Educational Technology

October 31, 2011

4 tech tips for parents to embrace digital education

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

by Kelsey Sheehy, U.S. News & World Report

Learning the ins and outs of the latest technology is a lot like learning to swim or ride a bike: The younger you are, the more naturally it comes. This is troubling news for parents who already feel two steps behind their digitally savvy children. While assisting with traditional school work poses enough challenges, parents now need to help their children build wikis and solve math problems on iPad apps. As schools shift toward online platforms and E-learning devices, tech-challenged parents may feel intimidated. The good news is that keeping up with the digital pace is as simple as starting a conversation, says Monica Vila, founder and “chief technology mom” of The Online Mom, a website focused on helping parents embrace technology.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/features/tribu/ct-tribu-kids-teaching-parents-technology-20111026,0,3454898.story

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Grant seeks to get more high school girls interested in technology

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

By Laurie D. Willis, Livingstone College

It’s no secret that there aren’t enough women in the technology field. But Livingstone College hopes to change that. The college’s Black Data Processing Associates chapter, or BDPA, has been awarded a $500 grant from the National Center for Women & Information Technology to raise awareness and interest in technology among high school girls. The grant’s official name is Return Path Student Seed Fund. “We plan to go to area high schools and introduce female students to women who have achieved success in the computer field,” said Trevor Stuart, president of Livingstone’s BDPA chapter. “It’s very important for women to be more involved in the technology field.” Stuart, a sophomore majoring in computer information systems, said his organization is scheduled to talk to students at Salisbury High School in November. Dr. Kathryn J. Moland, chairwoman of Livingstone College’s Computer Information Systems Department, said the school is partnering with Salisbury High School’s Me Time Girls Mentoring Group to raise awareness about technology. Me Time focuses on self esteem, self awareness and self reliance, said Sakinah Riley, founder and advisor.

http://www.salisburypost.com/News/102711-edu-livingstone-grant-w-pic-qcd

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Apple’s ‘School Box’ plan to innovate education

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

By Jonny Evans, Computer World

Apple’s plan to bring better educational tools to children worldwide could include a solar-powered iPad rig equipped with pico projectors and more, except the solution doesn’t come from Apple — but does use iPads. In Zimbabwe, government education ministers are working together with an iPad-based solutions provider to deliver a solar-powered education system, consisting of a solar powered device, micro projectors and a bunch of iPads. Dubbed the ‘School Box’, Zimbabwe’s Education, Sport, Arts and Culture minister David Coltart recently claimed traveled to Paris to meet with Apple to discuss the solution. “Great meeting with Apple today in Paris – unveiled a fascinating new “School Box” which will take iPads to the most remote rural schools – using solar power and micro projectors we will be able to bring computerized teaching aids to the poorest schools. I hope we will get the first pilot programs started early next year.

http://blogs.computerworld.com/19167/apples_school_box_plan_to_innovate_education

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October 30, 2011

Steve Jobs Had Hopes of Disrupting Textbook Market

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

By Jeffrey R. Young, Chronicle of Higher Ed

The late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs had discussed plans to shake up the textbook industry, including an effort that would have included free textbooks with iPads, according to a biography released this week. “Jobs had his sights set on textbooks as the next business he wanted to transform,” says a passage in the new book, Steve Jobs, by Walter Isaacson. It notes that Jobs said he had met with several major textbook publishers, including Pearson. It appears that his primary focus was on the K-12 textbook market. “The process by which states certify textbooks is corrupt,” Mr. Jobs is quoted as saying. “But if we can make the textbooks free, and they come with the iPad, then they don’t have to be certified. The crappy economy at the state level will last for a decade, and we can give them an opportunity to circumvent that whole process and save money.”

http://chronicle.com/blogs/wiredcampus/steve-jobs-had-hopes-of-disrupting-textbook-market/33912

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Some Thoughts About Educause 2011, FOSS, and Experimentation in Open Source

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

By George Williams, Chronicle of Higher Ed

I’ve often heard it said “Well, the software may be free, but you’ll have to pay people to maintain it.” And to that my response is, “We already employ those people. They currently spend their time maintaining the commercial software our campuses have purchased. It’s not going to increase our costs to eliminate the money we spend on that commercial software.” I’d like to see more campuses open to the idea of experimentation: don’t abandon your commercial LMS, but allow faculty to try out other possibilities. (And how about we stop referring to this sort of experimentation as faculty “going rogue” and start referring to it as faculty exercising academic freedom? We choose our own texts, we design our own assignments, we construct our own syllabi, and we should be able to choose our own educational technology, no?) Students won’t be as confused by the resulting diversity of interfaces as is often feared. They do just fine having to learn how to use different databases in the library or different information resources out there on the Web. If enough faculty and students find that they prefer free and open source tools to the ones you’ve been paying for… then maybe you should stop paying.

http://chronicle.com/blogs/profhacker/thoughts-educause-2011/36881

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Facebook Usage Beats TV During Work Hours

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

 by eMarketer

Facebook is gradually attaining parity with TV as a mass medium. During working hours, the social network has already beaten the boob tube in consumer media time spent. The Frank N. Magid Associates Generational Strategies study surveyed consumers of various ages about how they spend their media time throughout the day. Between 9am and 5pm, more consumers surveyed reported using Facebook than watching TV. This was true for each age group broken out from ages 15 to 46. Among the youngest consumer group, 8- to 14-year-olds dubbed “iGens,” 16% logged on to Facebook during those hours, the same percentage who said they tuned in to TV.

http://www.emarketer.com/Article.aspx?R=1008657

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October 29, 2011

Stepping Into the Breach

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

By Sue Marquette Poremba, Campus Technology

Data breaches are going to happen, regardless of what an institution does. How effectively a school responds may be a more telling indicator of its preparedness. If you think your institution is immune to a security breach, perhaps you should have a chat with Brian Rust at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. When asked about data breaches on his campus, the communications director in the Office of the Chief Information Officer answers with the hint of a sigh: “Let me tell you about the most recent one.” This particular breach involved the Wiscard, a student ID that doubles as a debit card. “There were records kept on a server that wasn’t as secure as it should have been,” Rust explains. But he’s quick to point out UW-Madison is no more or less vulnerable than any other university. In fact, he believes that almost every school has suffered a breach or an exposure at some point.

http://campustechnology.com/articles/2011/10/25/stepping-into-the-breach.aspx

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Technologies Enabling Do-It-Yourself Library Serivces

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

By Brian Mathews, Chronicle of Higher Ed

A core theme I see in LibQUAL+ data is that most libraries do pretty well in the service dimension, but when it comes to enabling users to help themselves their perceptions are typically much lower. When you put all the numbers together the narrative goes something like this: You’re pretty good at helping me, thanks, but I’d really prefer to do more things by myself—and by the way, you don’t make that very easy for me.  But is this changing? Over the past several months (years?) a common theme seems to popping up everywhere: self-service.

(Ed. Note: not to mention online delivery of services and materials)

http://chronicle.com/blognetwork/theubiquitouslibrarian/2011/10/13/are-we-in-the-diy-era-helping-patrons-help-themselves/

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Mobile Initiatives ‘Breaking Down the Walls of the Classroom’ at Abilene Christian U

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

By Dian Schaffhauser, Campus Technology

Small private college Abilene Christian University has entered the fourth academic year of its mobile education initiatives, and the program’s momentum and influence is still growing. The Texas institution, which has added the Apple iPad to its list of devices made available to students and faculty, along with the iPhone and iPod touch, recently hosted a Connected Open House, with attendance by people from dozens of other schools. The university is also running numerous mobile-oriented research projects among its faculty and recently opened three new mobile research centers sponsored by a sizeable grant from AT&T.

http://campustechnology.com/articles/2011/10/24/mobile-initiatives-breaking-down-the-walls-of-the-classroom-at-abilene-christian-u.aspx

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October 28, 2011

‘Cyber Challenge’ encourages teen hackers to seek security jobs

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

By Candus Thomson, The Baltimore Sun

 Like skilled cat burglars, teams of college-age hackers slithered past defenses to probe the soft underbelly of a sophisticated computer system. Their mission: to steal secrets and leave an electronic calling card. As they tapped away on laptops and spoke in low voices, knots of educators, business leaders, parents and government officials hovered nearby, smiling and nodding with approval. In the eyes of the organizers of the Maryland Cyber Challenge and Conference, today’s hacker could be tomorrow’s cybersecurity hero. “We need a whole generation of people to help us build out the digital future,” said Michael Kaiser, executive director of the National Cyber Security Alliance. “This has been a part of their lives since Day One.”

http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/bs-md-cybersecurity-challenge-20111022,0,5462640.story

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Vulnerable teens still at risk in cyberspace

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

By Sandra Tan, Buffalo News

Social network used by Jamey monitors anonymous posts, shuts down abusers. The kind of online hatred and harassment Jamey Rodemeyer experienced when he was in middle school was far from unusual. Danielle Mazziotti said she sees it all the time, particularly on the Web pages of friends who are homosexual or overweight. “I have lots of friends — everything that’s on their page, every time I see it, it’s all insults,” said the 15- year-old Clarence High School student. Those friends have accounts on Formspring, one of the newer social networking sites that has grown rapidly in the past two years amid the proliferation of social media on the Web. Formspring is the site where much of the cyberbullying directed toward Jamey occurred, but by no means does it have that market cornered. School counselors say they’ve seen cases of cyberbullying on other sites as well, including Facebook, which remains the most popular social networking site in the world.

http://www.buffalonews.com/topics/school-bullying/article604558.ece

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Huntsville schools go high tech with laptops, iPads

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

By Crystal Bonvillian, The Huntsville Times

The days of Huntsville students struggling to carry backpacks bulging with heavy textbooks are coming to an end as the city school system becomes more tech-savvy. The district has bought more than 3,600 computers over the past month as part of Superintendent Casey Wardynski’s push to create a 21st-century school system. “In the old days, bringing this kind of technology into a school would be a big deal,” Wardynski said. “We live in a new age, and the role of teachers is changing. They don’t work with a piece of chalk and a little blackboard at each desk anymore.”

http://blog.al.com/breaking/2011/10/huntsville_schools_go_high_tec.html

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October 27, 2011

The future of education lies in technology

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

by Drew Olanoff, The Next Web

Newark Mayor Cory Booker shared that he can no longer watch the way school systems have worked, there has to be change. Technology, he believes, can bring that change. The theme of the night appeared to be data. Educational institutions have a huge flow of data, some not even digitized, and have no way to pour through it to make smart decisions for their schools or more importantly for their students. Some of the companies have come up with ways to use data to incentive students with behavioral issues, make better use of a Principal’s time by giving them a dashboard of student and financial data in real-time, as well as share lesson plans all over the world.

http://thenextweb.com/insider/2011/10/21/the-future-of-education-lies-in-technology/

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Livescribe’s Echo Smartpen drags the humble pen into the 21st Century

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

 

by Martin Bryant, The Next Web

The traditional pen is fast approaching extinction. Personally, the only time I use one these days is to sign a cheque or greetings card (both equally facing their demise). That said, there’s no reason that the pen can’t be given a hi-tech reboot, and that’s what Livescribe’s Echo Smartpen does. While the Echo has been around for some time, I was recently given the opportunity to try one out. With the device’s Pro Pack (more on that below) having been launched in the UK this week, it seemed like a good opportunity to give it a review here on The Next Web. The Echo’s main function is to transform things you write or draw into digital form. It works with special paper which has an array of tiny dots printed across it, as well as command icons at the foot of each page. The device comes with a notebook featuring the paper, and you can buy more or print out your own. Tap the ‘Record’ icon and your Smartpen will begin recording a ‘Pencast’. These are ‘recordings’ of everything you write, draw or otherwise mark on the page with the pen.

http://thenextweb.com/gadgets/2011/10/21/livescribes-echo-smartpen-drags-the-humble-pen-into-the-21st-century/

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Zite, the slick iPad news reader, gets user profiles for easier device sharing

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

by Brad McCarty, The Next Web

Chances are, if there’s an iPad in your family, you share it among the different members. In fact, that lack of portability between people is part of what drove me away from my love of Android tablets and more toward the iPad. Zite, the magazine-styled reader app for the iPad, sees and understands that fact. Zite, if you’re not familiar, takes the things that you want to read from around the Internet and compiles them in an easy-to-browse format, similar to Flipboard but more focused on news without the social updates. The obvious problem here is that the things you want to read won’t necessarily be the same things that your significant other wants, but the lack of dedicated user accounts means that’s exactly how you have had to treat these apps until now.

http://thenextweb.com/apps/2011/10/21/zite-the-slick-ipad-news-reader-gets-user-profiles-for-easier-device-sharing/

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October 26, 2011

Unplugged: Teens can survive without technology for 48 hours

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

by Felicia Maza, the Pearl Post

What a long two days it has been without having or being able to go on my electronic gadgets for a whole 48 hours. Technology has gotten so out of hand that 48 hours sounds like a lifetime. But back then when technology wasn’t such a big deal, it was okay and anybody could have lasted. When my 6th period class was given this assignment, I heard nothing but moans and complaining about having to go two days without technology, including me. I thought it was going to be hard considering everything involves some type of technology. But instead I learned a valuable lesson and had an amazing time.

http://my.hsj.org/Schools/Newspaper/tabid/100/view/frontpage/articleid/463768/newspaperid/3334/Unplugged_Teens_can_survive_without_technology_for_48_hours.aspx

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Gartner Symposium: How Disruption Fuels Innovation

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

by Michael J. Miller, Forward Thinking

Successful innovation can come in a variety of ways, Harvard Business School professor Clayton Christensen said in an entertaining keynote at the Gartner Symposium conference Wednesday. Christensen, best known as the author of The Innovator’s Dilemma, talked about methods of innovation, the impact on the IT industry, and how looking at innovation in the wrong way has hurt the U.S. economy. He outlined five (well, four and a half, as time ran short) strategies that improve the probability of successful innovation: disruptions from below; competing against non-consumption; supply chain disruption; targeting the job, not the customer; and catching the tide of de-commoditization.

http://forwardthinking.pcmag.com/show-reports/289435-gartner-symposium-how-disruption-fuels-innovation

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iPhone accelerometer hack turns it into a ’spy phone’

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

by GMA News

Smartphone owners may want to think twice before placing their gadgets so close to their computer keyboards, lest they unwittingly give their passwords away. Researchers from Georgia Tech have found a way to use a smartphone accelerometer —a component that detects how the phone is tilted— to remotely decipher keyboard strokes. “We first tried our experiments with an iPhone 3GS, and the results were difficult to read. But then we tried an iPhone 4, which has an added gyroscope to clean up the accelerometer noise, and the results were much better. We believe that most smartphones made in the past two years are sophisticated enough to launch this attack,” said Patrick Traynor, assistant professor in Georgia Tech’s School of Computer Science, according to an article on TechJournal.

http://www.gmanews.tv/story/236145/technology/iphone-accelerometer-hack-turns-it-into-a-spy-phone

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October 25, 2011

FTC seeks comment on important online privacy changes

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

By Laura Devaney, eSchool News

COPPA has not been updated since 2005. Possible changes to the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) are on the horizon as the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has proposed updating the law to reflect how technology has changed web browsing and communication, and the agency is seeking comments on those proposed changes. Under COPPA’s online privacy rules, operators of websites or online services aimed at children under the age of 13, or others who have actual knowledge that they are collecting personal information from children under 13, must obtain parental permission before collecting, using, or disclosing such information from children.

http://fcw.com/articles/2011/09/26/feat-next-act-1-technology.aspx

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Tech’s future is managing data, not devices

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

By John Zyskowski, Federal Computer Week

If there is a simple way to sum up what government technology practices will look like in five years, it is that agency IT departments will be busy managing data, not devices. Agencies will get to that point in part through a series of deliberate decisions, such as buying certain kinds of prepackaged data center capabilities and not buying personal computing devices for every end user, several industry experts said. But agencies will also move to a more-data, less-device future by default because the huge streams of data they will pump out, store, move around and act on will be an inevitable by-product of a hyper-connected workplace and society.

http://fcw.com/articles/2011/09/26/feat-next-act-1-technology.aspx

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Chief Technology Officer at Niles Township High School District 219 Reports

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

by Guy Ballard, CIO

We are focused on finding free and open educational resources (OER) and helping teachers use these materials to deliver content and build 21st-century literacies. We use Moodle, an open-source learning management system (LMS), to develop courses with OER to deliver course content anywhere anytime. Professional development continues to be a key focus. We have developed three levels of tech courses for our District 219 University. These courses are comprised of face-to-face and blended instruction where teachers are taught to use Web 2.0 tools and embed digital-literacy skills into their curriculum. We are gearing up to deliver our third course in the technology series, will help teachers develop a hybrid or blended model of learning based on the idea of a flipped classroom. All three courses carry three-credits and teachers receive and use the same technology we give to our students. So far, 80 percent of our teachers have gone through the first course. It has been so well received, we have shared them with other districts and professional organization in our state.

http://www.schoolcio.com/article/guy-ballard/51840

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