Virtual School Meanderings

September 17, 2014

Distance-Educator.com e-Newsletter – 9/16/14

From yesterday’s inbox…

Distance-Educator.com Newsletter
SEPTEMBER 16, 2014
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FEATURED ARTICLE OF THE WEEK
Exclusive Interview with David Collery, CEO, CCKF (Realizeit)

Dr. Saba: How did you become interested in using technology for improving education and training? Mr. Collery: A background in teaching in disadvantaged high schools in Dublin for 15 years from 1970, where I saw the low expectation of both the environment and the students, made me determined to set the same teaching and learning […]

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RESEARCH-BASED ARTICLES OF THE WEEK
Exploring the Dimensions of Self-Efficacy in Virtual World Learning: Environment, Task, and ContentThis study explores the dimensionality of college students’ self-efficacy related to their academic activities in the open-ended virtual world of Second Life (SL). To do this, relevant dimensions of self-efficacy were theoretically derived, and items to measure these dimensions were developed and then assessed using a survey methodology. Using data from 486 students enrolled in […]

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Does the Online Environment Promote Plagiarism? A Comparative Study of Dissertations from Brick-and-Mortar versus Online InstitutionsIn recent years, there has been a concern that the Internet has been contributing to a growth in student plagiarism. This paper reports on a study aimed at investigating if there were differences between plagiarism levels in doctoral dissertations submitted by students enrolled at traditional, brick-and-mortar institutions and those by students attending online counterparts. A […]

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Download Report: International Institue of Educational Planning Medium Term Strategy 2014-2017IIEP’s vision is rooted in the understanding that education is a basic human right. No child, youth or adult should be excluded from learning opportunities that will allow him or her to live decently, access and exercise their rights, and engage in civic life. IIEP is particularly concerned with expanding quality education to provide equitable […]

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Revisiting the “Sleeping Giant” Metaphor: Is It Still Sleeping in the Commonwealth of Virginia, and Is It Still Really a Giant?In order to revisit Martorella’s metaphor of technology as a sleeping giant this paper analyzes data collected over multiple years in order to provide a portrait of how preservice teachers make sense of and choose (if at all) to integrate digital technologies within their internship classrooms. Findings indicate that in the Commonwealth of Virginia, within […]

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IN THE NEWS
Call for Chapters: Digital Badges in Education: Trends, Issues, and CasesDigital Badges in Education: Trends, Issues, and Cases Publisher: Routledge (Imprint of Taylor and Francis Group) Call for Chapters – Proposals Due 30 October 2014 More than any other time in history, learners have access to a multitude of learning opportunities. In large part, greater availability of learning options is possible because of the Internet […]

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Baroness Lane-Fox installed as sixth Chancellor of The Open UniversityCo-Founder of LastMinute.com and digital pioneer, Baroness Lane-Fox of Soho, has become the sixth Chancellor of The Open University (OU). Martha Lane Fox delivered her inaugural speech as Chancellor at an official installation ceremony today (Wednesday 10 September 2014). Open University Press Release

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Apple Watch: Coming to a Classroom Near You?Wearable technology has entered the mainstream. The Apple Watch, announced on Tuesday, ushers in the possibility that, one day soon, campuses across the country will contend with students who are literally attached to their gadgets. Wired Campus Full Article

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Free webinar, facing the challenges in Open Educational Resources for Less Used LanguagesA forthcoming webinar on 19 September presents a great opportunity to connect around Educational Resources (OER) for Less Used Languages in an increasingly digital everyday culture. International Council for Open and Distance Education Press Release

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September 8, 2014

Distance-Educator.com e-Newsletter – 9/8/14

From today’s inbox…

Distance-Educator.com Newsletter
SEPTEMBER 8, 2014
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FEATURED ARTICLE OF THE WEEK
Working as a System for the Citizens of the State of Georgia

When it comes to the delivery of IT services, the 31 institutions of the University System of Georgia work together as a system to ensure the delivery of more-effective technology solutions at costs that they can better afford. EDUCAUSE Full Article

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RESEARCH-BASED ARTICLES OF THE WEEK
An Exploration of Metacognition in Asynchronous Student-Led Discussions: A Qualitative InquiryResearch is limited on how metacognition is facilitated and manifested in socially situated online learning environments such as online discussion forums. We approached metacognition as the phenomenon of interest with a methodological objective to evaluate the relevance of a metacognition construct. We also had a content objective to study student-led facilitation of discussions as a […]

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ePortfolios and Audience: Teaching a Critical Twenty-First Century SkillThis article reports on a three-year investigation into how and to what extent ePortfolios sponsor teacher and student learning about audience in first-year writing classes at a mid-sized research university. Through interviews with students and instructors and detailed analysis of students’ ePortfolios, we found that, more often than not, the audience for ePortfolios is multiple. […]

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To See or Not to See: Effects of Online Access to Peer-Generated Questions on PerformanceThis study examined the effects on performance of online access to peer-generated questions during question-generation activities. Two eighth grade classes (N = 63) participated in six weekly question-generation sessions to support English learning. An online student question-generation learning system was adopted. In contrast to expectations based on the literature on observational learning and scaffolding, no […]

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Success Factors for e-Learning in a Developing Country: A Case Study of SerbiaIn this paper, DeLone and McLean’s updated information system model was used to evaluate the success of an e-Learning system and its courses in a transitional country like Serbia. In order to adapt this model to an e-Learning system, suitable success metrics were chosen for each of the evaluation stages. Furthermore, the success metrics for […]

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IN THE NEWS
Google Launches Effort to Build Its Own Quantum ComputerGoogle’s crack at a quantum computer is a bid to change computing forever. MIT Technology Review Full Article

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Rise of Online Booksellers Brings Complaints From Campus BookstoresWhen the orange Chegg bus rolls onto a campus, one person is unlikely to be excited about its free swag and energy drinks: the college-bookstore manager. Chronicle of Higher Education Full Article

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School eMail, websites hit by eRate changesNew rules would eliminate eRate discounts on eMail, voice mail, and website hosting beginning next year eSchool News Full Article

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Collaborative That Once Criticized Software Companies Becomes OneTen years ago, a group of universities started a collaborative software project touted as an alternative to commercial software companies, which were criticized as too costly. On Friday the project’s leaders made a surprising announcement: that it would essentially become a commercial entity. Wired Campus Full Article

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August 27, 2014

Distance-Educator.com e-Newsletter – 8/25/14

Also from Monday’s inbox…

Distance-Educator.com Newsletter
AUGUST 25, 2014
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FEATURED ARTICLE OF THE WEEK
Watch the Video: “The Intel Trinity: How Robert Noyce, Gordon Moore, and Andy Grove Built the World’s Most Important Company”

Michael Malone is a regular editorial writer for the Wall Street Journal and has covered Silicon Valley for over 30 years. His books include “The Guardian of All Things” and “Learning Curve.” For more, visit: michaelsmalone.com. In this program Mr. Malone talks about the rise and importance of Intel and the men who created it. […]

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RESEARCH-BASED ARTICLES OF THE WEEK
Mindtool-Assisted In-Field Learning (MAIL): An Advanced Ubiquitous Learning Project in TaiwanScholars have identified that learning in an authentic environment with quality contextual and procedural supports can engage students in thorough observations and knowledge construction. Moreover, the target is that students are able to experience and make sense of all of the learning activities in the real-world environment with meaningful supports, such that their learning motivation […]

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Guest Editorial: Powering Up: Insights from Distinguished Mobile and Ubiquitous Learning Projects across the World: Gwo-Jen Hwang and Lung-Hsiang WongRecent progress in mobile and wireless communication technologies has led to new development of technology- enhanced learning, enabling students to learn in the way that encompasses formal and informal learning across locations and time with supports or guidance from learning systems (Hwang, Wu, Zhuang, & Huang, 2013). Educational Technology & Society Editorial

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Learning with and from Facebook: Uncovering power asymmetries in educational interactionsAlthough social networking sites (SNS) are increasingly popular among students, their academic application is unfolding on trial basis and best practices for integration into mainstream teaching are yet to be fully realised. More importantly, is the need to understand how these sites shape academic relations and participation of heterogeneous students, particularly in resource-constrained African environments. […]

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The changing landscape of ePortfolios: A case study in one Australian universityThe potential of ePortfolios for both students and staff has generated considerable interest and investment by universities over the past ten years or so within Australia. Despite funded projects, ePortfolio specific conferences and a range of commercial and open software, there is not wide spread uptake of ePortfolios, although many universities continue to try and […]

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IN THE NEWS
States Focus On Preparing Future Workforce To Strengthen EconomyWASHINGTON—To further governors’ efforts to align education and training systems to the needs of state economies, the National Governors Association (NGA) today announced support for 14 states Colorado,Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Minnesota, Montana, New Jersey, North Carolina, Oklahoma,Virginia, Washington and West Virginia. By increasing the number of citizens with a postsecondary degree or relevant workforce certificate, more people will have access to the middle class and beyond, […]

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AI, Robotics, and the Future of JobsThe vast majority of respondents to the 2014 Future of the Internet canvassing anticipate that robotics and artificial intelligence will permeate wide segments of daily life by 2025, with huge implications for a range of industries such as health care, transport and logistics, customer service, and home maintenance. But even as they are largely consistent […]

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Press Release: New Startup “SitWith” Brings Strangers Together For Productive Networking LunchesPITTSBURGH—The challenge of meeting new people and expanding your personal network just got a lot easier for individuals in Pittsburgh. This is great news for people, such as young professionals, who are new to the area or those who are long-time residents and simply enjoy sharing conversation. SitWith, a startup company incubated by the entrepreneurship […]

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‘It Takes Time’The University of California System, after five years and millions of dollars spent, is asking for more time and money to get its systemwide online education initiative off the ground. Inside Higher Ed Full Article

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August 12, 2014

Distance-Educator.com e-Newsletter – 8/11/14

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Distance-Educator.com Newsletter
AUGUST 11, 2014
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FEATURED ARTICLE OF THE WEEK
The Quest for a Quantum Future

STATION Q, headquarters of potentially world-changing quantum computing research, is located just past where the Pacific Ocean meets the sand, up through a grove of palm trees and across a bike path. (Do mind the shirtless college student zipping past on a skateboard wearing only a backpack and swim trunks.) In some ways, Station Q […]

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RESEARCH-BASED ARTICLES OF THE WEEK
Social presence in online learning communities: the role of personal profilesOnline communication is increasingly used in education, but it is not without problems. One significant difficulty is a lack of social presence. Social presence relates to the need for users of technology-based communication to perceive each other as real people. Low social presence can be a particular issue in text-based, asynchronous systems such as discussion […]

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Consensus, Compromise, and Persistence: Implementing a Single ERP for 13 CollegesUsing the multi-entity processing (MEP) model let the Colorado Community College System transform 13 instances of ERP at its individual community colleges into a single installation. The new system handles all major transactions, including student, financial aid, human resource, and finance transactions, as well as allowing across-the-board updates for financial aid and legislative changes that impact all 13 colleges. Aligning 13 colleges on consistent business practices was […]

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Quality Experiences Of Inquiry In Blended Contexts – University Student Approaches To Inquiry, Technologies, And Conceptions Of LearningEvaluating the quality of inquiry using technology in blended contexts at university is a complex phenomenon as there are many variables which could account for qualitative variation in the experience. This study looks at reasons for qualitative variation in the university student experience of inquiry using technologies. It considers approaches to inquiry and technologies, conceptions […]

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Patterns And Principles For Blended Synchronous Learning: Engaging Remote And Face-To-Face Learners In Rich-Media Real-Time Collaborative ActivitiesBlended synchronous learning involves using rich-media technologies to enable remote and face-to-face students to jointly participate in the same live classes. This article presents blended synchronous learning designs from seven case studies that were part of a project funded by the Australian Government Office for Learning and Teaching and articulates principles for implementation as espoused […]

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IN THE NEWS
Online Learning Consortium Names Kathleen Ives CEO and Executive DirectorFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE On the heels of the rebranding of the Sloan Consortium to the Online Learning Consortium (OLC), this appointment signifies OLC’s firm commitment to its mission of helping member institutions advance the quality of their online learning initiatives. NEWBURYPORT, Mass. (July 21, 2014) — The Online Learning Consortium (OLC), formerly The Sloan […]

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Consensus, Compromise, and Persistence: Implementing a Single ERP for 13 CollegesUsing the multi-entity processing (MEP) model let the Colorado Community College System transform 13 instances of ERP at its individual community colleges into a single installation. The new system handles all major transactions, including student, financial aid, human resource, and finance transactions, as well as allowing across-the-board updates for financial aid and legislative changes that impact all 13 colleges. Aligning 13 colleges on consistent business practices was […]

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Can young students master digital writing assessments?How did young students perform with a computer-based writing assessment pilot?

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StoryScape from MIT Media Lab: Create Stories TogetherWriting a storybook has never been easier! Access StoryScape

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August 5, 2014

Distance-Educator.com e-Newsletter – 8/4/14

From yesterday’s inbox…

Distance-Educator.com Newsletter
AUGUST 4, 2014
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FEATURED ARTICLE OF THE WEEK
Peer Grading in a MOOC: Reliability, Validity, and Perceived EffectsPeer grading offers a scalable and sustainable way of providing assessment and feedback to a massive student population. However, currently there is little empirical evidence to support the credentials of peer grading as a learning assessment method in the MOOC context. To address this research need, this study examined 1,825 peer grading assignments collected from […]

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RESEARCH-BASED ARTICLES OF THE WEEK
Understanding Social Learning Behaviors via a Virtual Field TripThis is a multidisciplinary study investigating how a virtual rather than face-to-face field trip can be conducted in a real-world setting and how students respond to such a social learning opportunity. Our participants followed a story of a stroke patient at her virtual home and in a virtual hospital via a teaching vignette. They were […]

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Digital Cameras and Information Literacy: Innovations from the FieldThe authors describe a learning exercise for an English composition information literacy instruction session that merges technology with active learning and is fun and engaging. Librarians introduced digital cameras into library instruction. Students filmed one another as they searched the online catalog to locate call numbers, investigate subject headings, and find books on the shelves. […]

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A case study of blended teaching and learning in a New Zealand secondary school, using an ecological frameworkThis paper reports on the findings of a case study that investigated how blended teaching and learning was implemented in a New Zealand secondary school. An ecological perspective was taken, in an attempt to clarify the complexity of blended teaching and learning implementation, by researching the roles of students, teachers, school leaders and other educational […]

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University faculty’s perspectives on the roles of e-instructors and their online instruction practiceDespite the rapid use of e-Learning in higher education, the beliefs of instructors about and their practices during online instruction have been seldom addressed. This study explores the role perceptions of e-instructors in higher education. In total, 106 instructors from 20 Taiwanese universities filled out a questionnaire. Analytical results indicate that “content expertise” and “instructional […]

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IN THE NEWS
Promising uses of technology in education in poor, rural and isolated communities around the worldOne persistent challenge for educational policymakers and planners related to the potential use of informational and communication technologies (ICTs) in remote, low income communities around the world is that most products, services, usage models, expertise, and research related to ICT use in education come from high-income contexts and environments. The World Bank Blog Post

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New Book: Culture and Online Learning –Global Perspectives and ResearchEdited by Insung Jung , Charlotte Nirmalani Gunawardena Culture plays an overarching role that impacts investment, planning, design, development, delivery, and the learning outcomes of online education. This groundbreaking book remedies a dearth of empirical research on how digital cultures and teaching and learning cultures intersect, and offers grounded theory and practical guidance on how […]

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Distance learning needs re-tooling, captains tell chiefFORT LEAVENWORTH, Kan. (Army News Service, July 18, 2014) — It was to be a panacea. It could save money and reduce the carbon footprint by eliminating travel costs, decrease the need for infrastructure and perhaps even instructors, while allowing students to learn on their own time, in their own spaces, on their own devices. […]

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Six great ed-tech resources on YouTubeThe Clayton Christensen Institute is a nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank dedicated to improving the world through disruptive innovation. Founded on the theories of Harvard professor Clayton M. Christensen, the Institute offers a unique framework for understanding many of society’s most pressing problems. eSchool News Full Article

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