Archive for the ‘Online Learning News’ Category

The Real Legacy of MOOCs: Better Introductory Courses

Tuesday, September 2nd, 2014

By Joshua Kim, PBS Media/Shift

The real impact of MOOCs will be found in the traditional introductory course. Today’s MOOC-catalyzed efforts to improve introductory courses diverge somewhat from the core motivations of NCAT grant recipients and participants. Mostly gone is the impetus to lower instructional costs. The motivations to improve introductory courses to affect student retention and success have not gone away, but they have been joined by a push to improve the value that students perceive from their learning experience in the course.

http://www.pbs.org/mediashift/2014/08/the-real-legacy-of-moocs-better-introductory-courses/

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How online education can help Colorado adults

Tuesday, September 2nd, 2014

by Gabi Zolla, Denver Posts

If Colorado is to maintain an economy and living standard that is a model for other states, extending online education opportunities to low-income and working adults is a vital step in that direction. The technological breakthroughs of the Information Age have been impacting education at both the K-12 and college level. This has caused many debates about the value of online education, and criticism of newer online programs with open and free resources. But no matter one’s views, the truth is that online education will only continue to expand at all levels, and when it comes to making virtual learning opportunities accessible for all, the higher education world has been doing just that.

http://www.denverpost.com/opinion/ci_26388299/how-online-education-can-help-colorado-adults

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No Chalkboard Needed: J-Schools Experiment with Blended Learning

Tuesday, September 2nd, 2014

By Katherine Krueger, PBS

If a course is thoughtfully designed, Kelvin Thompson, a member of the team building online learning tools at the University of Central Florida, sees no drawbacks to strategically implementing blended learning methods. The University of Central Florida has been leading the charge in developing online tools to support blended learning courses since the mid-1990s. Working with the American Association of State Colleges and Universities, they developed a Blended Learning Toolkit to provide resources for instructors looking to design blended courses. Thompson said almost as an afterthought, the group developed a subject-neutral MOOC to teach educators and developers the ropes for designing these classes.

http://www.pbs.org/mediashift/2014/08/no-chalkboard-needed-j-schools-experiment-with-blended-learning/

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‘Sense of belonging’ enhances the online learning experience

Monday, September 1st, 2014

by Lisa Thomas and James Herbert, the Conversation

We investigated strategies to support learning for non-traditional students in online contexts and found that “sense of belonging” was one aspect deemed to be important. Participants were asked to discuss their experiences with online learning courses and strategies that supported learning for the diverse range of students in this context. A key finding of this research suggested that where teachers were able to foster a sense of belonging in their course, students reported greater enjoyment, reduced anxiety and were less inclined to withdraw from the course.

http://theconversation.com/sense-of-belonging-enhances-the-online-learning-experience-30503

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Online learning attracting new entrants

Monday, September 1st, 2014

by Virtual College (UK)

The arrival of online learning has opened up the world of education to people who previously felt shut out, as they have the chance to learn at their own pace and fit their classes around their existing work and family commitments. An increase in the number of people signing up to apprenticeships has also been fueled partly by the e-learning boom, as many of these individuals are supplementing their learning on the job with classes in their own time. Competency-based education is another growing trend across the sector, with this having roots in the US. The University of Wisconsin’s UW Flex and Capella University’s FlexPath are among the other most notable examples of learning establishments taking note of competency-based education and this is likely to continue to make waves in the coming years.

http://www.virtual-college.co.uk/news/Online-learning-attracting-new-entrants-newsitems-801744375.aspx

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Will learning coding boost kids’ college, career prospects?

Monday, September 1st, 2014

by eSchool News

Interest in computer coding is surging for a growing number of students stoked by popular computer gaming and smartphone apps–and hoping for a crucial leg up when applying to college and launching careers. Students and their parents view coding as an indispensable skill in the digital era, especially since the number of programming-related jobs is projected to soar in the next decade. Interest in programming among students and parents springs partly from the omnipresence of technology in children’s lives. The ability to develop a computer game or smartphone app has become–if not cool–at least a lot less nerdy. About 46 percent of recent college graduates say they are underemployed, according to a survey this year by management consulting firm Accenture. That’s up from 41 percent last year.

http://www.eschoolnews.com/2014/08/26/computer-coding-prospects-897/

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Daphne Koller on Education, Coursera, and MOOCs

Sunday, August 31st, 2014

by Russ Roberts, EconTalk

Daphne Koller of Coursera talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about online educational website Coursera and the future of education both online and via bricks-and-mortar. Koller, co-founder of Coursera with Andrew Ng, explains how Coursera partners with universities, how they try to create community and interaction, and the likely impact of widespread digital education on universities and those who want to learn. The conversation includes a discussion of why Koller left a chaired position in computer science at Stanford University to run a for-profit start-up in a crowded field.

http://www.econtalk.org/archives/2014/08/daphne_koller_o.html

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10 Free Online Courses That Every Professional Should Take

Sunday, August 31st, 2014

by RICHARD FELONI, Business Insider

We asked Salman Khan, founder, executive director, and lead tutor of Khan Academy, for the top 10 lectures professionals in any industry would appreciate, and included them below. Not every lecture is the first one in its respective series, but Khan thinks each is a good indicator of whether you’d like to spend more time going through all the videos and exercises in that course.

http://www.businessinsider.com/essential-khan-academy-courses-2014-8?op=1

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LI colleges, universities boost online courses

Sunday, August 31st, 2014

By JOIE TYRRELL, Newsday

Online education at most Long Island universities and colleges is being boosted in the 2014-15 school year, with the state university system continuing its major push and other schools reconstructing courses, hiring staff and adding infrastructure to support virtual learning. “We are realizing a vision of learning anytime, anywhere,” said Wendy Tang, an associate professor at Stony Brook University. She also is director of an online SBU program that leads to a bachelor of science in electrical engineering.

http://www.newsday.com/long-island/li-colleges-universities-boost-online-courses-1.9134768

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Blended learning design advice for collaboration & retention

Saturday, August 30th, 2014

By Meris Stansbury, eCampus News

According to a new roundup of case studies spanning multiple universities in Australia, blended synchronous learning can improve student retention rates and ease the concern that online students aren’t getting the same education as on-campus students. However, that’s only if blended learning is done right. Researchers from Macquarie University, Charles Stuart University, and the University of Melbourne identified seven recent case studies from leading universities using diverse technologies in blended synchronous learning to enhance student and faculty collaboration, ultimately leading to better retention rates for online students and more effective learning.

http://www.ecampusnews.com/top-news/blended-learning-design-763/

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Trust in online education on the rise

Saturday, August 30th, 2014

By Ron Bethke, eCampus News

A recent Gallup poll has revealed that Americans are increasingly valuing the quality of online colleges and universities. A growing trust in digital institutions is occurring with online learning. According to a new Gallup poll, more U.S. adults (out of a random sample of about 1,000) agree or strongly agree that online colleges and universities offer high-quality education. The 37 percent of adults polled, who agreed with idea that online instructions offer high-quality education in the Gallup-Luminia Foundation Poll on Higher Education, represent a respectable increase among a similar group polled in 2011, when only 30 percent of those polled responded positively to the question. A neutral stance was taken by 34 percent of those polled.

http://www.ecampusnews.com/top-news/trust-online-poll-678/

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5 important higher-ed conversations on Twitter

Saturday, August 30th, 2014

By Michael Sharnoff, eCampus News

See what higher-ed professionals are saying on Twitter about some of the most pressing ed-tech issues. How will colleges and universities find a more sustainable business model in higher ed?  Whether discussing the latest trends in online learning, cybersecurity, or tuition costs, there are plenty of ed-tech conversations to follow on Twitter.

http://www.ecampusnews.com/top-news/twitter-higher-ed-382/

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What’s better: Skills or degrees?

Friday, August 29th, 2014

By Meris Stansbury, eCampus News

According to a recent national survey on whether employees value their degrees more than skills training, though most employees say higher education is still a must, skills training is what’s more important to their career. Riding the recent waves of criticism from the general public on the high cost of tuition, lack of employment post-graduation, and perceived de-valuing of the traditional degree from employers, many new initiatives in higher-ed have taken root—from competency-based education (CBE) pathways to skills training programs beginning as early as high school.

http://www.ecampusnews.com/top-news/skills-degrees-survey-486/

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Critics of online degrees start from a false premise

Friday, August 29th, 2014

By PAUL LeBLANC, Concord Monitor

The higher education that tends to most shape our debates is the one of four-year, first-time, full-time students going right from high school to college – the college most often depicted in movies and television and novels and cherished by most who had the privilege of being educated that way. That higher education is about getting a degree and an education, and it is about coming of age. And these students now make up less than 20 percent of all college students in America. Online programs, in contrast, mostly serve working adults who have had all the coming of age they need. For this population, the four C’s that shape adult students’ needs are: credential (getting the right degree that advances their work and careers), completion (getting a degree as quickly as possible while maintaining quality), cost (a major issue for much of this population) and convenience (having delivery methods that work for them).

http://www.concordmonitor.com/home/13187082-95/my-turn-critics-of-online-degrees-start-from-a-false-premise

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Computer Science: The Future of Education

Friday, August 29th, 2014

by Alison Derbenwick Miller, Edutopia

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, by 2020 there will be 1.4 million new computer science jobs. However, between current professionals and university students, we will only have 400,000 computer scientists trained to fill those roles. Since it can take as many as 25 years to create a computer scientist, and since computer science skills are becoming increasingly integral for jobs in all industries, this skills gap is on track to emerge as a formidable economic, security, and social justice challenge in the next few years. Teachers, schools, parents, and industry must act on multiple fronts to address student readiness, expand access to computer science curriculum and opportunities, and help foster interest in computer science to ensure that it becomes a core component of every child’s education.

http://www.edutopia.org/blog/computer-science-future-of-education-alison-derbenwick-miller

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Coursera’s MOOCs Go To Work: What MasterCard Is Learning

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

by George Anders, Forbes

An intriguing strategy tweak is taking shape at Coursera, the pioneer of massively open online courses, or MOOCs. While Coursera still opens its (virtual) doors wide to anyone who wants to take a free course for the fun of it, the company also is welcoming big firms such as MasterCard, BNY Mellon, AT&T and Shell, as they seek new content for employee training and development. The business case is obvious.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/georgeanders/2014/08/20/courseras-new-goal-teaching-at-firms-such-as-mastercard/

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CAPS goes digital with new online tutoring

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

By Matt Reisen, New Mexico Daily Lobo

This semester a new program will help students bring tutors into the comfort of their own home — electronically. Anne Compton, associate director of the Center for Academic Program Support, said CAPS will debut its new Online Learning Center on Monday, which allows students to receive tutoring from their own computer. The Online Learning Center, a combined effort of CAPS, Extended University and New Media and Extended Learning, will give tutoring to students who may be too busy, or too far removed, to physically go to the CAPS office, but still need assistance, she said.

http://www.dailylobo.com/article/2014/08/caps-online

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Study examines online, face-to-face courses

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

by Phys.org

“The study reveals students actually see online classes as more challenging,” Professor Platt said. “Part of that is the students have to do more to manage their own time and schedule because online courses do not meet at a set point each week and some self-paced courses don’t have regular deadlines.” Students also perceived online classes as having less interaction than face-to-face classes, which Platt said could make the course more challenging for students who rely on extra help from their instructor or their peers. “The main reason the students took online courses was the flexibility of scheduling,” Platt said, noting online courses don’t conflict with scheduled courses in the classroom. “Online courses also can fit in if a student has a part-time job.”

http://phys.org/news/2014-08-online-face-to-face-courses.html

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Awarding Badges in Moodle

Wednesday, August 27th, 2014

By Tim States, Emmett Dulaney, Campus Technology

Organizations like Boys and Girl Scouts have long modeled the significance of having a common language to describe an accomplishment through earning physical badges for completion of preset tasks. The idea of creating a common language for noting student achievement has been embraced by the educational community through the next generation of badging known as digital badges. Moodle offers a central repository to manage and distribute digital badges for an institution. Badges can be awarded at the site level or course level. Site-level badges allow for institutional collaboration on a set of common standards for awarding badges, while course level badges can allow individual instructors to set their own standards for acknowledgment. In this article, we’ll first take a look at why you might want to do this and outline the user experience as an instructor and student.

http://campustechnology.com/articles/2014/08/20/awarding-badges-in-moodle.aspx

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This Flipped Class Is Studying Biology with a $10 Microscope and a Smart Phone

Wednesday, August 27th, 2014

By Dian Schaffhauser, Campus Technology

Take a smartphone, add $10 worth of plywood and Plexiglas, a bit of hardware, laser pointer lenses and LED click lights from a keychain flashlight and you have a DIY microscope worthy of use in college classes. At least, that’s the idea of an instructor at the Missouri University of Science and Technology who is adding the do-it-yourself technology in her biology lab courses. The project is part of a larger research endeavor at the university to explore the design of instructional labs for science and engineering courses that can be delivered in a blended or online format. The goal of a research is to develop e-learning models to redesign traditional lab courses to work in a hybrid format and to create a handbook for use by instructors that explains how to apply the new models.

http://campustechnology.com/articles/2014/08/19/this-flipped-class-is-studying-biology-with-a-$10-microscope-and-a-smart-phone.aspx

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Why you should care about gamification in higher education

Wednesday, August 27th, 2014

By Meris Stansbury, eCampus News

gGaming in education has, for the most part, been a K-12 trend, with its popularity relegated to supplemental learning for elementary school students. But gamification, from its implementation at MIT to its praise from the job industry, has much more serious implications for college students—and perhaps it’s time higher education got serious about incorporating game design. Today’s course design is under incredible pressure from popular practices favored by students—practices like the inclusion of interactive mobile technology, blended learning, Flipped Learning, and the integration of peer community forums—and according to experts, understanding the reasons why students prefer these methods of instruction can be gleaned from taking part in gaming.

http://www.ecampusnews.com/top-news/gamification-higher-education-028/

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