How to increase MOOC completion rates

August 21st, 2016

By Jarrett Carter, Education Dive

St. George’s University has increased the pass rate of students in its public health massive open online course by more than 500%, and nearly 10 times the national completion rate for similar distance learning modules. The course uses flipped classroom models, peer review and industrial infusion to make lessons more engaging and enriched for students. The model follows a similar approach taken by Harvard and the University of California, Berkeley in its graduate business courses.

http://www.educationdive.com/news/how-to-increase-mooc-completion-rates/424532/

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Why Today’s MOOCs Are Not Innovative

August 20th, 2016

By David Weldon, Campus Technology

At the Campus Technology conference in Boston, Stephen Downes explained the difference between innovation and transformation. Much of what is passing for innovation in education today is not really that, Downes said. And in the industry overall, is it innovation we are achieving — or change? “Change is done to you,” Downes stressed. “Innovation you do.” Downes is no stranger to dramatic change in education. In 2008 he co-created the first massive open online course in the world, setting off a revolution in online education. But that sort of thing isn’t what will transform education, Downes said. MOOCs are delivery methods – not changes in curriculum. If we want to change education, we have to change how we think about teaching and content. Downes didn’t offer a blueprint for how to do that, but challenged the audience to think about transformation in what we teach, how we teach it and how we personalize the experience.

https://campustechnology.com/articles/2016/08/09/why-todays-moocs-are-not-innovative.aspx

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Tapping into Research and Education Networks

August 20th, 2016

By Frank DiMaria, Campus Technology

Research and education networks (RENs) have been designed to meet the needs of some of the most demanding internet users in the country: scientists, academics and researchers in the nation’s leading academic institutions. These networks are engineered to support high-quality services that remain consistent regardless of the number of users on the network. They have the speed, quality, flexibility and support to readily adapt to new experiments or projects that place new demands on the network. RENs “have enormous capabilities and potential for all schools, small and large, to realize new capabilities in teaching, learning, research and administration,” according to Rob Vietzke, vice president of network services at Internet2, a member-owned advanced technology community that operates the largest and fastest coast-to-coast research and education network in the U.S. REN services are technologically ahead of the curve, enabling communication and collaboration on a high-speed network free of the noise and friction found on most commercial providers.

https://campustechnology.com/articles/2016/08/11/tapping-into-research-and-education-networks.aspx

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Underground university: Bay Area teachers beam secret online classes to Iran

August 20th, 2016

By Katy Murphy, Mercury News

Banned from college in Iran because of her Baha’i faith, Niknaz Aftahi risked everything to learn, studying architecture at a storied underground university that moved from living room to living room, at times meeting at her family’s home in Tehran. Now in the Bay Area, with a master’s degree and architecture job, Aftahi is repaying her debt of gratitude, offering the same hope to the next generation of Baha’i students. She is part of a growing network of mostly Baha’i faculty locally and around the world who teach and mentor the students from afar, for free. “Just the fact that I feel like I’m contributing a little bit brings me a lot of satisfaction and happiness,” she said. “Some of my students are such good designers and when I teach them, I really want to do my best because I feel like I’m the only resource they have.”

http://www.mercurynews.com/education/ci_30245999/underground-university-bay-area-teachers-beam-secret-online

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Daphne Koller Bids Farewell to Coursera, Hello to Calico

August 19th, 2016
by Andrew Rikard, edSurge
Coursera co-founder Daphne Koller has ridden the MOOC craze as the company’s CEO and later president. Now Koller is returning to her background in machine-learning research. Yesterday, Koller announced she’s leaving the company to join Calico, a Google-funded research and development company that focuses on slowing aging and counteracting age‑related diseases. “It is time for me to turn to another critical challenge—the development of machine learning and its application to improving human health,” Koller wrote in an Aug. 17 blog post. “This field has been a passion of mine since 2001, when I first started working on it at Stanford.” At Calico, Koller will serve as the company’s chief computing officer, leading teams developing new computational methods for analyzing biological data sets.
https://www.edsurge.com/news/2016-08-18-daphne-koller-bids-farewell-to-coursera-hello-to-calico
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The Rise of the Online Degree at America’s Top Universities

August 19th, 2016

by Priceonomics

We found that the number of four-year schools with online degree programs rose significantly. Among top-ranked schools, nearly 75% offer online degrees, and about half are increasing their online degree offerings. The fastest adopters of online learning include both public and private colleges and universities, including some academic heavyweights like Harvard and Johns Hopkins. Online degrees are most commonly offered in fields like business and health, which have long been popular among distance learners. But they are increasingly common for other fields like education and engineering. The craze over Massive Open Online Courses, which led some enthusiasts to prophesize the decline of traditional universities, has died down. But our analysis suggests that traditional universities are steadily embracing online courses.

https://priceonomics.com/the-rise-of-the-online-degree-at-americas-top/

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10 Questions To Ask BEFORE You Start Developing Online Training Courses

August 19th, 2016

by Christopher Pappas, Litmos

Planning and research are vital to the success of your online training program. You should learn as much as possible about the background of your online learners, the goals that must be achieved, as well as the performance gaps that need to be filled if you want to develop a succinct and successful online training course for your organization. Here are 10 questions that will help you narrow the scope of your online training program and ensure that all of the key takeaways are included.

http://www.litmos.com/blog/elearning/10-questions-to-ask-before-you-start-developing-online-training-courses

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U.S. military members among those now learning online from The Citadel

August 19th, 2016

by Benzinga

New online graduate degrees and certificates, and undergraduate degrees offered by The Citadel are now available to students across the U.S. and beyond with the same high standards and quality used to educate principled leaders for almost 175 years. Members of the U.S. military living around the country or on installations overseas are among those registering for The Citadel Graduate College’s newly online masters’ degrees and certificates, and undergraduate degrees. The non-cadet programs are ideal for busy professionals and military service members and their spouses wanting to continue their education.

http://www.benzinga.com/pressreleases/16/08/p8347810/u-s-military-members-among-those-now-learning-online-from-the-citadel

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Just How Important Is A College Education These Days?

August 18th, 2016

by Gabrielle Pfeiffer, Huffington Post

While the “higher ups” at universities may not be too thrilled about the advancement in online learning, it is great news for the rest of us. Those of us who have bills to pay on a limited income now have a better chance at expanding our knowledge and learning some very valuable skills. Hopefully this is just the beginning of a new era, and the online course world will keep expanding. I think that people will be more excited to learn if they get to choose how and what they are learning, on a schedule that is more convenient for them.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/gabrielle-pfeiffer/just-how-important-is-a-c_b_11437210.html

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4 Things to Know About Online Coding Boot Camps

August 18th, 2016

by John Friedman, US News

While more on-site coding boot camps exist than online ones, the latter format has started growing in popularity, says Liz Eggleston, co-founder of Course Report, a website that provides reviews and industry research on coding boot camps. In addition to online-only boot camps like Thinkful and Bloc, some on-site boot camps that initially didn’t offer a virtual option – like the Flatiron School in New York – are moving into the online space to reach a wider audience, she says. For online learners, Eggleston says, boot camps provide a middle-ground option between online degrees and free online courses via websites like Codecademy. Experts say online coding boot camps generally last at least a few months and cost several thousand dollars, so prospective students should ask for a free trial to make sure they select a program that’s the best fit for them.

http://www.usnews.com/education/online-education/articles/2016-08-11/4-things-to-know-about-online-coding-boot-camps

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Online Education Report Shifts Focus From Instructors to Students

August 18th, 2016

BY Morgan Lynch, MeriTalk

Online educational resources, which have become commonplace in higher education institutions across the United States, could be undergoing changes to facilitate better learning for students rather than favoring instructors. The Learning Management System (LMS) is used by 99 percent of colleges and universities as a software application that tracks and reports the use of electronic educational technology. The report argues that LMS should be rebuilt to be learner-centric and experiment with a variety of course styles. The report calls the ideal new software the Next Generation Digital Learning Environment (NGDLE).

https://www.meritalk.com/articles/online-education-shifts-favor-from-instructors-to-students/

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Institutional badging emerges as new resume booster

August 17th, 2016

By Jarrett Carter, Education Dive

Illinois State University’s badging program allows students to more creatively showcase volunteerism, technical training and skill development to potential employers and graduate schools. Officials use a third-party vendor, Credly, to administer the badges from criteria established by academic executives. The Lumina Foundation provided $2.5 million in seed funding to the badging company, a sign of support for the growing credentialing industry and its value to employers.

http://www.educationdive.com/news/institutional-badging-emerges-as-new-resume-booster/424192/

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Going beyond MOOCs in higher education innovation

August 17th, 2016

By Jarrett Carter, Education Dive

Stephen Downes, the designer of the first open source learning course, says education will not be revolutionized by technology that brings the current classroom environment and curriculum to digital platforms. Changes to curriculum, desired learning outcomes and professional preparation are the keys to innovation in higher education. Many campuses are changing curriculum to competency-based and adaptive learning models to encourage success, improve completion rates and boost interest among students.

http://www.educationdive.com/news/going-beyond-moocs-in-higher-education-innovation/424184/

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University of Illinois Leader in Online Education Deanna Raineri Joins Coursera

August 17th, 2016

By Rick Levin, CEO of Coursera

Because our collaboration with universities is so important, we need leaders within Coursera who deeply understand the process of building innovative online learning programs at large, complex institutions. For this reason, I am very excited to announce that Deanna Raineri has joined Coursera as Vice President of University Partnerships, Teaching & Learning. In this role, Deanna will work closely with university partners to deepen our engagements as we grow the portfolio of learning experiences offered on Coursera to learners around the world. She joins Coursera from the position of Associate Provost for Education Innovation at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where she established a campus-wide vision and leadership for innovations in classroom and online education.

http://coursera.tumblr.com/post/148695937512/university-leader-in-online-education-deanna

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The Importance of Day-to-Day Learning

August 16th, 2016

by AnnMarie Kuzel, CLO

Learning should fit into an employee’s work day and workflow – not take them out of it. The checklist of questions that learning leaders ask themselves before deciding which learning technology best fits their organization is long; which vendor is the best? What kind of platforms are available? What kind of content is most appropriate? What are the organization’s most important needs now and in the future? But CLOs often forget to ask one very important question: “Does the learning technology work cohesively with an employee’s everyday workflow?” Iain Scholnick, CEO of Braidio, a collaborative learning platform, talked to Chief Learning Officer about the importance of incorporating learning into an employee’s everyday workflow.

http://www.clomedia.com/2016/08/08/the-importance-of-day-to-day-learning/

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Are micro-degrees the future of higher education?

August 16th, 2016

by ALIZAH SALARIO, Metro

At Udacity, tech-savvy students earn nanodegrees for a fraction of the cost of a traditional degree. We live in tiny houses, make micropayments and use mini fridges. Naturally, now we can also earn micro-credentials. As the name suggests, micro-credentials quailfy individuals to execute specific skills, often in the fields math, science and technology. They’re earned in far less time than traditional degrees — and for a fraction of the cost. Think of them as the next generation of MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses), only more comprehensive, and with a credential at the finish line.

http://www.metro.us/lifestyle/are-micro-degrees-the-future-of-higher-education/zsJphh—Czgpd0JKEyP8E/

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Digital, Verified and Less Open

August 16th, 2016

By Paul Fain, Inside Higher Ed

More colleges are issuing digital badges to help their students display skills to employers or graduate programs, and colleges are tapping vendor platforms to create a verified form of the alternative credentials.Digital badges aren’t replacing the bachelor’s degree any time soon. But a growing number of colleges are working with vendors to use badges as an add-on to degrees, to help students display skills and accomplishments that transcripts fail to capture. Illinois State University is an early adopter. Students in the university’s honors program have earned roughly 7,400 digital badges as part of the experiment, which just began at full scale last year. The university brought in Credly, a badging platform provider, for the project.

https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2016/08/09/digital-badging-spreads-more-colleges-use-vendors-create-alternative-credentials

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When Minecraft is a calculated lesson plan

August 15th, 2016

BY KIRK BAIRD, THE BLADE

Students are learning to use emerging technologies as future instructors. We can learn a lot from a video game. What basic power tool best repels a zombie horde, for example, or the proper combination of kicks and punches to bludgeon an opponent into submission. Even how to determine the volume of a swimming pool, as in measuring its dimensions and then multiplying length by width by height. Yes, math. In a video game. And not just in any video game, but one of the more popular games of all time, Minecraft, a LEGO-meets 8-bit open world game played by millions worldwide.

http://www.eschoolnews.com/2016/08/08/when-minecraft-is-a-calculated-lesson-plan/

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A new study examines social media engagement among U.S. colleges and universities

August 15th, 2016

by eCampus News

College and universities can see how they stack up in terms of social media engagement using a new study that ranks the effectiveness of social media across higher-ed institutions. The study of 338 colleges and universities revealed key insights in who is driving the most engagement with social media–including Twitter, Facebook and Instagram–and showed which universities are winning at engaging their audiences via social. Engagement is defined as “measurable interaction on social media posts, including likes, comments, favorites, retweets, shares and reactions.”

http://www.ecampusnews.com/technologies/social-networking/social-media-engagement/

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Higher education taking steps to prepare for the IoT’s expansion

August 15th, 2016

by eCampus News

The Internet of Things (IoT) is coming (well, actually, it’s here), and with it, a demand for skilled graduates who know the ins and outs of connected devices. As colleges and universities work to address the challenges the IoT presents from an IT perspective, they also are addressing the needs of their students who will pursue IoT-related careers. Developing a comprehensive IoT strategy still remains the biggest challenge for industry adoption, according to 46.3 percent of 200 IT professionals surveyed at the Sensors Expo in San Jose by Northeastern University-Silicon Valley. Another top barrier for wide scale adoption involves security concerns (38.8 percent).

http://www.ecampusnews.com/curriculum/iot-colleges-curriculum/

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“24 per cent of learners in India are women”

August 14th, 2016

by Business Today

In the MOOCs space, how does the Indian market differ from more developed nations such as the US?  The average age of people taking the courses in India is younger, unlike in the US. We have a lot of learners who have just finished college and are in the early stages of their career. Another difference is that Indians take up courses that help them with their career, whereas in the US people use online learning platforms for enrichment courses on poetry, culture and such. Based on this, we have started partnering with corporates such as Axis Bank and IBM to help their employees with skill building and creating a culture of learning in the workplace.

http://www.businesstoday.in/magazine/features/24-per-cent-of-learners-in-india-are-women/story/235890.html

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