Virtual School Meanderings

December 12, 2018

Distance-Educator.com Free e-Newsletter 12/10/18

A newsletter from Monday’s inbox.

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Promoting online training opportunities for the workforce in Europe This document is the interim report for the new European initiative on “Promoting Online Training Opportunities for the Workforce in Europe” (2017-2019) and has been prepared for the Executive Agency for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (EASME) and the Directorate-General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs […]

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RESEARCH-BASED ARTICLES OF THE WEEK
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On-campus, distance or online? Influences on student decision-making about study modes at universityThis article examines the choices students make when deciding the mode of study they will enrol in for university. It expands on previous work in the field by surveying 744 Faculty of Arts students at an Australian university who had the choice of enrolling in one of three study modes: on-campus, distance or purely online. […]

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Burn Bright, Not Out: Tips for Managing Online TeachingManaging the online classroom presents new challenges for faculty members. New online faculty members can become confused with the process of teaching and creating content online due to a lack of support and ignorance of tools and strategies. Issues often arise in online teaching due to the ubiquity of the online classroom and finding appropriate […]

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Creating Boundaries Within the Ubiquitous Online ClassroomManaging one’s time and setting boundaries while teaching online are essential for continued job satisfaction and effective teaching. Online teaching offers attractive flexibility, but instructors report high teaching workloads, feeling isolated, high stress levels, and a poor work-life balance. By utilizing assumptions about online learners set out in andragogy theory, the practical application of the […]

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Sustainability of Open Education Through CollaborationThe definition of openness influenced the sustainability of business models of Open Education (OE). Yet, whether openness is defined as the free (re)usage of resources, or the free entry in courses, there always is a discussion on who pays for the resources used in these offerings. The free offering of courses or materials raises the […]

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Interactions in MOOCs: The Hidden Part of the IcebergInteractions that take place between MOOC users outside of discussion forums, and out of the reach of course designers, have received little attention from the scientific community despite their potential influence on learner retention. Based on an online survey, we found that MOOCs are often used as an activity among friends and family, and not […]

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The Rise and Fall (?) of Digital NativesBuilding on the earlier net generation and millennials concepts, Prensky popularised the notion of a generation of “digital native” students through his 2001 two-part series “Digital natives, digital immigrants”. Although his ideas about how students perceive and utilise technology resonated with many educators, they lacked supporting evidence. Subsequent investigations, which informed the so-called “digital natives […]

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IN THE NEWS
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Carnegie Mellon and Western Governors Building Career Coaching AgentsTwo universities will be working together on a research project to help students explore jobs. The National Science Foundation awarded almost $700,000 over three years to Western Governors University (WGU) and Carnegie Mellon University to create “intelligent coaching agents” for non-traditional students pursuing work in STEM. Campus Technology

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Online Learning: A 2-Voiced Case for AmbivalenceWading into the rip currents of online learning evangelism and countersurging cries of alarm about the corporatization of higher ed, Steve Mentz and Christopher Schaberg seek steady footing. Inside Higher Ed

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Spotlight on Innovation: Managing Online Growth at Texas TechA popular online human resources concentration marked an early indication of the potential popularity of distance learning at the institution. Inside Higher Ed

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Many Online Education Marketplaces Have Sputtered. Will Quizlet’s Pass the Test?Content may be king. But distribution determines the fate of kingdoms. For decades, print textbook publishers have owned K-12 distribution channels, usually through fleets of sales representatives that hone relationships with schools and districts. EdSurge

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Digital programme gives Syrian refugees access to HERefugees from the Syrian crisis and disadvantaged young people in Jordan and Lebanon are gaining access to short online courses and up to 24 months of blended learning study programmes through a partnership involving two universities in the region and King’s College London in the United Kingdom. University World News

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Virtual reality could serve as powerful environmental education tool, according to Stanford researchersUtter the words “ocean acidification” in mixed company, and you’ll probably get blank stares. Although climate change has grown steadily in the public consciousness, one of its most insidious impacts – a widespread die-off of marine ecosystems driven by carbon dioxide emissions – remains relatively unknown. Stanford University

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December 4, 2018

Distance-Educator.com Free e-Newsletter 12/3/18

Another newsletter from yesterday’s inbox.

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Quality Principles for Competency-Based Education This publication builds off of the early ideas introduced in the paper In Search of Efficacy: Defining the Elements of Quality in a Competency-Based Education System, developed for the 2017 National Summit on Competency-Based Education. After a series of revisions building on input from experts and practitioners in the field, […]

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RESEARCH-BASED ARTICLES OF THE WEEK
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How MOOC-Takers Estimate Learning Success: Retrospective Reflection of Perceived BenefitsMassive open online courses (MOOCs) have attracted a great deal of interest in recent years as a new learning technology. Since MOOCs inception, only limited research has been carried out to address how learners perceive success in MOOCs after course completion. The aim of this study was to investigate the perceived benefits as the measurement […]

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MOOCs and OER in the Global South: Problems and PotentialThis paper examines the problems and potential of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) and Open Education Resources (OER) in the global South. Employing a systematic review of the research into the use of open online learning technologies in Southern contexts, we identify five interrelated themes emerging from the literature: 1) access to the Internet; 2) […]

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Learning in virtual reality: Effects on performance, emotion and engagementRecent advances in virtual reality (VR) technology allow for potential learning and education applications. For this study, 99 participants were assigned to one of three learning conditions: traditional (textbook style), VR and video (a passive control). The learning materials used the same text and 3D model for all conditions. Each participant was given a knowledge […]

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Making it real: The development of a web-based simulated learning resource for occupational therapy studentsEquipping students with graduate attributes that ensure they are ready to work in complex health environments is highly important. Recently there has been increased use of simulation in health education to assist in the acquisition of graduate attributes, and to provide meaningful and authentic learning opportunities. The Deakin University Occupational Therapy program developed a unique […]

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Australian university students’ access to web-based lecture recordings and the relationship with lecture attendance and academic performanceWeb-based lecture technology (WBLT) allows students access to recorded lectures delivered live to the classroom any time and to any device with internet. This technology has become standard across universities. This study of Australian undergraduate psychology students explored many important questions related to WBLT. About 75% of students surveyed utilised recorded lectures. Qualitative responses allowed […]

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The Values of Open PedagogyTo support open educational practices, we must understand the meaning of open pedagogy and articulate the values that shape it. EDUCAUSE Review

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IN THE NEWS
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The OER Knowledge CloudThe UNESCO/COL OER Knowledge Cloud will greatly enhance research opportunities and access to knowledge and research on Open Educational Resources and related information by removing barriers, opening up scholarship and making research universally accessible. The OER Knowledge Cloud has been established to identify, collect, preserve and disseminate available documents of enduring value to researchers, industry, […]

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Imagining an Apple Store for Online DegreesGeorgia Tech moves forward with plans to create storefronts for its online education programs, joining a growing number of institutions offering hybrid online learning experiences. Inside Higher Ed

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Student coaching pays off at Loyola University New OrleansMany student success initiatives in higher education focus on meeting the needs of students who are most at risk of dropping out. Loyola University New Orleans has flipped this script by giving every first-year student personalized coaching—and the percentage of students who return for their second year is now at an all-time high. eCampuse News

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University of Florida Works to Ensure Websites are AccessibleAn online course doesn’t provide proper captioning during a video lecture. A department website features flashing and moving elements than cannot be easily turned off. A downloaded scholarship document is unable to be filled out with a hands-free, assisted computer device Center for Digital Education

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University of Missouri System Chooses Cengage Unlimited Subscriptions to Save Students Money on Course MaterialsBOSTON and ST. LOUIS, November 16, 2018 — As part of its efforts to increase affordable access to textbooks, the University of Missouri System will be offering Cengage Unlimited subscriptions to all students enrolled in Cengage courses beginning in January 2019. Cengage, the largest U.S.-based education and technology company serving the higher education market, provides […]

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Virtually InspiredFrom holographs and educational games, to drones and robots, 21st century educators are forging new and amazing trails in technology-enhanced teaching and learning. Virtually Inspired is a place where educators can come for inspiration by perusing each video showcase below to see how creative professionals around the globe are infusing technology with learning. Drexel University Online

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November 27, 2018

Distance-Educator.com Free e-Newsletter 11/26/18

Another newsletter from yesterday’s inbox.

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FEATURED ARTICLE OF THE WEEK
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Online Learning in Continuing Higher Education: Current Practices and Planned Initiatives As online enrollments outpace industry trends, many colleges are rushing to launch online programs that will attract new students. This has created intense competition in online education, but are colleges successfully meeting the learning demands of students? Find out in Online Learning in Continuing […]

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RESEARCH-BASED ARTICLES OF THE WEEK
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Increasing Interpersonal Interactions in an Online Course: Does Increased Instructor E-mail Activity and a Voluntary In-Person Meeting Time Facilitate Student Learning?

Distance learning is expanding rapidly in universities. While theoretical and qualitative literature stress the critical role of effective interpersonal interactions in motivating students and facilitating learning in online environments, quantitative evidence on the benefits of increased interpersonal interactions on student learning outcomes is limited. This study examines the effect of providing a voluntary meeting time […]

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Increasing Undergraduate Success: A Randomized Controlled Trial of U-Pace Instruction

U-Pace instruction, comprised of concept mastery and amplified assistance, has shown promise in increasing undergraduate success. To evaluate the efficacy of U-Pace instruction for students at-risk for college non-completion and students not at-risk and to determine whether concept mastery, amplified assistance, or both U-Pace components are responsible for the greater learning associated with U-Pace instruction, an […]

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The Expansion of Higher Education and the Returns of Distance Education in China

The returns of traditional face-to-face education are widely analyzed, but there is a need for empirical studies on the returns of distance education. Further, comparative studies on returns of both traditional and distance education using high-quality data are rare. Since 1999, continuous and rapid expansions have occurred in the whole Higher Education system in China. […]

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Information literacy skills on the go: Mobile Learning Innovation

Students’ understanding and integration of information literacy (IL) skills are fundamental to higher education and lifelong learning. Development and implementation of thirteen mobile lessons application (http://renmil.ca/ ) in the Mobile Information Literacy Tool (MIL) was the result of a unique collaboration between faculty and the library. Lessons demonstrated how to locate, evaluate, and use information […]

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An inferior source? Quantitatively analysing the production and revision of five technology-enhanced learning-related terms on Wikipedia

This article analyses five technology-enhanced learning-related terms on Wikipedia, assessing their usefulness in relation to academic journal articles concerning the same terms. Data were obtained about the word lengths of the Wikipedia articles, the numbers of Wikipedia edits and numbers of academic journal publications over the first 5 years after the creation of the first […]

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Learning Across Cultures, With Help From Technology

Students at six U.S. and six Japanese institutions next fall will get to enroll in classes developed jointly by instructors from opposite ends of the globe, thanks to a new technology-enhanced collaboration funded by the two countries’ governments. The American Council on Education is facilitating the American end of the project, which will spur implementation […]

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IN THE NEWS
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DePaul University Launches Streamlined Platform to Ease Administrative Burden for Faculty, Enable More Time for Research and Teaching

Midwest’s largest private, nonprofit university teams with faculty information system Interfolio to support shared governance activities and improve faculty experience and workflow Interfolio

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Unbundling and Rebundling Higher Education in an Age of Inequality

Unbundling and rebundling are happening in different parts of college and university education, through new forms of teaching and learning provision and in different parts of the degree path, in every dimension and aspect—creating a complicated environment in an educational sector that is already in a state of disequilibrium. EDUCAUSE Review

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The Next Frontier of Adaptive Learning

Arizona State University isn’t satisfied with the state of adaptive courses. That’s why this innovative university is going all in with adaptive degree programs. Campus Technology

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Virginia Tech announces Innovation Campus in Alexandria

Virginia Tech announces $1 billion ‘innovation campus’Virginia Tech announced on Tuesday plans to construct a $1 billion “innovation campus” to be opened next year in Alexandria, Virginia, just two miles from the new HQ2 office Amazon intends to build in nearby Crystal City, Virginia. edscoop   HISTORIC DAY: Virginia Tech Innovation Campus key to Virginia […]

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Interview with a Learning Scientist: Bob Ubell of NYU

Bob Ubell is Vice Dean Emeritus at the NYU School of Engineering, and Dr. Robert Feldman is Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst – and he is also the Chair of the McGraw-Hill Learning Science Advisory Board. The conversation between Bob and Robert ranges from benefits and criticisms of […]

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Will a new push for free wireless internet help rural students get online?

PANGUITCH, Utah — Both before and after classes at Panguitch High School, a low-slung brick building nestled in the high desert of southern Utah, students find their way to Shawn Caine’s classroom. They settle in at the computers where Caine teaches coding and software, such as Illustrator and Photoshop, or they head to the back […]

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November 23, 2018

Distance-Educator.com Free e-Newsletter 11/21/18

A newsletter from the day before Thanksgiving.

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Deliberate Innovation, Lifetime Education: #GT2040 “I got out,” is the proud mantra of the more than 157,000 Georgia Tech alumni worldwide. Whether a few years out, or celebrating a 50th class reunion, or perhaps somewhere in their midcareer, each Georgia Tech alumnus is bonded to this institution by stories of tradition, hard work, rigor, and experiences […]

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RESEARCH-BASED ARTICLES OF THE WEEK
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Unfitting, uncomfortable, unacademic: a sociological reading of an interactive mobile phone app in university lecturesScholarly literature on education technology uptake has been dominated by technological determinist readings of students’ technology use. However, in recent years there has been a move by sociologists of education to highlight how the contexts in which educational technologies are introduced are not tabula rasa but socially and culturally complex. This study approaches technology as […]

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The future of online testing and assessment: question quality in MOOCsIf MOOCs are to play a role in the future of higher education it is imperative that we critically examine how they are currently functioning. In particular, questions persist about the role MOOCs will play in the future of formal accredited learning. As the focus turns from informal and free to formal, accredited and paid, […]

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Students’ Approaches to E-Learning: Analyzing Credit/Noncredit and High/Low PerformersAim/Purpose This study examines differences in credit and noncredit users’ learning and usage of the Plant Sciences E-Library (PASSEL,http://passel.unl.edu), a large international, open-source multidisciplinary learning object repository. Background Advances in online education are helping educators to meet the needs of formal academic credit students, as well as informal noncredit learners. Since online learning attracts […]

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We still trust in Google, but less than 10 years ago: an eye-tracking studyIntroduction. The purpose of this study is to replicate a study from 2007, which found that student users trust in Google’s ability to rank results more than in their own relevance judgements. Method. In a between-subjects experiment using eye-tracking methodology, participants (n=25) worked on search tasks where the results ranking on search engine results pages […]

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Game design for visually-impaired individuals: Creativity and innovation theories and sensory substitution devices influence on virtual and physical navigation skillsThis action research study examined the design elements of three VR games that used an HTC VIVE VR helmet, two HTC game controllers, and a VR horse simulator for functionality and transferability to orientation and mobility (O&M) education for visually impaired individuals. The functionality of the VR games was tested with a visually-impaired individual based […]

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Promoting Critical Reading using Google Tools – a Community of Inquiry ApproachCreating a community of learning can enhance critical reading in a classroom environment. Task design plays a critical role in the effectiveness of this process. This paper presents a case study of a face-to-face literature course that used a host of Google tools to create such a community. The Community of Inquiry (CoI) principles of […]

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IN THE NEWS
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RAND Education Assessment FinderThe RAND Education Assessment Finder is a web-based tool that provides information about assessments of K-12 students’ interpersonal, intrapersonal, and higher-order cognitive competencies. Practitioners, researchers, and policymakers can use it to explore what assessments are available, what they are designed to measure, how they are administered, what demands they place on students and teachers, and […]

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ProctorU and SmarterServices Partner to Offer Flexible Proctoring SolutionsProctorU, the world’s largest provider of online proctoring and identity management services, is partnering with SmarterServices, a full-spectrum assessment services company. The ProctorU integration with SmarterServices’ SmarterProctoring platform allows organizations to use a single interface for scheduling, administration and reporting of proctored exams regardless of how they are delivered. ProctorU

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Who’s Taking Nondegree Courses — and Why?Alternative credentials pose an increasing threat to the supremacy of the traditional degree as the key that unlocks a career path. But available options and student preferences haven’t solidified, and they’re evolving so quickly that it can be difficult to keep track of the increasingly convoluted market. A new report published last month by two […]

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Putting Standardization Second (or Lower) in Online LearningI’m amazed. And concerned. Over the past six months, I’ve been to several conferences and workshops, where I participated in discussions with leaders of online learning, and the same few themes kept coming up: standardization, adoption rates, faculty impediments and limited budget. Inside Higher Ed

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Making Real-Time Rendering Less Daunting: Unreal Engine Online LearningWhen you see new software that can speed up your workflow, it’s fun to imagine what you can do with it. But in reality, many of us don’t want to be among the first to try it out, especially if documentation is lacking. No one wants to spend countless hours fighting with mysterious features only […]

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How to Build an Online Learning Program Students Crave and Employers WantOne of the great challenges for any educator is how do you teach and test students on real world problems, not just on theoretical textbook examples? EdSurge

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November 14, 2018

Distance-Educator.com Free e-Newsletter – 11/13/18

A newsletter from yesterday’s inbox.

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THE FUTURE OF WORK AND LEARNING The Fourth Industrial Revolution is here, and it is changing everything. The Third Industrial Revolution (aka the digital revolution) is defined by electronics and IT, automated production, and advanced globalization. It has changed how individuals interact with each other, commerce, and whole communities. However, the changes we are beginning to see, […]

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RESEARCH-BASED ARTICLES OF THE WEEK
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#DigPed Narratives in Education: Critical Perspectives on Power and Pedagogy

This mixed methods study addresses a knowledge gap in the nature and effects of networked scholarship. We analyze #DigPed, a Twitter hashtag on critical pedagogy, through the lens of Tufekci’s Capacities and Signals framework in order to understand (1) how educational narratives develop and spread on #DigPed, and (2) the nature of their capacities. Using […]

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Scaffolding Progressive Online Discourse for Literary Knowledge Building

Drawing on research from online, knowledge-building, and discussion-based learning, this design-based experiment captures the instructional moves theorized to develop student capacity in progressive, literary discourse. The experiment employed Knowledge Forum and its unique capacity to scaffold student learning of progressive discourse that results in an explanatory model, theory, or literary interpretation. Analysis of student discussion […]

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Testing Google Scholar bibliographic data: Estimating error rates for Google Scholar citation parsing

We present some systematic tests of the quality of bibliographic data exports available from Google Scholar. While data quality is good for journal articles and conference proceedings, books and edited collections are often wrongly described or have incomplete data. We identify a particular problem with material from online repositories. First Monday

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Scholars’ temporal participation on, temporary disengagement from, and return to Twitter

Even though the extant literature investigates how and why academics use social media, much less is known about academics’ temporal patterns of social media use. This mixed methods study provides a first-of-its-kind investigation into temporal social media use. In particular, we study how academics’ use of Twitter varies over time and examine the reasons why […]

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IN THE NEWS
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Teaching in Higher Ed Podcasts: Faculty Development for Professors

This is the space where we explore the art and science of being more effective at facilitating learning. We also share ways to increase our personal productivity, so we can have more peace in our lives and be even more present for our students. Teaching in Higher Ed

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Online Student Services: What, Where, Who, When, How, and Most Importantly, Why

In 2002, I moved to academia after a career in the engineering industry. One of the questions I was asked in my interviews at the college was whether I could teach online. I had taught via distance learning in a fairly loose model, working with engineers and support staff across the globe in my role […]

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Woz U to Deliver Tech Education Through U North Dakota

The University of North Dakota has teamed up with for-profit training company Woz U to provide short-term technology education programs. The institution is including the courses provided by Steve Wozniak’s education company as part of its “personal & professional development” catalog. These don’t offer standard college credit. Campus Technology

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Online Education Ascends

Number and proportion of college and university students taking classes online grew solidly in 2017, as overall postsecondary enrollments fell. A third of all students now take at least one online course. Inside Higher ED

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