Google recently invited the world to tell them how they would use Google Glass. Among the overwhelming number of proposals were a few vague ideas about how to improve education. Does Glass have the potential to improve education, or, like so many other devices struggling to make it into the classroom, is it just another distraction?
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Mixing and matching courses is not a novel path to acquiring a degree, especially for those who have had to work full-time while pursuing studies. However, this a la carte model has become more attractive to a wider audience thanks to the online open learning movement. Will the appeal of an unforgettable on-campus experience soon fade for a mobile generation of web users?
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In light of recent privacy breeches at large, global news corporations, parents are beginning to express their concerns about the security of inBloom’s Education Data Portal, which collects learning data about their children. The goal of delivering customized lessons and providing warnings about students at-risk does not seem to be enough to overcome parents’ fears about data leaking to unsolicited vendors with less benevolent intentions.
Predictive analytics are positioned to change how students scaffold their learning, by influencing their course choices and career decisions. Is this really for the better, though? Will students submit to a machine’s forecast of their success, or will they rebel against the calculated odds and pursue their own interests?
An MBA has always promised students both an education and a network. But what happens when the education is made free, with the rise of massive open online courses, and when relationships can be built and expanded through online social networks? Will the MBA still be worth it?
Data from: The Wall Street Journal
For years, parents have been handing their mobile devices to crying children as a form of modern-day pacifier. What they didn’t realize was that the kids would figure out how to find and play with all the entertaining apps on a device. The app market has grown, and the iTunes store is now booming with apps that claim to be educational. Will parents re-think or re-double their use of devices to occupy their children?
Businesses in the IT industry seem to think there aren’t enough STEM graduates, when in reality one in two graduates are simply choosing better paying jobs outside of their respective industries. Instead, guestworkers are filling industry positions, and businesses are pressing to expand the H1-B program.
Visualization by Janice Joo (© 2013 New Learning Times)
Robot professors won’t be taking over anytime soon. Automated essay graders merely describe the structure of a student’s essay and then compare it to hand-graded reference essays. Though the results appear to be just as effective as hand-grading, computers can still make mistakes. Besides, without humans professors, who will field student complaints?
The founders of a new Silicon Valley startup believe that students as young as 5 should learn to code. A visually enticing interface and a gamified learning process deliver the basics of programming logic, but avoid any actual coding. Is this the best way to introduce coding to children?
Data from: The Fisca...
Through data insights provided by CourseSmart – a Silicon Valley startup owned by several major publishing companies – the faculty at Texas A&M will soon be tracking how their students use digital textbooks. The ultimate goal is to understand students’ learning, which is quite an ambitious endeavor, considering that students today are increasingly attributing their learning to sources beyond textbooks.