Virtual School Meanderings

February 13, 2018

Distance-Educator.com Free e-Newsletter 2/12/18

A newsletter from yesterday’s inbox.

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FEBRUARY 12, 2018
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FEATURED ARTICLE OF THE WEEK
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2018 Top 10 IT Issues Higher education’s biggest concerns are converging with technology’s greatest capabilities. Evidence is mounting that digital technology is a major differentiator and a key to productivity and success within higher education. The 2018 Top 10 Issues reveal the broader strategic impact of technology on the entire institution. EDUCAUSE

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RESEARCH-BASED ARTICLES OF THE WEEK
Revisiting the Reusability and Openness of Resources in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Open Courseware

The marketing of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Open Courseware gives the impression that it has the potential to contribute to quality open learning and opening up higher education globally. It is from this perspective that the potential contribution of Open Educational Resources (OER) units in the MIT Open Courseware to opening up higher […]

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Conversational Functions for Knowledge Building: a Study of an Online Course at University

Interactions in online courses have been studied by analyzing Conversational Functions used by participants. Cacciamani, Perrucci Khanlari (2016) developed a coding scheme, named CF4KB, consisting of four Global Conversational Functions (GCF), each articulated in two Specific Conversational Functions (SCF). The aims of the present study were to explore: 1) What are the more frequently SCF […]

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Implementation of New Communication Tools to an Online Chemistry Course

Online courses provide flexibility and convenience for students and have become very popular in recent years. With the advance of technology and change of habits for the uses of traditional communication tools among students, there is a need for educators to explore effective ways to communicate with students that fit their social-media life styles. Two […]

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Effect of Motivational Scaffolding on E-Learning Environments: Self-Efficacy, Learning Achievement, and Cognitive Style

The present research studies the effects of motivational scaffolding that favor self-efficacy and improve learning achievement in students with different cognitive styles in the Field Dependence/Independence (FDI) dimension, when they interact in an e-learning environment on mathematics. The research has an experimental design with two groups and a posttest. One group of students interacted with […]

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IN THE NEWS
Online Degree Program Virtual Orientation: What to Expect

Online degree programs may require new students to attend orientation to acclimate them to the virtual classroom. One orientation format is asynchronous, meaning students read text or watch videos and complete the requirements whenever it’s convenient for them within a certain time frame; they don’t, for instance, need to participate in sessions in person or […]

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Online learning: Universities’ push for physical classes battles virtual trends

Australian universities are pushing back against Harvard economist Kenneth Rogoff who has argued for a heavy shift to online learning, especially for undergraduate degrees. Although domestic unis admit in the long run circumstances may push some of them into it. Financial Review

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Virtual Reality for Learning Raises High Hopes and Serious Concerns

Is virtual reality finally ready to make inroads in K-12? Technology companies are making a fresh push, and some market dynamics could provide them a tailwind. But there’s plenty of reason to remain skeptical. Education Week

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How learning analytics can provide students (and teachers) what they want

The words ‘analytics’ and ‘data’ might seem alien or even intimidating to most of us – unless you are a number-cruncher or a market analyst, why would they be of any use, right? However, Professor of Learning Analytics at The Open University, Bart Rienties, has spent much of his career researching how data can improve […]

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February 7, 2018

Distance-Educator.com Free e-Newsletter 2/5/18

Another newsletter from Monday.

Distance-Educator.com Newsletter
FEBRUARY 5, 2018
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FEATURED ARTICLE OF THE WEEK
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Grade Increase: Tracking Distance Education in the United States Distance education enrollments increased for the fourteenth straight year, growing faster than they have for the past several years. From 2002 to 2012 both distance and overall enrollments grew annually, but since 2012 distance growth has continued its steady increase in an environment that saw overall […]

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RESEARCH-BASED ARTICLES OF THE WEEK
Professional Development in an Online Context: Opportunities and Challenges from the Voices of College FacultyGiven the variety of learning and engagement needs of the increasingly diverse student population in higher education, flexible approaches to teaching are critical for improving student success. Professional development that provides faculty exposure to effective, evidence-based instructional strategies in an online context may enhance their teaching practices. This study explored the advantages and disadvantages of […]

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The Development of a Learning Dashboard for Lecturers: A Case Study on a Student Centered E-Learning EnvironmentStudent Centered e-Learning Environment (SCELE) is a Moodle-based learning management system (LMS) that has been modified to enhance learning within a computer science department curriculum offered by the Faculty of Computer Science of large public university in Indonesia. This Moodle provided a mechanism to record students’ activities when engaged in learning with e-Learning software. However, […]

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Roles of perceived fit and perceived individual learning support in students’ weblogs continuance usage intentionWeblogs (or blogs) are increasingly being used in higher educational contexts. Not much is known about the factors that influence students’ continued usage intention of weblogs. This study uses the expectation-confirmation model (ECM) as its background theoretical framework, and explores the roles of antecedent factors of perceived fit and perceived individual learning support in the […]

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Thematic analysis of the international journal of educational Technology in Higher Education (ETHE) between 2004 and 2017It gives us great pleasure to be able to use this editorial to present a thematic analysis of the articles published in the International Journal of Educational Technology in Higher Education (ETHE) since it began back in 2004. The study uses the articles published in the 14 years of the journal’s history (2004-2017) to show […]

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IN THE NEWS
Cybersecurity Report Spotlights Privacy Concerns on State Education and District WebsitesIt doesn’t take technical expertise to a see how websites are tracking you. Using simple, free browser extensions, Doug Levin, who specializes in cybersecurity hiccups that affect K-12 schools and districts, was able to uncover a common—and troubling—pattern affecting nearly every state department of education. EdSurge

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Interactive platform DBQuest wants K-12 history students to go deeper than famous quotesLaunched by nonprofit iCivics, the online repository of primary documents and videos aims to expand students’ understanding of civics. edscoop

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What Role for Higher Ed in an AI World?Contrary to popular belief, most Americans feel optimistic about the impending artificial intelligence revolution, even though they think it will take more jobs than it will create. Inside Higher Ed

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The Case(s) Against Personalized LearningBill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg are backing it with hundreds of millions of dollars. States from Florida to Vermont have adopted supportive laws and policies. And school districts across the country are embracing this emerging education trend. But as “personalized learning” takes root, it’s also coming under greater scrutiny. Education Week

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January 30, 2018

Distance-Educator.com Free e-Newsletter – 1/29/18

Another newsletter from yesterday’s inbox.

Distance-Educator.com Newsletter
JANUARY 29, 2018
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FEATURED ARTICLE OF THE WEEK
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Crossing the Line: What Counts as Online Harassment? Americans agree that certain behaviors constitute online harassment, but they are more divided on others Pew Research Center surveys have found that online harassment is a common phenomenon in the digital lives of many Americans, and that a majority of Americans feel harassment online is a major […]

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RESEARCH-BASED ARTICLES OF THE WEEK
A double-loop evaluation process for MOOC design and its pilot application in the university domain

The diffusion of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) is significantly changing the way people learn and update their knowledge and competencies. Although the benefits characterizing MOOCs, which leverage on free and open access to know-how and digitized materials, there are some challenges which call for improving and enhancing the existing methods and approaches for MOOCs […]

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Lessons learned from developing online training for humanitarians

A comprehensive online learning programme with more than 200 courses was built by the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies between starting with 2009 and 2015, offering development opportunities to the Red Cross and Red Crescent (RCRC) volunteers and staff to broaden their understanding, to strengthen their organisations, and to be better […]

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A Learning Analytics Approach for Evaluating the Impact of Interactivity in Online Video Lectures on the Attention Span of Students

Aim/Purpose As online video lectures rapidly gain popularity in formal and informal learning environments, one of their main challenges is student retention. This study investigates the influence of adding interactivity to online video lectures on students’ attention span. Background Interactivity is perceived as increasing the attention span of learners and improving the quality of learning. […]

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Development of an institutional framework to guide transitions into enhanced blended learning in higher education

The rapidly changing digital landscape is having a significant influence on learning and teaching. Our study assesses the response of one higher education institution (HEI) to the changing digital landscape and its transition into enhanced blended learning, which seeks to go beyond the early implementation stage to make the most effective use of online learning […]

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IN THE NEWS
Supporting Analytics through Data Integration and Governance

[This article is the fourth in a 2017 series that presents case studies related to the theme of integration and partnerships as reflected in enterprise IT: Communicating the Business Value of Enterprise IT Integrating Data and Systems to Support Next-Generation Enterprise IT Aligning Institutional Processes Through Business Process Redesign Supporting Analytics through […]

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The Role of Higher Education in the Changing World of Work

The changing world is a universal topic of interest, with particular resonance to higher education. Colleges and universities research change, teach about change, and often impact current and future change. To support students to live in this ever-changing world, those of us who work in higher education strive to provide solid, relevant preparation at the […]

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The New Google Play Audiobooks and the Academic Library

Excellent news that Google is getting into the audiobook business. Starting this week, audiobooks are available on Google Play. The online store has decent selection of newly released audiobooks for under $10. Even better, your first audiobook purchase is 50 percent off. Inside Higher Ed

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Blackboard and ReadSpeaker Partner to Enhance Accessibility of Digital Course Content

WASHINGTON, D.C., January 23, 2018 – Blackboard and ReadSpeaker are furthering their partnership to help instructors worldwide improve the accessibility of course content for their students. Currently, ReadSpeaker is Blackboard’s exclusive text-to-speech provider that is fully integrated within Blackboard’s learning management systems, supporting Universal Design for Learning (UDL). Now, as part of this extended collaboration, […]

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January 23, 2018

Distance-Educator.com e-Newsletter – 1/22/18

Another newsletter from yesterday’s inbox.

Distance-Educator.com Newsletter
JANUARY 22, 2018
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FEATURED ARTICLE OF THE WEEK
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What Makes a Worker? The possibilities and pitfalls of job training and apprenticeship Higher education has been lauded, for better or for worse, as one of the best paths to a career. This makes some sense: A significant percentage of today’s jobs require bachelor’s degrees, and workers with four-year degrees earn higher wages than those […]

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RESEARCH-BASED ARTICLES OF THE WEEK
Designing Authentic Learning Activities to Train Pre-Service Teachers About Teaching Online

Online learning is increasingly being used in K-12 learning environments. A concomitant trend is found towards learning becoming authentic as students learn with tasks that are connected to real-world occupations. In this study, 48 pre-service teachers use an online environment to engage in authentic practice as they developed online learning experiences for their future students. […]

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Unifying Experiences: Learner and Instructor Approaches and Reactions to ePortfolio Usage in Higher Education

This paper explores the alignment of student and instructor experiences when employing ePortfolio activities in a Canadian higher education context. Successful ePortfolio activities are operationalized as exhibiting alignment of expectations between students and instructors, whereas misalignment of expectations is characteristic of a poorer experience for the learners. Our research has shown that although this is […]

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Students as Co-Designers: Peer and Instructional Resources for Novice Users of ePortfolio

Several decades of ePortfolio research confirm the power of the tool for helping students make meaning of varied curricular and personal experiences. For first-time users, however, the learning curve may be steep, and the gap between institutional or instructor goals and student experiences may be wide. Some studies suggest that students themselves may address this […]

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Creating Interactive E-Books through Learning by Design: The Impacts of Guided Peer-Feedback on Students’ Learning Achievements and Project Outcomes in Science Courses

With the rapid progress of technology, the popularity of tablet computers and the development of e-book applications have brought the use of e-books as a learning tool under the spotlight. In the meantime, the aim of school education lies not only in providing students with knowledge but also in encouraging them to construct knowledge actively. […]

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IN THE NEWS
VR and AR: Learners as Creators and World Builders of Our Immersive Future

VR and AR: Designing Spaces for Immersive Learning VR and AR: Transforming Learning and Scholarship in the Humanities and Social Sciences VR and AR: Driving a Revolution in Medical Education & Patient Care AR and VR in STEM: The New Frontiers in Science A New World: VR and AR Tech Developments Introducing the VR and […]

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Lever Press Sets Gears in Motion

Librarians have been talking excitedly about Lever Press, an open-access publisher for digital scholarship led by liberal arts colleges, for several years. While interest in the press remains high, progress has been slow. Early discussions about the project began around six years ago, and despite the press launching in January 2016, it has yet to […]

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3 best practices from VR implementation across departments

Professors across many disciplines are embracing VR technology as an integral part of their learning tools eCampus News

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Arbitrator Sides With University on Academic Outsourcing

As more colleges have embraced online learning to (among other things) expand their enrollments at a time when their traditional pools of potential students are shrinking, conflicts with faculty members over who controls the curriculum have grown, too. Inside Higher Ed

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January 17, 2018

Distance-Educator.com Free e-newsletter – 1/16/18

A newsletter from yesterday.

Distance-Educator.com Newsletter
JANUARY 16, 2018
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FEATURED ARTICLE OF THE WEEK
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Navigating the Digital Shift II: Implementing Digital Instructional Materials for Learning SETDA expands upon the 2015 Navigating the Digital Shift report with a focus on living and learning in the digital age. In this second publication, stakeholders will learn about states’ guidance and policies around the implementation of digital instructional materials as well as best […]

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RESEARCH-BASED ARTICLES OF THE WEEK
African American Males and Online Education: A Review of the Literature

Online education is continuing to grow in popularity with students with more and more institutions offering fully online degrees. In addition, online education potentially offers a color free environment where students are less likely to be judged by race and treated more equally as this is one of the benefits of online education. However, African […]

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Hidden Aspects of Administration: How Scale Changes the Role of a Distance Education Administrator

Distance education research literature tends to focus on building economies of scale as a way to improve efficiency and effectiveness. However, the smaller scale distance education operation has a place and there are institutions, such as the one where the current study was set, that, while being keen to improve efficiency and effectiveness practices, do […]

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Hybrid Education: The Potential of Teaching and Learning with Robot-Mediated Communication

Blended learning, which combines online and face-to-face pedagogy, is a fast-growing mode of instruction as universities strive for equitable and alternative pathways to course enrollment, retention, and educational attainment. However, challenges to successfully implementing blended instruction are that social presence, or students’ ability to project their personal characteristics into the learning space, is reduced with […]

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Factors Affecting the Participation of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing in e-Learning and Their Satisfaction: A Quantitative Study

Today the digital divide is measured not so much by access to the internet but by people’s ability to interact in cyberspace, which calls for specific digital communication skills. These skills are also required for participation in e-learning, bearing in mind that the deaf and hard of hearing have certain characteristics related to their condition. […]

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IN THE NEWS
Why You Should Ask Students to Help Design Courses

Welcome to Teaching, a weekly newsletter from The Chronicle of Higher Education. This week, Beckie Supiano describes what one college has learned from involving students in course design. We also report on new data on distance education, share a couple of teaching tips, and invite you to tell us where you turn for such advice. […]

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Congressman, FCC commissioner (literally) answer students’ call on net neutrality

Jessica Rosenworcel and Rep. Paul Tonko videoconferenced with students from Bethlehem High School for a real-life lesson in civic engagement. edscoop

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Why Amazon is Investing in an Educational Robotics Startu

It’s no secret that Amazon loves to invest in and acquire small startups with promise. The Alexa Fund, Amazon’s corporate venture fund focused on AI, may be new but so far, it has been behaving just like the rest of the “Amazon family.” A recent CB Insights study on Amazon reports that the Alexa Fund, […]

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5 key steps in developing a system for digital credentials

As job applicants seek to demonstrate their skills, institutions can arm their students with digital credentials eCampus News

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