Educational Technology

New guide designed to help Colorado educators combine online courses with traditional teaching

Educational Technology News Blog - Sat, 08/05/2017 - 00:34

By MARISSA PAGE, Chalkbeat Colorado

A new guide released Monday seeks to help Colorado schools successfully introduce blending learning, a growing practice combining traditional classroom instruction with online coursework. The Colorado Blended Learning Roadmap, commissioned by state lawmakers, urges school officials to consider three main priorities: effective teacher training and increased support; flexibility in school policies to support the model; and access to quality technology and other tools.

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Why Apple Is Investing So Much in AR and VR

Educational Technology News Blog - Sat, 08/05/2017 - 00:29

by Kate Murphy, Campos

What’s Apple going to do with the company’s patents and technology? No one knows, but Apple CEO Tim Cook has expressed enthusiasm over AR in particular. “Unlike virtual reality, which closes out the world, AR allows individuals to be present in the world but hopefully allow an improvement on what’s happening presently,” he told the Independent in February. “With AR you can, not be engrossed in something, but have it be a part of your world, your conversation. That has resonance.” Earlier this summer, Apple launched ARKit, a tool that adds augmented reality capabilities to iOS. A soon-to-launch app developed using ARKit called A R Measure, is a good example of what this means to consumers. The app will allow you to measure real-life objects by superimposing virtual measuring tape over the item when you look through your phone screen.

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5 Assistive Technology Apps for Students with Special Needs

Educational Technology News Blog - Fri, 08/04/2017 - 00:40

by Matthew Lynch, Tech Edvocate

With so much talk about mobile devices at K-12 desks and teaching technology for the majority of students, it can be easy to overlook the strides also being made for students with disabilities when it comes to assistive technology, especially in the area of apps. These apps can be used with virtually any electronic device, including mobile phones. Also, many come no cost, and those that are fee-based are usually inexpensive. In this article, we will profile the best assistive technology apps on the market today.

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How to Choose the Right Digital Learning Device

Educational Technology News Blog - Fri, 08/04/2017 - 00:35

by Matthew Lynch, Tech Edvocate

Choosing the right digital learning device can be tricky. As more schools go one-to-one, offering every student a computer or tablet, they are faced with the difficult choice of picking one device that will work for all purposes. It can be tough to find a device that is tough enough to withstand everything students will throw at it, is easy to carry around, and can do everything teachers and students need it to do. Ultimately, there is no one right digital learning device for every school. But there are some basic guidelines that schools can follow to help them choose the right digital learning device for their needs.

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Is Online Education a Jobs Engine?

Educational Technology News Blog - Fri, 08/04/2017 - 00:30

By Joshua Kim, Inside Higher Ed

Drawing parallels to one economist’s unorthodox view of e-commerce.I like nothing better than getting things wrong. When we are wrong, we learn something. So I interested to read a NYTimes piece on 7/10/17 on e-commerce, the tech sector, and job creation. For a while now I’ve thought that the growth of online shopping is killing retail jobs, and that this trend would inevitably result in overall job losses as less the role of sales people and cashiers is eliminated. But maybe I’ve been wrong. And if online shopping is really a jobs engine, couldn’t online learning also be a job creator for educators?

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8 principles to help you advance to Flipped Learning 3.0

Educational Technology News Blog - Thu, 08/03/2017 - 00:40


Flipped learning pioneer Jon Bergmann outlined critical steps to building an effective flipped learning school. At ISTE 2017, flipped learning pioneer Jon Bergmann introduced session attendees to Flipped Learning 3.0, and described the 8 principles that are crucial to any school’s flipped learning journey. Bergmann referenced the Flipped Learning Network’s definition as a pretty solid explanation for educators who are unsure: “Flipped learning is a pedagogical approach in which direct instruction moves from the group learning space to the individual learning space, and the resulting group space is transformed into a dynamic, interactive learning environment where the educator guides students as they apply concepts and engage creatively in the subject matter.”

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Fascinating library project has students award peace prize

Educational Technology News Blog - Thu, 08/03/2017 - 00:35


A media specialist’s grade-wide interdisciplinary project shows students that their voices have power around the world.The Barrow Peace Prize is a cross-curricular project that allows 2nd-grade students to consider the character traits of peace and extend their voices to a global audience. Named for our school, David C. Barrow Elementary, the project begins with each student selecting one of six nominees from civil rights history to research. They then create a persuasive video essay as well as a watercolor painting showing why their chosen nominee best displays the qualities of peace. The videos are voted on by people from all over the world, and the nominee with the most votes (and the students who researched them) is awarded the Barrow Peace Prize.

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Students list the top 5 benefits of a campus app

Educational Technology News Blog - Thu, 08/03/2017 - 00:32


The right campus app can help support students’ academic success. A new survey reveals that while 38 percent of students are somewhat or very worried they will not graduate on time, students also say their campus app helps them stay on top of their academic responsibilities. The 2017 Student Life and Technology survey comes from DubLabs, a provider of personalized campus mobile applications focused on the student experience. The survey aims to understand today’s postsecondary student experience and it reveals potential barriers to graduation and how students are leveraging campus resources to stay on track.

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2017 Ed Tech Trends: The Halfway Point

Educational Technology News Blog - Wed, 08/02/2017 - 00:38

By Rhea Kelly, Campus Technology

In January, CT asked a panel of higher education IT leaders to opine on 11 education technology trends to watch in 2017. Now that we’ve passed the halfway point of the year, how are those trends shaping up? We asked some of the original panelists to weigh in.

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Stanford Launches Platform Lab for Centralized Control of Autonomous Cars, Drones

Educational Technology News Blog - Wed, 08/02/2017 - 00:36

By Joshua Bolkan, Campus Technology

A team of faculty at Stanford University has launched the Platform Lab, a new initiative that aims to develop infrastructure to control swarms of devices, such as drones or autonomous vehicles. “We think all these self-driving cars and drones will be controlled not individually, but centrally, in a coordinated fashion,” said John Ousterhout, faculty director of the lab, according to information released by the university. “This has the potential to change how society functions on a daily basis.”

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Report: AI Will Be in Nearly All New Software by 2020

Educational Technology News Blog - Wed, 08/02/2017 - 00:30

By Joshua Bolkan, Campus Technology

Artificial intelligence will be in nearly all new software products by 2020 and a top five investment priority for more than 30 percent of chief information officers, according to a new report from Gartner. The company defines AI as “systems that change behaviors without being explicitly programmed, based on data collected, usage analysis and other observations,” according to a news release. “While there is a widely held fear that AI will replace humans, the reality is that today’s AI and machine learning technologies can and do greatly augment human capabilities.”

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More kids are logging on to learn at cyber schools

Educational Technology News Blog - Tue, 08/01/2017 - 00:39

By Amy Scott, Marketplace

From the outside, it would be easy to mistake the Pennsylvania Cyber Charter School for a place to get your taxes done or mail a package. The downtown Erie branch is tucked away in a strip mall, across from a Big Lots discount store and a U-Haul storage center. But inside, a dozen or so kids are gathered around tables, making colorful sun catchers to understand how a liquid becomes a solid. “We are a real school,” Hayden said. “I think sometimes that isn’t the perception that people have, that we have a bunch of kids sitting in a dark room in front of a computer, isolated from the world, and that’s not what this is.”

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District wrestles with math teacher shortage

Educational Technology News Blog - Tue, 08/01/2017 - 00:35

By DAVID ADLERSTEIN, Apalachicola Times

If you have three teachers, and you subtract all three, then how many are left after you add all the math curriculum requirements for middle and high school together with the total number of successful applicants willing and able to teach those courses? So far, the answer is zero. Faced with three vacancies in its math department, the district’s hopes are dwindling to fill them by the start of school August 8, particularly after a full-scale but unsuccessful effort in the spring and summer to recruit. Rather than put in the classroom another teacher unfamiliar with teaching math, or a substitute likely not certified as a teacher, Superintendent Traci Moses is moving forward with a plan she believes has the best chance of success – the instituting of a blended learning lab reliant on online technology.

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The Future of Learning: Personalized and Curiosity-led

Educational Technology News Blog - Tue, 08/01/2017 - 00:29

By Sarah Zak Borgman, Skoll

Why should age be the key determent of where your brain is in its developmental journey? Short changing our students should not be an acceptable standard. We know children are naturally curious. They want to fully understand a topic, and have it presented in a 360 degree manner. Our education systems should follow their lead, not demand students conform to outdated and outmoded models of education. The world is a fundamentally different place now, and our education approaches need to reflect that. Khan Academy has disrupted the education paradigm by providing alternative learning opportunities that both augment what is being taught in the classroom, and allow a user to learn at his or her own pace to master a subject. Khan Academy also collects data on student performance to structure learning models according to student outcomes. Now doesn’t that sound reasonable? From learning to code and art history, to math and financial literacy, the Khan Academy platform continues to expand to meet the needs of learners at all ages and levels.

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Report: Educator Confidence in Technology Increasing

Educational Technology News Blog - Mon, 07/31/2017 - 00:40

By Richard Chang, The Journal

Teachers still want more resources and professional development to implement tech in their classrooms. Sixty-five percent of educators expressed confidence in using digital technology in their classrooms, a 7 percent increase over last year, according to a recent survey commissioned by education and publishing company Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH). While 98 percent of educators reported using digital materials in their work, teachers still said there was room for improvement in implementing technology in class. Lack of funding continues to be a significant concern among educators (58 percent in 2017). Forty-six percent said they lack time “to plan for implementation of digital resources into instruction,” according to a news release; 40 percent said there was a shortage of devices in the classroom; and 48 percent of educators said they lacked “access to technology-focused professional development” (PD).

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Mira Debuts Augmented Reality Headset for iPhone, iPad at $99

Educational Technology News Blog - Mon, 07/31/2017 - 00:36

By Sri Ravipati, Campus Technology

Mobile augmented reality (AR) startup Mira earlier this week unveiled an untethered AR headset for iOS. The new Prism headset — available for pre-order at $99 with an MSRP of $149 — aims to be an affordable option “to deliver premium and shareable AR experiences to the masses,” according to a company statement. It’s essentially a shell headset without any tech installed; similar to Google’s Daydream View headset for virtual reality, it only requires a smartphone or tablet to get started. Once an iPhone (6, 6s or 7) or iPad has been secured facing away from the user and Prism is paired with the Mira app, users can view objects rendered in stereoscopic 3D on the transparent visor. Prism also comes with a remote controller that enables users to interact with the AR objects via touchpad, trigger and two buttons.$99.aspx

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CA Charter Boosts Personalized Learning Options for Homeschoolers

Educational Technology News Blog - Mon, 07/31/2017 - 00:30

By Sri Ravipati, THE Journal

Visions in Education (VIE), the largest public charter home study program in California, has partnered with an Outschool to give VIE’s more than 5,200 K–12 homeschool students across nine Sacramento Valley counties more personalized learning options. According to information from the online learning company, Outschool provides live, online classes to 12 charter schools and networks in the United States and across 24 countries. Outschool’s online platform is designed to offer “flexible and personal homeschool, independent study and university prep programs at no out-of-pocket expense for families.”

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5 apps to innovate school libraries

Educational Technology News Blog - Sun, 07/30/2017 - 00:40


Convenient and creative apps to virtualize your school library program. Apps can bring technology, functionality, and creativity into your school library program. Since apps are a part of our everyday lives, especially those of students, they have the power to completely change the way students and teachers think about learning—especially in the library. In “Virtual Library Program Development,” Michelle Luhtala, library department chair, New Canaan High School, CT, reviewed an A to Z list of 50 apps to virtualize your school library program.

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Online class about upcoming solar eclipse offered to students this fall

Educational Technology News Blog - Sun, 07/30/2017 - 00:35

By Kyle Hampel, the Collegian

Kansas State University is offering a new online math class for the fall semester focused on the upcoming total solar eclipse. The class will begin on the day of the eclipse, Aug. 21, and focus on the math and physics related to celestial events in our solar system. As previously reported by the Collegian, the solar eclipse will occur on the first day of the fall semester, and class attendance is optional for all students. The eclipse class will be offered in two sections of Math 199. The Solar Eclipse section, or section ZA, is a four-week class for one credit. The Hidden Figures section, or section ZB, is a 12-week class for three credits. Both sections are designed for students who want a better understanding of the upcoming eclipse.

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27 Assessment Tools, Apps and Resources

Educational Technology News Blog - Sun, 07/30/2017 - 00:30

by Matthew Lynch, tech Edvocate

Assessment is at the crux of educational evaluation. It’s a major factor in designating student success, and it’s a vital skill that every educator needs to have firm hold of. Succinctly, grades represent the extent to which the learner has met the defined objectives. Teachers generally define these objectives at the beginning of the year, aided by benchmarks, such as statewide academic achievement standards. Assessment is an emotionally laden procedure that implies more than the degree of compliance with the goals. Before beginning a learning activity, teachers should think of and choose the assessment criteria; students appreciate a grading system that is fair, consistent, and easy to understand.

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