Educational Technology

June 23, 2013

99 Resources and Tools for Digital Learning

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

By Carrie Hopkins, from Top5OnlineColleges.org

The proliferation of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) and other forms of online education has changed the landscape of guided learning for both students and teachers. Professors who once stood in front of classrooms filled with dozens of students now stand in front of webcams in front of thousands or tens of thousands of logged-in users. Grading papers, scoring tests, and giving personalized feedback are all totally different pursuits in an online environment, and technology companies are rushing to build the tools that make online learning easier, more effective, and more enjoyable for teachers and their students.

http://classroom-aid.com/2013/06/15/99-resources-and-tools-for-digital-learning/

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A closer look at using the “flipped classroom” model at the School of Medicine

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

by Lia Steakley, Stanford SCOPE Blog

As reported previously on Scope, the School of Medicine is developing a new online learning initiative to re-imagine medical education using the “flipped classroom” model. Titled the Stanford Medicine Interactive Learning Initiatives , the program aims to make better use of the fixed amount of educational time available to train doctors. In a piece published today on the Health Care Blog, Michael Painter, JD, MD, a senior program officer at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, recounts his visit to an ECG cardiology course at the medical school to observe how educators are using web-based videos to impart basic knowledge and reserving class time for more engaging activities.

http://scopeblog.stanford.edu/2013/06/14/a-closer-look-at-using-the-flipped-classroom-model-at-the-school-of-medicine/

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Understanding Online Courses: A Student’s Perspective

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

by Russell, Blog Divided at Dickinson College

As a college student, I have always been both curious and skeptical about “online courses”. Although I have never taken one, I have often imagined the potential ease that learning at home would bring. Is this concept too good to be true though? Surely there must be a catch. As an intern at Dickinson College with Professor Pinsker (who is preparing to launch a new online course of his own titled, “Understanding Lincoln”) I have had the opportunity to do some additional research on this topic. What I have found so far, is a range of opinions that seem to only highlight my own mixed thoughts…. For any school offering an online class, I think it is crucial for them not to see students as numbers, but rather as individuals. This appears to be a difficult, if not impossible task.

http://housedivided.dickinson.edu/sites/blogdivided/2013/06/13/understanding-online-courses-a-students-perspective/

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June 22, 2013

Professors Want to Own MOOCs Before MOOCs Own Them

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

By Meghan Neal, motherboard

By now, popular sentiment is that MOOCs—massive online open courses—are the Napster of higher education. They’re disrupting the industry in a way that makes everything uncertain, except that the education system as we know it will be a thing of the past. The MOOC trend isn’t slowing down—millions of people are now taking classes online, and more and more university system are embracing the new format and incorporating it into their curriculum. Meanwhile, professors are realizing they’re getting the short end of the MOOC stick. They envision a doomsday scenario in which the professoriate is passed over for an automated, convenient and free virtual learning industry. If their lesson plans, reading materials, videos and quizzes are freely available to anyone with a wi-fi connection, will it render the professor useless?

http://motherboard.vice.com/blog/professors-want-to-own-moocs-before-moocs-own-them

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Hacking Your Education: The Next Generation of Students

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

By JOHN FAWCETT, Wired

Earlier this year, I hosted an algorithmic finance Meetup, and I met two students who were enrolled as part-time off-campus students. They were taking the bare minimum number of classes required at the university, at the cheapest price they could, and only “spending” those on requirements for their majors. All of their education and enrichment beyond their requirements was through massive open online courses (MOOCs). MOOCs are free non-degree online courses with open global engagement that have exploded in popularity over the last few months. These two students were choosing to build their own education through outside resources both to save money – they said the cost was way less, even though it would take 6 years instead of 4 to earn a degree – and for the material. According to them, the MOOCs had far more options for advanced material. I was blown away by the steel-trap optimization these two students were applying to their own education.

http://www.wired.com/insights/2013/06/hacking-your-education-the-next-generation-of-students/

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MITx, edX team up with City of Chicago to bring high school students MOOC-style learning

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

by Stephen Carson, MIT News

The MIT Office of Digital Learning has announced a collaboration between MITx, edX and the City of Chicago that will bring a six week MOOC-style course to that city’s high school students during the Chicago Summer of Learning. The course, A Taste of Python Programming, was developed under the leadership of Professor John Guttag and is based on materials from the popular MITx offering 6.00x Introduction to Computer Science and Programming. A Taste of Python Programming will run from June 25th to August 2nd and covers the first four weeks of materials from 6.00x.

http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/2013/mitx-edx-team-up-with-city-of-chicago-to-bring-high-school-students-mooc-style-learning.html

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June 21, 2013

Panel backs introduction of digital learning in US

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

by Associated Press

A week after President Barack Obama’s call for U.S. schools to be outfitted with high-speed Internet within five years, an independent panel that studied the lack of technology at school says digital learning, including the super-fast Internet connections, can be introduced even sooner. The LEAD Commission is finalizing a five-point plan to speed the adoption of digital learning in schools by 2016. The Associated Press obtained a copy of the panel’s blueprint on Wednesday; the full plan is expected to be formally released in the coming weeks. The commission was created in March 2012 to research the state of and figure out how to speech the introduction of technology in U.S. schools. The president of Columbia University and a former U.S. education secretary are among the panel’s four co-chairmen.

http://www.fox11online.com/dpp/news/national/Panel-backs-introduction-of-digital-learning-in-US_62596369

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Announcing Second Annual Udacity Global Meetup

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

by Udacity

Save the date! You’re invited to join the Udacity community as we gather for our Second Annual Global Meetup Day on Saturday, July 20th at 2pm PDT. The theme of the event will be to bring Udacians together on a single day worldwide to celebrate our community and our mission to educate and empower people to advance their education and careers in technology. Cities across the world will hear from one or more of Udacity’s founders and instructors. We’ll be formally organizing five official U.S. meetup locations in Palo Alto, Los Angeles, Seattle, Chicago and New York.

http://blog.udacity.com/2013/06/announcing-second-annual-udacity-global.html

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Students See Hope for the Future of Online Education

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

By Tanya Roscorla, Center for Digital Ed

The Future of Education study from Millennial Branding and Internships.com asked 1,345 U.S. college students what they thought about online learning, among other things. The findings were released on Tuesday, June 11. On the online education front, 78 percent of students said it’s easier to learn in person than online. “A lot of them haven’t had a chance to learn online, so I don’t think they know what they’re missing,” said Dan Schawbel, founder of Millennial Branding and author of Promote Yourself: The New Rules for Career Success. At the same time, half of the students surveyed said they don’t need a physical classroom anymore. They’re finding that flexibility and lower costs make online learning a viable option. And 43 percent say the courses will match up in quality or even exceed the quality of in-person classes.

http://www.centerdigitaled.com/news/Students-See-Hope-for-the-Future-of-Online-Education.html

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June 20, 2013

How Technology Is Destroying Jobs

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

By David Rotman, Technology Review

Economic theory and government policy will have to be rethought if technology is indeed destroying jobs faster than it is creating new ones. Given his calm and reasoned academic demeanor, it is easy to miss just how provocative Erik Brynjolfsson’s contention really is. ­Brynjolfsson, a professor at the MIT Sloan School of Management, and his collaborator and coauthor Andrew McAfee have been arguing for the last year and a half that impressive advances in computer technology—from improved industrial robotics to automated translation services—are largely behind the sluggish employment growth of the last 10 to 15 years. Even more ominous for workers, the MIT academics foresee dismal prospects for many types of jobs as these powerful new technologies are increasingly adopted not only in manufacturing, clerical, and retail work but in professions such as law, financial services, education, and medicine.

http://www.technologyreview.com/featuredstory/515926/how-technology-is-destroying-jobs/

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edX learning platform now all open source

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:25 am

by Linux Today

The edX learning platform has now completed its transition to open source and is available under an AGPL licence. The core of the system is the edx-platform which includes both the LMS (Learning Management System) and Studio, a tool for creating courses. Other parts of the system, such as the XBlock component architecture for courseware, machine-learning-based grading such as EASE, the discern tool, deployment tools, interfaces to external grading systems and Python execution utilities, can all be found on the new code.edx.org.

http://www.linuxtoday.com/infrastructure/edx-learning-platform-now-all-open-source.html

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Students See Hope for the Future of Online Education

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:20 am

By Tanya Roscorla, Center for Digital Ed

The Future of Education study from Millennial Branding and Internships.com asked 1,345 U.S. college students what they thought about online learning, among other things. The findings were released on Tuesday, June 11. On the online education front, 78 percent of students said it’s easier to learn in person than online. “A lot of them haven’t had a chance to learn online, so I don’t think they know what they’re missing,” said Dan Schawbel, founder of Millennial Branding and author of Promote Yourself: The New Rules for Career Success. At the same time, half of the students surveyed said they don’t need a physical classroom anymore. They’re finding that flexibility and lower costs make online learning a viable option. And 43 percent say the courses will match up in quality or even exceed the quality of in-person classes.

http://www.centerdigitaled.com/news/Students-See-Hope-for-the-Future-of-Online-Education.html

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June 19, 2013

Tech, education leaders talk STEM challenges

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

By BOBBY CERVANTES, Politico

Education and tech leaders on Wednesday lauded the Obama administration’s efforts to open the science, technology, engineering and math fields to more students — but said the resource challenges in underfunded schools remain a major hurdle. Tom Kalil, the White House’s deputy director for technology and innovation, said the Obama administration’s efforts include preparing and recruiting 100,000 new STEM teachers and opening opportunities to get more younger students interested in STEM. Asked about whether Congress needs to take steps to boost STEM education, Kalil said, “They are hearing not just the administration, but they’re also hearing from the private sector.” “We have open jobs. We could be hiring more people if we had workers” coming from the schools, he said at POLITICO Pro’s Tech Deep Dive: STEM Policy’s Next Steps.

http://www.politico.com/story/2013/06/tech-education-leaders-talk-stem-challenges-92631.html

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Unabridged Online

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

By Allan Metcalf, Chronicle of Higher Ed

The 50th anniversary of the Third passed in 2011 with still no Fourth in sight. So it was a happy surprise this year to learn that all of a sudden, available online from the publisher was a new Merriam-Webster Unabridged. The print version would have had to wait until it was finished, years hence. The online version allows access to the revision as it is being born. If you subscribe to the Unabridged for $29.95 a year, you’ll get something new: 5,000 new entries (like anonymize, crowdsourcing and alt-country music) along with 107,000 new example sentences.

http://chronicle.com/blogs/linguafranca/2013/06/12/unabridged-online/

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Stanford Makes Coursework Available on New Online Learning Open-Source Platform

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

by Vanessa Castañeda, MenloPark-Atherton Patch

Stanford online coursework will be available starting this summer on a new open-source platform, OpenEdX, the university announced Tuesday. Among the first programs to run on the OpenEdX platform will be Stanford’s popular “Three Books” summer reading program for incoming Stanford freshmen, along with two public courses now open for registration – one using contemporary health topics to teach statistics and another helping K-12 teachers and parents change the way students approach math. Courses from Stanford’s Department of Electrical Engineering are among those that will run on the platform beginning this fall.

http://menlopark-atherton.patch.com/groups/schools/p/stanford-makes-coursework-available-on-new-opensource-platform

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June 18, 2013

McGraw-Hill Expands Education Tech Research

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

By Dian Schaffhauser, Campus Technology

McGraw-Hill Education is continuing to woo talent from competitors and other organizations to build up its education business. The company recently announced that it would shortly be opening a new research and development and center of excellence operation in Boston’s Innovation District dedicated to education technologies. The new office will bring together technologists, developers, education specialists, cognitive researchers, and others to cross-pollinate education innovations.

http://campustechnology.com/articles/2013/06/04/mcgraw-hill-expands-education-tech-research.aspx

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U California Researchers Release Beta for Big Data Management

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

By Dian Schaffhauser, Campus Technology

A team of California universities has released a beta version of a system for managing big data along with more traditional forms of data. Researchers from the University of California in Irvine, Riverside, and San Diego have banded together to create AsterixDB, a Java-based “big data management system” (BDMS). The work began in 2009 with funding from the National Science Foundation and, eventually, the state of California and others. The goal was to create a set of new technologies for “ingesting, storing, managing, indexing, querying, and analyzing vast quantities of semi-structured information.” The researchers pulled ideas from three areas — semi-structured data, parallel databases, and data-intensive computing — to create a “next generation” open source application that could run on large clusters of commodity computers. At the heart of the system, the AsterixDB engine operates on a “shared nothing” architecture. Each computer in the cluster runs independently and is self-sufficient.

http://campustechnology.com/articles/2013/06/10/u-california-researchers-release-beta-for-big-data-management.aspx

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Draper University Now Accepting Bitcoins for Tuition

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

By David Nagel, Campus Technology

Draper University in San Mateo, CA has started accepting bitcoins for tuition and recently processed its first bitcoin payment for its summer program, which starts later this month. According to information released by Draper U, the educational institution has become the first to accept bitcoin for tuition. Draper, which bills itself as “an unconventional world class boarding school for the brightest young entrepreneurs from around the world,” also accepts other non-traditional forms of payment, including barter, equity, profit sharing, and even advertising tradeouts. Bitcoin is one of several cryptographic currencies generated by end users (“miners”) who tap their CPUs, GPUs, and other processing hardware to solve hash algorithms, resulting in newly minted virtual coins. Bitcoin, which has a fixed ceiling of 21 million coins, is currently by far the most valuable and popular of the cryptocurrencies, trading at a little more than $100 per coin as of this writing. (The currency can be highly volatile and has reached more than $200 per coin in the past.) Similar cryptographic currencies include litecoin, namecoin, and novacoin, to name just a few.

http://campustechnology.com/articles/2013/06/11/draper-university-accepts-bitcoins-for-tuition.aspx

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June 17, 2013

Diverse Students Go Digital

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

By Shawn Francis Peters, Chronicle of Higher Ed

My use of Twitter in the Wire course might be my greatest break with pedagogical convention. Whatever its faults, Twitter allows my students to respond quickly and freely to this provocative drama about the complex interactions between police and drug dealers in Baltimore. Their spontaneous tweets form the foundation of a conversation in class once we’re done viewing a particular episode. I also use our hashtag for posting material that might be relevant for exams. For our midterm this semester, students worked in groups to produce components of a study guide. They took pictures of the results and then posted them with the hashtag, where everyone had access to them.

http://chronicle.com/article/Diverse-Students-Go-Digital/139645/

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Hacking Prezi as a Platform for Visual Composition and Design Experimentation

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

by Kimon Keramidas, Chronicle of Higher Ed

Prezi is marketed as a presentation tool, a killer app for the frustrated hordes of PowerPoint users who are looking for more dynamic and visually compelling modes of presentation. It accomplishes that task quite well with a digital canvas design structure, a user-friendly interface for adding text, images, and multimedia (it even cannibalizes existing PowerPoints well), and the capacity to create a step-by-step path through materials for presentation purposes. But if you start to think more creatively about what Prezi’s toolset offers, you begin to realize how powerful a tool it can be for designing a wide array of visual compositions. If one looks past the presentation use case, the combination of the flexibility of a nearly infinite digital canvas and easy-to-use design features makes for a powerful and highly accessible tool for developing thought maps, prototyping designs for digital interfaces and physical spaces, creating bespoke visualizations, and as a platform for comparative visual analysis and annotation.

http://chronicle.com/blogs/profhacker/hacking-prezi-as-a-platform-for-visual-composition-and-design-experimentation/49909

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Crowdfunding Academic Research

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

By Lauren Ingeno, Inside Higher Ed

Though there are differences from one platform to the next, crowdfunding sites function similarly: A person posts a description of his or her idea asking for small contributions from the community at large, and those who feel passionately about the project can donate. The fund-raiser is usually given a specific amount of time to reach his or her goal, or the backers are not charged. Typically the crowdfunding site receives a percentage of the amount the fund-raiser earns, and backers can receive “rewards” from the fund-raiser for pledging certain amounts of cash. Kickstarter, which launched in 2009, is the world’s largest funding platform for artists, musicians, filmmakers and designers. While many projects fail, some have found massive success on the site — like a video game that gained $4,188,927 from 74,905 backers. Replicating Kickstarter’s model, websites that are used specifically to crowdfund scientific or technology-based projects have launched in recent years. Some of these sites include iAMScientist, Microryza, Petridish and FundaGeek.

http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2013/06/10/academic-researchers-using-crowdfunding-platforms

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