news (external)

5 Keys to Flipped Learning Success

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Wed, 2015-05-06 02:08

By Dennis Pierce, Campus Technology

Flipping the classroom isn’t easy, but many instructors have found it to be well worth the effort. Here’s some advice for making flipped learning work. Talbert teaches Calculus I and a full-year course on discrete mathematics for computer science majors. For calculus, he is using a free, open source textbook written by one of his colleagues with flipped learning in mind, and his department has created a YouTube channel with instructional videos that faculty have recorded using simple screencasting software. For his discrete mathematics course, Talbert is finding and curating online videos that students can watch before coming to class. In both courses, students are given a structured, pre-class activity that gets them familiar with the lesson’s basic concepts, so when they arrive in his class, “they’re ready to work at a higher level,” he said. That’s the essence of the flipped class model: Students learn the basics on their own, outside of class, so class time can be devoted to a deeper exploration of the content.

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Tips to Grab the Online Learner’s Attention

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Wed, 2015-05-06 02:05

by eLearning Feeds

The ultimate goal of an instructional designer is to make learner-centric eLearning courses. One way to capture the learner’s interest is to start with a “big bang”. Instead of beginning the course with an explanation of the learning objectives, you can make your elearning course interesting right from the beginning using the 6 tips mentioned below.

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How to Engage Learners In An Online Science Course

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Wed, 2015-05-06 02:02

by Pamela Wirth, eLearning Industry

For most undergraduate students, one or more courses classified under the Natural Science category are required for degree completion. For non-science majors, this can bring on an impending sense of dread and boredom before the course even begins. Especially for many older, returning students, it may have been many years since they have taken a basic biology or chemistry course. By personalizing the online environment for each student, the instructor increases the chance for engagement and motivation for even the most challenging of courses. For more tips on ways to motivate adult learners (applicable to all disciples) see Christopher Pappas’ article 17 Tips to Motivate Adult Learners.

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Sword in the Stone - Wed, 2015-05-06 02:00
Categories: Cartoons, Science News


Gesundheitsberichterstattung - Wed, 2015-05-06 00:00

Die im Informationssystem eingespeicherten gestaltbaren Tabellen aus dem Bereich "Pflegestatistik" des Statistischen Bundesamtes wurden um das Jahr 2013 ergänzt.

Categories: Science News

Elsevier's Free MOOC Prepares Med Students for Licensing Exam

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Tue, 2015-05-05 17:37

Press Release, Elsevier, May 05, 2015

Here's another MOOC business model - MOOC as a loss leader for textbook sales. And 'free MOOC' as pilot (it reads as though they will charge fees for later iterations of the MOOC). "The success of the Crush Step 1 MOOC pilot will help Elsevier evaluate its ability to work within the MOOC model and develop trusted content that informs and engages medical students," said Theodore O'Connell, MD, author of Crush Step 1. "Using results from the pilot, Elsevier will understand how we might develop a full USMLE course and other course guides." Of course, the MOOC starts with a  detailed registration form - so I don't think they don't really get the idea of 'open'.

[Link] [Comment]


OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Tue, 2015-05-05 14:37

Carl Straumsheim, Inside Higher Ed, May 05, 2015

Here's another example of the use of MOOCs to ease entry into degree programs. If you graduate with the all-MOOC MBA from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign you'll end up paying the same fees as anyone else - but if you don't need the credential you can get a certificate for a lot less, and you can take courses for free well inot the program. There's a certain point, of course, at which all of these cease being MOOCs, because the university seems to have lost the meaning of the work 'open'. The model is called "fractional learning" and looks like it is going to spread well beyond Arizona and Illinois. It's called the  iMBA and is delivered through Coursera.

[Link] [Comment]

University of Illinois Announces All-MOOC M.B.A.

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Tue, 2015-05-05 12:29

By Carl Straumsheim, Inside Higher Ed

The program, known as iMBA, will deliver most of its course content through Specializations, Coursera’s term for course sequences. Students will be able to take those sequences in four different ways — two that award credit and two that don’t. As with any MOOC, the content is available for free. Learners who wish to earn a credential but have no need for academic credit can pay a small fee, $79 a course, for an identity-verified certificate. Students can also apply to the College of Business and, if accepted, pursue the full M.B.A. degree. “That’s why we call it fractional learning,” said Rajagopal Echambadi, associate dean of outreach and engagement. The university plans to price the 18 courses at about $1,000 each. With the added cost of the identity verification fee, the total cost of the degree will be about $20,000. The university does not have an existing online M.B.A. program, but it charges in-state students in the part-time M.B.A. program about $9,000 a semester and full-time students about $22,000 a year for tuition.

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CMU’s Tepper Online Hybrid MBA: Equivalent to Onsite

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Tue, 2015-05-05 02:10

By Mary Grush, Campus Technology

Can an institution’s new online offerings match the quality it has established over the years in its onsite programs? At CMU’s Tepper School of Business, the Online Hybrid MBA is designed to be equivalent to its on-campus MBA programs. CT talked with Bob Monroe, Director of the Online Hybrid MBA, to find out how Tepper crafts its Online Hybrid MBA to offer the same education as its highly regarded onsite MBA programs. Monroe says “Identical” is a bit of a tricky word. There are things that really are identical: the core curriculum — the classes that you need to take are the same across any of the formats in which we offer our MBA; the professors teaching — typically the person that is teaching the online hybrid class will also be teaching an onsite version of the same class; the material covered and the mastery expected — the standards to pass or to get an ‘A’ are the same from one delivery format of the class to the other.  But we like to think of the online hybrid format as “equivalent” to the onsite formats — or possibly “interchangeable” would be a better term.

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Research: Short Online Interventions Can Improve Student Achievement

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Tue, 2015-05-05 02:05

By Leila Meyer, THE Journal

Researchers at Stanford University and the University of Texas, Austin studied the effect of short, online interventions on high school students at risk of dropping out and found that students’ grade point averages increased after only two 45-minute sessions. The researchers used two types of online interventions, one involving the development of a “growth mindset” and the other involving the development of a “sense of purpose.” The growth mindset is the belief that intelligence can be developed rather than being fixed at birth, and that struggling through challenging tasks is an opportunity to improve intelligence. In the study, researchers asked the students to read an article about the brain’s ability to grow intellectually through hard work and effective academic strategies.

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Is Learning Increasingly Self-Directed in the Digital Era?

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Tue, 2015-05-05 02:02

by Suren Ramasubbu, Huffington Post

It is vital that educators be trained to recognize and nurture self-directed learning using technology and be capable of creating learning environments that support it. A teacher who encourages freedom of learning and is open to it can accelerate the transition of learning from being teacher-centric to student centric. According to Roger Hiemstra, a scholar of adult learning and self-directed learning, a teacher plays six roles in self-directed learning – she is “content resource, resource locator, interest stimulator, positive attitude generator, creativity and critical thinking stimulator, and evaluation stimulator.”

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8-Year Old Creates Stunning Victory For Gender Equality

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Mon, 2015-05-04 23:34

Leslie Salzillo, Daily Kos, May 04, 2015

I'm always sceptical when I read headlines about the great accomplishments of 8-year-olds like this, because I know that they require a lot of support from their parents just to get in the door of major publishers, not to mention deciding what to say and how to say it. But I also really like it when they (and their parents) do have an impact like that, because it's so good for the child, and it's so good for society to have children having an impact on major policy decisions. We should do it more often. So Kudos to  Els of North London for convincing a number of publishers to do away with the harmful 'for girls' and 'for boys' lables on books.

[Link] [Comment]

Four Scenarios on the Future of Credentials

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Mon, 2015-05-04 20:32

Leila Meyer, Campus Technology, May 04, 2015

I'm not really a fan of the 'scenario-building' approach to projecting future trends, but it's all the range these days and so not surprising to see employed in this report (which is overall a pretty good overview of the environment). Here are the four scenarios (quoted from the study (17 page PDF)):

  • “ All Roads Lead to Rome,” imagines a future in which degrees awarded by the K-12 and post-secondary sectors still serve as the dominant form of credentials."
  • “ The Dam Breaks,” explores a future in which the employment sector accepts new forms of credentials, such as micro-credentials, on a standalone basis.
  • Every Experience a Credential,” considers what credentials might look like if new technologies enabled every experience to be tracked and catalogued.
  • “ My Mind Mapped,” imagines a future (with) breakthroughs in both the mapping and tracking of brain functions.

The universities are pursuing scenario 1, naturally. Most others are pursuing scenario 2. We are pursuing scenario 3. Nobody is really pursuing scenario 4, because it will be decades before the technology becomes practical, and would raise serious social and moral issues.

[Link] [Comment]

Cybersafety: new guide demystifies

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Mon, 2015-05-04 17:31

Unattributed, Education Gazette, May 04, 2015

The Online Safety Advisory Group (OSAG) in New Zealand has released a set of guidelines to help schools to apply new laws and to understand the issues surrounding the safe and responsible use of digital technologies in school (54 page PDF). These issues, according to the guide, break in to three major divisions:

  • Cybersafety: Involves conduct or behavioural concerns.
  • Cybercrime: Involves illegal activity.
  • Cybersecurity: Involves unauthorised access or attacks on a computer system.

Probably the key statement is in one of the first pages of the study: "In general, preventative approaches that rely on technical or other protections simply do not work." In order to ensure safety and security, the whole community must be involved, people need to have a say in the measures deployed, and brought to the appropriate skill levels.

This report also deals with the sensitive issue of the surrender and search of devices in schools. Teachers can't just grab a student's phone, demand passwords, and start browsing. "Searching for digital information is a specialist activity. The New Zealand Police are the only authorised agency to conduct such a search." This is as it should be. There's a lot more in the report. People dealing with digital safety and security in schools should read it.


[Link] [Comment]

The Top eLearning Statistics and Facts For 2015 You Need To Know

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Mon, 2015-05-04 17:31

Christopher Pappas, e-Learning Industry, May 04, 2015

The main statistic to me is that this thing that in 1995 we needed to prove was even viable is in 2015 growing steadily and becoming ubiquitous. Some snapshot figures (quoted from the article):

  • The global eLearning Market is expected to reach $107 billion by 2015
  • Self-paced eLearning market should see estimated revenues of $49.9 billion in 2015
  • The LMS market is expected to (be) worth approximately $4 billion in 2015 and over $7 billion in 2018
  • The worldwide mobile learning market in 2015 will reach $8.7 billion
  • The online corporate market is expected to grow by 13% per year up to 2017
  • 8% of companies use MOOCs, while another 7% consider to experiment with MOOCs. It is predicted that in the following two years this percentage will rise to 28%

That's not bad for a couple of decade's work.

[Link] [Comment]

Four of the top five YouTube channels are for kids (and the fifth is Taylor Swift)

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Mon, 2015-05-04 17:31

Stuart Dredge, The Guardian, May 04, 2015

I don't subscribe to the  Taylor Swift channel but I've been on it a lot as she provides high-quality music that is nice to listen to. As for the rest, well, not so much. "US-based toy unboxing channel Funtoys Collector was the biggest YouTube channel by some distance in March, with 477.5m views... second-placed Little Baby Bum, the British nursery rhymes channel, with 385.1m views that month. Two Russian cartoon channels, Masha and the Bear and Get Movies, ranked fourth and fifth with 323.1m and 311.2m views respectively." The reader is left to speculate what the various channels say about the cultures that produced them.

[Link] [Comment]

Facebook opens up amidst net neutrality row

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Mon, 2015-05-04 14:31

Unattributed, BBC News, May 04, 2015

Opposition to the business model from around the world (including these pages) has forced Facebook to open up a bit. The original plan was to create a service that would offer only Facebopok, Wikipedia, and a couple other providers. Now the plan is to allow more providers. "Although these terms will continue to restrict membership, Mr Zuckerberg said that people should not prevent others from using the internet in order to defend an 'extreme definition of net neutrality'." I personally don't think it's "extreme" to object when a service is offered that provides access to Facebook but not to OLDaily.People like me will never be able to afford to 'pay to play'. That's why the plan is objectionable.

[Link] [Comment]

The unwelcome guest: Why VMs aren’t the solution for next-gen applications

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Mon, 2015-05-04 14:31

Dinesh Subhraveti, O'Reilly Radar, May 04, 2015

This is quite a good article explaining the nature of virtualization, describing why the virtual machine is undesirable in a production environment, and offering the alternative of 'containers', which do not virtualize entire operating systems, but instead provide a consistent and semantically rich interface to the operating system. "While a VM provides a virtual hardware interface that can run an operating system, a container offers a virtual operating system interface that can run applications."

[Link] [Comment]

China advocates online open courses

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Mon, 2015-05-04 02:09

by Shanghai Daily

China’s Ministry of Education issued a document supporting further application of online open courses in college education on Tuesday. Colleges have been encouraged to adopt a teaching mode combining the increasingly popular Massive Open Online Course with traditional methods, the ministry said in the concise document. Chinese colleges should develop their own high-quality open courses and promote the courses abroad. Meanwhile, they should also introduce more excellent foreign open course projects, especially those on natural sciences, engineering and technology, according to the document.

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UI may extend winter-break classes for two years

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Mon, 2015-05-04 02:05

by Johnathan Hettinger, Champaign News Gazette

After receiving strong positive responses to online courses offered over winter break, the University of Illinois is considering extending the period for two more years. The educational policy committee of the academic senate passed a proposal at its meetings on Monday, calling the 2014-15 classes “a generally positive undertaking for the campus.” The university offered eight four-week online classes as a part of a pilot program for the first-ever Winter Session. The classes were largely popular electives and had an enrollment of 764 students — 71 percent of the 1,070 capacity — which the proposal called “particularly remarkable.” According to the proposal, the courses would be offered during the 2015-16 and 2016-17 winter break periods. There would be a formal review of the effectiveness of the classes after that.

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