Archive for August, 2013

The Five Components of a Successful Online Faculty Development Program

Saturday, August 31st, 2013

By: Al Infande, Faculty Focus

Faculty development is a crucial and vital component to any college or university. For institutions with geographically dispersed faculty who are teaching online, in some cases for the very first time, faculty development takes on a new level of importance. Here the challenges are not only ensuring instructors understand the technical aspects of teaching online and have the instructional skills to meet online learners’ needs, but also instilling a sense of community.

At Columbia Southern University, a fully online institution, we consider faculty development an ongoing, continuous process. Our faculty development program consists of the following five components.

http://www.facultyfocus.com/articles/distance-learning/the-five-components-of-a-successful-online-faculty-development-program/

Share on Facebook

Online Learning Technology is remaking education at ASU

Saturday, August 31st, 2013

by Arizona State University

Research has shown an increase in student success when traditional lectures are replaced with active learning exercises that promote this interactive approach. In addition to mathematics, ASU has rapidly embraced these new, proven learning tools and launched other classrooms. For example, in the School of Earth and Space Exploration, the course “Habitable Worlds” has been developed by President’s Professor Ariel Anbar and instructors Steve Semken and Lev Horodyskyj with funding from the National Science Foundation. Active learning classrooms have also been launched in the School of Life Sciences to teach genetics, evolution and neurobiology. According to the Scientific American article, while the shift has professors making big adjustments from lecturer to mentor, the expectation “is that generational turnover could make these computerized methods of instruction and testing, so foreign now, unremarkable, as they are for Arizona State’s Hawkins and her classmates,” notes Phil Regier, ASU’s executive vice provost and dean of ASU Online.

https://asunews.asu.edu/20130923-online-learning

Share on Facebook

Distance Learning: Best Apps, Tools and Online Services

Saturday, August 31st, 2013

by Scott Steinberg, Huffington Post

Distance learning solutions and online educational tools are rapidly growing in popularity and effectiveness with teachers, colleges and university-level programs worldwide. One recent survey estimated that at least one in five undergraduates has participated in at least one “distance education” course as part of their studies, and many middle, high and even elementary school teachers have begun using some form of distance learning in the classroom. For modern educators looking to provide the best tools and services for distance learning solutions, here are a dozen top resources to consider.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/scott-steinberg/distance-learning-best-apps-tools-and-online-services_b_3805068.html

Share on Facebook

Fewer Students Fail After Udacity Changes

Friday, August 30th, 2013

by Geoffrey A. Fowler, WSJ Digits

After a disappointing spring semester, San Jose State and online education startup Udacity reported Wednesday that their massive online open course pilot fared much better during the summer semester.  While pass rates for courses in their initial spring experiment ranged from 24% to 51%, in the just-completed summer semester those same courses witnessed pass rates of between 30% and 83%. In the case of the most successful class, Elementary Statistics, the 83% pass rate for the online course even exceeded the 76% pass rate for the class with regular in-person instruction. In an interview, Udacity CEO Sebastian Thrun acknowledged the different student populations made comparisons difficult. Still, “I am very confident that things are getting better,” he said. What changed? Based on data from the spring, Udacity made adjustments throughout the courses in how it presented the material that most challenged students.

http://blogs.wsj.com/digits/2013/08/28/fewer-students-fail-after-udacity-changes/

Share on Facebook

EdX and Aspiring Minds join hands for mutual

Friday, August 30th, 2013

by Business Standard

Employability solutions company Aspiring Mind and edX, the not-for-profit online learning initiative composed of the leading global institutions of the xConsortium including MIT, Harvard, Berkeley, and IIT Bombay, today joined hands for mutual collaboration. The collaboration is aimed to enable more than one million people enrolled with Aspiring Minds to receive employability advice through their flagship product AMCAT. The recommendation engine will enable students to find and access edX courses that address their specific skill gaps, in specialties ranging from math, to science, to technology, and beyond. Aspiring Minds’ users who complete edX courses will be awarded edX course certificates, and these credentials will be integrated within their AMCAT user profile. Aspiring Minds conducts AMCAT, which is employability test for students to evaluate their employability skills. Further, Aspiring Minds will invite all students from India who complete edX courses to the AMCAT platform and expose them to its 450 plus corporate clients.

http://www.business-standard.com/article/companies/edx-and-aspiring-minds-join-hands-for-mutual-collaboration-113082200845_1.html

Share on Facebook

Online Universities Face Opportunities and Dilemmas

Friday, August 30th, 2013

by Hispanic Business

Across all sectors of the industry _ public, private, and for-profit _ there is the sense that online learning offers the greatest opportunity for future growth. For-profit universities such as the University of Phoenix and Strayer University were the first to truly embrace online education, and their revenues soared as a result. Between 1998 and 2008, enrollment in U.S. for-profit colleges jumped by 236 percent, according to the independent advocacy group Education Trust. Aside from their early mastery of the online platform, the for-profits excelled at marketing to adult, nontraditional students, as well as tailoring the educational experience to their unique needs. More recently, though, for-profits have been criticized for using overly-aggressive, car-salesman-like selling tactics to recruit students. The schools often charge higher tuition than public colleges, and the student loan default rates at for-profit schools are dramatically higher than at other types of colleges.

http://www.hispanicbusiness.com/2013/8/22/online_universities_face_opportunities_and_dilemmas.htm

Share on Facebook

PublicBeta online-learning platform for entrepreneurs launchs with 40+ courses

Thursday, August 29th, 2013

By Ronan Steyn, Venture Burn

PublicBeta, “the online learning community for entrepreneurs by entrepreneurs” and brainchild of WooThemes co-founder Adii Pienaar, has launched with V1, and over 40 tantalising courses for you to sink your teeth into. PublicBeta aims to live by a ‘for entrepreneurs, by entrepreneurs’ motto and its courses reflect just that.

http://ventureburn.com/2013/08/publicbeta-online-learning-platform-for-entrepreneurs-launchs-with-40-courses/

Share on Facebook

As Online Learning Booms, Education IT Gains Power

Thursday, August 29th, 2013

by Michael Fitzgerald, Information Week

Online learning products are booming, giving teachers a smorgasbord of options and IT professionals in education influence they haven’t enjoyed in years. As online distance learning booms, it’s rattling the already large market for online learning tools. There’s new energy around online learning universities and school districts, and IT leaders in academia have influence they haven’t enjoyed in years. “You had a decade where customers didn’t have a lot of power. Now, there’s a lot more power in the hands of higher-ed institutions,” said Phil Hill, a partner at Mindwires Consulting in Los Gatos, Calif., and co-publisher of the e-Literate blog.

http://www.informationweek.com/education/online-learning/as-online-learning-booms-education-it-ga/240160279

Share on Facebook

Consoles and Classrooms: SUNY Games II to Create STEM Video Games

Thursday, August 29th, 2013

by Will Donovan, SUNY Blog

At the  University at Albany School of Education, Associate Professor Peter Shea is trying to bring together the console and the classroom. Professor Shea is leading a research study investigating the use of video games to promote learning, with a large and various group of experts, students, and faculty. The project, named  “SUNY Games II”, seeks to explore how teachers and students from diverse fields across the SUNY system can develop video games to promote understanding of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) content in K-12 schools. SUNY Games II will help the research and development of educational games. The project is being worked on through the Open SUNY framework, a massive online SUNY platform that will bring all online courses offered at each of SUNY’s 64 campuses onto a shared and comprehensive online environment.

http://blog.suny.edu/2013/08/consoles-and-classrooms-suny-games-ii-to-create-stem-video-games/

Share on Facebook

Registration open for NIU disability MOOC

Wednesday, August 28th, 2013

by NIU Today

Registration is now open for Perspectives on Disability, Northern Illinois University’s first-ever Massive Open Online Course (MOOC). The free online course was developed to raise awareness about disability, a fact of life for millions of people around the world, from personal, philosophical, sociological, psychological, medical, and legal perspectives. The MOOC is led by College of Health and Human Sciences professor Greg Long, a Presidential Teaching Professor in the School of Allied Health and Communicative Disorders. Staci Fulton, a former AHRS 200 student who has a disability, is hoping the MOOC based on the course will have a positive impact and says, “I think it’s important for people to realize that despite the many stigmatizations about disability, we can live normal lives, no matter what accommodations we may need. This MOOC will be a real eye opener for people and I am hoping will give people more of an open mind when it comes to disability!”

http://www.niutoday.info/2013/08/19/registration-open-for-niu-disability-mooc/

Share on Facebook

City of Boston teams up with edX to create BostonX

Wednesday, August 28th, 2013

by Carolyn Fox, Open Source

The City of Boston has teamed with edX to create BostonX. It will offer free online college courses throughout the city. And it will make MOOCs (massive open online courses) available at community colleges and libraries throughout the city. BostonX is still in its infancy but the city hopes to make MOOCs more available and accessible to residents and visitors. Boston’s Mayor Thomas Menino envisions neighborhoods as “mini campuses” around the city. He believes that this will only increase the city’s impact and standing on the nation and world as at the forefront of education.

http://opensource.com/education/13/8/bostonx

Share on Facebook

Charting a Course for Online Learning

Wednesday, August 28th, 2013

By Colleen Flaherty, Inside Higher Ed

Hitting faculty and student inboxes as they return for the fall at the University of Texas at Austin is President Bill Powers’s white paper on the future of “technology enhanced” education. He’s calling the document a report, but Powers said in an interview it’s really an invitation to jump into a dialogue this fall on how the highly visible flagship university will continue to develop – and remain a leader in – online and “blended learning.” The latter term refers to online course content and methods of delivery complementing more traditional forms of instruction. “Flipped” classrooms, in which online content is used to prepare students outside class for more meaningful in-class engagement of the material, for example, are popular at UT.

http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2013/08/15/u-texas-president-wants-faculty-input-future-online-education

Share on Facebook

Master’s Degree Is New Frontier of Study Online

Tuesday, August 27th, 2013

by Tamara Lewin, NY Times

Next January, the Georgia Institute of Technology plans to offer a master’s degree in computer science through massive open online courses for a fraction of the on-campus cost, a first for an elite institution. If it even approaches its goal of drawing thousands of students, it could signal a change to the landscape of higher education. Georgia Tech plans to offer a MOOC-based online master’s degree in computer science for $6,600 — far less than the $45,000 on-campus price. The courses will be online and free for those not seeking a degree; those in the degree program will take proctored exams and have access to tutoring, online office hours and other support services. Students who cannot meet the program’s stringent admission standards may be admitted provisionally and allowed to transfer in if they do well in their first two courses. And students who complete only a few courses would get a certificate. “This is all uncharted territory, so no one really knows if it will go to scale,” Dr. Galil said. “We just want to prove that it can be done, to make a high-quality degree program available for a low cost.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/08/18/education/masters-degree-is-new-frontier-of-study-online.html

Share on Facebook

Game on? The use of gamification in e-learning

Tuesday, August 27th, 2013

by Sarah Sweeney, Training Zone

Many HR and L&D professionals face the problem of ensuring that their training and learning programmes maintain learner engagement and motivation. Gamification has been regularly recognised as an opportunity to help solve this problem. In this post, we consider whether gamification can enhance the learning experience. Before we consider if it is game on for gamification in learning, it is necessary to look at what gamification essentially is.

http://www.trainingzone.co.uk/blogs-post/game-use-gamification-e-learning/185137

Share on Facebook

Our Views: Online learning growing quickly

Tuesday, August 27th, 2013

by the Advocate

As another school year approaches, more students will be opting out of traditional classrooms in favor of online learning away from brick-and-mortar campuses. In that shifting environment, how will Louisiana’s colleges and universities compete? That question promises to become more relevant as online education continues to grow. Since 2010, online college course enrollment has increased by 29 percent according to the Community College Research Center, which also noted that 6.7 million students — roughly one-third of all college students — are enrolled in online courses.

http://theadvocate.com/columnists/6798977-55/our-views-online-learning-growing

Share on Facebook

Big Data 4Dx: MIT Sloan Management School Online Course Taps Avatars

Monday, August 26th, 2013

by NANCY DUVERGNE SMITH, MIT Alumni Life

Webinars are old news at MIT, but the Sloan School of Management is taking online instruction to a new dimension. Last spring, Sloan launched a new Executive Education program called Big Data 4Dx, an online version of its popular program Big Data: Making Complex Things Simpler. Unlike online courses where participants watch lectures, Big Data 4Dx uses AvayaLive EngageTM, a web-based, immersive collaboration environment that allows participants to interact with each other in a virtual classroom.The next two-day session—both in person and online—is set for October.

http://alum.mit.edu/pages/sliceofmit/2013/08/19/big-data-4dx-online-learning-moves-into-the-4th-dimension/

Share on Facebook

Which Countries Use Which Browser?

Monday, August 26th, 2013

by Katie Lepi, Edudemic

Yesterday, we took a look at some of the fastest and most popular browsers across a variety of devices. While I was digging around for a few facts to see how accurate some of those numbers were, I stumbled across another handy infographic on worldwide browser usage, and felt like it was a pretty interesting follow up to yesterday’s post. Taking data from 2012, it takes a look at what browsers are being used where, and shows some fairly interesting trends. Whereas yesterday’s post showed some more granular detail of what browsers worked best on different systems, this one shows plain old popularity (aka, usage) in different areas in the world. Keep reading to learn more.

http://www.edudemic.com/2013/08/which-countries-use-which-browser/

Share on Facebook

Experts say colleges must adapt to changes

Monday, August 26th, 2013

By Walter C. Jones, Florida Times-Union
Changes in the economy and demographics are forcing colleges and universities to alter the way they offer courses, experts say, but that doesn’t mean they can abandon traditional classes. The swirl of policy choices for higher education drew the attention of state legislators from across the country this past week during the convention of the National Conference of State Legislatures meeting in Atlanta. “Everyone is writing books that college is doomed,” said Scott Jaschik, editor of Inside Higher Education.

http://jacksonville.com/news/georgia/2013-08-17/story/experts-say-colleges-must-adapt-changes

Share on Facebook

Massive Open Online Courses and Beyond: the Revolution to Come

Sunday, August 25th, 2013

By Michael A Peters, Truthout

Ernst & Young’s Universities of the Future carries the line, “A thousand year old industry on the cusp of profound change.” The report suggests that the current Australian university model “will prove unviable in all but a few cases.” It identifies five major “drivers of change”: democratization of knowledge and access, contestability of markets and funding, digital technologies, global mobility and integration with industry.

http://www.truth-out.org/news/item/18120-massive-open-online-courses-and-beyond-the-revolution-to-come

Share on Facebook

Open online university

Sunday, August 25th, 2013

by M Ramya, TNN

Massive Open Online Courses, or MOOCs, such as Coursera, are transforming the way people learn across the world. People of all ages and interests can sign up to study everything from archaeology to computing with professors from universities around the world such as Harvard, Yale, IIT-Delhi , Tel Aviv Univeristy and more. The courses are structured like the ones in the physical classroom with free reading material and deadlines for assignments. The courses do not carry credit and students are expected to follow an ‘honour code’ and avoid cheating and plagiarism. Now, these free online distance educators are showing potential to change the way students complete their courses in physical universities.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/home/education/news/Open-university/articleshow/21889881.cms

Share on Facebook

MOOCs click with Indians

Sunday, August 25th, 2013

Malini Nair, Times of India

“Our students in India represent the largest percentage of Coursera students outside of the US, roughly 10%. In the past 6 months, Coursera has seen a 139% increase in India student enrollment,” says Stanford professor Daphne Koller who, along with her other computer science colleague Andrew Y NG, set up Coursera. EdX, a non-profit created by Harvard and MIT, has pegged its Indian participation at 13% and Udacity says that India is one of its “top geographic drivers of traffic” . Hardly surprising then that IIT Bombay is set to join the group of institutions that are partnering with EdX. MOOCs are seemingly easy to do — you sign up for a course which could stretch over 12 to 15 weeks and dedicate a certain number of hours of study time per week entirely at your convenience. The ‘workload’ could be lectures, reading assignments, quizzes, tests, demo videos and so on. At Coursera you could if you wish ask for a certificate (called Signature Track) or even a web-supervised exam — these are charged and make for an important part of Coursera’s revenues.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/home/stoi/special-report/MOOCs-click-with-Indians/articleshow/21890105.cms

Share on Facebook