eLearning and Technology

Granite State College Closes Claremont Campus

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Thu, 2018-04-26 02:05

by Patrick O’Grady, Valley News

The decision to close the Granite State College campus on Pleasant Street is a reflection of the rapidly changing method of taking courses to earn degrees, college President Mark Rubinstein said this week. Granite State, which opened in the city to great fanfare in 2006, officially moved out of the renovated first floor of the former Odd Fellows building at the end of March, when the lease expired. In a phone interview this week, Rubinstein said more and more students have elected to take courses online rather than in a classroom setting, a shift that led to the decision late last year to close the Claremont campus.

http://www.vnews.com/Granite-state-college-sees-no-need-for-Pleasant-Street-presence-with-more-and-more-students-taking-classes-online-16651079

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Virtual reality excites Baylor students, professors for the future

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Thu, 2018-04-26 02:02

By PHILLIP ERICKSEN, Waco Tribune

Virtual reality, defined as a computer-generated simulation of an interactive three-dimensional environment, has wide potential, from entertainment to education. VR is already in use for general instruction in some college classrooms, and Baylor officials are exploring its potential. Education by VR is far more relaxing than the nightmarish fantasies some games feature. One application at Baylor lets users take close looks at human anatomy — lungs before and after years of smoking, for instance, or immersive experiences inside of a stomach.

http://www.wacotrib.com/news/higher_education/virtual-reality-excites-baylor-students-professors-for-the-future/article_2552eb05-e81f-5392-9bc5-6955c0673e09.html

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How AI and machine learning are redefining cybersecurity

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Thu, 2018-04-26 02:01

by NEIL C. HUGHES, the Next Web

The stakes are now much higher than a large corporation experiencing a data breach. We have already seen the devastating effects that a cyberattack can have on the aviation industry. Attacks on power grids and even hospitals highlight how everything with an online connection is now a target. The genie is officially out of the bottle, and it has never been easier to learn the tricks of the trade online. Machine-learning software is readily available, and video tutorials are also just a search away. By automating the tailoring of content to a potential victim, cybercriminals can quite quickly wreak havoc on a business or individual.

https://thenextweb.com/contributors/2018/04/05/cybersecurity-ai/

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ABA proposal would allow law schools to offer more classes online

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Wed, 2018-04-25 02:10

by Marilyn Odendahl, the Indiana Lawyer

Now, the American Bar Association appears poised to allow law schools to meet the demand for more online options. The Council of the ABA Section of Legal Education and Admission to the Bar has proposed a new rule for distance education that would increase the amount of law courses that can be taught on the internet. Under the current Standard 306, law schools may not grant more than 15 credit hours from online courses toward a J.D. degree, and may not enroll any first-year students in distance education. The proposed new rule would permit law schools to offer up to one-third of the credits for a J.D. degree online, and first-year students would be able to take up to 10 credits online.

https://www.theindianalawyer.com/articles/46586-aba-proposal-would-allow-law-schools-to-offer-more-classes-online

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Online Learning Shouldn’t Be ‘Less Than’

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Wed, 2018-04-25 02:04

by Sean Michael Morris, Inside Higher Ed

Learning done online — from automated corporate training to classes offered in an LMS to MOOCs — has always been viewed with some skepticism, viewed as something “less than.” And for most of its evolution, online learning has warranted this criticism. It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy made possible by antiquated pedagogies and educational technologies that limit teaching to button mashing, knowledge consumption and test taking.  But we’re not still in those early years. It’s not pragmatic today to think that classroom and online college experiences can remain separate — in terms of quality, but especially in terms of ideology.

https://www.insidehighered.com/digital-learning/views/2018/04/04/are-we-giving-online-students-education-all-nuance-and-complexity

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Florida’s push for online courses benefits all, including STEM students

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Wed, 2018-04-25 02:03

by Ned Lautenbach, Orlando Sentinel

Online education expands access. A new report by the Board of Governors, which oversees Florida’s 12 public universities, shows that 65 percent of undergraduates who took only distance-learning courses during the 2016-2017 academic year were women, a group with a history of underrepresentation in STEM fields. Similarly, the average age for students in distance-learning programs is 28 (compared to 22 for traditional programs), indicating that students are advancing their educations at a time when they’re likely to have family or job responsibilities.

http://www.orlandosentinel.com/opinion/os-ed-state-push-for-online-learning-benefits-all-stem-too-20180403-story.html

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The State of Innovation in Higher Education: A Survey of Academic Administrators

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Wed, 2018-04-25 00:05

Andrew J. Magda, Jill Buban, Online Learning Consortium, The Learning House, Inc., Apr 24, 2018

I'm not sure administrators are the best people to ask about innovation at educational institutions, and they'll say typical things like "Administrators often discuss a top-down approach — the president and provost setting the tone and directive for innovation at the institution — as creating the most success in innovation" (I find that consultants say this sort of thing as well, maybe because they are marketing their services to administrators). But the survey also recognizes "this approach must be carefully balanced and include a bottom-up component in which faculty, staff, and other constituents can drive the innovation process on their own." (44 page PDF)

Web: [Direct Link] [This Post]

The new geo-politics of higher education

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Tue, 2018-04-24 03:55

Simon Marginson, Centre for Global Higher Education, Apr 23, 2018

This paper argues the case for the global network of world class universities (WCUs). "The outcomes of higher education are not confined to, or even primarily, the creation of private economic and status benefits for graduates. Institutions of higher education generate many other individual and collective benefits, on both the local/national and the global planes." Fair enough. But the problem is (in my view) is that the people they most benefit is themselves. To be fair, the authors recognize this. "Networked WCUs are naturally disposed to secure mutual positive sum benefits (but) the contribution of WCUs to the common good is variable... (and) is articulated by two factors. The first is the polarity between social inclusion and exclusion in WCUs, which exclusion mostly wins... The second factor is (where) global practices of WCUs escape national constraints."

Web: [Direct Link] [This Post]

World-class systems rather than world-class universities

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Tue, 2018-04-24 03:37

Rajani Naidoo, University World News, Apr 23, 2018

It's just coincidence that this article appears as I am focusing on much the same sort of question while here in Colombia. But the author makes an argument with which I am largely in agreement. " In highly stratified systems, a major share of national resources is swallowed up by universities identified as world class. These universities are tasked with a research and prestige mission that is often diametrically opposed to enhancing equality." These universities, and the institutions that fund them, should be tasked with developing world class systems with an explicit intent to benefit all the people of a country, not just an elite. See also Jose Manuel Restrepo Abondano  on how universities can help to build lasting peace.

Web: [Direct Link] [This Post]

In “EdTech”, “Ed” comes before “Tech”: A National Louis University/Acrobatiq Case Study

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Tue, 2018-04-24 03:27

Michael Feldstein, e-Literate, Apr 23, 2018

I'm sure that the series this article introduces will be valuable, but my purpose here is to be a bit pedantic, but in so doing, allow me to illustrate the difference between my perspective and Michael Feldsteins. The pedantic point is that you can draw inferences about what ought to be done on the basis of quirks of language. Yes, 'Ed' comes before 'Tech'. But there isn't some 'Tech Ed' which is about the use of technology first in education. Rather, 'Tech Ed' means something completely different. So it means nothing that 'Ed' comes before 'Tech'.

But it's significant in the sense that the article points out that the university "modeled what universities need to do before they select courseware, from designing a business/sustainability model that enables them to provide appropriate cost of an education to thinking about educational goals to figuring out where courseware does and doesn't fit into that overall model." They did the 'Ed', then they did the 'Tech'. But I see it very differently. I look at 'Tech' and imagine what 'Ed' could be. I don't start with the presumptions of a university. And not surprisingly, where I end up looks very little like one.

Web: [Direct Link] [This Post]

Falling Into the Belief Gap

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Tue, 2018-04-24 03:17

Beth Hawkins, The 74, Apr 23, 2018

This reads more like a first-person story instead of the piece of advocacy journalism it is, and it's a style I really don't like very much, but it raises a valuable point that should not be overlooked: " The skill of self-advocacy is crucial for everyone, but especially for young people confronted by steep challenges." I've seen some people who can overcome this by themselves, but for most people, the task of believing in themselves requires the help of someone else who believes in them.

Web: [Direct Link] [This Post]

Having an audience makes us better at performing

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Tue, 2018-04-24 03:03

Jill Rosen-Johns Hopkins, Futurity, Apr 23, 2018

I think we've generally believe that the headline is true, but it's always nice to be able to back our intuitions with research. The open-access paper being discussed is called Neural substrates of social facilitation effects on incentive-based performance. According to the summary, " In essence, the presence of an audience, at least a small one, increased people’s incentive to perform well, Chib says, and the brain scans validated this by showing the neural mechanism for how it happens.

Web: [Direct Link] [This Post]

Computer Science Degrees and Technology’s Boom-and-Bust Cycle

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Tue, 2018-04-24 02:09

By Sydney Johnson, EdSurge

Many economists call the current era of technology growth a boom era, not unlike previous gold rushes such as the Dot-com bubble. But the thing about bubbles is, they usually pop. And that has some people concerned. Is another bust on the horizon? It’s not only tech employees who are paying attention to these patterns. In higher education, the number of computer science bachelor’s degrees follows market trends in finance and technology in particular—growing when times are good and plummeting when economies crash.

https://www.edsurge.com/news/2018-04-03-computer-science-degrees-and-technology-s-boom-and-bust-cycle

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States Take a Look at Online Learning Prices

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Tue, 2018-04-24 02:02

by Mark Lieberman, Inside Higher Ed

As tuition and student debt levels continue to rise, so has the political and public pressure on colleges to keep costs for students under control. Online education, still emerging, hasn’t escaped those conversations. Legislatures in several states have taken steps in recent years to curb fees that institutions charge exclusively to online students, or to incentivize institutions to spend less on their online programs. (They’re also taking a look at fees charged to both residential and online students, but that’s a separate issue with its own nuances.)

https://www.insidehighered.com/digital-learning/article/2018/04/04/states-pursue-methods-reduce-burden-students-online-programs

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Instructional design improves engagement in online courses

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Tue, 2018-04-24 02:00

by Jarrett Carter, Education Dive
A new survey of online education leaders from Quality Matters and Eduventures Research indicates that instructional design (ID) support can be a major part of how well online learners interact with each other in digital classrooms, as reported in Campus Technology. Courses where ID professionals were mandated to support classroom created a nearly 30% increase in student-to-student engagement against classroom where instructional design personnel were not used or not a mandated resource in the learning experience. According to Campus Technology, only 31% of 182 surveyed chief online officers said their campuses required instructional design input in online offerings, and that most ID help was requested for large online programs and mostly used at for-profit institutions in comparison to four-year and two-year institutions.  Common reasons participants gave for not including ID in were a lack of resources and to preserve faculty independence in teaching and learning.

https://www.educationdive.com/news/instructional-design-improves-engagement-in-online-courses/

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OER18 Reflections

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Mon, 2018-04-23 17:35

Laura Ritchie, lauraritchie.com, Apr 23, 2018

Laura Ritchie and her students hosted a session at OER18 describing how to write a song on a ukelele. This is the sort of session that would challenge me a lot, because my experiences making music are minimal and unpleasant. But the core of the session wasn't about music; it was about teaching and creating. "I will only ever know a small part of any of my students, and somehow I need not only to provide them with skills and tools, but also an open mindset for working. Open for me goes beyond the label." T

Web: [Direct Link] [This Post]

An Open Education Reader

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Mon, 2018-04-23 17:11

David Wiley, Apr 23, 2018

This is David Wiley's resource he has created for hi course on open educational resources. I assume that this is the basis for what Sheila MacNeill called Wiley's "potted" history of OER (I'm not really sure what 'potted' means in this context). As noted in her post, she disagrees with his sources ("predominately white, male, North American,  middle class"). I took a quick look through and find I'm not in there either. I wondered which criterion I didn't satisfy. But I think that the basis for Wiley's sources lies more in the very particular story he wants to tell (the one I've argued with him about for 20 years), and not in gender, race, income or geography. My contributions would run counter to his narrative. But still. In a history of OER I would think both Models of Sustainable OERs and Downes vs Wiley would qualify as significant, no?

Web: [Direct Link] [This Post]

Deep Learning Models That Predict Conflicts In Online Communities

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Mon, 2018-04-23 02:10

by Abhijeet Katte, Analytics India Magazine

There is not enough research and knowledge around how interactions happen online between communities and users, especially in the space of conflicts. A team from the Computer Science and Linguistics department of Stanford University wanted to change just that. What they did: research conflict events by searching for cases where one community posted a hyperlink to another community. What they found: conflicts tend to be initiated by a handful of communities—less than 1% of communities start 74% of conflicts. In the long term, conflicts have adverse effects and reduce the overall activity of users in targeted communities. The researchers also came up with a way to predict conflicts on the web communities.

Deep Learning Models That Predict Conflicts In Online Communities

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Why Is Online Learning Seeing a Surge in Popularity?

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Mon, 2018-04-23 02:05

by Joseph Bednar, Business West

This year marks the 15th consecutive year of growth in what’s known as online, or distance, learning at U.S. colleges and universities. But a newer trend is seeing students fresh out of high school — not just the working adults that have dominated the online-learning world — logging on as well. At a time of changing demographics in higher education, area schools that have embraced the distance model simply say they’re meeting students where they want to be.

Why Is Online Learning Seeing a Surge in Popularity?

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Microsoft launches new online training courses for aspiring AI engineers

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Mon, 2018-04-23 02:02

BY TOM KRAZIT, GeekWire
A new ten-course seminar for engineers looking to add machine-learning skills to their resumes is now available through the Microsoft Professional Program. The Microsoft Professional Program for AI will be available four times a year and it should take at least a few weeks to complete the training. Developers will be given an introduction to machine-learning principles and taught how to create learning models and data sets, modeled on an internal Microsoft training program. They will be awarded a “a digitally sharable, résumé-worthy credential” after completing a deep learning project at the end of the course, Microsoft said.

https://www.geekwire.com/2018/microsoft-launches-new-online-training-courses-aspiring-ai-engineers/

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