Online learning update by Ray Schroeder

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Online Learning News and Research ~ Ray Schroeder, editor ~ University of Illinois at Springfield
Updated: 1 hour 57 min ago

Penn State World Campus Taps Google Cloud to Build Virtual Advising Assistant

Mon, 2019-07-01 02:03

By Rhea Kelly, Campus Technology
At the start of the spring 2020 semester this January, Penn State World Campus will have a new artificial intelligence tool for answering the most common requests from its undergraduate students. A virtual assistant will help academic advisers at the online institution screen student e-mails for certain keywords and phrases, and then automatically pull relevant information for the advisers to send to students. For instance, the AI will be trained to assist advisers when students inquire how to change their major, change their Penn State campus, re-enroll in the university or defer their semester enrollment date, according to a news announcement.

https://campustechnology.com/articles/2019/06/20/penn-state-world-campus-taps-google-cloud-to-build-virtual-advising-assistant.aspx

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Stephen Schwarzman gives $188 million to Oxford to research AI ethics

Sun, 2019-06-30 02:10

By Rishi Iyengar, CNN Business

Stephen Schwarzman, the billionaire founder of investment firm Blackstone (BX), has given the University of Oxford its largest single donation in hundreds of years to help fund research into the ethics of artificial intelligence.  The Stephen A. Schwarzman Centre for the Humanities will bring together all of Oxford’s humanities programs under one roof — including English, history, linguistics, philosophy and theology and religion. It will also house a new Institute for Ethics in AI, which will focus on studying the ethical implications of artificial intelligence and other new technology. The institute is expected to open by 2024.

https://www.cnn.com/2019/06/19/tech/stephen-schwarzman-oxford-ai-donation/index.html

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What are the three pillars of a future-focused university?

Sun, 2019-06-30 02:05

by John Fischetti, the Conversation

But there is a bright future ahead if universities redefine themselves beyond the rhetoric of value propositions and marketing schtick, and fully embrace the below three key pillars:

1. Promote engagement and impact

2. Enhance humanity

3. Expand student access

https://theconversation.com/the-three-things-universities-must-do-to-survive-disruption-117970

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What K-12 and Higher Education Leaders Want Most from Data Dashboards

Sun, 2019-06-30 02:02

Matthew Lynch, Tech Edvocate

Schools can use KPI’s (key performance indicators) to measure and evaluate their success in reaching their various targets. The school dashboard should monitor and report on KPI’s so administrators can see at a glance if the school is still on track. A data dashboard that meets these requirements, will be a winner with higher education and K-12 leaders.

https://www.thetechedvocate.org/what-k-12-and-higher-education-leaders-want-most-from-data-dashboards/

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Digital Learning Leaders and the Demographic Reckoning

Sat, 2019-06-29 02:09

Edward J. Maloney and Joshua Kim, Inside Higher Ed

Whatever the path forward, campus digital learning leaders should be key partners in thinking of ways that undergraduate education can be reimagined. The coming demographic reckoning will force schools to rethink how they design and run all of their educational programs, including existing residential undergraduate degrees. Digital learning experts should be at the table in exploring all options for maintaining institutional mission alliance with economic resiliency in the age of scarcity.

https://www.insidehighered.com/digital-learning/blogs/technology-and-learning/digital-learning-leaders-and-demographic-reckoning

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Full-Time from Afar

Sat, 2019-06-29 02:03

Rodger Bates, Bryan LaBrecque; OJDLA

With the dramatic increase in the demand for distance learning opportunities in higher education, staffing demands have created a new opportunity for faculty members to teach full-time from remote locations. Previously, a significant portion of online instruction was taught by full-time faculty as part of their regular teaching load or as an economic opportunity for teaching “overload” courses. In addition, online classes are frequently being taught by adjunct, or part-time, faculty members. Increasingly, however, institutions are now found hiring full-time faculty members with the express intent of assigning them to teach fully online. Given the nature of asynchronous delivery, some institutions have begun allowing these faculty members to teach from afar. These non-residential full-time faculty members create a number of issues that affect students, faculty life, and distance learning administrators which must be addressed. Some ready-made solutions for these issues already exist, but other concerns still require attention.

https://www.westga.edu/~distance/ojdla/summer222/bates_labrecque222.html

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ASU, edX and MIT announce innovative stackable online Master of Science in Supply Chain Management

Sat, 2019-06-29 02:02

Arizona State University
Collaboration creates world’s first stacked master’s degree on edX.org from two top-ranked universities in the field. Arizona State University, edX and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology announced the launch of an online master’s degree program in supply chain management. This unique credit pathway between MIT and ASU takes a MicroMasters program from one university, MIT, and stacks it up to a full master’s degree on edX from ASU. This new master’s degree is the latest program to launch following edX’s October 2018 announcement of 10 disruptively priced and top-ranked online master’s degree programs available on edX.org.

https://asunow.asu.edu/20190619-asu-edx-and-mit-announce-innovative-stackable-online-master-science-supply-chain-management

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Wide Open Voices: Experiences of OER Course Developers

Fri, 2019-06-28 02:10

Brittany Dudek, Darci Duran, Tina Parscal; OJDLA
As the affordability of higher education dominates the spotlight, open educational resources (OER), low cost, and free-to-student materials are widely offered as a solution. This paper outlines the experiences of course developers who contributed to a large-scale OER initiative, including training, knowledge, effort, and satisfaction of course development support services.

https://www.westga.edu/~distance/ojdla/summer222/dudek_duran_parscal222.html

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Rolling Out Learning Analytics at a National Level

Fri, 2019-06-28 02:04

by Niall Sclater, EDUCAUSE Review

Several issues are driving the development of learning analytics in Welsh institutions. First, most of the institutions are facing a retention issue. While dropout rates in Wales are substantially lower than those in the United States, when students do withdraw from studying, it affects institutional finances and reputation, not to mention the life chances of the individuals concerned. This partially explains the Welsh Government’s sponsorship of the program: graduates are likely to have better employment possibilities and associated advantages over nongraduates and are thus more likely to help build the national economy.

https://er.educause.edu/articles/2019/6/rolling-out-learning-analytics-at-a-national-level

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Building Relationships with Students via Blockchain

Fri, 2019-06-28 02:02

By Dian Schaffhauser, Campus Technology

A few weeks ago, during its annual developer conference, Salesforce introduced Salesforce Blockchain, a platform connected to customer relationship management that promises to help organizations collaborate and share data securely through “distributed ledger” technology. On the stage as part of the announcement was Arizona State University, which has been working with Salesforce to create an educational network to enable schools to verify and share information, and particularly student academic records. In an announcement at the time, Kent Hopkins, vice president of enrollment services at ASU, explained that the network would have “the potential to be a game changer for integrated, seamless learning — increasing transparency of student achievements and ultimately making the exchange process of academic records easier for both learners and institutions.”

https://campustechnology.com/articles/2019/06/19/building-relationships-with-students-via-blockchain.aspx

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Considering the Alternatives (to the baccalaureate)

Thu, 2019-06-27 02:11

Ray Schroeder, Inside Higher Ed

Considering the plethora of lower-cost (in both dollars and time) alternatives to the traditional degree, it is no surprise that enrollment at the bachelor’s level in higher ed has dropped for the past half-dozen years. Sure, a robust economy has contributed to the decline, but applications to the University of California system and other major universities, as well as most midsized and smaller colleges, are down for 2019. Some very large employers are reassessing the need for the baccalaureate. Apple CEO Tim Cook says nearly half of Apple’s U.S. employment last year was made up of non-degree holders. He says most colleges don’t build the skills business leaders need most, such as coding. And, Siemens USA CEO Barbara Humpton says in the past the degree requirement merely helped hiring managers to identify a smaller qualified candidate group.

https://www.insidehighered.com/digital-learning/blogs/online-trending-now/considering-alternatives

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What does the future of work look like for women?

Thu, 2019-06-27 02:10

RASHEEDA CHILDRESS, Associations Now
A new McKinsey Global Institute report indicates that automation could lead to potentially high job losses for women by 2030. To stop this, leaders and organizations must invest in training and reskilling programs. Automation and new technology could displace tens of millions of women from the workplace in a little more than a decade. That’s according to “The Future of Women at Work,” a report released this month by McKinsey Global Institute (MGI). “Globally, 40 million to 160 million women may need to transition between occupations by 2030, often into higher-skilled roles,” the report said.

https://associationsnow.com/2019/06/what-does-the-future-of-work-look-like-for-women/

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The Public’s Support for (and Doubts About) Higher Ed

Thu, 2019-06-27 02:03

By Doug Lederman, Inside Higher Ed

Survey of likely 2020 voters shows they view colleges favorably but increasingly question whether they’re delivering on promises. It also suggests a disconnect between priorities of politicians and the public.  The picture that emerges from Third Way’s comprehensive survey of nearly 1,400 Americans who describe themselves as likely to vote in the 2020 general election is of a public that still believes in the value of colleges and universities and their degrees and thinks the institutions must do a better job of educating students affordably and effectively.

https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2019/06/17/survey-shows-publics-support-and-qualms-about-higher-education

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Online Education Is Necessary for Disability Equality

Wed, 2019-06-26 02:10

by Hania Syed, Training.com Australia

While many Australian universities offer onsite support for students with disabilities, more needs to be done to ensure all Australians have access to higher education. One of the best ways to do this is to readily offer accessible online education.  Enrolling is often strenuous for many individuals with disabilities, not to mention expensive. Many people with disabilities earn a low income, and disabled people are also overrepresented in unemployment statistics. Finally, juggling part-time work alongside study just to make ends meet is also not feasible for many people with disabilities. All of this means that the flexible nature and often reduced cost of online courses is highly appealing to students with disabilities.

https://www.training.com.au/ed/online-education-is-necessary-for-disability-equality/

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Why You Should Pair AI with Open Data

Wed, 2019-06-26 02:05

Meredith Trimble, Government Loop

Digital maturity in the public sector, however, isn’t just about internal strategies. All areas of government interaction with data, including operations, connecting with partners, and connecting with residents, benefit from modern technologies that are prevalent in our everyday private lives.

Full digital maturity in resident engagement includes:

Customizable, mobile, digital experiences with government that match private-world experiences;
Public self-service to conduct business through a single, constituent portal 24/7, or self-report issues; and
Public access to the same quality of real-time data surfaced through effective internal data sharing and aggregation.

https://www.govloop.com/community/blog/why-you-should-pair-ai-with-open-data/

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Seven Key Dimensions to Help You Understand Artificial Intelligence Environments

Wed, 2019-06-26 02:02

Jesus Rodriguez, Towards Data Science

There are several aspects that distinguish AI environments. The shape and frequency of the data, the nature of the problem , the volume of knowledge available at any given time are some of the elements that differentiate one type of AI environment from another. Deep diving into those characteristics will guide the strategies of AI experts in areas such as algorithm selections, neural network architectures, optimization techniques and many other relevant aspects of the lifecycle of AI applications. Understanding an AI environment is an incredibly complex task but there are several key dimensions that provide clarity on that reasoning.

https://towardsdatascience.com/seven-key-dimensions-to-help-you-understand-an-ai-environment-9d0085af2422

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Artificial Intelligence is Here to Stay: Will it Augment or Replace?

Tue, 2019-06-25 02:05

By IBL News

Are significant advancements in AI (Artificial Intelligence) going to eventually lead to the replacement of traditional teaching roles? Attendees at an IMS Global Learning Consortium panel, last month in San Diego, were asked to contemplate this question. The panel, entitled “Is Artificial Intelligence the Future of Education?” featured the outstanding speakers Tom Gierke, Ari Chanen, Eric Cosyn, Yakut Gazi, and Alex Kaplan with Ray Schroeder moderating.

https://iblnews.org/artificial-intelligence-is-here-to-stay-will-it-augment-or-replace/

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Higher Education Institutions Prepare for Wi-Fi 6

Tue, 2019-06-25 02:02

BY CISCO MERAKI, Center for Digital Education

Many higher education institutions today are already preparing for what the future of technology will bring. Wi-Fi 6, the latest wireless standard, not only promises to bring higher density, throughput, and reliability to higher education networks, but also ensures that students and staff can focus on collaborating and learning, rather than losing connections or having technology troubles. Identifying where bandwidth problems already exist, learning what the new standards offer, and thinking through a Wi-Fi 6 strategy are great first steps. With bandwidth requirements approximately doubling every three years, in addition to serving inherently high-density environments, the Butler University IT team has had a constant challenge to provide always-on, reliable connections for students and staff.

https://www.govtech.com/education/higher-ed/Higher-Education-Institutions-Prepare-for-Wi-Fi-6.html

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Spy reportedly used AI-generated photo to connect with targets on LinkedIn

Tue, 2019-06-25 02:01

Steven Musil, CNet

The photo appeared on the LinkedIn account of one Katie Jones, a 30-something redhead. Among her 52 connections were links to Washington political figures, including a deputy assistant secretary of state, a senior aide to a senator and a prominent economist being considered for the Federal Reserve, according to the AP. The news outlet found that despite her claims of working for years as a “Russia and Eurasia fellow” at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, the DC-based think tank had no record of her employment. Similarly, the University of Michigan could find no record of her claimed degree in Russian studies.

https://www.cnet.com/news/spy-reportedly-used-ai-generated-photo-to-connect-with-targets-on-linkedin/

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Google’s Growing IT Certificate

Mon, 2019-06-24 02:10

By Lindsay McKenzie, Inside Higher Ed
To bolster expanding online IT certificate program, Google plans to add career resources for students and to expand its community college partnerships and pathways to four-year degrees. More than 8,000 people have completed the eight-month Google IT support certificate program since it launched in early 2018. The certificate, Google’s first substantial foray into postsecondary education, is offered through online learning platform Coursera. The tech giant’s aim is to create a pipeline of diverse applicants for entry-level IT jobs. Nearly 75,000 people have enrolled in the program, said Natalie Van Kleef Conley, a senior product manager for Grow With Google, an initiative that aims to expand access to Google’s training and tools.

https://www.insidehighered.com/digital-learning/article/2019/06/14/google-it-certificate-program-expands-more-community-colleges

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