Educational Technology

Experts’ top tips for success in online classes

Educational Technology News Blog - Wed, 09/14/2016 - 00:34

by Colorado State University Online

Nearly 5,000 students are enrolled in online courses at CSU this semester. Many study fully online, and others are taking just one or a few of their classes online. Regardless of your online course load, it’s important to remember that studying online comes with a unique set of advantages and challenges. Several CSU professors and instructors have offered their advice for success in online courses. Here are some of their best tips.

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LaGuardia Community College: Where Business and Tech Education Meet

Educational Technology News Blog - Wed, 09/14/2016 - 00:30

by Rian Ervin, EdSurge

LaGuardia’s program, known as TechIMPACT, will partner with tech education companies including General Assembly, Udacity and The Software Guild to provide accelerated tech training for more than 300 low-income young adults over the next three years. “We think it is critical that tech jobs are taken by the diversity of people who make up America—namely women and people of color,” Mellow says.

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Online program to supplement Neosho classrooms

Educational Technology News Blog - Tue, 09/13/2016 - 00:40

By Ariel Cooley, Joplin Globe

Teachers at Neosho Middle School and Neosho Junior High have spent the last several months learning about an online learning management system called Canvas. “It does not replace a quality teacher,” said Mandy Lybeck, instructional technology specialist with the school district. “It is not a baby sitter; it is a tool.” The district has been evolving to meet the needs of the “digital native.” This, Lybeck said, is someone who has never lived in a world without advanced technology. To do so, the school has been pushing for a ratio of 1-to-1 with computers. This goal has been achieved in the middle school, the junior high and the high school. The lower grades are becoming closer every year.

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Nonprofit receives nearly $1M to fund online Native language classes

Educational Technology News Blog - Tue, 09/13/2016 - 00:35

By Associated Press

An Alaska foundation is hoping to revitalize five Athabascan languages through online education with help from a $900,000 grant. The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports that the Doyon Foundation recently announced the grant awarded by the nonprofit group Administration for Native Americans. The foundation will use the money to create 280 online lessons focusing on Holikachuk, Denaakke, Benhti Kenaga, Han and Dinjii Zhuh Kyaa languages. The courses will be available for educators and students throughout Alaska. The project is being worked on through a partnership with an organization called 7,000 Languages, which aims to preserve languages throughout the world.

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5 free online courses for every entrepreneur

Educational Technology News Blog - Tue, 09/13/2016 - 00:30

by Your Story

Whether you’re new to the startup world or you are an experienced business owner, continued education paves a clearer path in your professional journey. Enrolling in an online course gives you access to an ocean of resources, thus improving your knowledge on various subjects. It doesn’t have to be a financial commitment though, since free online courses make it easy and affordable for you to learn something new from the comfort of your home.

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Can Predictive Analytics Encourage Purdue Students to Be More Successful?

Educational Technology News Blog - Mon, 09/12/2016 - 00:40


Purdue University is working on student- and adviser-facing applications that reveal how student behavior matches up to their peers who have been successful academically. Enter Forecast, a student-facing Web application designed to compare current student behavior with the aggregated behavior of successful peers over the last eight years. Indiana university adopted hardware and software platforms to support predictive analytics, and then developed the application for students on top of that infrastructure. “We really wanted to expand what we were doing in the space of predictive modeling to allow us to look at more near-time and real-time data points of how students are actually interacting with the campus, and see how those were or were not predictive of whether they were ultimately successful here,” said Brent M. Drake, who became Purdue’s first chief data officer nearly three years ago. Purdue plans to study whether this application will help students actually change their behavior and improve academically.

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Mars free-for-all: Monash course equips students for life on red planet

Educational Technology News Blog - Mon, 09/12/2016 - 00:35

by Birdie Smith, Sydney Morning Herald

Want to study how to live on Mars? This course will take just 12 hours of your time. And it’s free. That’s right, gratis. Among your teachers will be astronomer Jasmina Lazendic-Galloway and chemist Tina Overton. The idea of life life on Mars has long captivated the human imagination, but while getting to the red planet is relatively easy, surviving will be a real challenge. Your classroom will be of the virtual variety, with the four three-hour-sessions run by Monash University taking place online. The course will cover the basics of how to survive on the inhospitable red planet, which offers visitors no air, water or food.

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History Enrollments Drop

Educational Technology News Blog - Mon, 09/12/2016 - 00:29

By Scott Jaschik, Inside Higher Ed

From 2012-14 to 2014-15, undergraduate enrollments fell by 7.6 percent, survey finds. At a time of concern about the state of the humanities in American higher education, a new survey finds declining enrollments in history, one of the central humanities disciplines. From 2012-14 to 2014-15, undergraduate enrollments fell by 7.6 percent, according to a new survey released by the American Historical Association. The survey is based on results from 123 history departments and is focused on total enrollments, not the number of history majors.

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Smaller classes, innovations to greet students in ‘reformed’ Buffalo schools

Educational Technology News Blog - Sun, 09/11/2016 - 00:40

by Deidre Williams, Buffalo News

In Kriner Cash’s second year as Buffalo superintendent, he says these are just some of the changes he is implementing in his reform agenda. “We’re going to provide (students) with the opportunity to do more,” Cash said. “We’re going to have our schools open longer. We’re going to bring all the services and supports to” students and their families. Here are some of the other innovations students and parents can expect to see when the 2016-17 school year starts Tuesday: iPads for all students in pre-K through second grade and access to tablets and laptop computers for students beginning in second grade; Six new translators for the top foreign languages spoken in the district, as multilingual education reform continues. “We’re going allow you to get online and go as far as you want to go as quickly as you want to go through our online course menu and our virtual schools and our other technology upgrades that we’re bringing in from pre-K through grade 12,” Cash said.

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Teaching and Learning Theories

Educational Technology News Blog - Sun, 09/11/2016 - 00:36

by Ann Gravells and Susan Simpson in Stanford University Tomorrow’s Teaching and Learning

There are many different theories regarding the way people learn. This section will very briefly explore some of them (in alphabetical order), which you might like to research further and try out with your own learners. However, don’t get too concerned thinking you must teach in a certain way because a theorist says so. What works with one group or individual learner might not work with another. You might find at first you are teaching the way you were taught at school, college or university. It might have suited you at the time, or it might have had a detrimental effect. Don’t be afraid to try something different and step out of your comfort zone. You will need to find out through experience what works and what doesn’t work with your learners.

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Massachusetts school district says laptops for students is a ‘social justice’ issue

Educational Technology News Blog - Sun, 09/11/2016 - 00:30

by DAVE HUBER, the College Fix

In a move that will cost $20 million, students in third through twelfth grade in the Springfield Public Schools (Massachusetts) will be given their own laptop to use during the school day. Superintendent Daniel Warwick tells MassLive that this is a “social justice” matter, an effort to bridge the so-called “digital divide” if you will: “This is an urban environment where many of our students are in high poverty rate situations, and with this technology they should be able to compete with any other student. We are providing technology to bring them into the 21st century and make them college and career ready.”

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Digital Tattoo project aims to increase awareness of online privacy issues

Educational Technology News Blog - Sat, 09/10/2016 - 00:40

By Hussein Hatim, the Ubyssey

As technology advances, the world has become a more convenient and far less secretive place. Services like Facebook, Google and Instagram have created and replaced avenues of communication in a way that allows everyone to share more information with more people. UBC’s Digital Tattoo project aims to increase awareness of online security and privacy issues. Created with grant funding from UBC’s teaching and learning enhancement fund and from BCcampus, the project brings students and university community members together to discuss ways in which they can help students make thoughtful decisions about their online presence. The project also works with other universities including Thompson Rivers University, the University of Victoria and the University of Toronto.

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Choosing a new school? Study up

Educational Technology News Blog - Sat, 09/10/2016 - 00:35

By Sarah Shemkus, Boston Globe

As kids grab their backpacks and notebooks and head back to school, it is only natural that many adults start thinking about their own education. And there are dozens of choices available. But many of the best-advertised programs have been accused of scamming students, charging outsized fees, and offering little useful training. Just recently, the federal government barred for-profit education behemoth ITT Tech from using federal financial aid to enroll students. So how can an ambitious student pick a solid program and make a savvy financial decision?

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Education professor develops progress-monitoring software

Educational Technology News Blog - Sat, 09/10/2016 - 00:29

By Jessica Buterbaugh, Penn State

If there is a common complaint among teachers, it is that there is not enough time in the day to complete all the duties with which they are tasked. From lesson plans to assessments to grading and student reports, the day is gone, and for most teachers, so are their evenings. A new software suite out of Penn State’s Learning, Design and Technology program is addressing those time constraints, while also improving the literacy of young students. Named avenue pm for its audio-visual environment and progress monitoring capabilities, the suite helps teachers track the literacy development of school-aged children, specifically for students who are deaf and hard of hearing. It consists of four different assessments that measure reading and writing aptitude, and is available for free for all educators and school districts.

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Harmony School Board to consider participation in online learning program

Educational Technology News Blog - Fri, 09/09/2016 - 00:40

By Dianne Byers, the Progress

At Tuesday’s Harmony Area School Board meeting, the board will be asked to consider a partnership with Central Intermediate Unit No. 10 for a pilot program that would allow Harmony students currently enrolled in cyber schools to participate in online learning offered by the school district. Although there would be an upfront annual cost to Harmony of $5,000, the partnership has potential. Superintendent Terry Young said she believes to save the district thousands it spends to educate Harmony students at cyber schools by getting students to return to Harmony for their education. Young told the board the district has 12 students who currently utilize cyber schools for a variety of reasons including discipline problems, family situations and emotional-social difficulties. The use of cyber schools by those 12 students costs the school district more than $161,0000 per year in its basic education funding received from the state.

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Big Companies That Help Older Workers Finish a College Degree

Educational Technology News Blog - Fri, 09/09/2016 - 00:38

By Lisa Rabasca Roepe

Nearly 3 ½ million Americans age 50 or older have taken some college courses but haven’t earned a degree or certificate, according to the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center. Some big employers, such as Starbucks, JetBlue, Fiat/Chrysler and Pizza Hut are now helping them finish a college degree. These companies have launched programs allowing their employees of any age to earn a college degree online for little or no out-of-pocket costs. (The specifics vary for each program and are noted at the end of this article.) It’s a win/win for employees and employers. “When people are working on improving themselves, their productivity and performance improves,” says John Fox, director of dealer training, FCA Performance Institute, Fiat/Chrysler. Others offering college-completion programs say this benefit helps them with recruitment, retention and employee engagement.

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A free online university course will teach you Mars survival skills

Educational Technology News Blog - Fri, 09/09/2016 - 00:30

By ARIEL BOGLE, Mashable

We could be living on Mars by the year 3000, so it’s time to get prepared. To help us earthlings ready ourselves for the journey, Monash University in Melbourne, Australia is offering a free online course focused on how to survive the red planet. Developed by astrophysicist Jasmina Lazendic-Galloway and chemistry professor Tina Overton, the course “How to Survive on Mars: The Science Behind Human Exploration of Mars” will run over four weeks, three hours per week with the first instalment beginning on Oct. 24. According to Lazendic-Galloway, the course emerged from she and Overton’s love of Andy Weir’s bestselling novel, The Martian, which was made into a 2015 film starring Matt Damon.

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New AI Tool Helps High Schoolers with College Admissions

Educational Technology News Blog - Thu, 09/08/2016 - 00:40

By Richard Chang, THE Journal

SchoolWise, an online platform for high school students interested in college, has launched, a new website that’s designed to help high school students and their parents during the often arduous college admissions process. The new site utilizes artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) tools such as IBM Watson, a platform that uses natural language processing and personality traits to reveal insights from large amounts of unstructured data, to help students find the right college for them. According to a report by the private, Indianapolis-based Lumina Foundation, only about 40 percent of high school students in the United States graduate from college. SchoolWise aims to improve that number by assisting students at the beginning of the college admissions process.

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Virtual Reality to Drive Rapid Adoption of 360 Degree Cameras

Educational Technology News Blog - Thu, 09/08/2016 - 00:34

By David Nagel, Campus Technology

Fueled by a growth in virtual and augmented reality, 360 degree cameras are expected to see rapid growth over the next five years. 360-degree cameras allow users to shoot spherical videos and still images, which can be shared on services like Facebook and YouTube and experienced as virtual reality using a phone, tablet or dedicated VR headset. The 360-degree video at the link below, for example, shows a Blue Angels flight from the perspective of one of the planes’ cockpits. On a phone or tablet, users can view the scene from different angles just by turning their devices left, right, up or down. (On a traditional computer, these movements are controlled using a finger or mouse.)

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How to Revamp Your Learning Spaces on the Cheap

Educational Technology News Blog - Thu, 09/08/2016 - 00:30

by David Weldon, Campus Technology

Often, the learning spaces that get the most attention are the big, flashy projects, complete with all the bells and whistles associated with cutting-edge technology-enhanced classrooms. But for many colleges and universities, those kinds of facilities are a dream, not a reality. With that in mind, Sutch and her colleague Mark Frydenberg, senior lecturer in computer information systems and director of the CIS Learning and Technology Sandbox at Bentley, presented the session “Spruce up Your Campus Learning Spaces without Breaking Your Budget” at the recent Campus Technology Conference in Boston, offering ideas on how campus technologists can outfit their learning centers “on the cheap.”

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