eLearning and Technology

Desperately Seeking Linux Programmers

By Jack M. Germain, LinuxInsider

Few people know just how pervasive Linux has become, and that is causing a big problem for companies that increasingly rely on it. “There is a shortage of software developers in the U.S. The employment rate for these jobs is down to 2.3 percent in the last quarter. The opportunity for jobs is now there for people who come in to get this training,” said Dice President Shravan Goli. The Linux operating system and Linux servers are so widely used today that not enough Linux-trained coders and system techs exist. Software developers and enterprise IT departments have jobs but no takers. To fill this shortage, the Linux Foundation has partnered with edX to offer a free online course to help computer engineers learn Linux.

http://www.linuxinsider.com/story/Desperately-Seeking-Linux-Programmers-80290.html

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Minority Students Should Weigh Pros, Cons of Online Education

By Devon Haynie, US News

Trina Jordan, a 49-year-old single mom from Nashville, Tenn., was always aware of her race in college. As an African-American undergraduate at Tennessee State University, a historically black school, she felt like other students were judging her for her dark skin. But that all changed when she signed up for an online master’s degree in professional studies at Middle Tennessee State University. There, Jordan was comfortable with her virtual classmates — and her skin color — in ways she never was in an on-campus setting. “With an online course, nobody knows who you really are,” says Jordan, who works for the Tennessee Board of Regents, the state’s higher education system. “They don’t know your ethnicity unless you have a picture on your profile. I felt like, ‘I can do this. There is no one stereotyping me.’”

http://news.yahoo.com/minority-students-weigh-pros-cons-online-education-130000307.html

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Group considers future of online classes at KU

By Ben Unglesbee, Lincoln Journal World

A group of Kansas University faculty, staff and students delving into the rise of online education recommends that the university keep watch over the quality of digital courses and online learning while making sure that faculty are fairly compensated for their time developing courses. Instructors and administrators have pushed for the development of more online coursework to ensure KU keeps up with its peers in the field. But trying to translate centuries-old instruction methods into online technology is tough. So is trying to determine how online classes can or should fit in at KU, with its dozens of departments and schools and thousands of individual instructors and students.

http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2014/apr/12/group-considers-future-online-classes-ku/

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Wiley Acquires CrossKnowledge: New Player in Corporate Learning

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Sun, 2014-04-20 15:44


Josh Bersin, Bersin by Deloitte, April 20, 2014

Take note: "Wiley has repositioned itself significantly and is making major investments in the markets for corporate and individual professional development. Over the last several years Wiley acquired Inscape (DISC assessment products), Profiles International (prehire and team assessments), Deltak (learning management system and student relationship platform for the education industry), and now CrossKnowledge, a fast-growing provider of corporate e-learning, LMS, and content management solutions."

[Link] [Comment]

Don’t give up on online education

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Sun, 2014-04-20 02:05

by Bill Lowry, Michael Wysession and Scott Krummenacher, WU Student Life

Recently, the faculty of Arts & Sciences voted to terminate the Semester Online program for undergraduates. We are the three Washington University professors who actually taught courses in this program. We write not to restart the debate over this program but rather to continue the discussion of online teaching in general. Hopefully, such discussion will continue. Indeed, some of the critics of the Semester Online program stated at the last ArtSci faculty meeting that their criticisms were not directed at online education per se but rather at the current arrangement with Semester Online. Given that, we thought it would be useful to offer the lessons we learned from teaching in this program.

http://www.studlife.com/forum/op-ed-submission/2014/04/10/dont-give-up-on-online-education/

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LaunchCode may expand beyond St. Louis

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Sun, 2014-04-20 02:04

By David Nicklaus, Post-Dispatch

LaunchCode, which began last year as an effort to increase the amount of computer programming talent in St. Louis, is looking at expanding to other cities. LaunchCode founder Jim McKelvey said this morning that he already has office space in Miami and will move there temporarily in June to work on a Miami version of the training and job-placement program. Baltimore, Philadelphia and Denver also are likely destinations for LaunchCode, he said. McKelvey, speaking at an Innovation St. Louis forum at the Missouri Botanical Garden, said officials of EdX, an education joint venture between Harvard and MIT, encouraged him to expand LaunchCode. In St. Louis, LaunchCode is using a free EdX computer science class to train programmers. The class is offered online, but LaunchCode is offering hands-on sessions to augment the coursework.

http://www.stltoday.com/business/columns/david-nicklaus/launchcode-may-expand-beyond-st-louis/article_d3335341-b8d9-5b51-ab04-ac185dbc5645.html

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UW-Madison expanding online course offerings for summer term

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Sun, 2014-04-20 02:02

By Karen Herzog, the Journal Sentinel

The University of Wisconsin-Madison announced this week it has expanded summer online course offerings so students who return to their hometowns for jobs or who have internships elsewhere can stay on track to complete a degree without disrupting other summer activities. “The students asked for flexibility and we responded,” said Jeffrey Russell, vice provost of lifelong learning and dean of continuing studies. “One benefit of studying during the summer is students then can move toward their graduation goal faster and ultimately join the workforce sooner. Making that transition from student to salary-earning professional is an important goal.” UW-Madison is offering 100 online courses this summer, up from 64 last summer and 49 the summer before.

http://www.jsonline.com/blogs/news/254600311.html

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2014 Future of Open Source Survey Results

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Sat, 2014-04-19 13:44
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Black Duck Software, Slideshare, April 19, 2014

Slideshare slide deck. From the summary: "The eighth annual Future of Open Source Survey results, presented by Black Duck and North Bridge, point toward the increased strategic role that open source plays in today’ s enterprises, its crucial function within new technology development, and the growth of both first-time developers within the OSS community and the impact open source has in daily life." The overall message: "Open source continues to eat the software world."

[Link] [Comment]

Universities See Regional Broadband as Critical to Success

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Sat, 2014-04-19 02:10

By John Pulley, Campus Technology

Scattered throughout the country are technological oases where data-thirsty Internet users can access blindingly fast, affordable broadband service. These super-connected communities are engines of innovation and economic progress. They are, of course, our nation’s universities. Forward-looking institutions are investing in broadband infrastructure both for themselves and for the regions they serve. Beyond the brick-walled perimeters and filigreed iron gates of campuses, the Internet service available to neighborhoods that ring our universities tends to be comparatively slow and considerably more costly. “Students expect and need broadband, especially WiFi, in class, in their residence and in outside areas. In other words, everywhere,” said Joanna Young, chief information officer at the University of New Hampshire. “Universities have a vested interest in broadband for themselves and their communities, as well as the regions they serve.”

http://campustechnology.com/articles/2014/04/10/universities-see-regional-broadband-as-critical-to-success.aspx

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Utah State University lowers tuition for online classes

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Sat, 2014-04-19 02:05

By Morgan Jacobsen, Deseret News

Utah State University recently announced its plan to lower tuition for in-state students taking online courses starting in summer semester this year. The university’s tuition plateau level was also lowered from 13 credits to 12 credits. That means students can take up to 18 credit hours per semester, but they only pay for 12. Previously, USU students were charged as much as 60 percent more per credit for online classes than traditional on-campus classes. Online credits weren’t included in the tuition plateau for traditional courses.

http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865600631/Utah-State-University-lowers-tuition-for-online-classes.html

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UC Berkeley School of Law to offer its first interactive online course

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Sat, 2014-04-19 02:02

By BECCA BENHAM, Daily Cal

Starting this summer, the UC Berkeley School of Law will be offering its first interactive online course specifically aimed at an international audience of both current law students and practicing attorneys. Championed as an “anti-massive open online course,” campus law lecturer Bill Fernholz’s “Fundamentals of U.S. Law” class is designed to create a tight-knit community despite the students’ diverse geographical locations. This online opportunity allows both international law students and lawyers with international caseloads to master U.S. law from their homes.

http://www.dailycal.org/2014/04/08/uc-berkeley-school-law-offer-first-interactive-online-course/

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“Blogs are the Vinyl Records of the Internet”

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Sat, 2014-04-19 00:07
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Clarence Fisher, Remote Access, April 18, 2014

I don't think this metaphor works. I accept that "personal blogging is retreating in favour of corporate social media sites such as Facebook, twitter, and tumblr." But it isn't clear to me that "Just as vinyl records are still listened to, and considered better than the digital format, they exist without having a real impact on the music industry." I think that the internet would be very different without blogs. There has to be more to life than Upworthy and Huffington Post.

[Link] [Comment]

I am the New Flickr. I am an Ass.

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Fri, 2014-04-18 20:54


Alan Levine, CogDogBlog, April 18, 2014

Alan Levine is not too pleased with the new Flickr interface. Neither, for that matter, am I. It's getting increasingly difficult to do the things with photos that give them meaning, like adding notes and comments. The 'sets' have been renamed 'albums' and are basically invisible now. I'm not sure how people can view my photos, if at all, other than through the photostream.

[Link] [Comment]

British Pathé releases 85,000 films on YouTube

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Fri, 2014-04-18 17:29
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Press Release, British Pathé, April 18, 2014

Another huge resource for open learning. "Newsreel archive British Pathé has uploaded its entire collection of 85,000 historic films, in high resolution, to its YouTube channel. This unprecedented release of vintage news reports and cinemagazines is part of a drive to make the archive more accessible to viewers all over the world." Among the favourtes are Wright Brothers First Flight (1903), Hindenburg Disaster Real Footage (1937) [HD] and Arnold Schwarzenegger Wins Mr Universe (1969)

[Link] [Comment]

When Evidence Backfires

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Fri, 2014-04-18 16:36


Neurobonkers, Big Think, April 18, 2014

People like me sometimes are inclined to think that if people had more and better education, they would not believe anti-scientific myths. For example, they they were told that the Sun is in a cooling cycle, they would not be inclined to blame Sun cycles for global warming. Actual evidence, however, suggests that people continue to believe myths despite the scientific evidence. Myths provide explanations, and merely debunking a myth leaves a gap in that explanation. In some cases, the provision of evidence contrary to the myth can actually strengthen their belief in the myth. Why do I raise this? Education is not a magic remedy for misinformation. See also the Debunking Handbook (PDF) by John Cook and Stephan Lewandowsky.

[Link] [Comment]

Udacity Will No Longer Offer Free Certificates

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Fri, 2014-04-18 02:08
by Steve Kolowich, Chronicle of Higher Ed Udacity hopes the certificates it offers to people who complete its massive open online courses are worth something. Now the company plans to charge students accordingly. “Discontinuing the ‘free’ certificates has been one of the most difficult decisions we’ve made,” wrote Sebastian Thrun, Udacity’s founder, in a blog post about the policy change. So far Udacity has given students who complete a MOOC the option of downloading a free certificate. But lately the company has been designing courses that combine the promise of instructional rigor with premium services to create tuition-based offerings. Those “full” courses cost $150 per month and include contact with human coaches, project-based assignments, and job-placement services. http://chronicle.com/blogs/wiredcampus/?p=51757 Share on Facebook var button = document.getElementById('facebook_share_link_10781') || document.getElementById('facebook_share_icon_10781') || document.getElementById('facebook_share_both_10781') || document.getElementById('facebook_share_button_10781'); if (button) { button.onclick = function(e) { var url = this.href.replace(/share\.php/, 'sharer.php'); window.open(url,'sharer','toolbar=0,status=0,width=626,height=436'); return false; } if (button.id === 'facebook_share_button_10781') { button.onmouseover = function(){ this.style.color='#fff'; this.style.borderColor = '#295582'; this.style.backgroundColor = '#3b5998'; } button.onmouseout = function(){ this.style.color = '#3b5998'; this.style.borderColor = '#d8dfea'; this.style.backgroundColor = '#fff'; } } }

Online speech therapy meets a number of schools’ and students’ needs

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Fri, 2014-04-18 02:05

by Laura Devaney, eSchool News

Speech-therapyOnline learning extends educational opportunities to a number of different student groups, and those needing special interventions are able to benefit from expanded learning opportunities, too. One fast-growing online intervention is online speech therapy, which connects students with highly-qualified speech therapists who might not otherwise be accessible to students, whether due to geographical limitations or funding issues.

http://www.eschoolnews.com/2014/04/09/online-speech-therapy-745/

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Online learning: tutors at your fingertips

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Fri, 2014-04-18 02:02

by the Telegraph

The Tutors’ Association – launched in October to regulate this burgeoning industry – is also turning its attention to the emerging online sector. And so, it seems, are many parents. Online tutoring service Tutorhub, which has more than 5,000 students and 700 tutors on its books, has been among those at the receiving end of parents’ attention. “We’ve seen a 500 per cent growth in demand over the last 12 months, across every subject imaginable, at every level – especially from students in rural areas,” says its founder, Jon Ellis. “With an online teaching hub you can offer a lot of specialist knowledge that students aren’t going to be able to find locally.” And the price of this knowledge – imparted by teachers, lecturers, examiners and Oxbridge graduates – averages £20 per hour. It’s a similar story for MyTutorWeb. Since its launch last year, this online service has enabled 3,500 tutoring sessions, delivered by Oxbridge and Russell Group university students at £17 an hour. On most days it signs up six new parents in search of tutors.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/educationadvice/10741448/Online-learning-tutors-at-your-fingertips.html

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Ethics and soft boundaries between Facebook groups and other web services

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Thu, 2014-04-17 21:08


Frances Bell, Francesbell's Blog, April 17, 2014

Fances Bell explores some of the murky issues surrounding access to 'closed' sites and services such as Facebook groups. These are not accessible to people without a Facebook login, and as such may be inaccessible to people who for one reason or another don't want Facebook. But also as such, these may carry a presumption of privacy on the part of members, some of whom may think posting to the course group isn't 'public' in the way posting a blog port or web page is. Meanwhile, can you post what was said on one Facebook group (or mailing list, or whatever) on another Facebook group? What if it's a 'closed' (members only) group? Tough questions.

[Link] [Comment]

Educating Modern Learners Is Live!

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Thu, 2014-04-17 21:01


Audrey Watters, Hack Education, April 17, 2014

Audrey Watters announces the arrival of her online publishing venture with Will Richardson and Bruce Dixon, Educating Modern Learners, "a site dedicated to news and analysis about the future of teaching and learning through a progressive education (and progressive ed-tech) lens." It will, sadly,  cost you $35 a month to read. Not open content, obviously.

[Link] [Comment]

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