Embracing Failure to Spur Success: A New Collaborative Innovation Model

April 19th, 2015

by Kim Wilcox and Edward J. Ray, EDCUAUSE Review

On college and university campuses across the United States, we’re surrounded by a resource that leads to discovery, innovation, and growth—yet we don’t embrace it at the leadership level. That resource? Failure. Failure is happening every day in our labs and classrooms and is essential to the learning and discovery process in both settings. As our research scientists attempt to make breakthrough discoveries, they run through repeated trials that fail to deliver the hoped-for results, but each failure provides another clue pointing in the direction of a solution. In classrooms, we encourage students in every discipline to question and analyze the information we put before them. Have we ever criticized them for being “wrong”? Not at all. We congratulate them on having the courage to ask new questions, and we encourage them to keep going.

http://www.educause.edu/ero/article/embracing-failure-spur-success-new-collaborative-innovation-model

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5 Lecture Capture Hacks for More Engaging Videos

April 19th, 2015

By Leila Meyer, Campus Technology

As more and more instructors flip their classrooms or teach online courses, it’s become increasingly important to create videos that can hold students’ attention. Some instructors have experimented with new ways to make videos more interactive and engaging; for instance, including themselves in the picture along with their teaching materials. “Putting our face on the presentation allows us to offer nuances and to communicate with more richness and immediacy,” said John Lammers, professor of communication and director of the Health Communication program at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Here are five ways to take lecture videos up a notch and better engage students.

http://campustechnology.com/articles/2015/04/08/5-lecture-capture-hacks-for-more-engaging-videos.aspx?admgarea=News

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New tool aids game-based learning integration

April 19th, 2015

by eSchoolNews

Digital learning system helps schools integrate game-based learning applications. RGS, a business unit of Avnet, Inc., has introduced the RGS Classroom Game Server (CGS), a new high-performance digital learning system designed to enable school districts to affordably integrate game-based learning (GBL) applications into their digital lesson plans for grades K-12. The unit is optimized for MinecraftEdu from TeacherGaming LLC. Each unit can support up to 35 players concurrently, in a variety of network environments including existing Ethernet or Wi-Fi LAN. For classrooms with no network access, the server can broadcast its own LAN, reducing the load on the school network infrastructure. In addition, offline mode allows for play without any Internet connection.

http://www.eschoolnews.com/2015/04/13/game-based-integration-094/

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People with learning disabilities may become victim or perpetrator of crime while online

April 18th, 2015

by News Medical

People with learning (intellectual) disabilities have historically been marginalised from mainstream society, and have had limited choice and control over their lives. While movements to achieve greater equality have had success, the rapid advancement of modern technology risks creating a new form of digital exclusion. For people with learning disabilities there may be a delicate balance between becoming a victim or perpetrator of crime while online. There are potential challenges that health professionals have to overcome when promoting safe and inclusive internet access. People with a learning disability walk a thin line between becoming a victim or perpetrator of online crime, according to authors writing in the journal Learning Disability Practice.

http://www.news-medical.net/news/20150413/People-with-learning-disabilities-may-become-victim-or-perpetrator-of-crime-while-online.aspx

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30 Innovative Ways to Use Twitter In the Classroom

April 18th, 2015

By Pamela DeLoatch, Edudemic

Do you use Twitter in your classroom as part of your lesson plans? If not, don’t worry—you’re not alone. Although 80% of K-12 teachers do have Twitter accounts for personal or professional use, most of them don’t integrate tweets into classroom lessons. And at first glance, it might be difficult to understand why you would, especially when Twitter is best known for getting updates on the oft mundane activities friends, family and celebrity crushes. But with 288 million active users worldwide, educational experts, like those at the National Education Association, say that Twitter can be a welcome tool for teachers who want to increase information, communication, and collaboration, both inside and outside the classroom.

http://www.edudemic.com/the-30-newest-ways-to-use-twitter-in-the-classroom/

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7 innovative 3D printers for the classroom

April 18th, 2015

By Rebecca Lundberg, eSchool News

A snapshot of classroom-ready 3D printers available for eductors. These days, 3D printing is becoming a staple of the modern classroom, from K-12 to college and university campuses as well. Even as prices dip for some models, educational institutions and districts are also gaining financial support from outside sources for ventures into 3D printing. In fact, from 2011 to 2015, government business intelligence company Onvia awarded $1,809,298 in 3D printer and supply contracts to 44 primary, secondary and higher education institutions and school districts across the United States. David D. Thornburg, co-author of “The Invent to Learn Guide to 3D Printing in the Classroom,” said he would not recommend one specific 3D printer for classroom use because the constant advancement in the 3D printing industry can make choosing the best models a “moving target.”

http://www.eschoolnews.com/2015/04/13/3d-printers-classroom-539/

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Report: Schools Should Focus More on Soft Skills

April 17th, 2015

By Joshua Bolkan, THE Journal

A new study from Wainhouse Research finds that a large minority, 39 percent, of education stakeholders say their schools should be doing a better job of preparing students for the workforce. Among more than 1,000 administrators, teachers, students and parents surveyed from North America and the United Kingdom, “many” said they “believe that schools are doing a decent job focusing on the 3 R’s: reading, writing and mathematics, but are not doing as good a job focusing on other aspects of education essential to preparing learners for entering the workforce,” according to the report. Sixty percent of those surveyed said too little emphasis is placed on collaborations with other learners outside the classroom, while 46 and 40 percent, respectively, said there should be more emphasis on group achievement and working in teams.

http://thejournal.com/articles/2015/04/09/report-schools-should-focus-more-on-soft-skills.aspx

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3 ways technology can support positive behavior in schools

April 17th, 2015

By Karen Gifford, eSchool News

How technology can help you apply Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) in your schools. In Arizona, I’ve helped create an event called the Behavior, Education, Technology Conference (BET-C), which explores how technology can help with PBIS. We just held the fourth annual BET-C in early March. Based on the sessions from this year’s conference, here are three ways technology can support the implementation of PBIS in schools.

http://www.eschoolnews.com/2015/04/10/technology-behavior-054/

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East Pennsboro Area Middle School to receive $400K blended learning grant

April 17th, 2015

by the Sentinel

Michael Sim, EPAMS principal, said being selected for this grant represents a validation of the work the school’s planning team has done for the last nine months. “Our team has dedicated many hours to researching, discussing, and thinking to craft our innovative, new design for our students,” he said. East Pennsboro’s design is based on leveraging technology and innovative instruction strategies to create individually-tailored learning in order to prepare students for college- and career-readiness, the release states. The components of the personalized learning model will guarantee student access to multiple instructional modes each school day.

http://cumberlink.com/news/local/education/east-pennsboro-area-middle-school-to-receive-k-blended-learning/article_751d5bd3-11e3-5188-bc9c-4d49fc1e8f4d.html

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How collaboration is just a modern LMS away

April 16th, 2015

By Michael Lafreniere, eCampus News

Today, the software is a web-based application commonly known as an LMS. With an appropriate LMS, video delivery, conferencing integration, and white board integration with digital inking capabilities, a teacher can collaborate with colleagues and students through the broadcast of synchronous instruction and learning activities online and in-class. The teacher can facilitate collaborative, shareable, personalized note-taking spaces, as well as track student engagement across multiple sections—class and student level insights that assist the teacher much like intentional formative assessment. At the end of the course, the same data collection can be used in the creation of student portfolios of learning outcomes, which are ideal for course and program improvement, as well as, accreditation.

http://www.ecampusnews.com/technologies/collaboration-lms-math-377/

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Watch out Watson: Here comes Amazon Machine Learning

April 16th, 2015

By Liam Tung, ZDNet

AWS developers who want to extract meaning and forecasts out of their data now no longer need other hosted machine learning platforms. Public cloud giant Amazon Web Services (AWS) on Thursday unveiled its first product for machine learning – simply called Amazon Machine Learning – to make it easier for AWS developers to extract value from the troves of transactional and operational data their hosted systems collect. The move by Amazon follows IBM’s recent launch of hosted Watson Analytics and Microsoft’s Azure Machine Learning, with all three now looking for ways to help developers embed machine learning intelligence into their apps. Google’s own machine learning offering, Prediction API, was launched in 2012.

http://www.zdnet.com/article/watch-out-watson-here-comes-aws-machine-learning/

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Hands on with Office Online and Dropbox: A surprisingly smooth combo

April 16th, 2015

by Ed Bott, ZDNet

Microsoft has been expanding the reach of its Office franchise over the past year, releasing apps for iOS and Android, occasionally even at the expense of its Windows division. But the latest Office expansion comes inside the browser, where anyone with an Office.com account, free or paid, can now link Dropbox accounts for seamless creation, viewing, editing, and sharing of online Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, and PowerPoint presentations.

http://www.zdnet.com/article/office-online-and-dropbox-together/

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5 Key Ways To Stretch Your Tech Budget

April 15th, 2015

By Chet Bembenek, THE Journal

The Columbus School District in Wisconsin serves a small community south of Madison, with only three schools and 1,300 total students — about 30 percent of whom qualify for free or reduced-price lunch. In other words, we’re just a typical small school district trying to make the most of our limited ed-tech budget. Despite our modest means, we have a fairly robust technology infrastructure. A 10-gigabit fiber backbone connects our three school buildings, all of which have wireless access. We have 100 Mbps of bandwidth out to the public Internet, and we’re bumping that up to 300 Mbps soon. We’re also on our way to having one device for every student in grades 1 through 12 next year. We’ve built out our IT infrastructure with the help of a few simple strategies. Here are five recommendations based on our experience.

http://thejournal.com/articles/2015/04/09/5-key-ways-to-stretch-your-tech-budget.aspx

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State’s universities getting fast and furious internet for collaboration

April 15th, 2015

by eCampus News

Arizona’s Sun Corridor Network announces two 100 gigabit connections to Internet2. The Sun Corridor Network, Arizona’s high-speed research and education (R&E) network, is now providing 100 gigabit per second (100G) connections to Internet2, for academic researchers at Arizona State University (ASU), Northern Arizona University (NAU) and the University of Arizona (UA). The two Internet2 connections—one located in Phoenix and one in Tucson—aim to benefit Arizona’s public universities by facilitating high-performance, data-intensive research and collaboration among peers at national institutions to enable discovery, knowledge and information sharing.

http://www.ecampusnews.com/top-news/arizona-universities-internet-981/

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Innovation is building your own adaptive tech solution, says major university

April 15th, 2015

by eCampus News

Arizona State University (ASU), Cengage Learning and Knewton announced a partnership to co-develop what ASU is calling “Active Adaptive” learning solutions, which leverage Knewton adaptive technology in new ways. These innovators in higher education will co-develop a solution from the ground-up utilizing adaptive technology paired with content and active learning activities, with the aim of empowering instructors to spend more time supporting and inspiring learning, and less time managing and lecturing students. ASU recognized the need for a new, customized way to deliver materials to students, allowing them to learn using instruction and content uniquely tailored to their individual needs in an environment that meets the University’s goals of having students take a more active role in their own learning.

http://www.ecampusnews.com/business-news/adaptive-knewton-asu-563/

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3 ways technology should be reinventing rural education

April 14th, 2015

By Bryan C. Hassel and Stephanie Dean, eSchool News

For rural schools, technology is a solution but also another challenge. Technology makes it possible for each of us to do more, learn more, and be more connected. That’s true for education in general, but its potential seems particularly compelling for rural schools, which struggle to offer an array of learning opportunities, to transport students to a central facility, and to get the best combination of teachers from small candidate pools.

http://www.eschoolnews.com/2015/04/09/rural-education-683/

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Every Teacher’s Must Have Guide to Facebook

April 14th, 2015

By Pamela DeLoatch, Edudemic

Want to connect with your students in and out of the classroom? Consider bringing Facebook into your class as a collaborative tool. We all know that most kids, or at least those in the pre-teen and up category, are locked into many forms of social media. Instead of fighting it, why not meet them where they are, and use the benefits of Facebook to communicate and increase involvement? We’ve identified a number of resources for you to use as you determine why and how to make Facebook work in your classroom.

http://www.edudemic.com/every-teachers-must-have-guide-to-facebook/

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Minnesota Course evaluations will go online in fall

April 14th, 2015

By Haley Hansen, Minnesota Daily

The comments and critiques students make on their course evaluation forms at the end of this semester may influence other students’ future class selections. Come fall, parts of students’ end-of-semester course evaluations will be available online for other students to view when deciding what classes to take, a policy change students have spent years advocating for. While the information online won’t be about individual faculty members, it will be about specific classes, which some say could help students make better informed decisions when enrolling in courses.

http://www.mndaily.com/news/campus/2015/04/08/course-evaluations-will-go-online-fall

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At this high school, the schedule is flexible

April 13th, 2015

By Nick Valencia, CNN

Most days, 16-year-old Jason Zobott walks into Huntley High School in suburban Chicago around 7:30 a.m. like any high schooler might. It’s what he does the rest of the day that’s not so typical. Zobott is enrolled in Huntley High’s blended learning program, which merges Internet-based instruction with a more traditional classroom setting. One-third of the school’s 2,700 students are enrolled. In 2015, the school is working toward enrolling the majority of its students. “Having to work online makes it really accessible to do the work that I have to get done,” said Zobott, a top-ranked junior who balances a heavy load of extracurricular activities with schoolwork. “I can learn on my own. I can work at the pace I want to work. And I learn the way I want to learn.”

http://www.cnn.com/2015/04/07/living/blended-learning-education/

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3,118 applicants accepted as freshmen by University of Florida, Gainesville required to take first year online

April 13th, 2015

By SOPHIE JANE EVANS, Daily Mail

More than 3,000 students are facing an unexpected decision after they received acceptance notices from the University of Florida – only to find they would have to spend a year taking online classes. The 3,118 unidentified applicants were presumably delighted when they were accepted as freshmen by the university in Gainesville for the fall after sending in applications for traditional first-year slots. But after reading their congratulations notices, they apparently realized they would need to agree to spend their entire first year taking classes on the Internet in order to attend the public college. The classes are part of a new program – the Pathway to Campus Enrollment (PaCE) – which started in 2015 and aims to accommodate a higher number of students, The Washington Post reported.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3028025/Thousands-student-receive-acceptance-notices-University-Florida-spend-entire-year-taking-ONLINE-classes.html

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Adult education options go digital in Minnesota with online offerings, software development

April 12th, 2015

by: Associated Press

Options for adult education are changing rapidly in Minnesota, and online offerings are a big reason. The St. Cloud Times (http://on.sctimes.com/1FglKci ) reports Minnesota-based choices available to adults now include software development courses with Prime Digital Academy as well as online Web development courses with Frontend Masters. Prime Digital charges about $12,000 for 18 weeks of its boot camp of classes, while Frontend Masters charges $39 per month or $390 a year for access. Also in Web and software development, groups Girl Code It Minneapolis and Twin Cities Geekettes are offering women a chance to learn how to code and break into a male-dominated field.

http://www.startribune.com/lifestyle/298790721.html

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