Archive for June, 2013

Get Rich Quick: Become a Teacher





Sunday, June 30th, 2013

By Will Oremus, Slate

Victor Bastos has made close to half a million dollars teaching classes on Udemy, an online learning startup. Victor Bastos was making $20,000 a year as a freelance Web developer in Lisbon, Portugal, when he started posting videos to YouTube. Already fluent in several programming languages and looking to branch into new ones, he thought making instructional videos would help him keep track of what he’d learned. “It was like an online notebook for myself,” Bastos, 33, told me. “But then I started getting a lot of subscriptions. People told me, ‘Your tutorials are great—why don’t you make a full course?’ ” Within a few months, Bastos got an email inviting him to do just that. The proposal came from an online-learning startup he had never heard of called Udemy. The offer: Host his course on Udemy’s Web-based platform, and he could charge students to take it and keep 70 percent of the revenues. Udemy would keep the other 30 percent.

http://www.slate.com/articles/technology/technology/2013/06/online_learning_startup_udemy_rookie_teachers_make_big_money_teaching_online.html

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4 ways higher ed has changed, post recession

Sunday, June 30th, 2013

by Associated Press

More urgent. More crowded. More expensive. Also, more flexible and accessible to millions. That, in a nutshell, is how higher education has changed around the world in the wake of the global financial crisis that struck five years ago, and the Great Recession that followed. Here’s how it happened: Increasing financial pressures to get more people through higher education more efficiently opened the door to new technologies. Those technologies, in turn, have begun “unbundling” individual classes and degrees from traditional institutions — much in the same way iTunes has unbundled songs from whole albums and the Internet is increasingly unbundling television shows and networks from bulky cable packages.

http://www.fox11online.com/dpp/news/national/4-ways-higher-ed-has-changed-post-recession_24271377

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How online courses will affect business degrees

Sunday, June 30th, 2013

by JIM FREDERICKSON, Financial Review

The emergence and proliferation of massive open online courses over the past 12 months presents an interesting array of threats and opportunities for Australia’s postgraduate business and management educators. There is no simple answer to the question of how MOOCs will affect Master of Business Administration and executive MBA programs. That’s because of the depth and diversity of programs that have evolved in Australia over the past 20 years. There is considerable variation in MBA programs and each will be affected in a different way by MOOCs.

http://www.afr.com/p/national/education/how_online_courses_will_affect_business_pDrKsH0YC0Y6VfffqdRsGJ

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Michigan State University launches free, online writing course

Saturday, June 29th, 2013

by the Associated Press

Michigan State University is looking to help aspiring and practicing writers with its first free online course in the humanities. The university recently announced the creation of “Thinking Like a Writer,” a non-credit course designed to help students improve their writing skills. It will be taught by Jeff Grabill, the university’s writing department chairman, and first-year writing director Julie Lundquist. The course will focus on the review and revision process and include interaction with instructors and peers. Leaders say they hope students improve their writing and help create a new experience for teaching writing.

http://www.freep.com/article/20130623/NEWS06/306230087/Michigan-State-University-launches-free-online-writing-course

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Probing Question: Are MOOCs Here to Stay?

Saturday, June 29th, 2013

By Melissa Beattie-Moss, Gant Daily

In higher education, 2013 may be remembered as the year of the MOOC. For those playing catch up, MOOCs, or Massive Open Online Courses, are college-level classes taught entirely over the Internet. Like students in brick-and-mortar classrooms, students enrolled in MOOCs take notes and tests and participate in discussions. Unlike traditional courses — or even typical online courses — MOOCs are usually free, draw hundreds or even thousands of students, and are run with minimal direct contact with teachers, with an emphasis instead on brief and (presumably) engaging video presentations. Colleges and universities are scrambling to get onboard the MOOC train (hundreds now offer some form of Web-based curriculum) while at the same time debating what the trend means for the future of higher education. Is MOOC-mania justified and are MOOCs here to stay?

http://gantdaily.com/2013/06/23/probing-question-are-moocs-here-to-stay/

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Penn State Associate Professor of English Stuart Selber on MOOCs

Saturday, June 29th, 2013

by Usman Zafar Paracha, Technorati

We are not certain about the future of MOOCs but we can expect different forms of MOOCs in the future, Selber said. “That is, these courses won’t end up being just one thing. Some will be free, others will charge. Some will offer credit (in various forms); others will provide relatively little feedback and assessment. Some will serve traditional students; others will focus on working professionals or on those interested in enrichment. The types that emerge at any particular school will be a function of larger social, political, and economic contexts.” The bottom line, according to Selber, is we should curtail the hysteria about MOOCs destroying or saving the American college campus. And if you have trouble thinking rationally about it, you could always turn to the Duke MOOC, “A Beginner’s Guide to Irrational Behavior.”

http://technorati.com/lifestyle/article/penn-state-associate-professor-of-english/

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Online Classes Fuel a Campus Debate

Friday, June 28th, 2013

By TAMAR LEWIN, NY Times

The announcement last month that Coursera, which offers free college classes online, had signed agreements with state universities enrolling more than a million students made it plain that such courses, virtually unheard-of two years ago, are now part of the higher education mainstream. But along the way, a rancorous debate has emerged over whether such courses will lead to better learning, lower costs and higher graduation rates — or to the dismantling of public universities, downgraded or eliminated faculty jobs, and a second-class education for most students.

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/20/education/online-classes-fuel-a-campus-debate.html?_r=0

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Udemy’s online learning marketplace has 8k courses, 800k students, and launches new ‘Summer’ grant

Friday, June 28th, 2013

by The Next Web

Online learning marketplace Udemy today revealed new statistics concerning the usage of its service. It shared that it now has more than 8,000 courses being taught to 800,000 students. Udemy says that its instructor acquisition growth rate has grown 365 percent and that now, some courses have become so popular that the top ten instructors have earned combined course revenue of more than $5 million. In an effort to increase the number of instructors, and hopefully create new courses, Udemy is launching its “Summer of Teaching” grant program whereby instructors could win $5,000 and 100 percent of their course revenues for life.

http://thenextweb.com/insider/2013/06/18/udemys-online-learning-marketplace-has-8k-courses-800k-students-and-launches-new-summer-grant/

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University Of Ether

Friday, June 28th, 2013

by ARINDAM MUKHERJEE, Outlook India

Last month, the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, US, announced that it will offer its first online master’s degree course in computer science. It would also be one of the first full credit online courses in the world. In India, an initiative led by the IITs and the Indian Institute of Science is attempting to do something similar. Recently, the Indian government announced a tie-up between the US-based Cornell School of Administration and the holding body of hotel management education in India under which hotel management aspirants would be able to study and get, right here in India, a degree from the famous seat of learning. The entire course will be online. These are not scattered developments but part of a gradual move the world over to offer serious, mainstream education online. The question, however, is qualitative: can technology-aided access to quality education transform India’s education system?

http://www.outlookindia.com/article.aspx?286241

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Skipping Campus (more “traditional” students opt for online learning)

Thursday, June 27th, 2013

by Ry Rivard, Inside Higher Ed

Students seeking online degrees might soon resemble traditional on-campus students, according to a new survey sponsored by two companies involved in online education consulting. The survey, in its second year, continues to show the typical student seeking a degree or certification online is a married middle-aged white woman, but the new results suggest the overall population of online learners is beginning to include more students who are of traditional college age, but not going to a college campus. The survey is only of students who have taken, are taking or plan to take courses from an online program. “It’s obvious that more and more people from traditional college-age populations are electing to do their college online — they are just skipping the campus,” said David Clinefelter, a co-author of the study and the chief academic officer at the Learning House, Inc., which advises colleges on online education ventures.

http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2013/06/26/survey-online-learners-are-starting-resemble-campus-learners

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MOOCs Expand on College Campuses

Thursday, June 27th, 2013

By DEVON HAYNIE, US News

San Jose State has also partnered with Udacity, a for-profit MOOC provider with a focus on the hard sciences, to provide several for-credit courses. Students have access to mentors seven days a week to help with concepts and questions. San Jose instructors work with Udacity to create videos and interactive, online exercises for the classes. “We see this as the evolution of MOOCs,” Clarissa Shen, vice president of strategic business and marketing at Udacity, said in an email. “We have brought much more human interaction back into play in order to help students throughout their learning process and giving them that much more access to their instructors.” Earlier this spring, Coursera, the largest of the MOOC providers, announced it would be working with the State University of New York system, the University of Colorado system and eight other university systems and public schools to explore ways of using MOOC technology and content to improve course completion rates, bolster quality and increase access to higher education.

http://www.usnews.com/education/online-education/articles/2013/06/21/moocs-expand-on-college-campuses

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Inside a MOOC in Progress

Thursday, June 27th, 2013

By Karen Head, Chronicle of Higher Ed

After months of preparation, we finally started our MOOC, “First-Year Composition 2.0,” at Georgia Tech. We are now through the first few weeks of the eight-week course, supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Veteran MOOC instructors warned me that the early weeks would be bumpy. The actual experience has often left me panicked—and worried that the course would not be successful. This is not like a traditional course, in which you have a day or two to deal with issues that come up in class. MOOC students expect immediate responses, and that means nearly 24/7 monitoring of the course.

http://chronicle.com/blogs/wiredcampus/professors-envision-using-google-glass-in-the-classroom/44401

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IMF joins online learning venture edX as its first non-university partner

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

by Ki Mae Heussner, GigaOM

The International Monetary Fund will offer finance courses to government officials — and, eventually, the general public — through the Harvard- and MIT-backed online learning site edX. Since its launch last year, the Harvard- and MIT-backed online learning site edX has convinced nearly 30 colleges and universities around the world to join its platform. But this week, the non-profit provider of massive open online courses (MOOCs) announced its first partnership with a non-university institution – the International Monetary Fund.

http://gigaom.com/2013/06/19/imf-joins-online-learning-venture-edx-as-its-first-non-university-partner/

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Fujitsu AND MIT Announce New Online Learning Platform

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

by MIT

Fujitsu Laboratories of America, Inc. and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)announced the joint development of a personalized learning platform that enhances the effectiveness of online learning. In recent years, a wide range of learning materials has become available online. However, traditional online learning systems have not sufficiently utilized learning environments that fully leverage the advantages of ICT, such as the ability to easily organize appropriate learning materials for users from among an infinite amount of disparate content, nor have there been systems to provide personalized learning materials and learning pathways based on users’ level of understanding and interests. Using navigation technology that can organize a massive volume of online learning materials into multi-layer topics, the platform makes it possible to navigate 100,000s of learning materials, which has been a challenge for students. In addition, by developing learning behaviour simulation technology based on an advanced probabilistic learner model, it is possible to predict learning outcomes through simulations without having to rely on actual students, a major problem faced by learning system providers.

http://www.itnews.it/news/2013/0617133002800/fujitsu-and-mit-announce-breakthrough-platform-technology-for-improving-effectiveness-of-online-learning.html

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Best Practices: Tips for Improving Your Online Courses in 2013

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

by Rebecca, MoodleRooms

As the new year begins, it’s a great time to set new goals for improving our elearning courses. Are your courses lacking luster, engagement, interactivity, or collaboration? How can you take your online courses to the next level? In today’s post, I’m going to suggest some ideas for improving your courses in Moodle and Joule.

Use advanced grading methods. Start using advanced forums. Add videos to increase engagement….

http://www.moodlerooms.com/resources/blog/best-practices-tips-improving-your-online-courses-2013

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Just Lectures? — A Review of the edX Justice MOOC

Tuesday, June 25th, 2013

by Jonathan Haber, MOOC News and Reviews

Harvard Professor Michael Sandel made headlines twice this year with regard to his ethics class (called Justice), which has become a staple of the Harvard experience. But Justice has also generated its share of controversy. But beyond those headlines, those of us who decided to commit a dozen weeks to the class were more concerned with whether or not Justice was anything special. Sandel’s lectures are based on highly polished set pieces (his book What’s the Right Thing to Do? contains many of the same arguments and anecdotes), and production values are as high as anything I’ve seen in a MOOC class to date. But keep in mind that these are the same lectures that have been floating around iTunes U and YouTube for many years, meaning edX’s Justice is largely built from repurposed existing material. I wish they had put a little more time into the ancillary material related to the class, notably homework assignments and quizzes which consisted primarily of multiple-choice questions with obvious answers.

http://moocnewsandreviews.com/just-lectures-review-of-edx-justice-mooc/

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Can We Move Beyond the MOOC to Reclaim Open Learning?

Tuesday, June 25th, 2013

by Anya Kamenetz, Huffington Post

Open learning can mean many things to many people. It can mean learning that takes advantage of Creative Commons-licensed open educational resources or OER (of the major MOOC platforms, EDx is open-source, but none have open content). It can mean learning that is self-organized, experimental, peer-to-peer, DIY, badged or otherwise nontraditionally accredited. It takes place where theory meets practice, in communities of practice, in bar camps, hackathons, hacker spaces, Maker Faires, chat rooms, virtual worlds, archaeological digs, libraries, on Twitter, on Vine, on Instructables, on Vimeo, at the after-afterparty to the conference, at the Occupy encampment, in abandoned churches in Pittsburgh, coworking spaces in Nairobi or the Museum of Modern Art in New York City. xMOOCs have never been and will never be the sum total or even the best example of experimentation with truly open learning.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/anya-kamenetz/can-we-move-beyond-the-mooc_b_3451418.html

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Brandeis Announces For-Credit Online Learning Courses in Partnership with 2U

Tuesday, June 25th, 2013

by Lauren Landry, BostInno

After announcing in November Brandeis would be joining nine other schools to offer online courses for credit, the University is ready to roll out curricula. The consortium, called Semester Online, was developed in partnership with 2U—formerly known as 2tor—and features the likes of Northwestern, Notre Dame and Boston College. Through the platform, students are able to attend lectures and collaborate with peers via virtual classrooms, creating an online experience similar to what they would find on campus. Brandeis will be introducing two for-credit courses in the spring of 2014, according to BrandeisNow.

http://bostinno.streetwise.co/2013/06/16/brandeis-semester-online-courses-through-2u/

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Venture Capital Needed for ‘Broken’ U.S. Education, Thrun Says

Monday, June 24th, 2013

By Lisa Wolfson, Bloomberg Business Week

“Education is broken. Face it,” said Thrun, a Stanford University research professor who helped create Google Inc.’s self-driving car. “It is so broken at so many ends, it requires a little bit of Silicon Valley magic,” he said in an interview today at Bloomberg’s Next Big Thing summit in Half Moon Bay, California. “If you look at Stanford, they are wonderful but they are small, by choice,” Thrun said. “What is missing is scale.”

http://www.businessweek.com/news/2013-06-18/venture-capital-needed-for-broken-u-dot-s-dot-education-thrun-says

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Online learning: it’s time for teachers to join the revolution

Monday, June 24th, 2013

by the Guardian

Moocs allow anyone, anywhere to access learning, without discriminating on grounds of race, gender or wealth. The past few centuries have witnessed revolutions in virtually every area of our world – health, transport, communications and genomics, to name but a few. But not in education. Until now, that is, with the advent of Moocs (massive open online courses). Moocs are transforming education in both quality and scale. As president of edX, the only non-profit Mooc provider, I have the privilege of being part of this revolution. It’s the most exciting time in education in decades. One way Moocs have changed education is by increasing access. Moocs make education borderless, gender-blind, race-blind, class-blind and bank account-blind. Up to now, quality education – and in some cases, any higher education at all – has been the privilege of the few.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/2013/jun/15/university-education-online-mooc

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After successful 1st year, U.Va. to expand free online learning course offerings

Monday, June 24th, 2013

By Associated Press

University of Virginia officials say their first round of worldwide free online classes were such a success that they’ll increase the offerings. More than 150,000 took the university’s five free courses this year on the Coursera online network. At least nine classes have been firmed up for the next year — three repeated classes and six new entries — and others are possible, Kristin Palmer, U.Va. director of online learning environments, told The Virginian-Pilot. Popular professor Larry Sabato, who also serves as director for the school’s Center for Politics, will teach a class on President John F. Kennedy’s legacy 50 years after his assassination. It is timed to coincide with the publication of his book on Kennedy. While Sabato said he’s teaching the class at the request of President Teresa Sullivan, he said he’s far from sold on online courses. “That’s one of my questions about this: Can I maintain any real level of educational standard in a class like this?” Sabato said.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/after-successful-1st-year-uva-to-expand-free-online-course-offerings/2013/06/15/c273cd56-d5f0-11e2-ab72-3f0d51ec1628_story.html

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