Educational Technology

June 28, 2017

Microsoft Project Develops Physical Programming Language for Blind Students

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

By Dian Schaffhauser, THE Journal

A Microsoft project will teach blind students from seven to 11 years-old how to program and apply design thinking to projects. “Project Torino,” as it’s called, uses a “physical programming language,” pods that are connected by the students to build programs. Learners string the pods together to create code that plays music, stories and poetry. The idea is to allow kids with visual impairment to participate in coding exercises in their classes right alongside seeing students — or to allow all students to learn the basics of coding in a tactile way.

https://thejournal.com/articles/2017/06/01/microsoft-project-develops-physical-programming-language-for-blind-students.aspx

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This university’s interactive lab is revolutionizing research

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BY TANIA BARDYN, eCampus News

University of Washington brings data to life in new “Idea Incubator” space with an interactive video wall for health sciences researchers. Our mission at the Health Sciences Library at the University of Washington is to advance the healthcare fields through scholarship, research, education and access to health information resources. We support not just university faculty, health researchers and students, but also a variety of other professionals and researchers in the Puget Sound and state of Washington. With that in mind, when the university library decided to add a new space on campus to enhance research data analysis and allow multidisciplinary collaboration, we didn’t want just another conference room; we wanted to give researchers something they couldn’t get elsewhere on campus.

https://www.ecampusnews.com/featured/featured-on-ecampus-news/university-of-washington-lab/

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Why Creating and Maintaining Accessible Digital Resources is Neither Easy nor Optional

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

by Matthew Lynch, Tech Edvocate

Organizations today — whether colleges and universities or third-party providers — are investing considerable funds and effort in building technology platforms, content, features that make the content discoverable and usable, and an interface that allows users to navigate the resource. Creating and maintaining an accessible digital resource is no simple feat. The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 AA standards require providers to support visual, auditory, and manual accessibility. To create accessible resources requires an understanding of these standards, routine monitoring, testing, evaluation, and most important, building accessibility into the DNA of code development and web design.

http://www.thetechedvocate.org/opinion-creating-maintaining-accessible-digital-resources-neither-easy-optional/

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June 27, 2017

Tim Cook Reveals Apple’s 10-Year Plan For Future Tech

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:37 am

by eSchool News

Apple recently held their Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) and made a slew of announcements about some of the updates and new products that we can expect in the next year. The company seems to be ratcheting up their focus in the field of AR/VR. A new augmented reality platform, virtual reality development tools, the HomePod speaker, and improvements to iOS 11 on the iPad may not feel revolutionary or even particularly useful right now, but they are the building blocks for the technologies Apple is betting will power our future. Let’s break it down:

https://futurism.com/tim-cook-reveals-apples-10-year-plan-for-future-tech/

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IBM’s Newest Program Uses AI to Solve the Biggest Problems Facing Humanity Today

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

by Futurism

IBM announced its Science for Social Good initiative and the 12 projects that will comprise it for 2017. The program uses big data, deep learning, and AI to solve complex social problems. On June 6, IBM launched Science for Social Good, a new program designed to take on some of the world’s weightiest problems using technology and data. The team of researchers, nonprofits, and postdoctoral fellows will be working on 12 projects for the remainder of 2017 alone, each aligning with at least one of the United Nations’ (UN) Sustainable Development Goals. These goals describe the most significant threats and inequalities that exist in the world today and sets them forth as problems to be solved by 2030.

https://futurism.com/ibms-newest-program-uses-ai-to-solve-the-biggest-problems-facing-humanity-today/

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Tech is Improving Learning Opportunities for Students with Special Needs

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

by Matthew Lynch, Tech Edvisor

The number of students with special needs is on the rise across the United States, making it increasingly difficult for educators to teach effectively to their entire student body. Did you know that only 62.7% of students with special needs in the US graduate high school? Advances in technology are making it possible for teachers to best assist students with special needs and or limited language skills, to learn alongside the average student. Through the use of computer programs and games and other devices, students with special needs can participate in the same activity as their peers or a slightly altered program based on their specific needs and skill set.

http://www.wthr.com/article/technology-helps-students-with-learning-disabilities-excel-in-the-college-classroom

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June 26, 2017

K–12 Cyber Incidents Have Been Increasing in 2017

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

By Richard Chang, THE Journal

Doug Levin, president of Ed Tech Strategies, a Virginia-based research and counsel consultancy, says that as K–12 schools increase their use and reliance on digital tools and services, the number of cyber incidents has also been on the rise — exponentially so. Since Jan. 1, 2016, 141 U.S. K–12 schools and districts experienced one or more publicly disclosed cyber incidents. Sixty-seven incidents were reported during 2016, and 74 have been reported during the first five months of 2017. If the pace continues at the current rate, that will represent a more than 100 percent increase in 2017, compared to last year. “Incidents and disruptions have been on the rise,” Levin said in an interview. “We have had more incidents in 2017 than all of 2016. We’ve seen more than double the number of incidents in schools.”

https://thejournal.com/articles/2017/06/08/k12-cyber-incidents-have-been-increasing-in-2017.aspx

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How EdTech Will Revolutionize Learning in India?

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

by Nidhi Singh, Entrepreneur India

A report says India’s online education market is set to grow to $ 1.96 billion by 2021 from $ 247 million in 2016. EdTech is a sunrise industry now, attracting investments because of its promising potential to change the way students can learn and grow. The Indian education scenario is changing with a number of technology start-ups stepping into the zone to improve the method of learning. Edtech entrepreneurs are leveraging technology to bring in innovations, find solutions and improve the overall quality of education.

https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/295406

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How to Inspire Your Students to Lead in the Digital Age

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

by Matthew Lynch, Tech Edvocate

There’s no denying that the digital age has transformed education. However, education in this time of technological transformation needs to extend beyond the question of “How can we incorporate technology and digital tools into the classroom?” and into the realm of “How can we better prepare today’s students to be leaders in technology tomorrow?” Successfully preparing students to become future technology leaders requires a good deal more than simply equipping students to go off to college to study engineering, computer science, mathematics, or another technology-related field. It requires fostering curiosity, collaborative skills, and a willingness to try — and fail — in their quest to find new solutions and explore new ideas. Teachers, Ed techs, and other educators can support this effort by inspiring their students in a variety of ways.

http://www.thetechedvocate.org/creating-tech-leaders-tomorrow-inspire-students-lead-digital-age/

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June 25, 2017

Google Has A Course That Teaches Kids How To Deal With Trolls And Online Scams Using Games

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

by GWYN D’MELLO, India Times

Google has launched an educational program designed to teach children on how to be safe online, and also how to be civilised netizens. Called ‘Be Internet Awesome’, it has a classroom course and fun video games to teach safe password habits, raise awareness on scams, and discourage trolling and cyberbullying.

http://www.indiatimes.com/technology/news/google-has-a-course-that-teaches-kids-how-to-deal-with-trolls-and-online-scams-using-games-323342.html

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Why online schools are growing

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

by Heather Ballien, Detroit News

Virtual schools are expected to grow at an annual rate of 12.8 percent during the next four years. Nearly one million students currently participate in some form of online learning, with more than 25 virtual schools providing services in various states across the country. Additionally, five states require students to take at least one online course before graduating. As a virtual school educator, I see firsthand why this 21st century education model is working for students.

http://www.detroitnews.com/story/opinion/2017/06/07/online-schools/102567692/

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Lessons Learned From How One Virginia District Prepared for Online Learning

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

by EdSurge

What does it take to prepare a district with the proper equipment and training to support online learning? A case study from New America explores how Alexandria City Public Schools (ACPS) in Virginia built out its technology infrastructure over the course of two decades. The experience “foreshadows what awaits states across the country that are just now connecting schools to sufficient broadband service to support online testing,” states the public policy think tank. According to the report, technology investments focused initially on supporting testing needs, leaving the ACPS educators “largely to its own devices” about how to best help teachers use technology for instruction. Its chief technology officer later restructured the technology department to include more teachers to help make important decisions concerning edtech tools.

https://www.edsurge.com/news/2017-06-06-case-study-lessons-learned-from-how-one-virginia-district-prepared-for-online-learning

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June 24, 2017

The 3 major dos and don’ts of blended learning

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

BY TARA BEAMS, eSchool News

Administrator discusses how to think about blended learning implementation in stages, refinement and honing. With the goal of making the learning experience more personalized and individual, a growing number of schools have embraced the concept of blended learning. The transition from more traditional pedagogies to one that’s centered on blended learning isn’t easy, but the rewards are certainly many. Here are a few dos and don’ts that we’ve discovered on our own journey down the blended learning path:

https://www.eschoolnews.com/2017/06/07/dos-donts-blended-learning/

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The Future of Free Speech, Trolls, Anonymity and Fake News Online

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

BY LEE RAINIE, JANNA ANDERSON AND JONATHAN ALBRIGHT, Pew Research Center

Many experts fear uncivil and manipulative behaviors on the internet will persist – and may get worse. This will lead to a splintering of social media into AI-patrolled and regulated ‘safe spaces’ separated from free-for-all zones. Some worry this will hurt the open exchange of ideas and compromise privacy

http://www.pewinternet.org/2017/03/29/the-future-of-free-speech-trolls-anonymity-and-fake-news-online/

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Digital Citizenship + Liberal Arts = Students Empowered for Life

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

by Annie Almekinder, et.al., EDUCAUSE Review

Students often attempt to navigate the Internet without being given the space to intentionally think about and understand how the digital world works, how it influences their lives, and how they in turn can influence its direction. Liberal arts colleges emphasize preparing students to be lifelong learners, creative and critical thinkers, and engaged members of whatever communities they enter after college, but how do they prepare their students for the digital world? Following a workshop on liberal arts colleges and digital citizenship, representatives from four higher education institutions share their varied experiences in cultivating digital citizenship awareness and capabilities among their students.

http://er.educause.edu/articles/2017/6/digital-citizenship-liberal-arts-students-empowered-for-life

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June 23, 2017

3D printer capabilities form the future of higher ed

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

by Brian Nadel, University Business

3D printing may be new to many higher education administrators, but for students it’s already old hat, as they were likely introduced to it in middle or high school. “3D Printing has changed dramatically over the past couple of years,” says Jesse Roitenberg, national education manager at Stratasys, a provider and consultant for 3D printers. “There are more low-cost options, which has led to elementary and middle schools purchasing, which has led to the high schools, colleges and universities having to step up their game.” Technology consultant Terry Wohlers estimates the industry saw over $6 billion in sales in 2016 and is growing at 17 percent a year. Colorado-based Wohler Associates, his marketing and analysis firm, tracks 113 higher ed programs that offer 3D printing.

https://www.universitybusiness.com/article/3d-printer-capabilities-form-future-higher-ed

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Ray Kurzweil’s Most Exciting Predictions About the Future of Humanity

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

by Patrick Caughill, Futurism

Ray Kurzweil is a formidable figure in futuristic thinking, as he is estimated to have an 86 percent accuracy rate for his predictions about the future. The future he envisions is one marked by decentralization of both the physical and mental. Kurzweil continues to share his visions for the future, and his latest prediction was made at the most recent SXSW Conference, where he claimed that the Singularity — the moment when technology becomes smarter than humans — will happen by 2045. Sixteen years prior to that, it will be just as smart as us. As he told Futurism, “2029 is the consistent date I have predicted for when an AI will pass a valid Turing test and therefore achieve human levels of intelligence.”

https://futurism.com/ray-kurzweils-most-exciting-predictions-about-the-future-of-humanity/

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June 22, 2017

Factors Sparking Engagement in Online Learning

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

by Ambalika Dogra, Ed Tech Review

As we are aware with the word ‘motivation’ and it is easy to identify motivated students in the classroom because they show interest, curiosity, involvement, and enthusiasm than others; same factors play a chief role in engaging students in the learning. Students who are engaged show complete involvement and intense efforts in the learning activities with the positive emotions. Skinner and Belmont (1993) while emphasizing upon behavioral and emotional aspects of the engagement implied that the opposite of engagement is disaffection which means disaffected students are bored, show anger, and they are withdrawn easily from the classroom, hence they are disengaged. In other words, engagement is a participation of students not only in classroom activities, but their cognitive and affective (Fredricks, Blumenfeld & Paris, 2004) involvement in all manoeuvres associated with the subject matter whether in class or outside it.

http://edtechreview.in/e-learning/2807-engagement-in-online-learning

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Centralia College Instructors Develop App to Help Students Succeed

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

By The Chronicle

Two Centralia College instructors have created a cellphone app that gives students a visual representation of their skills, allows them to see exactly how they’re doing in a class and informs them what they need to work on to improve their grades. Alisha Williams, an English instructor, and Gordon Gul, a computer science instructor, recently won the 2017 Connie Broughton Leadership and Innovation in eLearning Award from the Washington State eLearning Council for their app, according to a press release from the college. “We wanted to help students focus more on achieving the course outcomes, so we decided to link the things they are learning to the grades they are earning,” Gul said. “We needed a way to show students the correlation between their skills performance and their score on an assignment or quiz.” This resulted in an interactive app called Grade Outcomes Assessment Learning Strategy, or GOALS, that uses the Canvas online learning platform to access course information to create a color-coded, interactive chart.

http://www.chronline.com/news/centralia-college-instructors-develop-app-to-help-students-succeed/article_83e1c830-4816-11e7-859e-2776981e7d4e.html

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Creating a Makerspace on a Budget

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

by Matthew Lynch, Tech Edvocate

The ultimate goal of any good teacher is not just to teach his or her content, but to mold young men and women who will be productive, contributing members of society who can solve problems and, hopefully, make the world a better place. It’s not always important that a student can, in isolation, recite the Pythagorean Theorem or a list of prepositions. Instead, it’s important to use the tools and the knowledge learned in the classroom to positively impact the world around us. And that’s where Makerspaces come in! A Makerspace is a way to bring rote learning to life, to teach students to become lifelong learners, and to encourage problem-solving skills.

http://www.thetechedvocate.org/creating-makerspace-budget/

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June 21, 2017

UC San Diego Undergrads to Create VR, AR Content in New Lab

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

By Sri Ravipati, Campus Technology

The University of California, San Diego (UCSD) last month opened the doors to its Virtual Reality (VR) Lab, a new facility for undergraduate students to develop content for virtual environments. The space looks like “a cross between a classroom and a tech pavilion at the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas,” according to a university prepared statement, with “25 standalone systems combining an Oculus Rift head-mounted display, two controllers for navigating inside VR environments, a computer workstation equipped with a high-end graphics card, various peripherals and a custom-made breakout box for plugging in and unplugging cables.” In addition, the lab has several 360-degree cameras, hand-tracking devices from Leap Motion and an HTC Vive VR system” that were previously purchased using a $20,000 grant from a campus-wide program.

https://campustechnology.com/articles/2017/06/01/uc-san-diego-lab-to-focus-on-vr-content-creation.aspx

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