Archive for October, 2012

Exporting Online Learning

Wednesday, October 31st, 2012

by Paul Fain, Inside Higher Ed

California’s Coastline Community College is set to create low-cost, online bachelor’s degree pathways where students can enroll simultaneously at one of three public universities, none of which are in California. The new partnership between Coastline and the University of Massachusetts Online, Penn State University’s World Campus and the University of Illinois-Springfield should go live next spring. Inside Higher Ed Under the project, students would attend Coastline full-time for their first year of course offerings, with a targeted haul of 30 credits. They would then be concurrently enrolled at the college and one of its three university partners for the next two years. The curriculum of that segment would be 60 credits. Then, the final year would be 30 credits of “capstone” courses at the online university. Students could complete their associate degree on their way to a bachelor’s.  [ed note - this is the model that has been successfully implemented over the past dozen years at the University of Illinois Springfield]

http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2012/10/30/calif-community-college-goes-out-state-online-degree-partnerships

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Learning Online: Why Long Lectures Are Ineffective

Wednesday, October 31st, 2012

By Salman Khan, Time

Each school day, millions of students move in unison from classroom to classroom where they listen to 50- to 90-minute lectures. Despite there being anywhere from 20 to 300 humans in the room, there is little actual interaction. This model of education is so commonplace that we have accepted it as a given. For centuries, it has been the most economical way to “educate” a large number of students. Today, however, we know about the limitations of the class lecture, so why does it remain the most common format?
http://ideas.time.com/2012/10/02/why-lectures-are-ineffective/

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Distance Online Learning Numbers Increase

Wednesday, October 31st, 2012

By Erich Schaffhauser, KELO TV

More South Dakota high school students are ditching traditional class time for distance learning to earn part of their education. The NSU Center for Statewide E-learning connects students in various schools with a teacher at NSU through technology and its enrollment has jumped nearly 10 percent this year alone. When kindergarten through 12th grade enrollment in a school falls in the low hundreds, the number of classes offered in-house can be limited. That’s why some Warner students are thankful for additional courses offered online or elsewhere. “It’s just another way we get the opportunity to get those classes that aren’t offered here,” student Erin Punt said.

http://www.keloland.com/newsdetail.cfm/distance-learning-numbers-increase/?id=138927

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Digital online learning ‘accelerating’ at University of Virginia

Tuesday, October 30th, 2012

by Virtual College (UK)

Online learning at the University of Virginia (UVa) is advancing after thousands of students have signed up to its non-credit virtual courses. The institution has begun rolling out massive open online courses (MOOCs), following in the footsteps of many other US higher education facilities, the Daily Progress reports. According to Siva Vaidhyanathan, chair of UVa’s department for media studies, the purpose of introducing MOOCs at the institution is to perform a public service that also enhances UVa’s global reputation. He was quoted as saying the university has provided “online and hybrid courses and degree programs for years. There is nothing new or lucrative about that. Some of them are very cool, especially in the Curry School of Education.”

http://www.virtual-college.co.uk/news/Digital-learning-accelerating-at-University-of-Virginia–newsitems-801473636.aspx

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Online learning calls for new set of skills

Tuesday, October 30th, 2012

by Marcia Devlin, the Age

University teaching staff are ill-prepared for the challenges of the online world that higher education is fast becoming, partly because the necessary time and effort to prepare and support them has not yet been invested. The Horizon Report 2012 Higher Education Edition makes predictions about emerging technologies likely to have a large impact over the next five years in education around the globe. One of the trends reported this year is that people increasingly expect to be able to work, learn, and study whenever and wherever they want to. As the report says, we live in an increasingly busy world where learners have to balance demands from home, work, school, and family.

http://www.theage.com.au/national/education/online-learning-calls-for-new-set-of-skills-20121022-28156.html

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UC Online courses now available to the public

Tuesday, October 30th, 2012

by Dean Mayorga, UC Riverside Highlander

The newly-implemented online program UC Online provides more students with the option of taking general education classes through a University of California campus. Initially reserved for UC-enrolled students, the program became accessible to the public in early October. The UC system is hoping to target undergraduate classes that may be overcrowded. First introduced in January at UC Merced, the program has gradually expanded to eight other UC campuses, with the current enrollment of 1,700 undergraduates. This fall, eight classes were offered, such as The Beauty and Joy of Computing (CS 10), Art, Science and Technology (DESMA 9) and Maps and Spatial Reasoning (Geog 12) throughout the UC system. There is only one available course at UCR, entitled Dance, Cultures and Contexts (Dance 7).

http://www.highlandernews.org/4963/uc-online-courses-now-available-to-the-public/

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Improve Online Learning Student Engagement with Learning Analytics

Monday, October 29th, 2012

by onlinelearninginsights

Online learning is dynamic, active, at times disorganized, yet with the effective use of tools, instructors can adapt and adjust instruction to create a rich learning experience. This is part two in a three-part series on learning analytics. Learning analytics is a powerful tool that can help instructors adapt their course to create an engaging, robust learning environment. Analytics, the newest tool to improve student learning, is a branch of the latest application of Big Data, used exclusively at one time for big-box retailers such as Wal-Mart, Home Depot and Fortune 500 companies, has now become mainstream in education. Learning analytics in the education sector collects data whenever students log-on to their institutions learning management platform [LMS] such as Blackboard or Moodle. Each student click known as a ‘view’ in Moodle, is associated with a time stamp, a record of the time students spent with each resource. Analytics involves the mining of data, analysis and reporting, which creates [potentially] useful information about student learning.

https://onlinelearninginsights.wordpress.com/2012/10/23/how-course-instructors-can-improve-student-engagement-with-learning-analytics/

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CourseWork alternatives offer greater social aspect in online learning

Monday, October 29th, 2012

By Marshall Watkins, Stanford Daily

Even while various offerings compete with CourseWork to serve the Stanford community, the University continues to emphasize platforms focused on online education and the accompanying potential for reaching thousands of students. Internally developed platforms such as Class2Go and startups such as Coursera have found applications both within and beyond Stanford in a shift supported by University administrators. Many of these integrate the essential features of course management software within the massive open online course platform. “We want to get ahead of this wave,” said University President John Hennessy to the Faculty Senate in January, speaking on online education. “I want to be surfing the wave, not drowning in it.”

http://www.stanforddaily.com/2012/10/23/coursework-alternatives-offer-greater-social-aspect/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=coursework-alternatives-offer-greater-social-aspect

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The 6 Hottest Teaching and Online Learning Trends (And How Teachers Are Adopting Them)

Monday, October 29th, 2012

by edudemic

From flipping your classroom to deploying digital textbooks, there’s a lot of disruption happening in the classroom. We talk about these trends every day on Edudemic and hope that helps you stay on the so-called bleeding edge of education innovation. But rather than talk about the latest trends, why not actually find out how (and if) teachers are adopting each trend? The below infographic details the 6 hottest teaching trends and looks at how they’re being adopted.

http://edudemic.com/2012/10/the-6-hottest-teaching-trends-and-how-teachers-are-adopting-them/

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Learning Online Tweet by Tweet – It’s Official: Using Twitter Makes Students More Engaged

Sunday, October 28th, 2012

by Edudemic

Further affirming what you probably already know, Twitter is evidently one of the best tools for learning and becoming an engaged student. We’ve covered the benefits of the social network ad nauseum for teachers and administrators over the past few years … but a new study solidifies the worth of Twitter for students. Assistant Professor of Education at Michigan State University, Christine Greenhow, conducted a study titled “Twitteracy: Tweeting is a New Literary Practice.” In it, she found that college students who tweet as part of their instruction are more engaged with the course content, the teacher, other students, and they have higher grades.

http://edudemic.com/2012/10/its-official-using-twitter-makes-students-more-engaged/

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Learning Online: B.C. government to make some university textbooks available for free online

Sunday, October 28th, 2012

By: Veronika Bondarenko, the Ubyssey

The B.C. Ministry of Advanced Education plans to commission textbook authors or developers to put together online textbooks for popular undergraduate courses. As a condition of funding, they’ll be available through a Creative Commons licence that makes them free for anyone to use, reuse and revise. A nonprofit called BCcampus, acting as an agent of the government, will store the textbooks online. The ministry has promised to offer free online textbooks for 40 of the most popular post-secondary courses in the province, but it’s up to professors to decide what textbooks are assigned within specific courses. If all goes according to plan, some of the books will be available by September 2013.

http://ubyssey.ca/news/open-textbooks-765/

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Online Learning: MOOCs will never replace traditional higher ed

Sunday, October 28th, 2012

by Trent Kays, Minnesota Daily

It’s not that I consider MOOCs to generally be a bad idea; it’s just that I think we should be more critical of them. Many are rushing into MOOCs without considering the class, societal and cultural issues inherent in their adoption. Navigating a MOOC requires knowledge that is not always available to participants. One must know how to interact in online environments in order to benefit the most; however, we often see cases of trolling, flaming and other similar behaviors on the Internet. This behavior can extend to MOOCs. Even in closed online courses, the instructor has to police or set ground rules for interactions. This form of sociality, one based on lack of body language and other social cues, is what drives online interaction. Despite my trepidations regarding MOOCs, they can be wonderful tools for accessing knowledge. However, we shouldn’t define them as something they are not. We need to understand the limitations as well as the potential for greatness.

http://www.mndaily.com/2012/10/22/moocs-will-never-replace-traditional-higher-ed

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Education economics: Investments in e-learning may signal shift from professors to programs

Saturday, October 27th, 2012

by ksssann, all voices

Last year, Pearson made waves when it announced it has partnered with Google to launch OpenClass, a free, cloud-based learning system. And shortly thereafter, the New Jersey-based publisher announced it was partnering with a software start-up called Knewton that specializes in adaptive learning. In the tradition-bound world of education, adaptive learning has raised more than its share of hackles. Embraced by college administrators because of the potential to cut costs, in faculty circles there is concern that adaptive learning programs could have an impact on jobs. In an adaptive learning program, a student is first given an online test that is assessed by the program, and an immediate “diagnosis” is generated, giving a profile of the skill level of each student and areas that need reinforcement. Based on this assessment, an online curriculum is generated, including a series of exercises and problems that build on each individual student’s knowledge, helping to develop the skills to reach the next level.

http://www.allvoices.com/contributed-news/13231709-education-economics-investments-in-elearning-may-signal-shift-from-professors-to-programs

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Online Learning: videos replace live lectures … and students thrive

Saturday, October 27th, 2012

by Todd Finkelmeyer, Cap Times

Online learning still tends to get a bad rap in some circles — especially among those of us who grew up listening to professors talk at the front of a lecture hall. But it’s becoming increasingly apparent that a good mix of online and face-to-face teaching and learning can trump the more traditional (old-fashioned?) ways. The latest tidbit suggesting as much comes from this Chronicle of Higher Education article, which reports that “in an effort to raise student performance in a difficult course, San Jose State University has turned to a ‘flipped classroom’ format, requiring students to watch lecture videos produced by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and using (on-campus) class time for discussion.” And according to the Chronicle piece, early results indicate that the new approach to teaching a challenging Engineering Electronics and Circuits course has led to better test scores.

http://host.madison.com/ct/news/local/education/campus_connection/campus-connection-online-videos-replace-live-lectures-and-students-thrive/article_f1043ba2-1a1f-11e2-92a9-0019bb2963f4.html

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Vanderbilt innovation guru joins online learning revolution

Saturday, October 27th, 2012

by Ryan Underwood, the Tennessean

In 2008, David Owens took a leave from Vanderbilt to serve as CEO of Nashville-based Griffin Technology, which makes accessories for Apple products. He’s also an accomplished home brewer, working out of a mad-scientist shed in his backyard. And starting in February, he will become one of the first Vanderbilt professors to launch a class on Coursera, a new online education company that has partnered with 33 universities around the world to offer free courses to more than 1.3 million registered users. The class Owens will teach, “Leading Strategic Innovation in Organizations,” has already attracted more than 12,000 students, a number that has grown by 50 percent in the first half of this month alone. It will be one of 11 business courses offered by Coursera, alongside classes from institutions such as Duke, Stanford, the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business and the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business.

http://www.tennessean.com/article/20121021/COLUMNIST03/310210066/Ryan-Underwood-Vanderbilt-innovation-guru-joins-online-learning-revolution

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MITx and the classroom of tomorrow: A vision for the future of edX and MIT

Friday, October 26th, 2012

By Sam Shames, the Tech

While helping students master course material, MITx helps professors and faculty measure exactly what their students have and have not learned. Providing this type of feedback allows for more focused and effective teaching. When professors know exactly what a class does and does not understand, they can use class time more efficiently. Not only would the integration of MITx improve the traditional classroom setting, but it would also empower students by giving them the resources they need to take control of their education. Currently, if a student is very excited about a subject and wants to study it, the only option they have is to read the textbook. Not only is this not a very effective way to learn, but it is about as common as turning in optional problem sets. MITx offers a better platform for enthusiastic students to explore the material at their own pace. It provides students with an unprecedented level of control of their education, a level of control that is sure to be welcomed by the self-sufficient learning community that is MIT.

http://tech.mit.edu/V132/N46/shames.html

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Andrew Ng champions online education as ‘the great equalizer’

Friday, October 26th, 2012

By Elise Johnson, Stanford Daily

“The world is a very unfair place today, where the circumstances you’re born in either give you or deny you the opportunity to have a good life. But the technology now exists to offer a high quality education to everyone at a very low cost.” Andrew Ng, associate professor of computer science and co-founder of the education technology company Coursera, is a leader in the world of online education. Working with fellow professor Daphne Koller Ph.D. ’93, Ng established the company in April 2012. Coursera has become the darling of the online education movement, with over 1.5 million students worldwide enrolled in at least one of 200 available courses. In under a year, 33 of the world’s top universities have partnered with Coursera to offer online classes from their course catalogues to the public for free. These massive online open courses, known as “MOOCs,” represent a model of online learning new to the world of higher education.

http://www.stanforddaily.com/2012/10/19/andrew-ng-champions-online-education-as-the-great-equalizer/

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Learning Online: Have people really understood what a great MOOC would look like?

Friday, October 26th, 2012

by the Learner Weblog

I think people might have got the whole ideas of MOOC too much relying on “teaching quality” alone. To me, MOOC is about LEARNING! In an ideal learning ecology, learning (and teaching) should be focused on the learners’ needs, NOT just what the teachers want to teach. If MOOC is only about teaching, then the educators and designers need to be mindful about what is needed to support education and learning. This is why Niazi has been struggling with the MOOC, when she couldn’t reach the media (Youtube) of instruction and assessment that she wanted. There are indeed so many roadblocks and distractions when learning online, that everyone has a story to tell. But is it really what the learner wants? How could we support our fellow educators and learners in MOOC?

http://suifaijohnmak.wordpress.com/2012/10/20/oped12-have-people-really-understood-what-a-great-mooc-would-look-like/

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Deeper learning by design: what online learning platforms can do

Thursday, October 25th, 2012

by the Conversation

There are specific challenges that come with the design of an LMS or an online course site – its design can effect teaching practices and student engagement. We need to evaluate these systems in the context of a commitment to good teaching and “deep” learning – and that can’t just mean the ordinary student surveys. Universities and course providers must understand the needs of an increasingly diverse student cohort, so that they can design their online course sites and LMS accordingly. As Lindsay Tanner in a recent article in the Australian suggests there has been lots of tech(nology) and not much ped(agogy) in responses to rising student numbers and new ways of learning.

http://theconversation.edu.au/deeper-learning-by-design-what-online-education-platforms-can-do-9803

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Getting the most out of online learning

Thursday, October 25th, 2012

By Kathleen Kingsbury, Reuters

Online learning just got a lot bigger: Last week the University of Texas announced plans to bring its nine universities and six health institutions to the Internet. Courses from the state higher education system will soon be offered via edX, the $60 million initiative launched last spring by Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to provide free, Web-based classes. The University of California at Berkeley joined forces with edX in July, and now Texas will invest $5 million. EdX is only one of several online platforms offering so-called MOOCs, or “massive open online courses.” Rival startup Coursera, founded by two Stanford University computer science professors and funded by Silicon Valley venture capital, last month added 17 top institutions to its roster, including Columbia University, the University of London and the University of Science and Technology.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/10/19/us-education-courses-online-idUSBRE89I17120121019

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In Victory for Common Sense, Minnesota Will Allow Free Online Learning Courses After All

Thursday, October 25th, 2012

By Will Oremus, Slate

In a win for common sense, Minnesota has decided to allow universities to offer free online courses to its residents after all. For one day, Minnesota’s Office of Higher Education felt the Internet’s indignation as word spread that it was cracking down on free online college courses offered through Coursera and other websites. The bizarre bureaucratic decision was first reported by The Chronicle of Higher Education on Thursday morning, and it became Internet-wide news after my blog post about it Thursday evening went viral, thanks in part to the user-generated news board Reddit. I’ve just gotten word that the state has reconsidered its stance. Here’s the new statement from Larry Pogemiller, director of the Minnesota Office of Higher Education:

Obviously, our office encourages lifelong learning and wants Minnesotans to take advantage of educational materials available on the Internet, particularly if they’re free. No Minnesotan should hesitate to take advantage of free, online offerings from Coursera.

http://www.slate.com/blogs/future_tense/2012/10/19/minnesota_coursera_ban_state_won_t_crack_down_on_free_online_courses_after.html

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