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I wonder what the people at newbrunswickjobshop.com ("long name, greate results") will say. "The Conservative government is considering a new money-making plan that would allow it to sell private-sector advertising on the government’ s Job Bank website. The Globe and Mail has learned that federal officials are examining ways to raise millions from the website, which currently posts more than a million jobs per year." Job advertising is pretty competitive (just ask Monster.com), likes directly to the learning and competence market, and commercializing the national job bank would add a major new variable to the mix.[Link] [Comment]
I think this is obvious but it needs saying anyways: "Building an online space to highlight your academic work will help you come job search time." It's an article with only one example, really, but it makes the case, and that's a start.[Link] [Comment]
A CBC survey says that "thousands" of students in Canada were caught cheating (though admittedly that means maybe one percent of theem). Of course, many more people may actually be cheating than get caught. Other studies have found around half of all students admt cheating (a figure that is interestingly consistent with the poll at the bottom of the article). I think that if the system is designed such that cheating helps you get ahead, people will cheat. Without going into the details (which I know are really the sticking point) I would want to design a system where students harm only themselves by cheating, whether or not they are caught.[Link] [Comment]
I would hesitate to call the three commentators in this article 'experts' but I do think their reflections on their initial exposures to MOOCs are interesting. Here's Rosental Alves of the Knight Centre, who has been running MOOCs on Journalism for a year or so: "Our MOOCs are a human experience. This is not a book. It's not a self-directed course. It has a beginning, middle and an end, and it is led by an instructor. These aren't college classes. It's a workshop and a community. We don't expect that everyone who comes will do it. We don't mind if you come, watch a video and go."[Link] [Comment]
We're running a MOOC en franç ais starting next Monday on Open Educational Resources (OERs). There's a page available where you can sign up. It's not a long MOOC - 10 weeks - and it will feature a variety of interesting participants. The MOOC was created by the L’ Organisation internationale de la Francophonie (OIF) and was developed by the Université de Moncton. I will be facilitating and a good numner of NRC people are also contibuting (see the introductory video for more).[Link] [Comment]
Cathy Davidson was more than a little surprised and bemused when she was arbitrarily named one of the leading figures in MOOCs by the Chronicle of Higher Education. "I've been ambivalently interested in MOOCs," she wrote at the time, "with more than a healthy degree of scepticism that the current form will persist in the future." Still, she has since then embraced her newly minted expert status with gusto, having worked since then to learn something about the subject in which she was now a designated expert. So we have here today an article listing ten things she learned from actually making a MOOC. It takes her nine points to get to the main point of MOOCs, but at least she getss there: "The best use of MOOCs may not be to deliver uniform content massively but to create communities and networks of passionate learners galvanized around a particular topic of shared interest." See also the HASTAC Future Ed Discussion group link.[Link] [Comment]
From the press release (edited to remove adjectives) : "IMS Global Learning Consortium has announced the release of the public specification of Learning Tools Interoperability v2 (LTI™ 2), which enables automated 1-click integration of a wide variety of educational apps and digital content with the educational enterprise." The press release is for some reason a PDF. More: "The LTI v2 standard can be downloaded from the IMS Global public website at http://www.imsglobal.org/lti/. IMS Global maintains a developer website for those wishing to implement LTI and has a catalog of tools and platforms that have achieved LTI conformance certification is maintained at http://developers.imsglobal.org/catalog.html."[Link] [Comment]
The Hasso Plattner Institute has launched a Chinese-language MOOC portal. The recently launched www.openHPI.cn an educational platform offering MOOCs in Chinese language. Current courses are found here: https://openhpi.cn/courses[Link] [Comment]
Nice article debunking some supposed 'logical fallacies' that have started to appear in the media and on discussion boards. For example:
As the author says, not every disagreement is a logical fallacy. "Blaming our disagreements, particularly political ones, on logical fallcies does nothing other than delude us into thinking that our opponents are illogical and that we are intellectually superior." Or as I say in my own Guide, the logical fallacies are intended to help us correct our own thinking, not to belittle that of others. Via Big Think. (p.s. the illustration is Bayes Theorem, aka conditional probability, a useful rule, but not the only number that matters).
Beware philosophies saying 'thoughts become things'. Thoughts do not become things, nor do outcomes appear merely because you hope for them. Yes, there is a relation between visualization and desired outcomes. But what you have to visualize and practice is the hard work it takes to reach the outcome, not the outcome itself. (P.S. this is one of the best stock photos ever to accompany an article - though I've edited it to provide a meme-worthy alternative).[Link] [Comment]
In the winter of 1981 I was sent to Austin, Texas, for three months to learn IBM's new MVS-JES (Multiple Virtual Storage - Job Entry Subsystem) mainframe computer, which would be the backbone of our global network of data processing sites (I was based in Calgary, others were based in Australia and Britain). I studied these systems (and took a communications course called 'On the Way Up') using tutored video instruction. It worked very well for me. Note though that while John Seely Brown and Paul Duguid say "the method requires viewers to work as a group... [to] construct and negotiate a shared meaning, bringing the group along collectively rather than individually," I studied on my own and practiced what I learned messing aorund with the mainframe on the night shift. Oh, and I sincerely doubt that the method was "discovered" at Stanford in the 1970s, as Fred Bershears suggests in an email today, no more than MOOCs were "discovered" at Stanford in the 2000s.[Link] [Comment]
The founders of the MarineLives project need the help of the HASTAC community.
We are establishing an educational charity to be named Connecting Primary Sources, and would benefit enormously from the experience of the HASTAC community. We are volunteers with a passion for history, and share a belief in collaboration as a powerful force in
Tony Bates is always interesting and therefore so is his vision for an open textbook ("a personal vision for what I want to do, he writes. "There are innumerable alternative visions one could quite legitimately have for an open textbook"). It will be "aimed mainly at faculty and instructors in colleges and universities" and "a model for open textbook publishing, incorporating many of the design principles of ‘ good teaching’ – such as active and social learning, use of video and audio, crowd-sourcing, remixing and adaptation."[Link] [Comment]
I like this presentation a lot. Science, management and journalism are typically represented as taking an objective stance on objective data. But the data are rarely objective, and as this presentation makes clear, the stance can depend a lot on your point of view. Good science (and management, and journalism) means being able to take a variety of points of view (Hirst talks about 'sensemaking' and 'telling stories' but I think this is loose vocabulary for describing contextualization and perspective). Seen from one angle, a set of points may represent a straight line; from another angle, they may be a curve. The real strength (and meat of the presentation) comes when Hirst describes how we can ask questions and how we can interpret answers: looking for outliers, similarities and differences, trends, patterns and structure.[Link] [Comment]
This is really intetresting. It's just a snippet of a story, but it describes how a physical education might use a heartbeat monitor in a phys ed classroom (ie., a gym). "Combined with a GPS, the monitors give a full picture of their activity levels. It is clearly a growing area in the science of sports and physical activity." Yes it is. A variety of devices is now available. But who should own and/or have access to this data? Especially things like GPS data. I can only imagine what RunKeeper does with my data. Sell it to insurance companies, maybe? I've been doing rigorous spin classes for the last six weeks, but not reporting them to RunKeeper. What is the consequence of that? I think personal data should remain personal, and question the presumption that it should be accessible by teachers or companies or whomever.[Link] [Comment]
I actually think the format suggested here is wrong. Here's a sample of the MLA version:
Daly, Jimmy (jimmy_daly). "72% of college students own a smartphone: http://t.co/yyZbgVBK00 #highered". 31 Jan 2014, 17:01 UTC. Tweet
I think it should say "Twitter.com" and not "Tweet". Twitter.com is the source. 'Tweet' is a nickname. A person could use identi.ca (which uses pump.io), which would use the same sort of reference, but you would neither call it a 'Tweet' or "Identi' (or whatever). Additionally, each tweet has a unique URL. The Daly tweet cited above can be found at https://twitter.com/jimmy_daly/status/429298436736028674 - but you'll never find it without the actual URL. Not without months or years of endless scrolling.
Interesting article about the problems faced by the Chinese audience participating in international (ie., English-language) MOOCs. Issues range from internet speeds to the Great Firewall to differing approaches to learening. Also, Chinese MOOC users tend to be much younger, making university-level vocabulary a challenge (related: I always thought the University of Alberta's Dino 101 course should have been less like a university course and more like the NASA website). Should there be a 'MOOC Chinatown?' I'd rather see the great cultures of the world interact through MOOCs, rather than embracing their own solitudes. But it's not something that happens automatically.[Link] [Comment]
Obviously wearing a videocamera on your head everywhere you go will raise some ethical issues (when the cameras are tiny and built into real glasses or tie clips, etc., the ethical issues will be even greater). Google is responding people to follow the rule, "Don't be creepy." They write, "In places where cell phone cameras aren’ t allowed, the same rules will apply to Glass. If you're asked to turn your phone off, turn Glass off as well. Breaking the rules or being rude will not get businesses excited about Glass and will ruin it for other Explorers." Maybe - but Google forgot its "Don't be evil" slogan the day after its IPO dropped, and I suspect commercial enterprise will take being creepy in stride just as easily as it takes being evil. So be warned - if you thought government NSA and CSEC-style spying is creepy, just wait for the corporate version. Via PC Magazine.[Link] [Comment]
I've mentioned deep learning a number of times in the past. It's time to pay attention to this. Michael Nielsen has made available the first chapter of his recent book on deep learning (he adds: "The book’ s landing page gives a broader view on the book. And I’ ve written a more in-depth discussion of the philosophy behind the book").
So what is deep learning? If you use neural networks to recognize patterns - being able to recognize, for example, that a handwritten number is a '4' and not a '5' - the usual way is to create a large set of correctly identified hand-written numbers and use this to 'train' the neural network (using a method called back-propagation, for example). But in deep learning, you are presented with the handwritten numbers, and the neural network has to determine for itself that there is such a thing as a '4' and then recognize future instances of it.[Link] [Comment]
The learning and development guru community was on full display during January’ s Learning Technologies Exhibition and Conference at Olympia, according to LINE Consulting's 'suzanneo' (please put your name on your blog post, suzanneo!). They were led off by Brian Solis and Marc Presnky, both of whom had the same message, and often, the same slides. The same, ahem, wrong message. "Prensky still bangs on about that old Digital Imigrants / Digital Natives thing, Solis... talks about Generation C – the ‘ C’ standing for connected." And "nothing much was done to repair the situation by a double-headed presentation on disruptive technologies." According to the presenters (probably this track, but we aren't told - suzanneo, if you're going to cite someone, tell us who it is!) the failure to adapt can be traced to leadership - "neither of the presenters had read Michael Neilsen’ s thoughtful blog post about what (actually) happened."
Suzanneo writes, "This purblindness on the business aspects of disruption was symptomatic in my view of a wider failure in parts of the guru community; an inability or unwillingness to engage with the critical question of exactly why technology innovation in L& D meets so much resistance – and, equally importantly, what can be done to change that attitude." Well, that's one question, but the real issue is the community's unwillingness to engage with changing research and development trends. And it is equally simple-minded to constantly blame PowerPoint for a failure to adapt and learn over ten or so years of presenting at conferences. Maybe the conference itself shares some of the blame - we don't see any of the presentations (no slides, no video) and this just encourages speakers to say the same old thing over and over.[Link] [Comment]
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