of computer technology to make its way into classrooms.

http://www.eschoolnews.com/2017/04/07/virtual-reality-change-education/

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School innovator incorporates blended learning in teacher training

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

By Corinne Lestch, EdScoop

Yorktown Community Schools has a culture of “embracing what’s next.” Those are words from the district’s director of eLearning and Curricular Innovation, Holly Stachle. “All of our stakeholders, including students, parents and the administration, are accepting of a 21st century learning environments.” Stachler was named a NextGen Leader by the Consortium for School Networking (CoSN) and EdScoop in a national program to recognize rising leaders in K-12 education technology. She will be recognized along with her fellow finalists at the annual CoSN conference this month in Chicago. Stachler plays a key role in development curriculum and policy, and she has to some extent filled the capacity of technology director. She also does all the professional development for teachers on new tools and devices.

http://edscoop.com/school-innovator-incorporates-blended-learning-in-teacher-training-at-indiana-district

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5 Differences Between MOOCs, Online Degree Programs

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

By Olena Reid, US News

Massive open online courses, or MOOCs, offer a great opportunity for prospective students to learn more about almost any topic imaginable. MOOCs are generally accessible to anyone for free unless you pay for a certificate of completion, and are often created by companies such as edX and Coursera in collaboration with universities. These courses are also an excellent way to test the waters of online learning before diving into a full online program. If you have tried MOOCs and are considering pursuing an online degree, here are some differences between the two you should consider.

https://www.usnews.com/education/online-learning-lessons/articles/2017-04-07/5-differences-between-moocs-online-degree-programs

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April 18, 2017

The Hidden Costs of Active Learning

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:34 am

By Thomas Mennell, Campus Technology

Flipped and active learning truly are a better way for students to learn, but they also may be a fast track to instructor burnout. I end every publication and every talk with the catchphrase “I’ll never teach another way again,” and I mean it. Students learn more deeply, more effectively, and they integrate material much more through a flipped/active learning format than with more traditional, lecture-based instruction. To teach in any other way, to me, seems almost unethical — especially given how much money today’s college student spends on his/her education. How could I deliver an inferior product to my students when I know that flipped learning is so much better? That said, there are many days when I wish I’d never heard of flipped learning at all — times when I wish I actually could teach another way again.

https://campustechnology.com/articles/2017/04/05/the-hidden-costs-of-active-learning.aspx

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MIT Brings Free Science and Math Video Lessons to Charter High Schoolers

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

By Dian Schaffhauser, Campus Technology

Now MIT has teamed up with a Massachusetts charter school system for regular access to the free website, which has about 200 videos in its online library for use in science and math courses. All of the lessons are intended to show the use of science and math to solve real-world scenarios. For example, another lesson, “The Fault in Our Cells,” researches chemotherapy resistance; and “I am a Novice Marathoner” looks at how the human body produces energy through food digestion.

https://campustechnology.com/articles/2017/04/06/mit-brings-free-science-and-math-video-lessons-to-charter-high-schoolers.aspx

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Using Simulations to Create Virtual Learning Experiences

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:27 am

by Matthew Lynch, Tech Edvocate

There are many types of simulations that can help instruct children, teens, and college students. For example, there are flight simulators that can be used to help highlight different areas, such as the historic flight of Amelia Earhart across the Atlantic Ocean and various Physics concepts. Simulations do not have to be expensive. With a little research, you are likely to find a free or low-cost online simulation that will help students better understand concepts and ideas. For example, you can teach about the stock market, economics, and business management on SimCEO. There are interview simulators to help students get practice when applying for a job. There are even simulations that are designed to help students sympathize with someone being bullied and help to resolve the problem in a positive way.

http://www.thetechedvocate.org/using-simulations-create-virtual-learning-experiences/

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April 17, 2017

Future of Learning Is Here! Online Learning Is Shaping Today’s Education Trends

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

By Aarzu Khan, DazeInfo

Radio, TV and of course computers themselves have been implemented in schools and universities with a lot of enthusiasm. The results have not been all that impactful. For most of the 20th Century students have been studying in much the same way as they have in the previous century. One of the most exciting things about the current online learning age is the fact that it allows us to be better world citizens. We can find out anything about other nations. Often directly from them in the form of social media.

https://dazeinfo.com/2017/04/06/online-learning-education-china/

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