Educational Technology

November 14, 2018

Amazon Wants to Teach Kids to Code

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by Dorothy Gundy, VOA

Amazon wants to get more young people to consider becoming computer engineers. The American technology company this week launched a program that aims to teach more than 10 million students a year how to code. Amazon says it will pay for summer camps and other costs for young people from low-income families. It also will offer teacher training at low-income schools. The program is called Amazon Future Engineer. Amazon hopes the programs will help bring more African-American, Hispanic and female students to the field of computer science.

https://learningenglish.voanews.com/a/amazon-wants-to-teach-kids-to-code/4638850.html

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Make sure you’re not investing in zombie AI

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

DAN ROTELLI, Venture Beat

Among the throngs of zombie AI systems, though, exist a few quality AI systems. These systems are highly intelligent, and though they have some minor human dependencies, they produce incredibly reliable results. The developers of these systems want customers to have a good grasp of the ‘magic’ behind the intelligence – ‘magic’ that really amounts to specific settings, mechanics, controls, even known limitations. True AI can be recognized by its interactivity and trainability. These systems combine intuitive interfaces with algorithms, instructions that tell the robotic brain what logic to use. And with a little coaching along the way, true AI gets smarter and learns to differentiate right from wrong. Compared to zombie systems, true AI systems require more time investment initially but are typically more sustainable in the long run because the coaching continually improves them over time.

https://venturebeat.com/2018/11/03/make-sure-youre-not-investing-in-zombie-ai/

 

 

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U of T Libraries hires first Wikipedian in Residence

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by ILYA BAÑARES, the Star

Alex Jung, an MA candidate in the Department of Political Science at the University of Toronto, is the institution’s first Wikipedian in Residence. It’s a new role. “The purpose behind the position, ultimately, is to go where our community is,” said Jesse Carliner, Communications Librarian. “Everybody, whether they admit to it or not, uses Wikipedia as a starting point for their research if they don’t know anything about a topic.”

https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2018/11/01/u-of-t-libraries-hires-first-wikipedian-in-residence.html

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November 13, 2018

7 Ways Machine Learning Will Transform The Enterprise

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By Divyesh Aegis, BCW

We are sure somewhere you also have come across the name of artificial intelligence. The whole world is discussing the power of artificial intelligence and how it will influence humanity either in positive or negative ways. The terms machine language and artificial learning have become the most complex buzzword across the globe. But believe it or not, artificial intelligence is truly a game-changing technology in the field of enterprise learning. Some of the big organizations have actually been taking the full advantage of artificial learning.

http://www.businesscomputingworld.co.uk/7-ways-machine-learning-will-transform-the-enterprise/

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Communication critical when introducing competency-based models

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

By Amelia Harper, Education Dive
Organizations such as the International Association for K-12 Online Learning (iNACOL) are pushing for a movement toward broad educational reforms, such as competency-based education, with assessment of mastered skills or proficiencies replacing traditional A-F grading systems, according to a column in The Hechinger Report. However, some parents and students in Maine and other locations are pushing back against these changes, citing issues such as a lack of clear guidance in the transition, a lack of student voice in the decisions and the feeling that such shifts are being forced upon them. Obstacles to these new models can come from both sides of the ideological aisle and may result from factors, such as suspicion of philanthropy-backed reforms, a lack of clear communication about the research behind the models, why such changes are necessary, their long-term impact and the fact that most communication about these changes is couched in educational jargon.

https://www.educationdive.com/news/communication-critical-when-introducing-competency-based-models/541195/

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Online program helps prevent teen depression: UIC study shows potential of web-based intervention

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MONIKA MARKO AND TJ CRAWFORD, UIC

Although up to 20 percent of adolescents experience a depressive episode each year, the medical community has struggled to implement programs that effectively prevent depression. Researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago have worked to fill this gap in pediatric primary care by conducting clinical trials to evaluate and compare interventions. A new study published in JAMA Network Open highlights the positive effect of one web-based intervention, called CATCH-IT, on preventing depressive episodes among adolescents most at risk.

https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-11/uoia-oph110218.php

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November 12, 2018

Sandel Talks Civic Education and Online Learning at Ed School Forum

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By Sam E. Sharfstein and Connor J. Wagaman, Harvard Crimson

Government Professor Michael J. Sandel spoke about the importance of civic education Thursday evening at a talk titled “Civic Education Goes Global.” Sandel, a pioneer of and advocate for “massive open online courses,” highlighted the importance of creating a global community of respectful discourse through education.  In the discussion, Sandel said his goal is “to take the distance out of distance learning” and to replicate an engaging classroom experience for online learners.

https://www.thecrimson.com/article/2018/11/2/ed-school-sandel-talk/

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AI Disrupting Labor Ecosystems, Automation to Replace Human Element in Routine and Low-Skilled Jobs by 2030

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Frost & Sullivan

The increasing adoption of AI technology among Australian businesses is expected to disrupt the country’s labor market across industries such as agriculture, automotive, banking/finance, education, healthcare, ICT, and legal services. “AI technology is disrupting and shifting the global labor ecosystem in terms of job shift, skills shift and work engagement trends. We predict more than 40% high-routine and low-skilled tasks to be automated by 2025-2030,” said Mr. Vijay R Rao, Research Director Mobility, Asia-Pacific, Frost & Sullivan. Furthermore, it is likely for hybrid work environment to emerge, where machines handle tedious tasks and leave high-skill functions for humans.

https://ww2.frost.com/news/frost-commentary/ai-disrupting-labor-ecosystems-automation-replace-human-element-routine-and-low-skilled-jobs-2030-predicts-frost-sullivan/

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Connecting Data Science to ‘Almost Every Domain of Inquiry’

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

Greg Toppo, Inside Higher Ed

The University of California, Berkeley, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology are doing just that, creating entirely new institutions within their campuses to come to terms with the ubiquity of data and the rise of AI — and to accommodate a surge in popularity that these fields are generating among students and employers. Berkeley on Thursday said it plans to form an entirely new division, to be tentatively called the Division of Data Science and Information, that will engage faculty members and students across the flagship UC campus. The division, officials said, will be led by a new associate provost and connect departments as disparate as UC’s College of Engineering and its College of Letters and Science.

https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2018/11/02/big-data-ai-prompt-major-expansions-uc-berkeley-and-mit

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November 11, 2018

Can we design schools where teachers and students thrive?

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

BY LAURA ASCIONE, eSchool News

During a two-year period, 100Kin10 developed the Grand Challenges, which created a roadmap of the underlying problems facing STEM education. It also identified 104 critical challenges and catalysts that, if improved, could be the impetus for the greatest STEM education improvements across the education system.

The report draws from three of those catalysts to address three major issues related to teachers’ work environments:
1. Relevant professional growth during the school day
2. Opportunities for teacher collaboration during the school day
3. School leader responsibility for creating positive work environments

https://www.eschoolnews.com/2018/11/01/can-we-design-schools-where-teachers-and-students-thrive/

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Finding the Data that Makes a Difference

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

By Dian Schaffhauser, Campus Technology

During new-student orientation, Assessment and Planning administers two surveys, one on the impact of orientation and the other to baseline student engagement or their preparedness for college. Then there’s the first-year experience survey given during the fall semester as well as other surveys on financial literacy, student satisfaction with services, satisfaction with admissions and enrollment for transfer students and plenty more. Plus, every semester students’ GPAs are updated, grades are added, data on math proficiency is factored in, and scores from the Multi-State Collaborative to Advance Quality Student Learning are collected, along with standing on the dean’s list and majors declared. Each student is tracked for at least seven years, including where they’ve gone if they’ve withdrawn from the institution before graduation

https://campustechnology.com/articles/2018/10/11/finding-the-data-that-makes-a-difference.aspx

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How Smart Class Technology is Benefiting Education Sector

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

Daljeet Kaur, Entrepreneur

The education sector has seen a noticeable increase in educational standards, advancement and innovations in recent years. Schools and other educational institutions have begun to adopt modern teaching methods through interactive intelligent boards, projectors and smart notebooks, etc. And we can not deny, these technological updates make the education system more interactive and easier. Students prefer to use tablets, phones and other devices to share and transfer study material that saves their time and efforts. On the other hand, this smart technology helps teachers to turn boring lectures into an engaging session. It is not just about sharing information but also creating a better online presentation by avoiding the need to write manually.

https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/322587

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November 10, 2018

Robots Won’t Replace Instructors, 2 Penn State Educators Argue. Instead, They’ll Help Them Be ‘More Human.’

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

By Tina Nazerian, EdSurge

One way professors can use artificial intelligence is to help find new materials to add to their lessons, said Bowen. An instructor can type in a concept or idea, such as “industrial design,” into the tool his team built, called Eureka!, which acts like a recommendation engine. Eureka! uses Wikipedia as a source of information. Once the tool generates results, the instructor can identify which ones are most like what he means by “industrial design” or whichever term he used. Eureka! will then use that information to refine the definition of that original term.

https://www.edsurge.com/news/2018-11-01-robots-won-t-replace-instructors-2-penn-state-educators-argue-instead-they-ll-help-them-be-more-human

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MIT-developed AI learns language like a child does

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MIT, Engadget

When you teach language to AI systems, you typically use annotations that describe how words work. But that’s not practical in many cases — even if everybody agrees on those annotations, they often take a lot of time to produce and can still seem unnatural. MIT’s solution? Have AI learn like a child. Its researchers have developed a parser that imitates kids’ learning processes by observing scenes and making connections. The system studies captioned videos and learns to link words to objects and actions by determining the accuracy of a description.

https://www.engadget.com/2018/11/01/ai-can-learn-language-the-way-children-do/

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U.S. Department of Education Funds WPI to Help Address Anticipated Shortage in Artificial Intelligence Professionals

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:28 am

Worcester Polytechnic University

In an effort to build the nation’s strength in artificial intelligence research and teaching, the U.S. Department of Education has awarded Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) $895,500 through its Graduate Assistance in Areas of National Need (GAANN) program. With the funds, WPI will provide six needs-based fellowships to U.S. citizens pursuing a PhD in fields deemed to be “areas of national need,” specifically artificial intelligence in such areas as deep learning, natural language processing, machine learning, healthcare analytics, data science, and learning sciences. To be eligible, candidates must plan to pursue a career in teaching or research.

https://www.wpi.edu/news/us-department-education-funds-wpi-help-address-anticipated-shortage-artificial-intelligence

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November 9, 2018

APLU Develops 6-Step Guide for Implementing Adaptive Courseware

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

By David Raths, Campus Technology
Drawing on the experience of eight public universities involved in a multi-year adaptive learning pilot program, the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) has created a six-step guide for implementing adaptive courseware. APLU hopes to provide colleges and universities with a roadmap that runs from initial planning through scaling up the use of adaptive courseware across a campus. The idea behind adaptive courseware is to provide a personalized digital learning experience for each student. Courses are often delivered in a blended format that includes direct instruction from a professor who is able to tailor his or her own teaching based on student progress data that the adaptive courseware provides.

https://campustechnology.com/articles/2018/10/29/aplu-develops-6-step-guide-for-implementing-adaptive-courseware.aspx

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Khan Academy Takes on Civics and U.S. History

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By Dian Schaffhauser, Campus Technology
The Khan Academy has launched a new series of videos focused on civics for students in K-12 and higher education — and anybody else interested in learning how government works in the United States. The videos feature academy Founder Sal Khan as well as news media celebrity and presidential debate moderator John Dickerson.  The videos feature lively conversations about U.S. government, politics and history, including little-known anecdotes from the nation’s past.

https://campustechnology.com/articles/2018/10/25/khan-academy-takes-on-civics-and-us-history.aspx

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Don’t Panic About GDPR, Colleges Are Told

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By Lindsay McKenzie, Inside Higher Ed

American colleges and universities that have yet to figure out a plan to comply with the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation still have time to act, attendees at Educause’s annual conference heard Wednesday. Speaking at a conference session called GDPR: Where Are We Now? Esteban Morin, a lawyer at Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck, told university IT leaders to “not panic” if they are just starting to develop a plan to ensure their institution is compliant with the E.U. data protection and privacy rules.

https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2018/11/01/eu-slow-enforce-new-data-privacy-rules-colleges-told-not-panic-about-lack-compliance

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November 8, 2018

Nintendo Bringing Labo to Classrooms

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By David Nagel, THE Journal
Nintendo is working with the nonprofit Institute of Play to bring its popular Labo kits for Nintendo Switch to classrooms in North America. The Institute of Play is developing STEAM curriculum and a teacher guide for Labo and is seeking classrooms to participate. It’s already running a pilot in New York. Labo is a making and invention system for the Nintendo Switch gaming platform that brings mixed-reality capabilities to the platform, allowing users to build interactive devices out of cardboard and other materials that can not only interact with games and content on the screen but can be interacted with. For example, users can build a car out of cardboard that can actually move using vibration controlled through Switch.

https://thejournal.com/articles/2018/10/23/nintendo-bringing-labo-to-classrooms.aspx

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Early intervention: How a tech-based approach is keeping our students in school

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BY MITCH FOWLER, eSchool News

Imagine: Jimmy starts high school and has difficulty with math. Although he does well in other subjects, he has low motivation in class and forgets when homework is due. Despite the teacher’s best efforts to encourage him and give him extra help, the student continues to struggle. As the semester continues, the teacher runs out of ideas for helping Jimmy and he falls farther and farther behind his classmates. With the right plan and technology in place, this scenario might never have played out.
Simply put, early intervention is key to identifying struggling students. But, early intervention can only be successful if schools have a solid structure in place to access relevant data and act on it quickly.

Early intervention: How a tech-based approach is keeping our students in school

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Google to give away $25 million to fund humane AI projects

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By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Google will give away $25 million to projects that propose ways to use the artificial intelligence of computers to help create a more humane society. The grant program announced Monday is part of a broader Google initiative called “AI for Social Good” that aims to ease concerns that advances in artificial intelligence will eliminate jobs and perhaps even be autonomously deployed by militaries to kill people, Other technology companies have taken similar steps to address ethical issues in AI. For instance, Microsoft has committed $115 million to an “AI for Good” initiative that provides grants to organizations harnessing AI for humanitarian, accessibility and environmental projects.

https://abcnews.go.com/Technology/wireStory/google-give-25-million-fund-humane-ai-projects-58834119

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