Educational Technology

Can online tutors make anytime, anywhere learning a reality?

Educational Technology News Blog - Tue, 08/18/2015 - 00:36

By Peter West, eSchool News

Recently, I began dubbing the current generation of students the “Netflix Generation.” They learn when they want, and expect learning resources to be available when and where they need them. This is similar to the way they consume media through streaming services such as Netflix (for movies and television series) and Spotify (for music). However, this now produces other pressures. Learning outside of traditional school hours does not remove the need for teachers. If all that students needed in order to learn was information, schools would have closed once Google and high-speed broadband arrived on the scene. Students continue to need support, a human explanation, encouragement to work through a problem, and insight to take them through a mental barrier to get to the next stage of problem solving. Yet if significant learning is happening outside traditional school hours, who is available to support it?

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Documentation, communication key to online summer PE class

Educational Technology News Blog - Tue, 08/18/2015 - 00:28

by Grace Paine, Charlottesville Tomorrow

Does physical education need to take place in the school gym? According to staff and students at Charlottesville High School, the answer is “no.” Charlottesville High School recently wrapped up its second year of offering students the chance to fulfill their physical education credit by taking a virtual course over the summer. The program’s goal, administrators say, is to grant students greater flexibility in their schedules so that they can pursue individualized interests during the school year.

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Inquiry-based science platform lets students conduct investigations

Educational Technology News Blog - Mon, 08/17/2015 - 00:39

by eSchool News

Van Andel Education Institute (VAEI) has launched a new scientific inquiry platform, called NexGen Inquiry — which guides students through the scientific method and lets them conduct investigations and journal their progress. Released in preparation for the 2015-16 school year, NexGen Inquiry includes an interactive teaching and learning platform that supports existing curriculum, integrated teacher professional development, a teacher community and a resource library. Built by teachers for teachers, NexGen Inquiry is the result of more than a decade of work with students and science educators at the Van Andel Education Institute Science Academy in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

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University moves to give students wireless power

Educational Technology News Blog - Mon, 08/17/2015 - 00:35

by eCampus News

Powermat Technologies is installing its wireless charging platform at California State University, San Bernardino (CSUSB), allowing students to charge their mobile phones so they can stay connected to the information and learning resources they need while on the go. CSUSB says it is the first university globally to offer wireless power on campus, and it will soon integrate Powermat technology into high-traffic common spaces, student union areas, study areas, and on campus cafes and restaurants. The second wave will then see broader implementation in the university’s library and classrooms.

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Scientists Teach AI Machines To Understand Us

Educational Technology News Blog - Mon, 08/17/2015 - 00:29

by Vlad Tverdohleb, iTechPost

Artificial intelligence (AI) machines will be soon able to sustain a conversation with humans. This is one of the oldest goals in artificial intelligence and soon it might become a reality. Facebook has a chance to be the first company able to achieve this goal. According to Yann LeCun, the head of Facebook’s artificial intelligence lab, the company made progress in revolutionizing artificial intelligence research. After the recent successes in speech recognition and face recognition, now AI researchers are focusing their efforts on deep learning. This field has become a battleground between the high-tech giants, such as Google, Microsoft, IBM and Facebook, in their efforts to bring new AI applications on the consumer market.

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The 7 do’s and don’ts of creating your own OERs

Educational Technology News Blog - Sun, 08/16/2015 - 00:41

By Laura Devaney, eSchool News

Whether you know it or not, most educators have already started creating their own open educational resources (OER) in the form of tests, handouts, and presentations. Bringing them on online to share with other educators is just the natural next step. But there are best practices creating and sharing OERs, which are resources that are freely shared and able to be modified and redistributed. This “grass-roots, bottom-up” approach to content creation enables educators to tailor content to meet students’ needs,” said Tyler DeWitt, an MIT Ph.D. student and a student coordinator for the MIT+K12 video outreach project, during an edWeb webinar, which explored these and other related takeaways and gave several tips for creating OERs that work for educators.

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More Guilford students take advantage of online classes

Educational Technology News Blog - Sun, 08/16/2015 - 00:31

By Marquita Brown,

More students in Guilford County are studying science, Spanish, SAT prep and other courses. But they’re doing it while getting more screen time than face time with a teacher. Such self-guided classrooms aren’t taking the place of the traditional classroom — at least not yet. They are an increasingly popular way for some students to get an edge on their peers. About 2,000 students have taken online classes in Guilford County Schools each year since 2012, when the system first started its virtual public school. Students don’t have to pay to take the classes.

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University Of Missouri Offers 10% Tuition Discount For Online Degree Programs

Educational Technology News Blog - Sun, 08/16/2015 - 00:29

by Hanna Sanchez, iSchool Guide

The University of Missouri has decided to offer a 10 percent discount on its online degree programs for the upcoming semester this fall. The tuition drop is an effort to lure more in-state students to take online courses. The University of Missouri is offering in-state students a tuition drop on its online degree program, Mizzou Online, this fall. The school said Missouri students will save 10 percent if they enroll online, which costs about $82.86 per course. To qualify, students also must have attended a public community college in the state and be working on a degree from an undergraduate distance program.

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Understanding How Students Use and Appreciate Online Resources in the Teaching Laboratory

Educational Technology News Blog - Sat, 08/15/2015 - 00:40

by Sasha Nikolic, International Journal of Online Engineering

The internet is a great resource student’s use for learning. Reasons include the ease in searching with sites such as Google, or the vast collection of informative videos on YouTube. The teaching laboratory can also benefit from online resources, especially when students are deficient in prerequisite knowledge. The benefits are greatest when there are non-standard learning paths, and multiple entry points into a degree. This study undertakes a mixed methods research approach to try and understand how students use and appreciate an online resource, called the Training Laboratory, designed to support learning in the engineering teaching laboratory. The targeted resources are used to help support students as well as the laboratory teaching assistants (called laboratory demonstrators). The study finds that such resources are used by a substantial number of students to aid learning, increasing productivity, and improving teaching. The availability of such targeted resources leads to an improved student experience.

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North Carolina School Pilots Online Physical Education Course This Fall

Educational Technology News Blog - Sat, 08/15/2015 - 00:35

By Hanna Sanchez, iSchool Guide

A North Carolina school is offering an online physical education course starting this fall. The pilot program will become available statewide in 2016 if it is successful in select counties. The North Carolina Virtual Public School will pilot an online physical education course this fall. Instructors will provide a video demonstration and students will be expected to create a video portfolio of the same skills and sports to showcase their progress. If successful, the PE course will become available statewide in 2016. Like Us on Facebook The pilot program will kick off in New Hanover and Macon counties, and will debut at Wilmington Early College and Isaac Bear Early College high schools as neither has a PE teacher, Jace Harr of Education News reported.

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Paperless: 5 Ways Taking Online Classes Benefits The Environment

Educational Technology News Blog - Sat, 08/15/2015 - 00:30

by Anum Yoon, Elite Daily

Online learning is a hot topic in today’s schools, but environmental concerns are often left out of the debate. In addition to the positive effects digital classrooms can have on students, they also benefit the Earth. From reducing paper and other waste to conserving natural resources, here are five environmental benefits of a digital classroom you may not have considered. Transportation accounts for 27 percent of greenhouse gas emissions in the US, and personal vehicles are our most common mode of transport. A digital classroom eliminates the need for traveling back and forth from a physical school building. Therefore, students and teachers engaged in online learning immediately reduce their carbon footprints.

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7 mobile learning myths no educator should believe

Educational Technology News Blog - Fri, 08/14/2015 - 00:40

By Meris Stansbury, eSchool News

By now, educators are familiar with the term mobile learning — or mLearning — having experienced its rush in classroom popularity starting as early as 2000. But two researchers say it’s now imperative that educators slough off the myths from the reality to avoid ineffective classroom practice moving forward. “In recent years, many projects have assisted in the maturation of mLearning and much has already been done to integrate mLearning into mainstream education. However, mLearning is still in its infancy and we are merely seeing the tip of the iceberg,” notes Tom Brown, a former associate professor of research and development in tech-enhanced learning at the University of South Africa. Most of the myths identified by Brown and Mbati focus on mobile learning’s oft-described “techno-centric” characteristics, which the researchers say may do a disservice to those educators either interested in implementing mLearning, or have already done so.

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Should there be a “driver’s license” for online programs?

Educational Technology News Blog - Fri, 08/14/2015 - 00:35

By Ron Bethke, eCampus News

Utilizing the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement could be the key to reaching a national standard on recognizing online degree programs. The American Council on Education (ACE) has released a new paper on the importance of implementing a standardized approach to recognizing online degree programs across different states. The paper, titled “A More Uniform Way of Recognizing Online Degree Programs Across State Lines, with SARA as a Focus,” is the sixth in a series of Quick Hit briefs about current and emerging topics in higher education attainment and innovation released by ACE’s Center for Education Attainment and Innovation and funded by the Lumina Foundation.

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Survey: Professors and Employers Find High School Grads Unready for College or Work

Educational Technology News Blog - Fri, 08/14/2015 - 00:30

By Dian Schaffhauser, THE Journal

Neither university faculty nor employers believe that American public high schools are preparing students for the expectations they’ll face in college and career. In fact, compared to 2004, the assessment is even more dismal. More than a decade ago, for example, only 28 percent of college instructors stated that schools were doing an adequate job of readying students for what came next after high school. That count is down to 14 percent in 2015. Among employers, 49 percent in 2004 said that schools were adequately preparing students for what they would need for work; in 2015, the count was 29 percent. Part of the challenge, say students themselves, is that their high schools don’t set academic expectations high enough. Fifty-four percent said that they were only “somewhat challenged”; 20 percent said it was “easy to slide by.”

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How to Teach Students to Evaluate the Quality of Online Information

Educational Technology News Blog - Thu, 08/13/2015 - 00:39

By Leigh Ann Whittle, Edudemic

The volume of information available on the Internet is astounding, and it just keeps growing. Business intelligence company DOMO estimates that 571 new websites are created every minute. With that amount of information, it can be difficult for students to separate the gems from the garbage. Julie Coiro, associate professor of education at the University of Rhode Island,says author and publication type are of limited importance to students, and if they do examine these elements, they can’t explain why they chose certain websites. Coiro suggests strategies to help students to effectively evaluate what they see on the Internet, practice refuting what is on the Internet, and cross-check claims. In other words, becoming critical consumers of online material means more than just viewing a website. It requires knowing what qualifies as quality content and how to judge what is good material and what is not.

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Blended Learning Leaders Are Over the Honeymoon—and Rolling Up Their Sleeves

Educational Technology News Blog - Thu, 08/13/2015 - 00:35

by Alex Hernandez, EdSurge

This summer, I spoke to leaders at six public charter school networks who are now wily veterans in the art of blending teacher-led instruction with online learning–also known as “blended learning”. Their titles range from Innovation Manager to Director of Individualized Learning, meaning they work directly with teachers to effectively incorporate edtech in the classroom. I asked them one question: What has you jumping out of bed and rushing to work, in regards to blended learning? In short: finding out what learning software is working for students; making edtech tools usable for teachers; putting better data in the hands of teachers and students; and–now that they know enough to be dangerous–designing 2.0 versions of their school models.

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The first 10 jobs that will be automated by AI and robots

Educational Technology News Blog - Thu, 08/13/2015 - 00:30

By Conner Forrest, ZDNet

Robots have been working alongside human employees in industries such as manufacturing for a long time, helping accomplish tasks quicker or more efficiently. But, as the fields of cognitive computing and artificial intelligence continue to grow, we will see many more industries — from the food industry to customer service — affected by automation. A 2013 research paper out of the Oxford Martin School in the UK estimates that roughly 47 percent of the total US jobs are at risk of computerization or automation. Some of these are jobs for which we are offering college degrees and/or certificates.  That means almost half of the jobs in the US could end up being automated. But, which will be the first to go? Here are 10 jobs that will be at the top of the list.

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University of Connecticut says hit by hackers from China

Educational Technology News Blog - Wed, 08/12/2015 - 00:40


The social security numbers and credit card details of up to 6,000 University of Connecticut students, faculty and others may have been stolen by cyberhackers from China, the university said on Friday. Officials detected a potential breach of the School of Engineering’s network in March and an investigation uncovered that hackers may have gained access to it as early as September, 2013, spokesman Tom Breen said. He said 6,000 students, faculty, alumni and research partners of the school were notified that their personal information may have been compromised.

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Online courses offer students an education option

Educational Technology News Blog - Wed, 08/12/2015 - 00:35

by Atlanta 11 Alive

Online classes are skyrocketing in popularity as high school kids take advantage of technology, but do they really work? Cobb County was the first school district to offer online classes in Georgia all the way back in 2001. However, that doesn’t mean some kids are not having a little trouble getting the hang of it. “I had to work really hard to make sure I didn’t procrastinate,” sophomore Garrett Davis said. Now that he’s taken three, he says he’s gotten the swing of it. Senior Grace Arnold has been taking them her entire high school career – and she’s got it down. “It’s a lot of knowing yourself, knowing your schedule, planning beforehand,” Arnold said

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