Virtual School Meanderings

May 21, 2015

[DEANZ] 22 May, DEANZ Webinar: MOOCs, Distance Education, And Why The Latter Wins

For my Kiwi readers…

22 May, DEANZ webinar: MOOCs, distance education, and why the latter wins
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Dear member

We are pleased to present to you the next three webinars, part of the DEANZ webinar series:

THIS WEEK: Friday 22nd May at 2pm: MOOCs, distance education, and why the latter wins – Mark Nichols (Open Polytechnic, DEANZ president)

Thursday July 2nd at 11am: Moving out of the computer room: Otago’s virtual desktop – Emerson Pratt (University of Otago)

August: Assessment in OFDL environments, Sharon Coulter (Open Polytechnic)
– further details closer to the time

Instructions for the first time users
If this is your first time attending a Blackboard Collaborate session, it is recommended that you review the requirements and setup your equipment at our getting started page:

You may need to download and install the Collaborate Launcher. Please allow at least 15 minutes before joining a session to do this.

If you have any technical issues, please use one of the contact methods on the Behind The Blackboard website to connect with the free, 24/7 helpdesk:

As for equipment, you are encouraged to have a headset with a microphone attached. If you do not have one, no problem! You can use computer speakers to listen and/or a built-in or external microphone. If you do not have a microphone, you can communicate using the text chat.

———- Day of the Meeting ———-

It is recommended that you join the session at least 15 minutes before the start time to test your equipment and the software.

Login Information:
1. Navigate to the DEANZ Webinar Room
2. Enter your name as the “Display name” (this will appear in the participant list in the meeting room)
3. Accept any security confirmation requests
4. Once your name appears in the Participants section in the top-left corner of the Collaborate window, you’ll know that you’ve successfully joined the session. Other participants won’t be able to hear you until you’ve pressed “Talk” to turn your microphone on.

With best regards
DEANZ Executive

You are receiving this email as you are a member of DEANZ. To unsubscribe please use the unsubscribe link below.
Our mailing address is:


c/o Kathryn Mac Callum, Eastern Institute of Technology
Private Bag 1201


New Zealand

Add us to your address book

May 20, 2015

Online PD Thursday, May 21 at 3:00 pm Eastern – Upcoming CANeLearn Events – May CANeLearn News Update

From today’s inbox…

May 2015 Edition – online web version
Greetings all.  This message is being sent to all members and those who signed up for the he Canadian eLearning Network (CANeLearn) newsletter.  Please forward this email as appropriate as this week’s webinar in our CANeLearn members series is again open to everyone.
May 2015 Highlights (scroll down or click for additional details)
    • Webinar: Thursday, May 21 from 3-4:00 pm Eastern
    • Toward Flexible Learning Solutions in Canada: A Symposium for K-12 Blended and Online Learning Leaders – July 8 & 9, 2015 (Halifax)
    • blendED Alberta Symposium (Oct. 25-27 Edmonton)
    • EdTech Open Workshops: New series underway this week
    • Call for vignettes for State of the Nation: K-12 Blended and Online Learning in Canada


How do we shift to competency-based assessment?

Thursday, May 21st – Time: 3:00 pm Eastern

Presenters: Kerry Cule and Dianne Conrod, LEARN


“The Québec Education Program is characterized essentially by its competency-based approach and its focus on the learning process. Knowledges are organized in terms of competencies to make learning meaningful and open-ended for students.”

Quebec Education Program, 2001 Quebec’s education reform has required a major shift for many teachers, not only in how they teach, but also in the ways in which they assess and evaluate the development of their students’ learning.  LEARN’s principal for online learning, Dianne Conrod, and LEARN science teacher and consultant, Kerry Cule, will share their experience with competency-based learning, and its assessment and evaluation, with details from the Quebec Education Program and examples from LEARN’s online learning program.

Please share your experiences and questions throughout the session!


Kerry Cule – Kerry has a background in engineering and made the transition to teaching in 2007. At LEARN, she currently has two roles: online science teacher and secondary science consultant.

Dianne Conrod – Dianne loved teaching middle school students for several years before moving into elementary school leadership. She transitioned into online learning in 2002 and has been with LEARN since its inception. Dianne is principal for LEARN’s online courses and SOS LEARN (online tutoring and homework help).


Toward Flexible Learning Solutions in Canada: A Symposium for K-12 Blended and Online Learning Leaders

July 8 & 9, 2015

Halifax Regional School Board Offices 33 Spectacle Lake Drive, Dartmouth, NS B3B 1X7

Information and Registration here

The July 8th & 9th CANeLearn Summer Summit features:

  • Dr. Randy LaBonte, CEO, Canadian eLearning Network (CANeLearn), and adjunct professor Vancouver Island University
  • Dr. Michael K Barbour, Director of Doctoral Studies, Isabelle Farrington College of Education, and Assistant Professor, Educational Leadership Sacred Heart University
  • Verena Roberts, Researcher, Edmonton Regional Learning Consortium & Teacher, Palliser Beyond Borders School
  • Sue Taylor-Foley, Acting Executive Director Education Innovation, Programs and Services, Nova Scotia Department of Education
  • Leadership Panel from across Canada
  • Open dialogue and group discussion on emerging trends in K-12 blended and online learning
  • Planned networking opportunities throughout the event…

Registration is free but limited. Click here to register (required). Deadline to register is June 30!


blendED 2015: Alberta’s Blended and Online Symposium

October 2527, 2015 West Edmonton


EdTech Open Workshops

May 15-29, 2015 Online

  • Mastering your Moodle – Taming the Beast

Other sessions upcoming



Call for vignettes for State of the Nation: K-12 Blended and Online Learning in Canada

  • The Canadian eLearning Network is compiling data on blended and online learning programs across Canada
  • If you have a story or unique program you would like to profile (like the Navigate program featured above), email us at

NZC Online Newsletter May 2015

One for my Kiwi readers…

NZ Curriculum Online

Vol – | 20 May 2015

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Tālofa lava! Afio mai!
Welcome to this edition of the NZC Online newsletter. It’s designed to keep you up to date with new ideas, resources, stories, and research to help you give effect to the national curriculum in ways that best address your school context.


New section: Focusing on the cultural diversity principle

Cultural diversity is one of eight principles in The New Zealand Curriculum that provide a foundation for schools’ decision making. This new cultural diversity package draws together research, digital resources, and examples to support schools as they consider this important principle.

Cultural diversity blog post
This blog post focuses on creating an inclusive school environment that is responsive to cultural diversity. The blog offers a survey, reflective questions, and examples of effective practice to help you think about ways that you can include and value all students within your classrooms and schools.


The final three stories in the Pomaria School film package are now available for your viewing. These films are designed to provide support and inspiration to schools that are in the process of reviewing their own school curriculum.

Teachers working together.



Sāmoa Language Week
Sāmoa Language Week takes place this year between 24 and 30 May. The theme for 2015 is Tautua nei mo sou manuia a teaao – Serve now for a better tomorrow. This resource page offers ideas and resources to help you get involved.

Secondary e-newsletters now available
Term 2 e-newsletters for secondary middle leaders are now available. These newsletters offer effective teaching and learning strategies, useful links for resources and exemplars, links to relevant readings, plus information about upcoming regional workshops and cluster sessions.

Have you seen?

NZ Curriculum Online user survey
We invite you to take part in a short online survey to help guide the ongoing development of NZC Online. We hope you can spare a few minutes to offer feedback and share your ideas.

Inclusive Education
This site on TKI provides New Zealand educators with practical strategies, suggestions, and resources to support learners with diverse needs. Eight new guides have recently been made available.

The New Zealand flag – your chance to decide
New Zealanders have the chance to decide in the upcoming flag referendums – whether to keep the existing flag or choose a new design. This resource in English and te reo Māori is designed to help teachers, leaders, students, and whānau as they engage with the flag consideration process in their school community.

Learning area highlights

Accelerated English Language Learning – Online ESOL Support for Schools

The Ministry has a new online ESOL programme available to intermediate and secondary schools who have students who are new learners of the English language.

This programme on the VLN is designed to accelerate English language learning to help students in years 7–13 catch up to their peers as quickly as possible. Schools who are new to ESOL students and who do not have established ESOL departments or ESOL teachers will find this resource invaluable.

If you would like more information, please contact Ruthanne Kennedy,

Literacy Online – New School Journals

During May 2015 schools will receive three School Journals – one at each of the levels 2, 3, and 4.

PDFs of all texts, teacher support materials, and audio support for the level 2 journal are available online.

Spread the word

Please share this newsletter and encourage your colleagues to subscribe to the updates 

Want to be informed of new tools, resources, and stories as they are published? Join our FaceBook page for updates, and follow us on Twitter.

May 19, 2015

Plugged In | 05.19.15 | (powered by iNACOL)

A final word today from the neo-liberals…

To view this email as a web page, go here.
International Association for K-12 Online Learning (iNACOL)

powered by iNACOL…

Vander Ark on Innovation
Last week, the ISLLC released new draft standards for school leaders. The Council of Chief State School Officers is currently accepting public feedback on the standards, which include transformational leadership principles for school leaders. The project…
Blend My Learning
When using games in the classroom, teachers need to design their implementations in ways that fit their goals, the format of their class, and their students’ needs. Each classroom environment is different and it is not uncommon to find teachers with…
I continue to be amazed and impressed by our staff’s progress over the past five years related to our implementation of a competency-based education system. Our grading, assessment, and instructional practices have changed significantly during this time…
Bridge Magazine
Most elementary and middle schools fairly buzz with noise just before the school day starts, as a stampede of students put away coats, take seats and share boasts over video game exploits or exchange giggles about young romance. But one of the first…
Getting Smart
What’s next? With all the frustration surrounding NCLB and big end of year tests, what’s the new policy framework that will replace grade level testing? For a state ready to embrace personalized and competency-based learning, what are the next steps…
Keeping Pace
Some of our past blog posts have explored the current shortcomings and potential benefits of reciprocity between states in teacher certification and sharing online courses. Often our views tend towards skepticism. Regarding teacher certification…
At Cristo Rey San Jose Jesuit High School in San Jose, CA, students are experiencing a new style of learning. Blended learning has provided students with the chance to learn and accumulate information at their own pace. These students are using…
THE Journal
While the 1-to-1 maelstrom continues buffeting the Los Angeles Unified School District, whose technology procurement practices are under investigation by the FBI as part of a federal grand jury probe, school leaders in other districts may be wondering whether…
North Platte Telegraph
Credit recovery is a web-based program that allows North Platte High School students who failed a class to retake it in a non-traditional setting. The program mimics what students would experience when an instructor presents information, except the…
Games and Learning
Project Tomorrow has spent more than a decade tracking the growth and impact of digital technologies on schools and this year’s major survey contains a lot of rich research for those wanting to put games in the classroom. The survey or more than…


Did you receive this edition of Plugged In from a colleague or friend? Subscribeto have it sent directly to your inbox… Thank you!

2015 iNACOL Blended and Online Learning Symposium

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We respect your right to privacy – view our policy e-Newsletter – 5/18/15

From yesterday’s inbox… Newsletter
MAY 18, 2015
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A Web-Based Course Assessment Tool with Direct Mapping to Student Outcomes

The assessment of curriculum outcomes is an essential element for continuous academic improvement. However, the collection, aggregation and analysis of assessment data are notoriously complex and time-consuming processes. At the same time, only few developments of supporting electronic processes and tools for continuous academic program assessment and curriculum performance feedback have emerged. In this paper, […]

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Tablet-Based Math Assessment: What Can We Learn from Math Apps?

In this report, we describe a survey of mathematics education apps in the Apple App Store, conducted as part of a research project to develop a tablet-based assessment prototype for elementary mathematics. This survey was performed with the goal of understanding the design principles and techniques used in mathematics apps designed for tablets. We focused […]

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Linking learning styles and learning on mobile Facebook

With continued development of related technologies, Web 2.0 has become an important site of learning innovation. In particular, social networking sites such as Facebook, which have become popular, have the potential to function as an educational tool enabling peer feedback, interaction, and learning in a social context. Preparing appropriate environments for learners with different needs […]

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A usability evaluation of a blended MOOC environment: An experimental case study

In the past few years, there has been an increasing interest in Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) as a new form of Technology-Enhanced Learning (TEL), in higher education and beyond. Recognizing the limitations of standalone MOOCs, blended MOOCs (bMOOCs) that aim at bringing in-class (i.e. face-to-face) interactions and online learning components together have emerged as […]

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Recommendations on Formative Assessment and Feedback Practices for stronger engagement in MOOCs

Many publications and surveys refer to the high drop out rate in Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) which is around 90%, especially if we compare the number of students who register against those who finish. Working towards improving student engagement in MOOCs, we focus on providing specific research-based recommendations on formative assessment and feedback practices […]

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Small College, Big Online Partners

Champlain College is making a surprising play in the online adult learner market, slashing its private college tuition rates for corporate partners to compete for their employees’ tuition assistance dollars. Inside Higher Ed

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U.S. Higher Education Institutions Expected to Spend $6.6 billion on IT In 2015, According to IDC Government Insights

Framingham, MA – May 11th, 2015 – According to a new IT spending guide from IDC Government Insights, U.S. Higher education institutions are expected to spend about $6.6 billion on IT in 2015, much of that driven by investments in enterprise networks and higher end notebook computers. The first guide of its kind, , “Pivot […]

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When Actors Replace Instructors as On-Camera Talent

If your school has been producing course videos the same way for years, it may be time to update your technique to make sure students are still watching. Purdue shares lessons learned from an unconventional approach. Campus Technology

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New Consortium’s Mission: Improve Liberal-Arts Teaching Online

Four liberal-arts colleges on Mondayformed a consortium to share information about their experiments with online education, and more members may soon join in. Wired Campus

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