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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Upcoming free Webinar from Education Week

Education Week invites you to this free, live webinar.


Forging the Technology-Curriculum Link
Thursday, March 1, 2012,
2 to 3 p.m. ET.

Educators are accustomed to putting an emphasis on developing the most challenging and engaging curricula for their students and many are also now comfortable with the use of technology in their classrooms. But it’s important for educators to be thoughtful and deliberate in aligning both technology and curriculum to develop the most successful programs for students.
Register now

Presenters:
Noreen M. Walton,
director of learning support services for the 33,000-student Poway Unified School District in San Diego

Mark Hofer, associate professor of educational technology, College of William and Mary, Williamsburg, Va.


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EON Reality Releases EON Creator 4.7 Software for Creating 3D Lessons

EON Reality, the world’s leading interactive 3D software provider, today released EON Creator 4.7, an easy-to-use eLearning authoring tool that integrates 3D concepts with the web, PowerPoint, videos, sounds, animations and more into complete, blended learning environments.

Photo: www.eonreality.com

With EON Creator 4.7, users can create unique educational 3D Lessons and interactive scenes using high-quality 3D components from the EON Experience Portal and blend them together with their own 3D content. The Portal contains thousands of models and scenes accessible directly from inside the EON Creator authoring tool. Once content is downloaded into EON Creator, users can add contextual knowledge to any 3D object in their scene. Users can also link multiple 3D scenes together to create continuous learning environments.
Read more...

Related link
EON Blog

About EON Reality

EON Reality is the world's leading interactive 3D solutions provider for business and education based on Virtual Reality technology. A customer centric culture, global presence, innovation and integrity are the pillars of EON Reality’s success story.
We have been supporting customers since 1999 with 3D visualization solutions that improve communication and knowledge transfer – from simulation based learning and safety training to the creation of Interactive 3D sales and marketing materials that provide realistic authentic experiences anytime, anywhere.
We deliver versatile productivity to the energy, education, aerospace/defense, industrial and medical sectors. Organizations use EON’s solutions to increase sales, better communicate product functionality, decrease cost of training and travel less.

Source: 3Droundabout


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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

European perspectives on e-learning by Dr. Morten Flate Paulsen

Photo: Morten Flate Paulsen
Take a closer look at Morten Flate Paulsen presentation on European perspectives in e-learning at ICDE's workshop in Oslo.

It is A 10-minutes presentation at a seminar organized by the International Council for Distance Education (ICDE) and the Norwegian Association of Higher Education Institutions (UHR), in cooperation with Norway Opening Universities (NOU).


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Treating Higher Ed's 'Cost Disease' With Supersize Online Courses by Marc Parry

Photo: Marc Parry
"Oh my God, she's trying to replace me with a computer.

That's what some professors think when they hear Candace Thille pitch the online education experiment she directs, the Open Learning Initiative at Carnegie Mellon University." summarizes Marc Parry.

Photo: Candace Thille
The Chronicle

They're wrong. But what her project does replace is the traditional system of building and delivering introductory college courses.

Professors should move away from designing foundational courses in statistics, biology, or other core subjects on the basis of "intuition," she argues. Instead, she wants faculty to work with her team to put out the education equivalent of Super Bowl ads: expensively built online course materials, cheaply available to the masses.

When Ms. Thille began this work, in 2002, the idea was to design free online courses that would give independent novices a shot at mastering what students learn in traditional classes. But two things changed. One, her studies found that the online system benefits on-campus students, allowing them to learn better and faster than their peers when the digital environment is combined with some face-to-face instruction.
Read more...

Candace Thille (Opening Up Education) 


Related link
Candace Thille leads an overview of Carnegie Mellon's Open Learning Initiative

Source: The Chronicle of Higher Education


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Monday, February 27, 2012

Top 4 Ways to Save Money on Online Courses

Today I have Katheryn Rivas as guest blogger. Please be sure to check out her unique guest post. Guest posts are always welcome, please contact me.

Many online learners choose to pursue distance education because of the significant cost savings. But even veteran distance learners can benefit from paying attention to whether or not they are throwing money away on online education expenses and learn about the top ways to avoid doing so.

1. Research Costs to Gain Perspective

Before you enroll in any online program, whether it be one course or an entire semester's worth, the least you should do is see how much you are paying compared to similar programs. Even if you don't mind paying more for a program you love, it is always good to have perspective on the market and know when there might be an opportunity to cut your costs. Check out things like tuition rates, student fees, course material costs, and financial aid packages, and try to research at least five programs that could work for you. No matter what program you go with, you will know that you made an informed financial decision.

2. Read the Fine Print on Financial Aid

Financial aid can be a complicated process. It's almost like working with an insurance company. Sometimes you feel like all the aid is there and secured, and then the semester ends and you're presented with a bill for the remaining costs. Make sure this doesn't happen to you and speak directly with financial aid officers at several different schools to know exactly what you may be potentially responsible for covering. Factor that in to the total cost of your education when comparing programs.

3. Don't Buy Course Materials from the School

This is true at traditional colleges, as well. You can almost always find a less expensive copy of a textbook online through a private vendor, rather than at your school book store. There are many sites that sell used copies of textbooks; probably the biggest is Amazon.com. You can also rent a book from sites like Bookrenter.com. If you're in a rush, do a simple Google search to see if you can automatically find the text at a lower price.

4. Watch Out for On-Campus Requirements

The thing about online classes that really saves you money is the fact that everything is online. You never have to pay for travel to and from class, or the meals and miscellaneous expenses associated with the commute. Some online courses are held in a blended format, and students meet regularly at a central location, just much less frequently. There is nothing wrong with a blended online course, just factor in the added cost before you enroll in the program.

This guest post is contributed by Katheryn Rivas, who writes on the topics of online universities advice.
She welcomes your comments at her email.

Many thanks to Katheryn.
Enjoy your reading!


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Thursday, February 23, 2012

MentorMob helps teachers aggregate online content into a learning ‘playlist’

Here's what's new on eSchool News site today.

Site of the Week
Dennis Pierce, Editor writes, "Our Site of the Week, MentorMob, is a free new platform that help teachers create educational "playlists" from online content."

http://www.mentormob.com

Materials for teaching and learning exist everywhere online: in YouTube videos, SlideShare presentations, and published articles, for example. MentorMob is a free new platform that helps teachers collect, or “curate,” this content in one simple place for their lessons.
MentorMob organizes the best content for a specific subject, called a “mob,” into an engaging learning playlist to bring the sense of discovery and fun back into learning, the company says.
Read more...

Source: eSchool News


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45 Inspiring Career Blogs for College Students

Carol Brown has been in touch to remind us about this recent published article below.


College, ostensibly, prepares participants for their chosen career paths, but tracking down the right entry-level positions comes burdened with its own set of protocols, strategies, and insights, all of which might seem impregnable to the recent graduate.

Fortunately, blogs exist to help demystify the overwhelming amount of information applicants have to process. Whether looking for tips on crafting the snazziest resume around or succeeding after scoring a great position, the following resources make for some of the best places to start seeking professional, experienced advice.

Photo: Online College.org

1. Lindsey Pollak
Because this career expert and consultant specifically concerns herself with Generation Y, her official blog will be particularly useful to college students about to hit the job force.
Read more...

Related link
Take a closer look at Online Colleges blog

Many thanks to Carol.
Enjoy your reading!
  


Source: Online College.org


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Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Making movies with mobiles by Bob Tedeschi

Powerful programs like Adobe’s Premiere and Apple’s iMovie often come preinstalled on desktop computers, but many people never use them. Mobile software could change that.

Photo: Deccan Herald

Apps like VidTrim (free on Android), Avid Studio for iPad ($5) and the mobile version of iMovie ($5 on Apple) are less ambitious than the desktop programs, so they’re easier to learn. And with mobile devices quickly replacing camcorders, you can shoot, edit and share your video with others within a few minutes.

I found iMovie the easiest and most versatile video-editing app for Apple products. People who own both iPhones and iPads can buy iMovie once, and it’ll work on both devices.

The app is designed for people who want to shoot and immediately edit and export their videos, without fussing with too many postproduction special effects. It is slightly difficult to understand at first, but there are a few tricks that can help flatten the learning curve.

The first trick is finding the tutorial.
Read more...

Source: Deccan Herald 


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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

International conference on mobile learning, Berlin, Germany

An international conference on mobile learning will take place from 11 to 13 March 2012 in Berlin, Germany.


Since the advent of mobile learning, developments in its practice and research have been carried along by technological innovation and advancement. Laptops, for example, have given rise to new models of technology integration and accessibility within the classroom and freed technology from the 'imprisonment' of computer rooms. In the same way, handheld devices have made it possible contextual outdoor learning and freed learners and technologies from the confinement of a building.

With developments seemingly speeding up, there is an increasing relevance and need for mobile learning research focused on pedagogically meaningful approaches to mobile learning and systematically evaluated with appropriate data collection and analysis tools.

This event will be a forum for the presentation and discussion of mobile learning research which illustrate developments in the field. The overall programme will consists of invited talks and oral presentations.


Authors of the best published papers in the Mobile Learning 2012 proceedings will be invited to publish extended versions of their papers in the "International Journal of Mobile and Blended Learning.

For further information, please visit: http://www.mlearning-conf.org/


Source: Cordis News


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Innosight's Michael Horn on How 'Blended Learning' and Technology Can Bridge the Education Gap

Photo: Michael Horn
In less than a decade, half of high school courses in the U.S. will be online, according to Michael Horn, author and co-founder of The Innosight Institute. The Internet will improve how people learn, Horn tells Arabic Knowledge@Wharton, and will be key to reforming the educational system of the future. He sees the advent of 'blended learning,' a system of customized, student-centric learning paired with supervision, which would allow educators to adopt more specialized roles. Across the globe, he adds, mobile devices will be crucial to help bridge the education gap in developing countries.

Photo: Gestures

Horn co-wrote the bestselling book Disrupting Class: How Disruptive Innovation Will Change the Way the World Learns with Harvard Professor Clayton Christensen. He and Christensen later co-founded The Innosight Institute, a non-for profit think tank devoted to applying the theories of disruptive innovation to problems in the social sector.

In the future, Horn predicts the majority of students will be engaged in what he calls "blended learning" where they'll learn online with control over the pace of their learning in schools with teachers providing guidance. As new technologies and applications are introduced into schools, he also predicts the future of teaching shifting into three roles: Teachers who act as mentors and motivators; content experts; and case workers that help students deal with non-academic obstacles to learning. Horn sees such changes creating a more student-centric education system where each child can learn at a customized pace and path.

An example Horn cites is the Khan Academy, launched in 2006 by Salman Khan, a Bangladeshi-American with a mission to provide high quality and free education to anyone in the world through an online platform. An MIT and Harvard Business School graduate, Khan came up with the idea after tutoring his cousin in mathematics using Yahoo!'s Doodle notepad.
Read more...

Source: Knowledge@Wharton


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Monday, February 20, 2012

Swinburne's online resources commended

Swinburne University of Technology’s innovative MathsCasts teaching project has been recognised in the prestigious NMC Horizon Report: 2012 Higher Education Edition.

About MathsCasts

MathsCasts is part of an international research collaborative between Swinburne, the University of Limerick in Ireland and Loughborough University in England.

The joint project produces high quality resources aimed at supporting first-year undergraduates, online tutorial videos that explain how to solve various mathematical problems.

Photo: Professor Gilly Salmon
Swinburne’s Pro Vice-Chancellor (Learning Transformations) Professor Gilly Salmon said Swinburne was the only Victorian university, and one of very few Australian universities, included in the US edition of the report.

This year a special NMC Horizon Report will be produced in Australia and Professor Salmon will serve on the national panel.

MathsCasts resources are available from:
Read more...

Related link
Professor Gilly Salmon takes up new post in Australia       

Source: Swinburne University Media Centre


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New brain connections form in clusters during learning

New connections between brain cells emerge in clusters in the brain as animals learn to perform a new task, according to a study published in Nature on February 19 (advance online publication).

Illustration by Logan Parsons.
Photo: UC Santa Cruz

Led by researchers at the University of California, Santa Cruz, the study reveals details of how brain circuits are rewired during the formation of new motor memories. The researchers studied mice as they learned new behaviors, such as reaching through a slot to get a seed. They observed changes in the motor cortex, the brain layer that controls muscle movements, during the learning process. Specifically, they followed the growth of new "dendritic spines," structures that form the connections (synapses) between nerve cells.

Initial results of the spatial analysis showed that one third of the newly formed synapses were located next to another new synapse. These clustered synapses tended to form over the course of a few days during the learning period, when the mouse was repeatedly performing the new behavior. Compared to non-clustered counterparts, the clustered synapses were more likely to persist through the learning sessions and after training stopped.

In addition, the researchers found that after formation of the second spine in a cluster, the first spine grew larger. The size of the spine head correlates with the strength of the synapse. "We found that formation of a second connection is correlated with a strengthening of the first connection, which suggests that they are likely to be involved in the same circuitry," Zuo said. "The clustering of synapses may serve to magnify the strength of the connections."

In addition to Zuo and first author Min Fu, the coauthors of the paper include UCSC graduate student Xinzhu Yu and Stanford University biologist Ju Lu. This research was supported by grants from the Dana Foundation and the National Institute of Mental Health.
Read more...

Source: Eureka! Science News and University of California - Santa Cruz,


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Sunday, February 19, 2012

iNACOL Webinar to Explore Online Learning for Extending Learning Opportunities in the Community

The International Association for K-12 Online Learning (iNACOL) will host a webinar on Wednesday, February 22 to explore how online learning can support extended learning opportunities and after-school programs in community-based organizations.

 


The webinar, called "Digital Learning in Class and Beyond," is based on a report by The After School Corporation (TASC). The webinar will describe the report's findings on how out-of-school programs can use online learning resources to expand educational opportunities. It will highlight examples of after-school programs actively utilizing digital learning to expand learning opportunities for students.

Presenters will include Jennifer Siaca Curry of TASC; Barry Joseph of Global Kids; David Lowenstein of Public Broadcasting Service and Pam Johnson of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. The webinar will be held on Wednesday, February 22 at 2:00 P.M. Eastern.

To register, please visit: http://www.inacol.org/events/webinar/index.php


Digital Learning Beyond School from The After-School Corporation on Vimeo.

About iNACOL

iNACOL is the International Association for K-12 Online Learning, a non-profit 501(c)(3) membership association based in the Washington, D.C. area with more than 3,800 members.

iNACOL is unique in that its members represent a diverse cross-section of K-12 education from school districts, charter schools, state education agencies, non-profit organizations, colleges, universities and research institutions, corporate entities and other content and technology providers (www.inacol.org).

iNACOL is host to the annual Virtual School Symposium (VSS). VSS 2012 is scheduled for Oct. 21-24, 2012, in New Orleans, LA (www.virtualschoolsymposium.org).

Source: Sacramento Bee


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MathType 6.7: Get the most out of Microsoft Office 2010


If you are upgrading to Office 2010 you need the latest release of MathType

MathType 6.7 for Windows in English, French, and German is compatible with Microsoft Office 2010, Windows 7, and other applications!

MathType functionality with Office:
  • MathType Ribbon Tab in Word and PowerPoint: MathType takes full advantage of Office's Ribbon User Interface making it easier than ever to do equation operations in documents and presentations. Equation numbering and browse features work with all Word equation types.
  • Equations in Outlook: MathType works with Outlook and allows you to include mathematical notation in email. The recipient of your email does not have to use either Outlook or MathType in order to see your equations.
  • Handwritten equations: MathType adds a menu command to bring the Windows 7 Math Input Panel to the front, ready for you to enter math by hand. This command is available in any MathType window, as well as within Microsoft Word.
...and more.

Try MathType free for 30 days


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Saturday, February 18, 2012

If teachers can be replaced by computer screen, we should be by Cathy N. Davidson

Photo: Cathy N. Davidson 
Duke Professor Cathy N. Davidson is the author, most recently, of "Now You See It: How the Brain Science of Attention Will Transform the Way We Live, Work, and Learn."

Cathy writes, "It's meant as a challenge, not a prescription: "If We (Profs) Can Be Replaced by a Computer Screen, We Should Be!" I am amazed at how often my pronouncement, made most recently at the Harvard Innovations in Learning and Teaching (HILT) Symposium, is interpreted to mean: "All profs should be replaced by computer screens." Not at all."


What I mean is that given how sophisticated online technologies are becoming, given how many people around the world are clamoring for quality and low-cost education, given how seriously people in the online educational business (like Kahn Academy) are studying how people learn and what kind of help and interaction they need to learn, given all that, then, if we profs are adding no other value to our teaching but that which could be replicated online, then, well, turn on the computers and get the over-priced profs out of the classrooms now

What is the case for face-to-face teaching? First, it is precisely the condition of being face to face. Great teachers know how to take the temperature in the room, and see how to take the experience of a diverse group of students learning together and transform it into something magical (at its best) and irreproducible mechanically. There is a quality of the human and aspirational and inspirational that defines teaching and that is something that happens when I am in the same room with you. Great teachers understand how precious face-to-face communication is and find ways to make the most of our very special time together. Great teachers understand the intimacy and responsibility of great learning, of how charged and fraught and precious the role model and mentor are. They treat that human relationship with the utmost respect and care.
Read more...

Related links
Cathy Davidson (from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)
HASTAC stands for Humanities, Arts, Sciences, and Technology Advanced Collaboratory

Source: Durham Herald Sun (blog)


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Friday, February 17, 2012

Online Learning - Get Educated Effectively

Today I have Harry Martin as guest blogger. Please be sure to check out his unique guest post. Guest posts are always welcome, please contact me.

Are you in the minds of finding an appropriate educational program in the midst of your career to keep yourself upgraded professionally? If yes then, enrolling for an advanced degree via online learning comes across as the best possible choice for every career-oriented individual. The world of education under the influence of technology has experience a massive breakthrough in the way people learn and connect to education.

Given to technological growth and professional advancements, today students and professionals are always on the lookout of upgrading their resume with new skills and learning. In such situations, online education has come forward as a great boon for the careerists, as it lays the perfect path to better education without any professional compromises. Therefore, if you have been looking forward to advancing your career in the right direction professionally then, obtaining advanced degrees in the relevant field stands as your sure shot to success.

Advanced Degrees – Exploring the Importance
Owing to technological advancements and growth of online learning, finding programs offering advanced degrees is no tough task. A number of institutes have established programs in multiple disciplines offering advanced degrees. The basic aim of all these courses has been to introduce a learning objective that helps in the professional growth of individuals.

The demand of professionals and the corporate industry is increasing with time and professionals are struggling to meet ends with the rising demand in the global professional industry. Professionals having goo academic prospects also seems to be on the run to pursue skill advancement courses for experiencing better professional opportunity.

Today, professionals are seen to enroll for advanced degree courses alongside students who enroll at the courses following the completion of graduation programs.

Advanced Degree Courses – The Association with Online Education Programs
Since, today’s career-oriented individuals are always on the lookout of advancing their academic credentials for sustaining professional growth, enrolling for online education has come up to be the smartest choice. Online educational programs in today’s age are considered to offer a great platform for students wishing to get educated effectively and efficiently.

Now, when it comes to advancing your career via online education, enrolling for advanced degrees come forward as the next-to-none-solution. Well, if you have been questioning about the integrity of online educational program then, all you need to do is enroll at an institution offering accredited degrees. Convenient and flexible, the educational approach allows the career-oriented individuals to learn new skills and incorporate professional advancement at its best.

Career Opportunities with Advanced Degrees
Surprising it might come to you, but obtaining an advanced degree in a professionally relevant discipline is certain to unfold new career opportunities for you. Some of the well-known online institutes are also known to offer placement assistance to students with advanced degrees. After completing the online program in advanced degree courses, you can be rest assured of obtaining the edge amid all other careerists in the global professional world.

Therefore, without any doubts in your mind, set your foot forward to learning new skills and advancing your career opportunities via obtaining advanced degrees online.
Questions and comments can be sent to: Harry Martin
Many thanks to Harry.
Enjoy your reading!


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Thursday, February 16, 2012

eSchool News Current Site of the Week

Here's what's new on eSchool News site today.

Site of the Week


http://www.ncee.org/programs-affiliates/center-on-international-education-benchmarking

New website helps policy makers learn from other leading education systems

The National Center on Education and the Economy, a nonpartisan research organization based in Washington, D.C., has launched a new group called the Center on International Education Benchmarking. The center will conduct research on the world’s most successful education systems, and its website offers access to information, analysis, and opinion on the education systems of the top-performing countries from all over the world. In addition, the center is launching a monthly newsletter for policy makers and education leaders who want to keep up to date on the education strategies used by these top-performing countries.

Developed for policy makers, educators, researchers, and journalists, the center’s website provides access to databases, research reports, analytical documents, official white papers, opinion pieces, and other resources. Users can access the information by country as well as by issue, with descriptions of how each top-performing country is handling school finance, teacher and leader quality, and other issues.
Read more...

Source: eSchool News 


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Are Open Course Textbooks the Solution to the Rising Cost of Education?

Today I have Nadia Jones as guest blogger. Please be sure to check out her unique guest post. Guest posts are always welcome, please contact me.

College textbooks are expensive, there is no arguing that. In fact, the average college student attending a 4-year public university spent more than $1,000 on books and supplies for the 2011-12 school year, College Board reports. And while students typically don't even get to all of the material included in their textbooks, prices are still steadily on the rise.

That's not to say that some efforts haven't been made to reduce the price of textbooks—Apple just recently launched iBooks 2, an app that in addition to offering easily updated discounted digital e-books also allows educators to author their own cost-effective textbooks. But education advocates say that this method doesn't suffice. Students must still purchase an iPad in order to access iBooks2, a device that most already struggling students can't afford. Not to mention that studies show that digital textbooks aren't really that much cheaper than traditional textbooks anyway. One Daytona State study showed that students only end up saving about a buck each semester by opting to use digital textbooks instead of traditional ones.

So what's another plausible solution? Many experts are saying open-source textbooks—essentially free (or practically free) online downloadable textbooks and materials. In fact, many schools have already jumped onboard with this idea.
Washington State's vocational and community colleges have a functioning open course library where students can download a "bundle" of material for a mere $30. Included is not only the selection of textbooks for 80 different courses, but additional course material and syllabi as well. Earlier this month Rice University also announced its plan to adopt an open course textbooks for its freshman classes.

The open course textbook ideas is even hitting high schools— for example Utah State classrooms are really considering adopting open course textbooks since figures show it would only cost the state $5 per printed open course textbook as opposed to $80 for a traditional one.

While providing open course textbooks really seem like a cost effective-way to make education more affordable for everyone, it'll definitely take some time before they hold any real weight. And not just because states and other educational institutions are too slow to catch on, but also because there are many people who still love the touch and feel of tangible textbooks. In fact, if given the choice, many students say they would still prefer to buy a traditional textbook than an e-book. So would a printed open course book make a difference? One would hope. What do you think?

This is a guest post by Nadia Jones who blogs at accredited online colleges about education, college, student, teacher, money saving, movie related topics.
You can reach Nadia at her email.

Many thanks to Nadia.
Enjoy your reading!


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Wednesday, February 15, 2012

50 Essential Homeschool Blogs for Every Grade Level

Carol Brown has been in touch to remind us about this recent published article below.


Homeschooling practices are as diverse as the parents and kids who take part in its tenets. But whether secular or religious, rigidly structured or freeform, motivated by politics or motivated by convenience, the only thing they seem to hold in common is a desire to offer children the best possible education.

Because so many students, moms, dads, and experts have taken to blogging, hitting up some of these sites makes it exceptionally painless to set up a little network and soak up some inspiration. And the following provide a hefty start!

High School

Photo: Online College.org

Why Homeschool:
Although a general homeschooling blog, this one's focus on education philosophy might tantalize high school students wanting to learn more about the whys behind their parents' lesson plans.
Read more...

Take a closer look at Online Colleges blog

Many thanks to Carol.
Enjoy your reading!


Source: Online College.org


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Learning from the Alternative Workplace by Beth Goodbaum

"More employers are adopting alternative workplace practices to address employee-related values and needs. Is the office cubicle on its way out of the modern workplace?" summarizes Beth Goodbaum.

 Five Trends that are Dramatically Changing Work and the Workplace (PDF)

Office cubicles, desktop computers and a 9-to-5 staff have long been the standard trademarks of the traditional workplace. Today, however, non-traditional settings and practices are becoming popular as employers shift to more informal alternative workplace initiatives.

Research consortium New Ways of Working (New WOW) defines the "alternative workplace" as "the combination of nontraditional work practices, settings and locations that supplement or replace traditional offices," consisting of practices that include "mobile work inside and outside the office, hoteling, work from home (telecommuting) and work from third-party places, among others."

In New WOW's recent benchmarking survey of 143 leading organizations, including Fortune 500 and 100 companies, 74 percent of respondents said they have a formal or informal alternative workplace program in place. Yet the major survey findings indicate that there has been a substantial rise in the number of informal, ad-hoc implementations in organizations, climbing from 18 percent in 2009 to 32 percent in 2011.

While the top perceived value behind such programs has typically been cost savings, the focus is now shifting to employee-related values, including job satisfaction, work/life balance and talent retention. Such initiatives are changing both the look and the practice of companies worldwide.


"Develop new ways of working by involving employees in interviews, focus groups and surveys," Dr. Joe Aki Ouye, co-founder and partner of New WOW, advises in Five Trends that are Dramatically Changing Work and the Workplace. "
Second, the participants need to: assess how existing ways of working are helping or hindering their achievement; think through new policies, work practices, and technologies; and prepare a strategy for rolling out new ways of working."
Read more...

Source:ThomasNet Industrial News Room (blog)


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Virtual Education Seen as Understudied by Michelle R. Davis

Educators, policymakers, and researchers see a need for more and better research as the popularity of e-learning continues to rise.



Photo: FreeDigitalPhotos.net

A flurry of reports and high-profile news articles over the past year has cast doubt on the effectiveness of online education, and raised concerns about the rapid growth of virtual education across the country. This increased attention comes as such education moves further into the mainstream of K-12 education and opens itself up to greater scrutiny.

At this point in the maturation of virtual education, the importance of high-quality, objective research is greater than ever. Education leaders need it to make informed decisions about how to use virtual education programs. But therein lies the problem: Very little high-quality, objective research on the subject is available.

Some policymakers, e-learning experts, and researchers say that K-12 virtual education is understudied, and that studies which can definitively say online learning works, or that it can surpass face-to-face education, or that in certain circumstances it provides the best opportunities for students, remains lacking even as interest in virtual education rises. Others say that research exists, but that it is often ignored because it looks at individual classes or small groups of students.

'Does It Work?'

"Keeping Pace With K-12 Online Learning"

In the recently released "Keeping Pace With K-12 Online Learning" report, produced by the Evergreen Education Group, a Durango, Colo.-based research and consulting firm, the section on research cites the study that is most often referred to when people ask:
Does online learning work?
Read more...

Source: Education Week


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2/21 webinar: Small Budget, Big Impact Lecture Capture

Attend this free live webinar.


Small Budget, Big Impact Lecture Capture

Tuesday, February 21, 2012
2:00 - 3:00 p.m. Central
(
convert your time zone)

How did a university with minimal budget, one full time staffer and three distributed campuses, including a distance learning programme with 16,000 enrolled students, get to 2500 online presentations with 131,085 views?

Ask a Massey University professor, instructional designer and academic technologist and they will all tell you the same thing: vision, cooperation and Mediasite lecture capture technology.

Over the last six years, faculty adoption and student demand has grown exponentially, yet Massey maintains the growing programme without major new investments in technology or staff.

Join us for this webinar in three parts, each featuring an academic perspective on how to get the most out of lecture capture automation for the biggest learning impact.


  • Matt Alexander is the single staffer dedicated to supporting university-wide lecture capture for Massey's five colleges, as well as conferences, staff training and high profile, must not fail live webcasts of VIP speakers in a variety of environments, from traditional classroom lecture theatres to traditional Maori meeting houses.
  • Dr. Macpherson teaches a marketing paper (or course) that combines both face to face and distance students who are spread across the globe. Since 2009, he's recorded over two hours of online instruction each week with no specialized technical expertise, and his research shows students find the use of Mediasite highly beneficial to the success of the learning experience.
  • Scott Symonds assists faculty and academic staff to integrate online video into their daily teaching. He provides best practices, tips and tricks for the best live lecture delivery, dynamic online collaboration and ways to leverage the recordings on demand in the learning management system.
Register online today


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