Dropbox Launches Education Offering

May 18th, 2016

by Inside Higher Ed

The file-hosting service Dropbox is launching a new deployment option specifically for colleges and universities. More than 4,000 institutions already use the company’s cloud-based storage solutions for businesses, but the company saw an opportunity to launch a separate offering for educational institutions, said Jason Katcher, who leads Dropbox’s education efforts. While Dropbox for Business customers pay $149 a year per user, Dropbox Education is priced at $49. Colleges can also earn discounts depending on the size of their student populations. Katcher, previously the head of Google Apps for Education, said Dropbox sees itself playing a supporting role to the learning management systems and collaboration tools that colleges already use.

http://www.cblohm.com/2016/05/11/infographic-how-to-prepare-for-meeting-the-media-iste-2016/

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Strategic Technology and High-Touch Support Key to Student-Centricity

May 18th, 2016

Kristy Davis, The EvoLLLution

Leveraging technology and committing to offering high-touch services that respond to the unique needs of traditional and non-traditional students are central to creating the experience today’s learners expect and need. Student centricity starts with mission. Academic Support Resources, the core student services unit at the University of Minnesota, follows a shared mission statement: “Making a Positive Difference in Student’s Lives.” Faculty at this large R1 University may be working on a cure for cancer, developing a theoretical framework to analyze an art form or researching artificial intelligence, but they all want their students to be well served and fully engaged in their learning. There are many initiatives currently underway that place the student at the center of our efforts—too many to detail at great length—but here is a glimpse into some of the ways the University of Minnesota has committed to crafting an engaging, enriching and student-focused environment.

http://evolllution.com/technology/tech-tools-and-resources/strategic-technology-and-high-touch-support-key-to-student-centricity/

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For teachers, transition to leadership carries fair share of challenges

May 17th, 2016

By Erin McIntyre, Education Dive

One way to combat isolation is to become a “connected educator,” using social media to connect with other leaders from across the country. Hashtags specific to school leadership include ‪#principalpln and ‪#principalsinaction. For tech-savvy educators seeking to learn more about administration, a number of websites offer resources and free materials. The the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP) website offers a resource page with suggested reading materials, copies of Principal magazine, newsletters, white papers and links to sessions from the NAESP annual conference. Webinars and online learning possibilities can also help. A number of “principal practice” videos are available for free streaming on the PBS Learning website, funded by the Wallace Foundation. Education World also has a collection of resources called the Principal Files, focused largely on occupational challenges.

http://www.educationdive.com/news/for-teachers-transition-to-leadership-carries-fair-share-of-challenges/417118/

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Georgia Tech Professor Used Robot as TA

May 17th, 2016

by Inside Higher Ed

Ashok Goel, a professor of computer science at Georgia Institute of Technology, gave his students an unusual lesson in an artificial intelligence course this semester. The Wall Street Journal reported that Goel used IBM’s computer analytics programs to create a robot — with the name of Jill Watson, in honor of the IBM Watson system — to work as a teaching assistant in the course. Jill Watson prompted students about deadlines and provided information and encouragement in the online discussions for the course.

https://www.insidehighered.com/quicktakes/2016/05/09/georgia-tech-professor-used-robot-ta

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How single mothers juggle kids, getting college degrees

May 17th, 2016

by Associated Press

Single mothers who attend college face a tough challenge. While new options such as online courses and satellite campuses offer more flexibility, the challenge of dealing with children, classwork, homework and often a job is still a difficult juggling act. Mothers who have done it say it would be nearly impossible without support from friends, family and public programs— and without giving up a lot of sleep. Devonish, a 2004 Atlantic City High School graduate, received her associate’s degree last year from Atlantic Cape. She is continuing her schooling part time, taking courses from Fairleigh Dickinson University at Atlantic Cape. Like other single moms, she knows the difference a college degree can make. A 2002 Census Bureau study estimated that in 1999, the average lifetime earnings of someone with a bachelor’s degree was $2.7 million, 75 percent more than what high school graduates could earn.

http://www.ccenterdispatch.com/news/state/article_81663885-be04-52ad-b036-6dde9599eec2.html

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U California Davis Brings Augmented Reality to Middle School

May 16th, 2016

By Joshua Bolkan, Campus Technology

The ARsandbox combines an actual sandbox with a 3D camera, a digital projector and a computer to display a topographic map that adjusts as sand is moved around inside the box. The ARsandbox combines an actual sandbox with a 3D camera, a digital projector and a computer to display a topographic map that adjusts as sand is moved around inside the box. The University of California, Davis recently brought an augmented reality (AR) sandbox to students at Howard University Middle School of Mathematics and Science to help them learn about Earth science and watersheds. The sandbox combines an actual sandbox with a 3D camera, a digital projector and a computer to display a topographic map that adjusts as sand is moved around inside the box. When users hold their hands over the sandbox, it becomes a cloud and virtual water flows from it into the sandbox.

https://campustechnology.com/articles/2016/05/02/u-california-davis-brings-augmented-reality-to-middle-school.aspx

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U Denver To Launch ‘STEM for Grown-Ups’

May 16th, 2016

By Michael Hart, Campus Technology

The University of Denver’s Center for Professional Development will partner with the Denver-based Silicon STEM Academy to offer “STEM for Grown-Ups,” a new curriculum of interactive courses involving science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) that teachers and others can take for continuing education unit (CEU) credit. The Silicon STEM Academy, which provides training programs in technology for both children and adults, will offer six courses at its facility in Denver while the University of Denver will offer the credentialing that could lead to both CEU credit and academic credit. “STEM for GrownUps” is a suite of immersive STEM education programs intended to give professionals interdisciplinary, collaborative training in critical thinking.

https://campustechnology.com/articles/2016/05/04/u-denver-to-launch-stem-for-grown-ups.aspx

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8 ways digital media will evolve for the future

May 16th, 2016

BY LAURA DEVANEY, eSchool News

A new study evaluating the Ready To Learn initiative outlines how educational digital media will change to influence children and content producers.  While digital educational media can continue to have a substantial impact on children, the size of that impact is directly proportional to a commitment to equity, according to a study examining five years of the CPB-PBS Ready to Learn Initiative, which represents $72 million in taxpayer dollars. Interviews with 26 prominent children’s media researchers, producers, and thought leaders were conducted as part of the study. The study reflects on the initiative’s progress over time and offers examples of how digital educational media have influenced learning.

http://www.eschoolnews.com/2016/05/06/8-ways-digital-media-will-evolve-for-the-future/

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Survey: Teachers now use twice as much gaming and video in the classroom

May 15th, 2016

BY LAURA DEVANEY, eSchoolNews

Annual survey reveals digital resources such as game-based environments and online videos have experienced increased use in classrooms. Teachers’ use of game-based environments and online apps has doubled in the last six years, according to the annual Speak Up survey released on May 5. The national report, From Print to Pixel: The role of videos, games, animations and simulations within K-12 education, reveals that in 2010, only 23 percent of surveyed teachers said they used games, compared to 48 percent of those surveyed in 2015. In 2010, 47 percent of teachers said they used online videos, and that jumped to 68 percent of teachers in 2015.

http://www.eschoolnews.com/2016/05/06/survey-teachers-now-use-twice-as-much-gaming-and-video-in-the-classroom/

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New Workers, New Skills

May 15th, 2016

by Marina Gorbis, EDUCAUSE Review

As the world of work undergoes transformation, new worker categories are emerging—people who, by choice or by necessity, are thinking about making a living in new ways and who are putting work into a very different context. At the Institute for the Future (IFTF), our team of ethnographers has been exploring these new worker categories while conducting in-depth interviews and observations in various locations around the United States. These workers span different levels of skills and different levels of engagement with work, from those who simply rent their assets (e.g., homes, cars) to generate income streams to those who work in new ways full-time. Such workers include micro-workers, dream builders, amplified entrepreneurs, and makers and hackers.

http://er.educause.edu/articles/2016/5/new-workers-new-skills

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Brave New Work World

May 15th, 2016

by John O’Brien, EDUCAUSE Review

I have experienced a few dramatic moments, epiphanies even, when it became clear that the world I thought I was inhabiting was changing in remarkable ways. As a faculty member, I once cancelled class because I was giving a paper at a national conference. I assumed I would be a hero. In my experience at that time, students loved nothing more than a day to skip class and catch up on all the work I was assigning. Instead, one of my working adult students called me up to read me the riot act. The conversation started with “I paid good money for this class” and went downhill from there. In this single moment, I realized the academy was heading into some decidedly uncharted waters.

http://er.educause.edu/articles/2016/5/brave-new-work-world

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Nashville School Uses Augmented Reality

May 14th, 2016

By Richard Chang, THE Journal

J.E. Moss Elementary School, a Title I school in Nashville, TN, has adopted an augmented reality program to help improve reading skills in one of its kindergarten classes. Letters alive, a supplemental reading software kit from Alive Studios, has aided teacher Greg Smedley-Warren and boosted his kindergarten class’ literacy scores above all the other kindergarten classrooms in his school, according to a prepared statement. His class includes several ELL and “at risk” students.

https://thejournal.com/articles/2016/05/05/nashville-school-uses-augmented-reality.aspx

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Report: Games and Online Video Gain Traction in Education

May 14th, 2016

By David Nagel, THE Journal

Nearly half of all teachers — 48 percent — are using games in their instruction now, according to a new Speak Up research report released by Project Tomorrow. That’s more than double the percentage from five years ago (23 percent). Things are not all positive for gaming, however. While nearly half of school and district administrators indicated they had instituted some form of game-based learning in their schools, “38 percent of school administrators and 47 percent of district administrators said they have not and they have no plans to do so,” according to the report. Just 27 percent of administrators said they are providing teachers with professional development for game-based learning, while 50 percent of teachers said they are “looking for professional development to better use games within instruction” (up from 26 percent in 2012).

https://thejournal.com/articles/2016/05/05/report-games-and-online-video-gain-traction-in-education.aspx

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More teachers hired for area districts’ online summer school

May 14th, 2016

by Suzanne BakerContact, Naperville Sun

If this summer is anything like last year, high school students from three local school districts could be completing online course work in 11 different countries and 24 different states in June and July. Registration for summer ended last week with 1,300 course enrollments, causing the Expanding Learning Opportunities consortium, known as eLo, to hire more teachers. Last summer was the inaugural year for eLo, a partnership between Indian Prairie District 204, Naperville District 203 and Wheaton Warrenville District 200 that offers online high school classes taught by teachers from the three districts.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/suburbs/naperville-sun/news/ct-nvs-online-summer-school-st-0506-20160505-story.html

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New tech partnership targets competency-based learning and admissions

May 13th, 2016

By Tara García Mathewson, Education Dive

Learning Machine, an ed tech company that offers data-driven software to help admissions officers shape their incoming classes, has partnered with Credly, which created a platform to give, receive and display digital badges and credentials. Campus Technology reports the partnership will give admissions officers the opportunity to consider competency-based learning experiences from prospective students. Dan Hughes, president and COO of Learning Machine says he expects digital credentials to become a standard part of the admissions process and “the common currency of a global job market.”

http://www.educationdive.com/news/new-tech-partnership-targets-competency-based-learning-and-admissions/418606/

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Mark Cuban disrupting ed tech ‘pain points’

May 13th, 2016

By Tara García Mathewson, Education Dive

Mark Cuban, the Shark Tank regular and Dallas Mavericks owner, has become an ed-tech investor with stakes in four companies with which he maintains close contact. Cuban is also a vocal critic of the current state of higher education. The Chronicle of Higher Education reports Cuban has invested in Copley Systems, which helps colleges keep students on the path to graduation by tracking academic activities; Degreed, which developed a digital portfolio platform; Packback, which connects online communities of students and instructors who use the same books; and Ranku, which targets online student recruitment and enrollment. Cuban has helped the founders of each company get ahead faster, using his star power to recruit other investors. His key critiques of higher education are student debt, an over-reliance on adjuncts, and wasteful spending on buildings like stadiums, food courts and fitness centers that depreciate quickly and require continual maintenance.

http://www.educationdive.com/news/mark-cuban-disrupting-ed-tech-pain-points/418602/

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Fast Drivers Ed Online Puts Creative New Spin on an Aged Industry

May 13th, 2016

by Fast Drivers Ed Online

In addition to providing online drivers ed in California, Texas, and Florida; the company is already working on providing students with the ability to procure their own auto insurance without being constrained by their parent’s current policy or the need to be placed on their father or mother’s current auto policy. Fast Drivers Ed Online also has goals to provide students with the opportunity to “obtain more direction” with the creation of sister websites pertaining to life purpose. More will be released on this subject in the upcoming months as the story and program develops, however it will be life changing for some. “The internet is so full of white noise and similar trends. If we can make waves in the online educational space and create an impact in young people’s lives, where it is most crucial, and create an impression that will positively affect the outcome of their lives, we will consider this movement a success,” further states Osterkamp and Orantes.

http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/fast-drivers-ed-online-puts-creative-new-spin-on-an-aged-industry-300264645.html

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Summer classes: worth the cost to get ahead

May 12th, 2016

by Madison Heller, Denver University Clarion

Summer classes: are they worth the money, or the time? Summer is supposed to be a break from school. These months tend to be spent lounging by the pool, swimming at the lake or eating snow cones with friends: stress-free months that allow us to recharge for the fall. However, there are a lot of strong reasons that suggest summer classes are in fact worthwhile. First, consider the price. Summer classes boil down to $1,199 per unit. For a typical four credit class, this means $4,796 in direct costs. The cost could quickly add up if students need to stay in Denver while attending DU’s classes and then the additional cost of a textbook or two. The cost is definitely something to think about when considering online classes. If you are not going to take the class seriously or use it to further your academic progress, then don’t bother. But, there are a lot of reasons for taking summer courses that make the price tag worth it.

http://duclarion.com/2016/05/summer-classes-worth-the-cost-to-get-ahead/

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UGA students create virtual worlds in class

May 12th, 2016

by Lee Shearer, Online Athens

Students wandered around in a store, punched with boxing gloves, gave speeches, mixed chemicals and fenced with a rapier in a UGA classroom on Thursday. Nobody could see these things except the students who were actually doing them, however, and it all took place in a room was only about 10 by 15 feet. The students were actually demonstrating their final projects for a virtual reality class taught by Kyle Johnson of UGA’s College of Engineering. Computer science majors Dennis Law, Aaron Tharpe and Phillip McIntyre designed a fencing program — you could practice basic fencing moves, and watch your body’s movements on a screen to gauge how well you were doing.

http://onlineathens.com/mobile/2016-05-06/uga-students-create-virtual-worlds-class

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Employers placing lower value on grades, extracurriculars

May 12th, 2016

By Tara García Mathewson, Education Dive

The fifth annual study of global employability found that, in 2015, employers cared less about grades and extracurriculars and focused more on skills like innovation, leadership, and networking. Pathik Pathak, founding director of the Social Impact Lab at the University of Southampton writes for World Economic Forum students are also better choosing extracurricular activities that will help them gain these soft skills. One avenue is through student societies connected to top corporate employers. Pathak urges universities to focus on employability, incorporating soft skills development and network building into the curriculum and making it a central responsibility rather than an afterthought.

http://www.educationdive.com/news/employers-placing-lower-value-on-grades-extracurriculars/418779/

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Christina Aguilera Talks Teaching Her New On-Line Singing MasterClass

May 11th, 2016

by Caryn Robbins, Broadway World

Grammy Award winning recording artist Christina Aguilera is the newest instructor for MasterClass (www.masterclass.com, www.masterclass.com/ca), an online education platform making it possible for everyone to learn directly from the world’s best. The legendary singer, songwriter and actress teaches an all-new course, available today, in which she shares her nuanced understanding of singing and her incredible natural talents. The course features tips, tricks, exercises, and some of the surprising mental techniques behind having one of the most impressive vocal ranges in music today!

http://www.broadwayworld.com/bwwtv/article/BWW-Exclusive-Interview-Christina-Aguilera-Talks-Teaching-Her-New-On-Line-Singing-MasterClass-20160503

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