EDM'14 - The Problem Solving Genome

Submitted by Sharon Hsiao on Wed, 07/16/2014 - 2:02pm.
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One of the best papers from EDM14.

Full paper can be retrieve here

Parameterized exercises have recently emerged as an important tool for online assessment and learning. The ability to generate multiple versions of the same exercise with different parameters helps to support learning-by-doing and decreases cheating during assessment. At the same time, our experience with using parameterized exercises for Java programming reveals suboptimal use of this technology as demonstrated by repeated successful and failed attempts to solve the same problem. In this paper we present the results of our work on modeling and examining patterns of student behavior with parameterized exercises using Problem Solving Genome, a compact encapsulation of individual behavior patterns. We started with micro-patterns (genes) that describe small chunks of repetitive behavior and constructed individual genomes as frequency pro les that shows the dominance of each gene in individual behavior. The exploration of student genomes revealed that individual genome is very stable, distinguishing students from their peers and changing very little with the growth of knowledge over the course. Using the genome, we were able to analyze student behavior on the group level and identify genes associated with good and bad learning performance.


Working with Robotics

Submitted by Kafoumba Doumbia on Wed, 07/16/2014 - 11:26am.
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Our nation is facing a challenge encouraging more students to engage in STEM.
However, some schools, such as Cloonan Middle School in Stamford, Connecticut, are doing their best change this situation. Cloonan Middle School has partnered with West Point to help provide them with tools for a robotic workshop. The workshop was held to engage students in the learning of STEM and teach them how to program a robot.

I personally think that this is a great program for middle schoolers and we should think about spreading such ideas nationwide. This program will not only help those students pass their classes, and prepare them for future educational challenges, it will help them become problem solvers of the next generation.


Financial Literacy Blog Follow Up

Submitted by Oumar Soumahoro on Wed, 07/16/2014 - 1:26am.
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As a follow up to my previous blog about financial literacy, I came across the video below in which college students from various campuses are asked about basic financial terms.
It is however surprising that those students are more aware of the things going on around them (e.g. pop culture) than they are about things that could affect them for the rest of their lives.
Please watch this video and share your opinion on efficient ways students can be better knowledgeable of the decision they make and will make in the future.


Chrome Kills Windows Battery

Submitted by Henry Adjei on Tue, 07/15/2014 - 11:57pm.
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Do you wonder why your laptop battery is always low even after minimal use? Most of the time, we blame it on how we don’t charge it for a long period of time. It is not how much we charge it but rather how we use it. Did you know that the browser you use could affect the battery on your laptop?

This article highlights how Google Chrome, when used on a Windows machine, can kill its battery and slow it down as well. Chrome is the only browser that has this issue. Windows has what is called a “system clock tick rate”. Every time you open a browser, the system clock tick rate must be under 15.625ms unless you use the browser to open something else. However, with Chrome, it reduces to 1.000ms as soon as you open the browser. Chrome always stays as 1.000ms until you shut it down. Macs do not have this kind of problem because of the “tickless timers” they use. The best way to solve this issue is reduce or stop using Chrome in favor of Internet Explorer or Firefox.


Big Dreams

Submitted by Bismark Appiah on Tue, 07/15/2014 - 11:43pm.
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There are 50 million women in India today between the ages of 15 and 24 who are neither in school, nor working.

For decades, many Indians have not had the experience of working or receiving an education. It is only a few members of the country's population that have had the experience of working or going to school. And those few people are the fortunate ones. In India, 50 million women are part of the less fortunate. They are not employed or in school.

All the women have been doing is praying and wishing for a miracle to happen. Most of the 50 million women have big dreams. However, the chance of achieving their dreams is very narrow. For instance, the mother of a three-year-old wishes to become a doctor and wants the same for her daughter. How can she achieve these goals when she belongs to a socially disadvantage group? You can read more about this here.


Digital Media + Learning Competition 5

Submitted by Ting Yuan on Tue, 07/15/2014 - 5:12pm.
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It is the 5th Digital Media and Learning Competition administered by HASTAC teams based at the University of California Humanities Research Institute and Duke University through a grant from the MacArthur Foundation.


$10,000 to $150,000 year-long development grants
$5,000 technology grants
$1.2 million will be awarded in total.

The Trust Challenge will accept applications from September 3 to November 3, 2014.

Successful applicants will develop digital tools — apps, badge systems, data management platforms, online learning content, etc. — that engender trust, safety, and privacy in connected learning environments, and that empower learners to connect and learn anywhere, anytime in ways that are equitable, social, participatory, and interest-driven.


Strengthening School Culture

Submitted by Carmel Addae on Tue, 07/15/2014 - 12:08am.
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I came across an educational video about strengthening school communities and what improvements it brings about. There are lots of activities used by specific schools to help improve school culture. Glenview Elementary School is an example of a school that is working on making their school culture stronger. The school uses a variety of activities and programs such as dialogue circles, team building and arts to encourage and build school culture.

Join the discussion on Vialogues.


Wage Gap Hurts Women in STEM

Submitted by Reindorf Kyei on Mon, 07/14/2014 - 11:27pm.
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The wage gap has increased over the last decade, and this article highlights some of the reasons why this is the case. There tends to be high-income rates in many STEM related jobs. Although the wages are high, there is still a huge difference in wages for occupations such as aerospace engineers. In electrical and mechanical engineering, women represent only 10 percent of the workforce. What are some ways in which we can encourage and recruit more women for STEM jobs?


EAI Endorsed Transactions on E-Learning - Call for Papers

Submitted by Ting Yuan on Mon, 07/14/2014 - 10:46am.
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Latest News from AERA Graduate Studies Forum: EAI, The European Alliance for Innovation is calling for papers.

Anyone familiar with the editors?

Editors in Chief:
Giovanni Vincenti, University of Baltimore, Baltimore, MD, USA
James Braman, Towson University, Towson, MD, USA

EAI offers authors the revolutionary e-SCRIPTS system – a Web 2.0-based peer-review and manuscript management application that guarantees objective and fast reviewing, through an innovative reviewer bidding process. Acceptance decisions are expected to be made in a matter of weeks instead of many months

ISSN # 2032-9253 - this publication is indexed by ISI, Scopus, EI, DBLP, INSPEC, Google Scholar, etc.


Building and Maintaining Scalable Products on AWS

Submitted by Yudan Li on Mon, 07/14/2014 - 10:04am.
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The AWS Summit last week introduced to us some great tools for creating and maintaining scalable cloud-based products on AWS. In building scalable products on cloud, developers are faced with a few challenges that are insignificant when working with single-instance servers. These challenges include quick configuration of multiple servers, quick codebase deployment, performance monitoring, autoscaling, etc.

The three most relevant tools introduced were CloudFormation, Elastic BeanStalk and OpsWorks. All of them belong to the Deployment & Management section of AWS. They are tools for developers to allocate, organize, monitor and control AWS resources like EC2, RDS, S3, Elastic IP, Load Balancer, etc. Clients are charged for the usage of these resources instead of the tools themselves.

CloudFormation is a tool to specify and maintain server architecture. It provides several templates for popular architectures. The architecture configured with CloudFormation is abstract in that it does not involve the provisioning of any real hardwares and softwares. It serves as a guide for other services that do work on server allocation and maintenance.

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