Miscellaneous

Ministers and Key Partners Chart Path Forward for Education and Skills in Canada

Stephen Downes' OLDaily - Thu, 07/17/2014 - 09:00


Press Release, Council of Education Ministers, Canada (CMEC), Jul 17, 2014

The Council of Education Ministers, Canada (CMEC), met with "his week with more than 200 key business and labour leaders, academics, representatives of student organizations, and other stakeholders" l;ast weekend in Charlottetown, and recommended the following:

  • Education and training must empower Canadians to acquire the skills they need for success in the job market in a flexible and dynamic environment.
  • Partnerships and alignment with business, labour, education, and training providers are key to ensuring synergy between education and skills training systems and Canada's labour markets.
  • Access to accurate, relevant, and timely labour market and education data is essential to support Canadians to make smart career choices, as well as enable government and business to make evidence-based decisions in planning for the future.

This is the sort of conversation they were having just before they created the Canadian Council for Learning (CCL), a five-year $80 million program that released a number of reports and then disappeared.

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Categories: Miscellaneous

Extended Artificial Memory. Toward an integral cognitive theory of memory and technology

Stephen Downes' OLDaily - Mon, 07/14/2014 - 10:00


Lars Ludwig, Kluedo, Jul 14, 2014

Lars Ludwig wrote to tell me about work he has done on the possibility of extending memory with machines. "This thesis is a contribution toward an integral cognitive theory of memory and technology. It, furthermore, develops a theory and prototype for technologically extending mind (memory and thinking)." I didn't have a chance to read the whole dissertation, clearly, but what I read was enough to pique my interest - for example, his discussion of the various and different meanings we have for the term 'memory'.

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Report: Open Access to Journal Articles Gaining Acceptance from Researchers

Stephen Downes' OLDaily - Mon, 07/14/2014 - 10:00


Leila Meyer, Campus Technology, Jul 14, 2014

More evidence of the increasing acceptability of open access research. "The report, "Taylor & Francis Open Access Survey, June 2014," is the second annual survey of journal authors on their opinions toward open access publication... Compared to last year, the survey found that attitudes toward open access are becoming increasingly positive... the number of respondents who strongly agree that 'pen access offers wider circulation than publication in a subscription journal' increased from 38 percent to 49 percent."

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Categories: Miscellaneous

21st Century Literacy: New Initiative Makes the Case that Learning to Code is for Everyone

Stephen Downes' OLDaily - Mon, 07/14/2014 - 10:00


Mimi Ko Cruz, Berkman Center for Internet, Society, Jul 14, 2014

You have to admire their capacity to win research grants. "With a recently awarded $1.5 million grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF), the researchers (an interdisciplinary team of researchers from MIT’ s Media Lab, the University of California’ s Digital Media and Learning (DML) Research Hub, and Harvard’ s Berkman Center for Internet & Society) aim to engage a broader range of young people in computer programming by building on their interests in areas such as music, dance and sports."

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Categories: Miscellaneous

Beyond Assessment - Recognizing Achievement in a Networked World

Stephen Downes' OLDaily - Mon, 07/14/2014 - 08:00
[Slides][Audio]

ePortfolios and Open Badges are only the first wave in what will emerge as a wider network-based form of assessment that makes tests and reviews unnecessary. In this talk I discuss work being done in network-based automated competency development and recognition, the challenges it presents to traditional institutions, and the opportunities created for genuinely autonomous open learning.

12th ePortfolio, Open Badges and Identity Conference , University of Greenwich, Greenwich, UK (Keynote) Jul 11, 2014 [Comment]
Categories: Miscellaneous

Net Neutrality Offensive

Stephen Downes' OLDaily - Mon, 07/14/2014 - 08:00
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Carl Straumsheim, Inside Higher Ed, Jul 14, 2014

Academic groups are (once again) stressing the importance of net neutrality. “ I think it’ s hard to downplay how important free, open and readily accessible internet is to colleges and universities throughout -- including the students, the faculty, the administrators and staff that have to run the institutions.”

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Beyond Institutions - Personal Learning in a Networked World

Stephen Downes' OLDaily - Sat, 07/12/2014 - 10:00

In this presentation I look at the needs and demands of people seeking learning with the models and designs offered by traditional institutions, and in the spirit of reclaiming learning describe a new network-based sysyetm of education with the learner managing his or her education.

Network EDFE Seminar Series, London School of Economics (Keynote) Jul 09, 2014 [Comment]
Categories: Miscellaneous

Beyond Free - Open Learning in a Networked World

Stephen Downes' OLDaily - Fri, 07/11/2014 - 07:00
[Slides][Audio]

The evolution of open content and open learning are explored in this presentation that seeks to recapture the essence of what it is that a MOOC is designed to do.

12th Annual Academic Practise & Technology Conference, University of Greenwich, Greenwich, UK (Keynote) Jul 08, 2014 [Comment]
Categories: Miscellaneous

Sorry, Folks, Rich People Don't Create The Jobs

Stephen Downes' OLDaily - Thu, 07/10/2014 - 09:00
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Henry Blodget, Business Insider, Jul 10, 2014

Or, put another way, education does far more to create jobs than rich people. That is not to say that we do not need people to make investments or start companies. We do - we need both. But only as a part of a healthy and functioning economic ecosystem that is working toward something larger than mere generation of wealth (such as, creating happy lives for its citizens, building a social and cultural institutions, advancing science and researcher, pushing the frontiers of discovery). Via Doug Belshaw.

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How to Create Your Own Illustrated Characters in PowerPoint

Stephen Downes' OLDaily - Mon, 07/07/2014 - 10:00
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Tom, The Rapid eLearning Blog, Jul 07, 2014

I wonder what the 'completion rate' is for this bit of learning. Does it even matter? It help my attention right to the end, and I think I might try creating animated characters using PowerPoint some time in the future. The video is by Daniel Albarrá n.

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Microsoft joins key industry groups to deliver on promise of the Internet of Things

Stephen Downes' OLDaily - Mon, 07/07/2014 - 10:00
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Kevin Dallas, The Official Microsoft Blog, Jul 07, 2014

If you're not watching developments in this arena, you should be. How do we "get the benefit out of the more than 212 billion 'connected things' IDC predicted  we’ ll see by the end of 2020?" The time is now to think about (say) how things will help us learn and how we'll interact with them. Microsoft is joining the Industrial Internet Consortium (IIC) and the AllSeen Alliance to create this infrastructure. Maybe these will have education working groups, or maybe it makes sense to form an 'Education of Things' alliance. More.

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PersonalizED :: A Guide to Personalizing Learning in the Classroom

Stephen Downes' OLDaily - Mon, 07/07/2014 - 10:00
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Mary Ellen Beaty O’Ferrall, Sara Henschell, Margaret Roth, Fieldmarks Blog, Jul 07, 2014

According to the authors, "Personalized learning is an instructional philosophy intended to address the distinct learning needs, interests, aspirations, and cultural backgrounds of individual students to create an environment and experience that best facilitates their learning." This post is a fairly good overview of personalized education. It's worth asking, though, as you read through, how this account is distinct from personal learning, where people create learning according to their own needs and interests, rather than having something created for them.

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Complexities of Measuring Effectiveness

Stephen Downes' OLDaily - Mon, 07/07/2014 - 10:00
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John Marschhausen, Connected Principals, Jul 07, 2014

If we actually understood this, and believed it, we would never assess learning using things like tests: "education is complex, challenging to measure, and impossible to show with a single measure. Each child in our care, every single student in our classrooms, is a unique person with different strengths, needs, and passions. Socioeconomic challenges, such as poverty, can greatly impact education – we partner, support, and engage our families to maximize educational opportunities." Related:  competency education will be the next great disruptor in the system.

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Categories: Miscellaneous

Online education is dead; long live Mentored Simulated Experiences

Stephen Downes' OLDaily - Mon, 07/07/2014 - 10:00


Mark Guzdial, Computing Education Blog, Jul 07, 2014

I'm not sure what is new about this proposal, except perhaps the name (which really just combines two things we already know quite well). Here's Roger Schank: "Universities have adopted online education wholesale. They are producing garbage. No, actually they are producing what they have always produced." So this, he says, is dead. Instead: "What is education? Its an experience, mentored by an expert, in which the student tries to accomplish something, fails, and then after some discussion with peers and mentors, tries again." It took less than a month for the term to be co-opted into something quite different, covertly reintroducing instructivism: " I think our ebook work is close to what he’ s describing, since we focus on worked examples (as a kind of 'mentoring') and low cognitive-load practice (with lots of feedback)."

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Categories: Miscellaneous

Personal Learning Networks, CoPs Connectivism: Creatively Explained

Stephen Downes' OLDaily - Mon, 07/07/2014 - 10:00
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Jackie Gerstein, User Generated Education, Jul 07, 2014

OK, with some or another of these analogies I would probably have issues because the metaphor is not exact. But it doesn't really matter because what I really like is the way the author finds different ways to creatively express the essential nature of communities of practice. And a number of them capture a little-discussed but important aspect of MOOCs and communites of practice: self-organization.

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Categories: Miscellaneous

MOOC completion rates DO matter

Stephen Downes' OLDaily - Mon, 07/07/2014 - 10:00
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Martin Weller, The Ed Techie, Jul 07, 2014

Martin Weller offers an argument to suggest that MOOC completion rates do matter. He argues that while MOOCs may be like a newspaper, they're "like designing a newspaper where you had to read a certain section by a certain time." And, he asks: "Most MOOCs are about 6-7 weeks long, so 90% of your registered learners are never even looking at 50% of your content. That must raise the question of why are you including it in the first place?" The answer is very simple: Choice. On the internet today you have all the newspapers in the world. Most people only read a small fraction of them on a regular basis, but they feel free to dip into the content of others from time to time.

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Categories: Miscellaneous

EU's right to be forgotten: Guardian articles have been hidden by Google

Stephen Downes' OLDaily - Mon, 07/07/2014 - 01:00


James Ball, The Guardian, Jul 06, 2014

I'm sympathetic with both sides here. As "the result of a European court ruling that individuals had the right to remove material about themselves from search engine results," the Guardian newspaper reports that various stories about people it covers have been removed from search engine results. One such is the removal of results related to "Dougie McDonald, who was found to have lied about his reasons for granting a penalty in a Celtic v Dundee United match." Now on the one hand we should expect to have some privacy from Google's prying eyes. On the other hand, a newspaper - or, for that matter, a blogger - ought to have the right to post news about the person. Either way, it's up to a court - not Google - to make the decision, not as a blanket decision, but on a case by case basis. Update: the BBC is reporting that Google has  reinstated the missing links.

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Categories: Miscellaneous

Demoting Social Silos to Syndication Endpoints

Stephen Downes' OLDaily - Sun, 07/06/2014 - 10:00


David Wiley, iterating toward openness, Jul 06, 2014

David Wiley discovers Known and the result is magical. "Known is a publication platform that uses the “ POSSE” publication model, where POSSE stands for “ Publish (on your) Own Site, Syndicate Elsewhere” . .. The POSSE model is just beautiful. It represents everything empowering about the Reclaim and Retain work. In fact, the more I wrapped my head around it, the more excited I got." See  more about Known. This is the model - promoted here through everything from  indiweb to  Diaspora to syndication itself - that we've been taking about here for years. It's the basis for the personal learning environment. It's the basis for mesh networking. Welcome to the future, David. Maybe you want to read  this (and this) and we can talk about breaking down the silos and building indie learning. Via Jim Groom.

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Categories: Miscellaneous

Jobs Charted by State and Salary

Stephen Downes' OLDaily - Sun, 07/06/2014 - 10:00
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Nathan Yau, Flowing Data, Jul 06, 2014

Interesting presentation, sadly using U.S. data only, of every major job category, the size of the population employed in it, and the average salary. What I find noteworthy is that the slider only needs to move between $20K to $180K. It raises the question: who needs more than $180K to live? And why would incomes be higher than that? The vast majority of us earn something within that range. The people who earn more are deriving an unfair advantage from the work the rest of us produce and are distorting marketplace pricing for goods and services (everything from food to health care) the rest of us need to live.

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Categories: Miscellaneous

The Future is Open

Stephen Downes' OLDaily - Sun, 07/06/2014 - 10:00
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Various authors, Creative Commons, Jul 06, 2014

Creative Commons has released their annual report as a picture book. I'm not sure what to think of that. Sure, there's text, but the presentation is mostly visual. The main highlight is the release of version 4.0 of the licenses - we are told they are "global licenses" that don't need to be adapted to each jurisdiction. "The new licenses include provisions related to database rights, personality rights, data mining, and other issues beyond the scope of the original CC licenses." But better is the recognition that "CC licenses are a patch, not a fix, for the problems of the copyright system." This is reflected in a  policy statement that urges that content be considered "open by default". Controls on reuse should be the exception, not the rule, and in my view, should require special justification. So much of any creation is borrowed from others there needs to be substantial justification for locking it in its entirety. I guess I don't mind the picture-book format, but posting credits on every page for each image, even the navigation icons, is distracting. Just build a credits page.

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