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This could be really handy for a lot of people. The idea is "to help postsecondary decision-makers make informed selections of digital courseware products, and support effective adoption and implementation of these solutions." The Courseware in Context (CWiC) Framework is not a framework in the traditional sense, but is composed of the following tools (quoted):
The resources are available as a PDF and Excel spreadsheet. There are no company or product listings (you have to do that yourself - the tools help you do this). An interactive-web-based version is planned but not yet available. You'll be required to provide name and email in order to access the materials.[Link] [Comment]
The idea has been making the rounds recently. This article summarizes some comments in favour from Martin Weller, opposed from Audrey Watters, and breezes through some comments take take the discussion in all sorts of directions. "I’ m left with the feeling that maybe a discipline isn’ t what we need," says Tim Kapdor in this post, "but we do need something." Right now PopEdu gets all the attention - Sal Khan and the Gates megamoney. Against this, "Ed-tech and using digital technology for learning is something distinct and relatively new. It’ s not computer, neuro or information science, or humanities or education – it sits outside the normal traditions. It needs staking out, research, evidence and practices in order to take a seat at the table." I get the point - there needs to be a way to weed out the fads and fashions, the quacks and the cretins. But pretending that we're physicists isn't the answer either. If there is to be a centre to this discipline, it needs to be an open centre. Because as Maha Bali says, "I don’ t know how becoming a discipline won’ t again exclude certain people from the table."[Link] [Comment]
Education, says Hank Green, is impossible to optimize. Hank and his brother John are the creators of Crash Course, a YouTube educational channel, now being touted on Patreon. "We create free, high-quality educational videos used by teachers and learners of all kinds," says the Patreon description. "That's all we want to do. After 200,000,000 views, it turns out people like this." In this article Green writes about talking to rich people about the success of Crash Course. "They get really excited really fast," thinking they could scale it up and 'fix' education. But there's no one-size fits-all. "Different schools face different problems. There are no one-size-fits-all solutions. You can’ t innovate your way into the kind of traditional cost-savings the internet brings." So instead "we keep doing what we’ re good at… making great content about difficult subjects that help students and teachers." And giving them away for free.[Link] [Comment]
This is an interesting discussion but actually very light on the explanation it promises. A close reading reveals it to be this: first, VCs confuse size and scale, preferring to create large institutions in an industry that depends on local impact. Second, scope and scale do not always mix. They try to reform the entire education system rather than focusing on a specific activity or domain. Why do theey do this? Ego plays a role, but ultimately the cause is found in their desire to do good (which runs counter to the need to make money ("one cannot do good for very long if the business does not do well enough to survive")). The consistent failure of private institutions, argues the author, gives ammunition to those who oppose privatization, but "that sphere will always comprise public and private, nonprofit and for-profit institutions, and for-profit businesses play an essential role."[Link] [Comment]
The assignment bank was one of those details that made DS106 so innovative. Basically the idea was that people submit suggestions for assignments, which other people then browse, select from, complete and contribute. Some of the earliest posts in my art blog (now used for my photos of the day, but always subject to change) are from the DS106 assignment bank. The title is also from the DS106 course. Anyhow, this post reconstructs the history of the assignment bank. It begins from a Michael Cauldfield post in which part of this history became the subject for discussions. Alan Levine drills deep into the historical archive and concludes "the Assignment bank is totally the idea and prowess of Martha Burtis." He also comments on the difficulties of doing digital history. I can relate; I've been updating my Presentations files recently. When people tell you "the internet is forever" don't believe them. So much has already been lost. Take some time now and repair your archives. The future will thank you. Image: one of my DS106 contributions, The Long Goodbye.[Link] [Comment]
In keeping with the learning communities theme from last week have a look at these presentation resources shared by Lucy Gray on the Global Education Conference and the Highly Connected Global Educator. There's a fair bit of overlap between the two slide decks (the latter is the better deck) but you'll see listings of learning communities and networks, overviews of global education projects, and related resources. The focus of these projects, writes Gray, is not on the technology or the content but on the people.[Link] [Comment]
I think this falls into the category of overthinking things, but I still want to pass on this discussion of OER 'frameworks', for example one describing "different stages of OEP using a combination of OER usage and learning architecture." Yes, it's another set of taxonomies-and-stages. And as always they seem to raise more questions than they solve. "Whats an institution?" What about collaborative development? "What about moving beyond the institution?" Why is 'open practice' a continuum? Is the 'value chain' the right place to locate OERs?[Link] [Comment]
What's interesting about the diagram in this post is that you could figure out who the major writers are in the field without knowing anything about the writers or the field. Take a look. Rawls, Sen and Ostrom occupy central locations. "Basically, it automatically (well - a little effort and a bit of Google Scholar/Gephi competence needed) maps out connected research areas and authors, mined from Google Scholar, including their relative significance and centrality, shaped to fit your research interests." When we can do this for everybody, what would we need tests and exams for any more?[Link] [Comment]
Good article listing sources of cognitive bias (always an interest of mine). Numerous links. "In order to avoid drowning in information overload, our brains need to skim and filter insane amounts of information...
By keeping these four problems and their four consequences in mind (we) will ensure that we notice our own biases more often." The item called to my recollection a CBC interview I listened to this morning with Julia Shaw, author of The Memory Illusion: Why you might not be who you think you are.At least, I think I listened to it.[Link] [Comment]
This report from the Conference Board of Canada "explores the potential of e-learning in the Canadian setting." Most Conference Board reports are expensive (like this excellent Learning and Development Outlook from last year) but this one is free. Most readers of this newsletter will find the report very superficial, dated and quaint. It's not clear there was actually a literature review, as claimed - many of the (sparse) resources in the bibliography link to error pages on the Conference Board website (the references have other errors, including a '2003' article on MOOCs). The main points of discussion - whether e-learning should be employed, the quality of faculty-created courses, the nature of the LMS - would have been appropriate in 2004. Aside from a short discussion of MOOCs, there is nothing about modern e-learning: social networks, simulations and virtual reality, gamification, workplace support (indeed, workplace learning is all but ignored). The report contains three recommendations: reduce economic barriers, tackle institutional constraints, and adopt excellent practices. Well sure; we'll get right on that, once we get past this Y2K bug thing.[Link] [Comment]
This is a very specialized piece of technology, but if you're building learning technologies, it's also an important application. "MappingEDU is a web-based system designed to do one common, time-consuming data integration task well: map one data standard to another. The primary users are data analysts and technical staff who create mappings between data sources. MappingEDU also contains features to assist subject matter experts in reviewing data mappings." See also this press release.[Link] [Comment]
Bob Dylan Wins Nobel Prize in Literature for Creating New Poetic Expressions within the Great American Song Tradition
Normally I'd be celebrating a Nobel for peace or physics or something, but this year's Nobel prize in Literature speaks to me. "Dylan has released album after album, decade after decade, that showcase his unparalleled wordcraft in various song forms. And some of his finest work has appeared only in recent years, when it seems his career might have come to a close."[Link] [Comment]
Presented atMOOCs4All. In this discussion I discuss the thinking behind our MOOCs, personal learning environments and connectivism and consider the question of how we know whether the method is working, how we know whether it is effective. Presented online via Adobe Connect and simulcast (using xSplit) to YouTube Live. Above is the SAdobe Connect recording. Also you can view the xSplit recording to YouTube Live from the presenter screen (doesn't show screen shares, because that's how Connect rolls).moocs4all.eu Extended Virtual Symposium , Online, Via Adobe Connect and YouTube Live (Keynote) Oct 13, 2016 [Comment]
This is not a coherent post - not even close. But there is something interesting going on here. The core metaphor of 'digital sunscreen' is not defined (except for the fact that it lasts two hours). Meanwhile there is an undercurrent about teachers and tech leaders becoming part of the problem we're trying to solve. Then there's this: "I’ ve been using the term edumedia sarcastically. The proper term is mission-driven marketing – a way to turn awareness into action with those new to your product or to engage already-supportive people in deeper ways. It uses teachers, enlists paid and unpaid teachers and ex-teachers – to present itself as ‘ the future’ in a duplicity of discussions and forms." Lovely.
There's a follow-up post today that helps a bit. Dean Groom writes, "I think I’ ll actively promote two hours a day (school+home) is an essential contract between parents and teachers." So I think the point is to limit screen time to two hours. Groom admits "Two hours a day is going to sound ridiculous to kids and adults alike." And the concern underlying the limit is this: " is dominated by the commercial agendas and belief of a few mega-brands – Apple, Google, and Microsoft. The ‘ social stream’ of edumedia is seduced and propositioned by brands." He's not wrong - but the remedy needs to be fixed.[Link] [Comment]
Here's the teaser: "Arts-based research is beginning an investigation without expectations and remaining open to all possibilities. Now imagine asking a ninth-grade class to deconstruct and recreate a Happy Meal. Now I wouldn't want a ninth-grade class to ever be in the same room as a happy meal. But I get the point; I remember at SXSW a decade ago watching participants take café offerings and turn them into nouveau cuisine. "Arts-based research, a methodology of inquiry promoted by Professors Shaun McNiff and Elliot Eisner, asks the researcher to begin an investigation, not with a predetermined sense of what is useful, but by remaining open to all possibilities for diving in." That's how I like to do my work, but it's far from universally accepted.[Link] [Comment]
I like the argument. And I think it's more right than wrong. "There is no particularly good reason why ballet or basketball should be taught through apprenticeship while science and math are not. As any scientist will tell you, our profession is as much a matter of hard-won skill as piano or tennis. In graduate school, where we really teach science, we use the same methods as a chef or a tailor."[Link] [Comment]
This podcast discusses an experiment whereby the history of discussions was run through natural language analytics. "When they did that, they discovered two things: what kind of arguments are most likely to change people’ s minds, and what kinds of minds are most likely to be changed."[Link] [Comment]
Voice-activated WiFi kettles are still in the realm of future technology (and, I would think, about as safe as a Galaxy Note 7) but this nightmare scenario still draws out an important lesson for the internet of things (IoT) and technology integration in general. But gthe best line in the article has nothing to do with the kettle: "Well the kettle is back online and responding to voice control, but now we're eating dinner in dark while lights download a firmware update." These are all the sort of things that can't happen with household appliances. We tolerated it for decades with software because, well, software, but when the toaster won't toast we're going to begin fighting back.[Link] [Comment]
As the title suggests, learning and development are becoming more agile. By this, what they mean is that there is a much greater use of freelancers. The article draws from an Accenture study (14 page PDF) on outsourcing that suggests "HR will need to redefine its mission and activities— and perhaps create new roles and organizational structures to maximize the extended workforce’ s strategic value... the best HR organizations of the future will offer learning opportunities to extended workers." The article quotes Patty Woolcock, the executive director of CSHRP, the California Strategic HR Partnership, says: "The future of learning is three 'justs': just enough, just-in-time, and just-for-me." So we're looking at technology-supported peer learning, bringing together customers and providers, and focusing on development (growth) rather than deficiencies (or gaps).[Link] [Comment]
I'm preparing for a talk on Thursday on learning communities and encountered this excellent study from 2010. This is a fairly large study, as the title suggests, and the report (153 page PDF) provides a comprehensive overview, including these observations:
Additionally, the authors recommend curricular integration supporting active and collaborative learning, including collaboration with faculty and student services, with the objective of promoting student engagement.[Link] [Comment]
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