news (external)

Timeghost - Fri, 2014-07-11 02:00
Categories: Cartoons, Science News

Gesucht: Namen für ferne Welten

ScienceTicker.Info - Thu, 2014-07-10 13:40
Ferne Sterne und ihre Planeten haben derzeit meist kryptische Bezeichnungen. Das soll sich nun ändern. Erstmals will die Internationale Astronomische Union (IAU) die breite Öffentlichkeit an der Namensfindung beteiligen. Lesen Sie mehr bei Scienceticker Astro
Categories: Science News

Why you should embrace MOOCs with gusto

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Thu, 2014-07-10 02:10

by Michael Curry, Training Zone

MOOCs can reach mass markets at disruptive price-points where universities only need to charge for assessment, certification or value-added services. This also opens up new market segments for them, such as employers. In addition, technology pioneers such as Google and also mobile operators can contribute to educational infrastructure as part of their strategy to be omnipresent for all technology-enabled consumer interactions. Corporates and employers, including Barclays, Microsoft, O2, can also leverage the opportunity to sponsor, drive and fund initiatives that have a calculated return in terms of brand building and corporate social responsibility whilst professional bodies such as the Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT) and the Institute of Direct and Digital Marketing (IDM), can extend into international markets. Here, these associations can encourage new recruits into a career-long professional journey of learning, development and support.

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Academics call for guidelines on use of online learners’ data

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Thu, 2014-07-10 02:05

by Times Higher Ed

Guidelines to ensure the ethical use of data gathered from online learners need to be developed, to prevent the misuse of personal information, a group of academics has said. Delegates at the Asilomar Convention for Learning Research in Higher Education, which took place in California earlier this month, have produced a framework to promote the appropriate use of both learners’ personal information, and any research based on their activity. The document states that six principles should inform the collection, storage, distribution and analysis of information gathered from people who engage with online learning resources such as massive open online courses.

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Librarians: unsung heroes of the digital age

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Thu, 2014-07-10 02:02
by the Chicago Tribune Libraries and the professionals who staff them have risen to meet the needs of a constantly changing digital environment, shifting from gatekeeper of information to educator, a role that extends well beyond the college campus.  Today’s librarians support users by providing access to electronic resources and instructing those who may be unfamiliar with how to use the varied formats in which these resources may exist.  As they experience more new forms of technology, librarians have to stay on the forefront of how these technologies work and how they impact the flow of information.  “Libraries continue to be epicenters of knowledge,” says Anita Norton, director of the online library at Excelsior College. “Online students, for example, rightfully expect and should have access to the same resources and services available as their peers at brick and mortar institutions.  It has always been a responsibility of librarians to ensure that everyone has equal access to information and in the digital age libraries have to be creative and proactive in their outreach to all users.,0,3077611.story Share on Facebook var button = document.getElementById('facebook_share_link_11512') || document.getElementById('facebook_share_icon_11512') || document.getElementById('facebook_share_both_11512') || document.getElementById('facebook_share_button_11512'); if (button) { button.onclick = function(e) { var url = this.href.replace(/share\.php/, 'sharer.php');,'sharer','toolbar=0,status=0,width=626,height=436'); return false; } if ( === 'facebook_share_button_11512') { button.onmouseover = function(){'#fff'; = '#295582'; = '#3b5998'; } button.onmouseout = function(){ = '#3b5998'; = '#d8dfea'; = '#fff'; } } }

A health policy resource guide for nurses.

NLM - Nursing Informatics - Wed, 2014-07-09 21:55
Related Articles

A health policy resource guide for nurses.

J Contin Educ Nurs. 2014 May;45(5):203-4

Authors: Falk NL

This column helps nurses and advanced practice nurses learn why it is essential to engage in health policy. It also supports readers in their efforts to discover new understanding and take action.

PMID: 24801823 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

Categories: nursing informatics

Congrats to Paul-Olivier Dehaye: MassiveTeaching

elearnspace by George Siemens - Wed, 2014-07-09 18:27

In a previous post, I commented on the Massive Teaching course at Coursera and that something odd was happening. Either Coursera deleted the prof from the course or the prof was running some type of experiment. It now appears to be primarily the latter.

The story has now been covered by The Chronicle (here and here) and Inside Higher Ed (here). Thoughtful reflections have been provided by Rolin Moe and Jonathan Rees. Participants on Twitter have also had their say. The general consensus is that “wow, this is weird”. Coursera has deftly pushed everything back to the University of Zurich, who in turn has pushed it onto the prof, Paul-Olivier Dehaye. Commenters have been rather cruel (I know, shocking to have mean people on the internet), going so far as to question Dehaye’s sanity. OT: Favourite comment of the day: “Moocs are demonic, and unhuman.”

There is plenty of blame to go around. Dehaye has not publicly commented. Coursera very quickly washed its hands of the situation. What Dehaye did was inappropriate and might have crossed a few ethical boundaries. That’s an important angle, but not one that I want to pursue here. Three substantial concerns exist:

1. Coursera has been revealed as a house of cards in terms of governance and procedures for dealing with unusual situations. While Coursera promotes itself as a platform, something that I wrote about a few years ago, it is more Frankensteinian than functional. MOOCs were developed so quickly and with such breathless optimism that the architects didn’t pay much attention to boring stuff like foundations and plumbing. What is the governance model at Coursera? Is there anything like a due process to resolve conflicts? And a range of questions around content ownership and learner data.

I have a colleague who taught on Coursera recently. He was unable to get access to data that had previously been promised. In a university, there is a counterbalancing process to these types of conflict or disagreements. At MOOC providers, the company rules. This is fine at Facebook, but Coursera is essentially a leech on the education system – getting teaching for free while exploring new ways to monetize the process. (Wait. Doesn’t that make them the Elsevier of teaching and learning? Content and teaching free. Monetize the backend.)

My point here is that the governance structure that underpins university is lacking in MOOC providers. It is not a balanced and equitable system. There are many fissures in the MOOC model and as providers become more prominent in education these fissures will become more evident. If companies like Coursera and edX expect to be able to make decisions on behalf of faculty and partner universities, conflict is inevitable. A transparent process is required.

2. University of Zurich has an obligation and responsibility to its faculty. Where a university’s reputation and identity can be launched internationally in a MOOC, leadership should have some quality control process in place. Is the university so poorly informed about online learning that simply giving a faculty member keys to the kingdom without some guidance and direction was assumed to be a good approach? There is much blame to be shared and it should fall in the following order: 1. Coursera, 2. U of Zurich, 3. Dehaye

3. Criticism ranging from a poorly designed course to poor ethics has been directed to Paul-Olivier Dehaye. Most of it is unfair. There have been some calls for U of Zurich to discipline the prof. Like others, I’ve criticized his deception research and his silence since the course was shut down. Several days before the media coverage, Dehaye provided the following comments on his experiment:

“MOOCs can be used to enhance privacy, or really destroy it,” Dehaye wrote. “I want to fight scientifically for the idea, yet teach, and I have signed contracts, which no one asks me about…. I am in a bind. Who do I tell about my project? My students? But this idea of the #FacebookExperiment is in itself dangerous, very dangerous. People react to it and express more emotions, which can be further mined.”
The goal of his experiment, Dehaye wrote, was to “confuse everyone, including the university, [C]oursera, the Twitter world, as many journalists as I can, and the course participants. The goal being to attract publicity…. I want to show how [C]oursera tracks you.”

There it is. His intent was to draw attention to Coursera policies and practices around data. Congrats, Paul-Olivier. Mission accomplished.

He is doing exactly what academics should do: perturb people to states of awareness. Hundreds, likely thousands, of faculty have taught MOOCs, often having to toe the line of terms and conditions set by an organization that doesn’t share the ideals, community, and egalitarianism that define universities (you can include me in that list).

The MOOC Mystery was about an academic doing what we expect and need academics to do. Unfortunately it was poorly executed and not properly communicated so the message has been largely lost. Regardless, Dehaye has started a conversation, raised a real concern, pushed buttons, and put a spotlight on unfair or opaque practices by organizations who are growing in influence in education. Yes, there are ethical concerns that need to be addressed. But let’s not use those ethical concerns to silence an important concern or isolate a needed narrative around what MOOCs are, how they are impacting higher education and faculty, and how control is being wrested from the people who are vital counter-balancing agents in society’s power structure.

Paul-Olivier – thanks. Let’s have more of this.

Beyond Institutions - Personal Learning in a Networked World

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Wed, 2014-07-09 12:52

In this presentation I look at the needs and demands of people seeking learning with the models and designs offered by traditional institutions, and in the spirit of reclaiming learning describe a new network-based sysyetm of education with the learner managing his or her education.

Network EDFE Seminar Series, London School of Economics (Keynote) Jul 09, 2014 [Comment]

How millennial culture is driving change in higher education

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Wed, 2014-07-09 02:10

By Mike Matousek, eSchool News

Sparked by the generation’s need for constant collaboration – and convenience – the changes occurring today are unprecedented, but perhaps not all that surprising. The publishers, universities, faculty, and administration that have made up the last half-century of education are trying to adapt to this new generation of snapchatting, instagramming, show-me-this-instant students. When asked to define today’s college student, I believe they can be described by three cultural and personality traits outlined in the link below.

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Armstrong expands online learning opportunities

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Wed, 2014-07-09 02:03

By Charlsie Dewey, Grand Rapids Business Journal

Armstrong International has expanded its global online learning environment to offer open enrollment and continuing education credits for skilled tradespeople, professionals and students through Armstrong University. Armstrong University, based in Three Rivers, offers more than 100 courses across its 10 colleges of study. The courses span technical, industry specific and environmental health and safety subjects drawn from practical and theoretical expertise from around the world. Courses in HVAC, refrigeration, steam generation and hot water are just a few of the trade skills covered at the university. Company employees, representatives and leading technical experts bring hundreds of years of combined experience to the classroom and deliver a practical curriculum.

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Dominant Players - Wed, 2014-07-09 02:00
Categories: Cartoons, Science News

Internationalen Weltbevölkerungstag am 11.07.2014

Gesundheitsberichterstattung - Wed, 2014-07-09 00:00
Ausgewählte Informationen zum Internationalen Weltbevölkerungstag am 11.07.2014
Categories: Science News

I was wrong

elearnspace by George Siemens - Tue, 2014-07-08 17:06

I’ve made statements late last year to the effect that “corporate MOOCs will be the big trend in 2014″. I was wrong.

Recently, with CorpU and Reda Sadki, I ran an open online conference on corporate MOOCs. We put together a strong line up of presenters and topics and I expected reasonably strong turnout as the topic was timely. While we had a large number of signups, we only had 15-30 people attend each session. The sessions were generally one-way information flow (from the presenter). Attendees appeared to be reluctant to share experiences and views. I’m not sure if this was due to corporate interests in preserving and not sharing information or if we just didn’t hit on the right topics.

The recordings of most sessions are available here (we had a few requests to not record sessions by presenters). Some excellent presentations!

Aside from not having the engagement I was hoping for, I was interested in several points raised during the event:
- Corporate MOOC completion rates are in the 70-80% range
- Coursera is heavily focused on providing branded “turn key” content for corporation training
- Systems like WorldBank are developing MOOCs as an integrated part of their overall online or digital learning strategy
- Several corporations, notably Google and SAP, are deep in the rabbit hole of MOOCs already and are reporting position experiences for both employees and customers who have taken their courses
- Consulting services such as Parthenon are deeply engaged in MOOCs and helping organizations plan for and deploy them.
- The costs of MOOCs are significant in terms of capital and time and effort of people. It’s not as simple a process as many assume when they start.
- Military organizations are exploring MOOCs and alternative teaching/learning approaches and are reporting promising early results. But we can’t tell you everything. It will be declassified in 2050.
- Organizations are primarily using MOOCs for internal learning, marketing, connecting with customers, and “teaching” suppliers.

Beyond Free - Open Learning in a Networked World

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Tue, 2014-07-08 12:51

The evolution of open content and open learning are explored in this presentation that seeks to recapture the essence of what it is that a MOOC is designed to do.

12th Annual Academic Practise & Technology Conference, University of Greenwich, Greenwich, UK (Keynote) Jul 08, 2014 [Comment]

Robots Learn Faster, Better with Online Learning Helpers

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Tue, 2014-07-08 02:12

by Product Design & Development

Sometimes it takes a village to teach a robot. University of Washington computer researchers have shown that crowdsourcing can be a quick and effective way to teach a robot how to complete tasks. Instead of learning from just one human, robots could one day query the larger online community, asking for instructions or input on the best way to set the table or water the garden. The research team presented its results at the 2014 Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers International Conference on Robotics and Automation in Hong Kong in early June.The research team presented its results at the 2014 Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers International Conference on Robotics and Automation in Hong Kong in early June.

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Sloan Consortium Picks a New Name

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Tue, 2014-07-08 02:11

by the Chronicle of Higher Ed

The Sloan Consortium, an influential champion of online learning that grew out of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation’s early interest in the topic, is changing its name and will now be known as the Online Learning Consortium. The consortium was founded in 1992 and published the first issue of its Journal of Asynchronous Learning in 1997. It has been a stand-alone membership organization since 2009, when its parent foundation shut down its online-education program after spending some $80-million on various undertakings and playing a leading role in the growth of online courses, particularly under the leadership of A. Frank Mayadas, a program director at the foundation.

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Francis Marion MBA goes online

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Tue, 2014-07-08 02:06

by Associated Press

Francis Marion University in Florence says the university’s master of business administration program is going online. The Morning News of Florence reports ( ) that students in the program have had to attend two classes a week on campus since 1987. Beginning this fall, students will be able to study at their convenience online. They will still need to meet face-to-face with professors on up to three Saturdays during the semester. The university says the change comes after nearly two years of studying the needs of MBA students.

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Sorry, Folks, Rich People Don't Create The Jobs

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Mon, 2014-07-07 15:50

Henry Blodget, Business Insider, Jul 07, 2014

Or, put another way, education does far more to create jobs than rich people. That is not to say that we do not need people to make investments or start companies. We do - we need both. But only as a part of a healthy and functioning economic ecosystem that is working toward something larger than mere generation of wealth (such as, creating happy lives for its citizens, building a social and cultural institutions, advancing science and researcher, pushing the frontiers of discovery). Via Doug Belshaw.

[Link] [Comment]

Libraries will lend out WiFi hotspots to foster online learning

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Mon, 2014-07-07 02:09


For the less fortunate, a library may be the only reliable way to get online. But what do they do after hours, or when they can’t make the trek? That’s where a pair of Knight Foundation grants may prove vital. Both the Chicago Public Library and New York Public Library are starting up large-scale projects that lend WiFi hotspots to households with little to no internet access, giving them a chance to pursue internet education programs that would otherwise be off-limits. Chicago’s approach will let those in six broadband-deprived neighborhoods borrow a hotspot for up to three weeks; in New York, the library will offer mobile routers for up to a year as part of existing learning initiatives.

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The revolution in online learning

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Mon, 2014-07-07 02:04

by the Telegraph

Technology has revolutionised learning. From the rise of MOOCs to apps on iPads designed for children who can often navigate iOS before being able to walk, it is clear that technology is providing new education platforms for all levels. According to UNESCO, 6 billion people around the world now have access to mobile phones and digital devices. This astronomic growth of cheap technology presents a huge opportunity for learners, especially in emerging countries. Mobile Moocs: a new way of learning The wider and technologically advanced provision of education tries to satisfy the demands of a fast-growing student population – from 20 million in 1970 to 164 million in 2000 to an eye-watering projected 260 million students globally by 2020.

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