Educational Technology

How technology is reshaping the university IT positions

Educational Technology News Blog - Fri, 03/24/2017 - 00:40

by Stephen Noonoo, Education Dive

The role of university IT leadership is being reshaped by analytics and the need to work across departments. Some schools are adding C-suite data management positions, or expanding the roles of existing IT leaders, according to EdTech Magazine. Brown University is now offering a masters of cybersecurity degree that will train tech leaders, not just in how to prevent threats, but how to work with and think like business leaders and colleagues with other job functions.

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Technical training prepares graduates for the automation era

Educational Technology News Blog - Fri, 03/24/2017 - 00:35

by Jarrett Carter, Education Dive

A recent study from the Society for College and University Planning suggests that the global workforce will lose more than 7 million jobs over the next five years, thanks to expansion in automation. A profile of Henry Ford College in The Atlantic showcases the ways the institution is reimagining its technical training program to address this issue through its “learning to learn” strategy, which officials believe offers students more comprehensive training modules for industry-specific job roles. Industrial changes can lead to increased costs for faculty, training technology and curriculum design, but articulation agreements with high schools and corporate partnerships can help to fill in gaps associated with industrial change and create new revenue models.

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Credentialing remains a slow-growing process for higher ed

Educational Technology News Blog - Fri, 03/24/2017 - 00:30

by Jarrett Carter, Education Dive

Credentialing and competency-based education models remain a relatively-small part of the matriculation process at most colleges and universities, but a new study suggests new ways institutions can more efficiently gauge prior learning and capacity in high-level subject matters. MOOCs and coding bootcamps can offer specific levels of learning and training, and when reviewed against common institutional standards or outsourced to third-party assessment companies, they can be a vital part of an academic transcript for an employer or graduate school. Pitfalls for assessment can include uneven record-keeping by various departments, or inconsistent values placed on differing alternative credit-bearing modules.

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Oculus Intros Facebook Livestreaming to Samsung Gear VR, Adds 360-Degree Videos to Rooms

Educational Technology News Blog - Thu, 03/23/2017 - 00:40

By Sri Ravipati, THE Journal

Oculus last week released some updates to its mobile virtual reality (VR) platform, including more ways to virtually connect with friends on Facebook, as well as few functionality and features for the Samsung Gear VR headset. First, the company has introduced more content in Rooms, a virtual space where friends can privately convene that launched late last year. Rooms 1.2 has expanded its video selection with free content to watch from websites like Vimeo. It also allows users to watch 360-degree videos for the first time. Users and their friends can watch the videos in its new viewing dome (see image). In addition to content, Rooms has added voice search.

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After the Planning Phase: 7 Tips for Implementing a Makerspace

Educational Technology News Blog - Thu, 03/23/2017 - 00:35

By Leila Meyer, THE Journal

Once a school district has completed the initial planning phase of their makerspace initiative — as described in a previous THE Journal article — it’s time to let teachers and students start tinkering, creating and designing. Here, our expert educators offer seven tips for successful makerspace implementation.


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GPA Versus Exam Scores: What’s Better in Predicting College Success?

Educational Technology News Blog - Thu, 03/23/2017 - 00:32

By Dian Schaffhauser, THE Journal

High school grade point average serves as a better predictor of college success than standardized exam scores among students heading directly into higher ed from high school. But among those who delay their college entry, the same isn’t necessarily the case; it depends on the type of test and the subject under consideration. These findings came out of research undertaken by Education Northwest, one of 10 regional educational laboratories that do applied research to improve academic outcomes for students. The project was a follow-on to research undertaken last year by the same organization to examine developmental education placement rates and how well high school grade point average and exam performance predicted performance in college-level courses among first-time students entering two- and four-year programs at the University of Alaska system.

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Shmoop Releases Side-by-Side Translations of Shakespeare Online

Educational Technology News Blog - Wed, 03/22/2017 - 00:40

By Richard Chang, THE Journal

One website aims to make sense of the Bard’s poetic yet perplexing lines in modern English for contemporary young readers. Shmoop’s site, Shakespeare in Modern English, is designed to give students the best of both worlds: Reading the original text online right alongside a modern English translation and summary. Shmoop is known for its all-inclusive guide to Shakespeare, called Shmooping Shakespeare, which includes everything students could ever want to know about the Bard of Avon: in-depth summary and analysis of every single one of his plays and many of his poems; an extensive biography; an entire section devoted to his most famous quotes and another devoted to the words he coined; and Shmoop’s well-known Shakespeare Translator, which lets users turn their everyday language into eloquent Shakespearese.

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The Past, Present and Future of Big Data in Higher Ed

Educational Technology News Blog - Wed, 03/22/2017 - 00:35

by Steve Burrell, Evolllution

Beyond these student success examples, there lies another world of opportunities to leverage Big Data to improve the operational efficiencies and effectiveness of our institutions. Rapid technological advancement in computational power, prescriptive analytics, image processing, sensors and beacons, data storage, systems integration tools, and advanced search capabilities among other key advances provide insights into systems performance, process bottlenecks, hidden dependencies, and other user-, event-, and device-based data in near real time.

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Principal: New online school meets Arkansas students’, parents’ needs

Educational Technology News Blog - Wed, 03/22/2017 - 00:30

By Scott Smith, Times Record

Arkansas students no longer have to show up to a brick-and-mortar school to gain a high-quality education, according to one official. The Arkansas Connections Academy is a new online public charter school that is being offered to students from across the state, said Darla Gardner, principal for the school. Students in grades K-9 can enroll in the free program and learn school subjects and conduct school projects at their own pace, she said. Participating students also can receive “a more personalized” education due to more one-on-one instruction time between student and teacher, Gardner said.

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Project Tech class gears students up for technology-driven futures

Educational Technology News Blog - Tue, 03/21/2017 - 00:30

by Lainie Steelman, McDonough County Voice

Walk into the Project Tech class at Macomb Senior High School, and you won’t see students taking notes while the teacher lectures. What you will see is students directing their own learning, either independently or in small groups. The Project Tech class, offered at the high school for the first time this semester, lets students choose and complete a technology-based project. Students learn as they go along and solve problems as they arise. Among the students’ projects are an RPG (Role Playing Game), a website that collects the school district’s sports records, an exoskeleton and a comparison of two computer programming languages. Often, the projects are in response to a problem a student wants to solve.

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Top 20 virtual reality apps that are changing education

Educational Technology News Blog - Tue, 03/21/2017 - 00:30

BY MATTHEW LYNCH, tech Edvocate

Virtual reality is one of the hottest edtech trends. Not only are students allowed the opportunity to emerge themselves into a subject but can travel the world from their desk chairs. While not readily available in every classroom, programs such as Google Cardboard aim to make VR headsets cheap and accessible. The majority of students in the USA own a cell phone, and with many of these educational apps available on both iOs and the iTunes-enabled devices, they are becoming more accessible to more students. Educationally, these VR apps allow students to visualize concepts that were confined to the pictures in a textbook. Linked below are 20 Virtual Reality Apps that are changing education.

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USA Today: Students need to know this for media literacy

Educational Technology News Blog - Tue, 03/21/2017 - 00:29

by MERIS STANSBURY, eSchool News

Students today are increasingly turning to online new sources to meet their research needs. Because of this, it is important for educators to teach students about trustworthy news sources and separating real news from fake news—but how can teachers impart these media literacy skills when trends in journalism are constantly shifting? In “Media Literacy: A Crash Course in 60 Minutes,” hosted by and sponsored by Mackin Educational Resources, Michelle Luhtala, Library Department Chair at New Canaan High School, CT, interviewed Greg Toppo, the National Education and Demographics reporter for USA Today, about today’s shifting trends in journalism and how teachers can help students identify reliable sources.

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Texas A&M Brings Gaming to Art History

Educational Technology News Blog - Mon, 03/20/2017 - 00:40

By Sri Ravipati, Campus Technology

Texas A&M University has teamed up with game-based learning company Triseum to introduce gaming into art history survey courses, in an effort to help students better understand the world in which works of art were created. Through a three-year agreement announced Friday, the university will integrate the company’s ARTé: Mecenas, an immersive art history video game that transports students to the Italian Renaissance of the 15th and 16th centuries. They can experience the political, social and economic factors of that time period through taking on the role of a merchant or banker within the Medici family. For example, students are tasked with balancing relationships between stakeholders in that time period (merchant factions, the Catholic Church, etc.) to build and maintain a financial empire.

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3 Ideas for Closing the Tech Skills Gap

Educational Technology News Blog - Mon, 03/20/2017 - 00:35

By Rhea Kelly, Campus Technology

According to a recent survey from the Career Advisory Board, only 11 percent of employers believe higher education is very effective in meeting the skill needs of their organization. More than half (57 percent) said it is common for job applicants to lack technology skills deemed important for success. And 77 percent of respondents said their company’s competitive advantage relies on a workforce that can use applied tech skills to solve problems. These issues and more were discussed in a session this week at SXSWedu in Austin The panel offered three solutions to help close the tech skills gap: Create dedicated industry advisory boards for educators; Move toward a vision of “any time, anywhere” education for students; and Provide students and employees access to the latest technologies.

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5 tips for getting blended learning right

Educational Technology News Blog - Mon, 03/20/2017 - 00:30


Tool integration, teacher teams are just some of the ways schools can ensure successful blended learning initiatives. When implementing a blended learning model, it is important for schools to be aware of key components and steps to integrate into their plan. In “Five Tips for Getting Blended Learning Right,” hosted by and sponsored by Achieve3000, Julia Freeland Fisher, director of Education at the Clayton Christensen Institute, gave schools the tips they need to successfully implement blended learning.

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Considering OER? Here’s what you need to know

Educational Technology News Blog - Sun, 03/19/2017 - 00:39


OER are teaching and learning resources that are free to use and share. They also are adaptable and can be customized for a specific class or student. Repositories such as The Orange Grove, the Utah Education Network, and OER Commons help educators locate and learn how to incorporate the resources into their instruction. The Software & Information Industry Association’s guide to OER can give educators background information to help them on their way to OER integration.

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Online alternative high school puts St. Louis students on path to graduation, but rigor questioned

Educational Technology News Blog - Sun, 03/19/2017 - 00:36

By CAMILLE PHILLIPS, St.Louis Public Radio

The school — Workforce High — uses the same online curriculum as the district’s three alternative schools and four credit-recovery programs. But some experts question whether at-risk students are learning what they need to by watching video lessons and taking online quizzes at a rapid pace. It’s hands-on support that sets Workforce High apart, says Alice Prince, who helps oversee the school. “It’s the exact same rigor,” said Prince, a director at SLATE. “I ask our students what is the difference, and they say ‘Well it’s a family atmosphere. The education mentors care if you get it or not.”

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Online learning successful at John Glenn

Educational Technology News Blog - Sun, 03/19/2017 - 00:31

by Hometown Life

Michigan Virtual University has selected John Glenn High School to represent them at the Student Showcase at the 2017 MACUL Conference at Cobo Hall in Detroit on March 16. Bonnie Ballard, John Glenn High School’s MVU mentor, and three students have been asked to represent Wayne-Westland Community Schools at the annual showcase. The students who are taking the online classes have a high completion and success rate. Currently, 85 percent of students who are taking online courses at John Glenn are passing their classes and receiving high school credit for those courses.

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How to create a Makerspace in any space

Educational Technology News Blog - Sat, 03/18/2017 - 00:39

by Matthew Lynch, Tech Edvocate

Makerspaces are spaces for hands-on interactive learning. These spaces have become popular in many communities, schools, and libraries due to their emphasis on creative learning and STEAM subjects. The primary aspect of any makerspace is the fact that creative hands-on learning opportunities are provided to users. One important fact regarding makerspaces is that there is no perfect model or formula that must be followed. In fact, it is not necessary to have a space set aside solely for use as a makerspace. If there are available study rooms, meeting rooms, or classrooms that are not always in use they can easily be converted into a makerspace. Converting a room into a temporary makerspace can be easily accomplished by bringing in the equipment for the maker activities.

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Lawmakers want to tie online course funding to classroom funding formula

Educational Technology News Blog - Sat, 03/18/2017 - 00:35

by Bryan Schott, Utah Policy

There’s an interesting little clause tucked away inside the public education budget that has the state’s largest teachers union wary. HB2 contains some intent language that ties the amount of money appropriated to pay for online courses used by private and homeschooled children to the weighted pupil unit, the basic integer of school funding. The reason for the change is to better deal with paying for the anticipated increase in the number of students who might take advantage of those programs beginning in the 2018-2019 fiscal year. In 2015, more students than anticipated used the online education programs, which resulted in a funding deficit.

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