Data shows widening gap in higher-ed technology adoption

January 29th, 2015

by EDUCAUSE

Research from higher education technology association EDUCAUSE shows that in 2015, colleges and universities will need to evolve to address very real challenges of IT security, cost, and productivity, as well as providing user support for the “new normal” that covers mobile, cloud, online education, and BYOD environments. “The pace of change for higher education information technology is increasing–not slowing–and on many fronts. Trends that have previously dominated thought leadership and motivated early adopters are now cascading into the mainstream,” said Susan Grajek, vice president of data, research, and analytics at EDUCAUSE.

http://www.ecampusnews.com/technologies/data-gap-technology-023/

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edX: Programming language Scratch isn’t just for kids anymore

January 29th, 2015

by Barb Darrow, GigaOm

Scratch is a programming language built to help children learn basic programming skills. But now edX, the MOOC (for Massive Open Online Course) backed by top colleges including MIT, Harvard and Caltech, will offer a free Scratch course for anyone “regardless of age or digital skill.” Registration is open now for Programming in Scratch” which kicks off February 2. The course will be taught by Colleen Lewis, professor of computer science at Harvey Mudd College, a tech powerhouse and another edX partner school.

https://gigaom.com/2015/01/23/edx-says-scratch-isnt-just-for-kids-anymore/

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How Apple wants to remake the classroom

January 29th, 2015

By Nick Heath, Tech Republic

Apple has more than one million apps, more than two million books, almost one million media files available through its services, according to Couch, as well as more than 10,000 public courses through its online learning repository iTunes U – with Apple breaking down some of that content into categories and educational level to make it easier to browse. Increasingly teachers and students will turn to personalised learning services such as eSpark he said, where the students and teachers can choose the lessons that best suits the student, moving away from one size fits all education. “Going forward technology will really empower teachers to meet the need of each individual student.”

http://www.techrepublic.com/article/how-apple-wants-to-remake-the-classroom/

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EdX CEO Lays Out Disruptive Vision For Higher Ed

January 28th, 2015

by WBUR Here and Now

Anant Agarwal, CEO of edX, says “I talk about unbundling in time, function and content. Let’s take unbundling in content. Why should it be the case that a professor who teaches a course writes a textbook, teaches a course, writes the exams, the whole thing. Instead, a blended course is an unbundled course, where you might use a MOOC from a professor from another university as a new age textbook. That would be unbundling of content. So we do some of that. Why can’t we increase that? Today, why is it that every student has to learn in college when they are 18? Why four years? How about unbundling time? …. So a continuous education system like this could solve many problems. It will allow people to get just-in-time education on topics that are on the cutting edge of technology and learn as they need to learn; they may be better able to pay later.”

http://hereandnow.wbur.org/2015/01/22/edx-moocs-anant-agarwal

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IDAHO’S PATCHWORK WEB OF ONLINE LEARNING

January 28th, 2015

by KEVIN RICHERT, Idaho Education News

Repeatedly — both before and after his election to a third term — Gov. Butch Otter’s praise for Idaho’s high school broadband system has focused on access. The Idaho Education Network brings more classes into rural schools, he says, bringing the state that much closer to meeting its constitutional mandate to provide a uniform system of free public schools. The state’s own numbers tell a very different story:

http://www.idahoednews.org/news/idahos-patchwork-web-of-online-learning/#.VMFse1w_28p

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Higher ed jobs changing with technology, students

January 28th, 2015

By Joan Axelrod-Contrada, Boston Globe

Over the next 10 years, jobs for college and university administrators are expected to grow 15 percent nationally compared with 11 percent for all jobs, according to the US Labor Department. The median pay is about $86,000 a year. The growth in higher education employment. A 2013 survey found that 7.1 million students — about one-third of all students — took at least one online course, up from 6.7 million in 2012. College and university officials say many skills from other industries are transferable to higher education, although they might have to be bolstered with a degree or certificate.

http://www.bostonglobe.com/business/2015/01/23/higher-jobs-changing-with-technology-students/PO956UVR6xI3dKwjMZyMLJ/story.html

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UGA students take flight in drones class

January 27th, 2015

By RAYLEIGH ROZIER, Online Athens

The lawn outside the University of Georgia’s journalism school recently was filled with buzzing as students tried their hand at flying drones for the first time. The students are now in the third week of “Drones, Drones, Drones” a new course this semester dedicated to analyzing the airborne technology. The course is being offered through the New Media Institute, a certificate program at UGA that teaches students about emerging technologies and prepares them to use new media in their careers. According to the syllabus, the class aims to “explore the appropriate and effective use of drones, chart the regulation and proposed legislation of drones, and learn how to operate drones.” Students are also responsible for collaborating on a paper detailing both the benefits and the challenges of drone use.

http://onlineathens.com/uga/2015-01-21/uga-students-take-flight-drones-class

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How to (Really) Get Girls Into Coding

January 27th, 2015

by Lydia Loizides, Shelly Palmer

If we really want to get girls to code, then show them that everyone can code. We need to find creative, engaging ways to get girls to understand that Ruby is more than a gemstone, that Java isn’t coffee and that Python is not something to run from. Coding is not only for nerds and geeks or “super-smart people”; coding is for artists, musicians, politicians, athletes and movie stars. Coding is for everyone.

http://www.shellypalmer.com/fwb/2015/1/21/how-to-really-get-girls-into-coding

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“What happens when you type google.com into your browser and press enter?”

January 27th, 2015

by Git Hub

This repository is an attempt to answer the age old interview question “What happens when you type google.com into your browser’s address box and press enter?” Except instead of the usual story, we’re going to try to answer this question in as much detail as possible. No skipping out on anything. This is a collaborative process, so dig in and try to help out! There’s tons of details missing, just waiting for you to add them! So send us a pull request, please! This is all licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Zero license.

https://github.com/alex/what-happens-when#the-enter-key-bottoms-out

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Khan Academy Releases All Classes for iPad

January 26th, 2015

by Michael Foster, Khan Academy

For the first time ever, Khan Academy has released all of its classes specifically for the iPad. Khan Academy has positioned itself as a stopgap for people who are being failed by their education system. While the site is great for self-study, often it’s being used by students who are being let down by their teachers. When lessons are confusing, fail to cover the material adequately, or assume knowledge that students lack, they can go to Khan Academy and fill in the gaps that their education system has thrust on them. Further distribution and simplification will only help Khan Academy shore up the holes in otherwise lacking educational programs, which is why the iPad release is such a big deal. Additionally, the growing popularity of teaching by tablet around the world means that more teachers will likely resort to teaching lessons through Khan Academy instead of through costly and often lackluster textbooks. This will save schools money, it will make the education process more efficient, and it will likely make more students learn to love learning.

http://www.allvoices.com/article/100003270

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Top Apps to Enhance Your Online Learning Experience

January 26th, 2015

By Viktor, Epoch Times

The academic world is becoming increasingly high-tech, with many programs offered completely online. It follows that plugged-in students would want to make use of technology to make the most of their online studies. Try downloading the following apps to communicate with your fellow students at a distance, stay organized, and absorb more from your readings.

http://www.theepochtimes.com/n3/1208343-top-apps-to-enhance-your-online-learning-experience/

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Satellite Internet: meet the hip new investment for Richard Branson, Elon Musk

January 26th, 2015

by Megan Geuss, Ars Technica

The two moguls are backing competing networks to bring Internet to the underserved. It was an interesting week for ideas about the future of the Internet. On Wednesday, satellite industry notable Greg Wyler announced that his company OneWeb, which wants to build a micro-satellite network to bring Internet to all corners of the globe, secured investments from Richard Branson’s Virgin Group and Qualcomm. Then in a separate announcement on Friday, Elon Musk said that he would also be devoting his new Seattle office to creating “advanced micro-satellites” to deliver Internet.

http://arstechnica.com/business/2015/01/satellite-internet-meet-the-hip-new-investment-for-richard-branson-elon-musk/

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High School Girls Create Their Own Wearables at MIT Workshop

January 25th, 2015

By Michael Hart, THE Journal

Mechanical engineer Kristen Railey gathered 50 high school girls at the MIT Lincoln Laboratory in Lexington, MA, one Saturday in December. When the researcher who builds and programs military robots for the lab asked the students to close their eyes and imagine what an engineer looks like, only six said they imagined somebody like Railey, a young woman just a few years older than themselves. That’s exactly why Railey, an MIT engineering graduate, had organized the first one-day “Make Your Own Wearables” workshop for teenage girls that the Massachusetts Institute for Technology had ever held.

http://thejournal.com/articles/2015/01/15/high-school-girls-create-their-own-wearables-at-mit-workshop.aspx

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Global PC Shipments Increase Following 2-Year Decline

January 25th, 2015

By Joshua Bolkan, THE Journal

Following more than two years of declining sales, global PC shipments increased 1 percent in the fourth quarter of 2014, according to a new report from market research firm Gartner. “The PC market is quietly stabilizing after the installed base reduction driven by users diversifying their device portfolios,” said Mikako Kitagawa, principal analyst at Gartner, in a prepared statement. “Installed base PC displacement by tablets peaked in 2013 and the first half of 2014. Now that tablets have mostly penetrated some key markets, consumer spending is slowly shifting back to PCs.” “However, there are regional variations. Mostly, mature regions show an ongoing trend of positive growth, but emerging markets remain weak,” Kitagawa added.

http://thejournal.com/articles/2015/01/14/global-pc-shipments-increase-after-2year-decline.aspx

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Students break the bank to buy their books

January 25th, 2015

By: Oona Goodin-Smith and Daniel Rader, USA Today

According to a study by the U.S. Public Interest Research Group (USPIRG), as of Jan. 27, 2014, the average American college student spends $1,200 per year on books and supplies, which is equivalent to 39% of tuition and fees at a community college and 14% tuition and fees at a four-year university. By these numbers, it is estimated that the average student will spend $4,800 on textbooks and supplies by the end of his or her undergraduate stay—even more if the program requires five or six years of education. The study asserts that “publishers keep costs high by pumping out new editions and selling books bundled with software.” This is something Rona Jin, a junior studying psychology at the University of Michigan, faced firsthand when she was forced to fork over $244 for the newest edition of a cognitive psychology book software bundle for a class.

http://college.usatoday.com/2015/01/17/students-break-the-bank-to-buy-their-books/

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50+ Tools for Differentiating Instruction Through Social Media

January 24th, 2015

by John McCarthy, Edutopia

Can you recall a time when student interests like skateboarding or video were never used as part of learning curriculum because the tools needed were either too expensive or not yet conceptualized? Do you remember a time when non-traditional learners struggled, and absenteeism meant a high likelihood of students doing poorly in school, and possibly having to retake the course? If you experienced none of these scenarios, then you live in a world of possibility because you grew up with the many social media tools available to support all learners. If any of these scenarios bring back memories as a teacher or student, then you understand that we have many more tools today to ensure that learners succeed despite struggles, because students and teachers have so much more available to meet every learner’s needs.

http://www.edutopia.org/blog/differentiated-instruction-social-media-tools-john-mccarthy

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Video Boot Camp

January 24th, 2015

by Bill Selak, Edutopia

The rapid adoption of devices in the classroom has fundamentally changed the way we can create video. Every part of the creation process — writing, recording, editing, and distributing — is possible on the devices that can fit in our pocket. Vision is the most dominant of the five senses. Research shows that concepts are better remembered if they are taught visually. This is called the pictorial superiority effect, and it’s why video is such a powerful learning tool. Curating content is another significant way to incorporate video into your classroom. If you don’t have the time or software to make a fancy video, odds are someone has already made it and shared it on YouTube. This Film Festival is equal parts curation and creation.

http://www.edutopia.org/blog/five-minute-film-festival-video-boot-camp

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4 ways a GoPro can boost your campus profile

January 24th, 2015

By Meris Stansbury, eSchool News

3D printers, digital signage, educational video games—there’s just some technology that, while not vital to day-to-day campus operation, helps boost student engagement and communication, and ultimately makes your campus stand out from the competition. Enter the GoPro camera. Often reserved for cool YouTube videos about extreme sports or creepy videos of cheerleaders hula-hooping, innovative institutions looking to technology as a branding and marketing tool are now using GoPro cameras to highlight campus life, build international brand awareness, enhance student campus activities, and even enrich lab work.

http://www.ecampusnews.com/top-news/gopro-education-campus-889/

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Hands-on: Microsoft’s HoloLens is flat-out magical

January 23rd, 2015

by Peter Bright, Ars Technica

Microsoft claims this will replace the computer screen – and they may well be right. HoloLens is an engaging and effective augmented reality system. With HoloLens I saw virtual objects—Minecraft castles, Skype windows, even the surface of Mars—presented over, and spatially integrated with, the real world. It looked for every bit like the holographic projection we saw depicted in Star Wars and Total Recall. Except that’s shortchanging Microsoft’s work, because these virtual objects were in fact far more convincing than the washed out, translucent message R2D2 projected, and much better than Sharon Stone’s virtual tennis coach. The images were bright, saturated, and reasonably opaque, giving the virtual objects a real feeling of solidity.

http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2015/01/hands-on-with-hololens-making-the-virtual-real/1/

Imagine the education potential as you check out the video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aAKfdeOX3-o

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Looking back and looking forward at higher-ed CyberSecurity

January 23rd, 2015

By Bruce P. Burrell, eCampus News

What went very wrong in 2014; what are concerns for 2015? According to various reports, including those from BreachLevelIndex.com, PrivacyRights.org, and Secure Computing, there were at least 154 data breaches in the U.S., .edu realm in 2014, and another 36 in .edu-related healthcare facilities. It may not sound like a shocking number at first blush, but within those breaches, there were ultimately 2,608,038 known records exposed with the number of records compromised ranging from a single record to over 309,000. These records were compromised in a variety of ways; some were accidentally released, others the result of malicious insiders or outsiders.

http://www.ecampusnews.com/safety-and-security/2015-cybersecurity-data-288/

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5 ed-tech highlights from CES 2015

January 23rd, 2015

By Phillip Britt, eCampus News

From extremes like robot teachers to soon-to-be ubiquitous technologies like wearable devices, CES 2015 did not disappoint. The annual International Consumer Electronics Show is the showcase for newer technologies already in the marketplace and those soon to debut. “What is popular in the consumer market is becoming more of the backbone of education, because that’d what students bring in,” said Kerry Goldstein, producer of TransformingEDU, the show’s education track. “There’s no place better than CES to look at what is going on with technology.”

http://www.ecampusnews.com/technologies/ces-highlights-education-377/

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