Sunday, May 31, 2020

Secretive agency uses AI, human 'forecasters' to predict the future - PAUL RATNER, Big Think

A U.S. government intelligence agency develops cutting-edge tech to predict future events. The Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA), a research arm of the U.S. government intelligence community, is focused on predicting the future. The organization uses teams of human non-experts and AI machine learning to forecast future events. IARPA also conducts advanced research in numerous other fields, funding rotating programs.

Saturday, May 30, 2020

What every student needs to know about eLearning - CHRIS EDWARDS, eCampus News

In today’s landscape, online higher ed has widespread structure and support. Because the model of online learning was built around an assumption of distance between student and teacher, when done right, eLearning is the epitome of organization. Online learning supports the process of student-to-teacher communication with explicit instruction on information, assignments and expectations. In fact, a Shift Learning report recently found that eLearning increases retention rates to 25-60 percent compared to an 8-10 percent retention rate in face-to-face learning settings.

Friday, May 29, 2020

Universities Are Freezing Tenure Clocks. What Will That Mean for Junior Faculty of Color? - Sara Weissman, Diverse Education

More than 240 universities are offering junior faculty extensions on their tenure clocks to ease the pressure as the coronavirus upends their research and routines. Dr. Delia Fernandez says it’s “one of the most basic things universities can do to support their junior faculty … because the idea of research productivity, or any productivity at this time, is kind of absurd,” she said. But some faculty are concerned about whether extensions alone account for academia’s disparities.

Thursday, May 28, 2020

Classroom of the Future: The Rise of Online Learning - Vivian Wagner, e-Commerce Times

Online education is evolving to become increasingly mobile, in order to satisfy the needs both of students and instructors. "Our learners increasingly want to access training on their own terms, at their own best times," said Neovation's Belhassen. "Mobile-first training allows you to take your daily training on your phone during your commute, before or after your shift, at any time convenient for you. Mobile devices can deliver all the rich media we have come to expect in traditional long-form training -- videos, audio-clips, etc.," he noted.

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Six stories of six weeks of virtual learning - Melanie Lefkowitz, Cornell Chronicle

Spring 2020 was a semester like no other. Over the course of a few weeks, thousands of classes – lectures and seminars, laboratory and performance courses, capstone projects and veterinary clinics – transitioned entirely online. Instructors navigated technical and logistical difficulties, as well as the shifting realities of a global pandemic. But amid the challenges, students and faculty found opportunities for innovation, connection and intellectual growth. Here are snapshots of six courses that took creative approaches to their online formats.

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

The pandemic is emptying call centers. AI chatbots are swooping in - Karen Hao, MIT Technology Review

Covid-19 is accelerating job losses in an industry that was already automating work at a rapid pace. As the coronavirus crisis has dragged on, understaffed government agencies, grocery stores, and financial services have all scrambled to set up similar systems for handling a new influx of calls. IBM saw a 40% increase in traffic to Watson Assistant from February to April of this year. In April, Google also launched the Rapid Response Virtual Agent, a special version of its Contact Center AI, and lowered the price of its service in response to client demand.

Monday, May 25, 2020

The shift to online learning and skills training shows promising trends and troubling signs - Jeannette Sanchez, International Labour Organization

The COVID-19 pandemic has triggered an abrupt transition to distance education, training and e-learning. The crisis has resulted in massive shifts to online platforms and tools for the continued delivery of learning and skills development, which have shown both promising trends and troubling signs. Among those signs, the evidence that, while much is being made of digital learning making access more equitable, access to online platforms doesn’t always result in equal quality learning. Women, for example, are being disproportionately cut off from distance learning due to lack of childcare or home help during the pandemic.

Sunday, May 24, 2020

Online Learning Minute: The Role of Microlearning - Brian Runo, MarketScale

Essentially, microlearning is “the small, incremental, or ‘micro’ part of an online learning experience,” said host Brian Runo. On this episode of MarketScale’s Online Learning Minute, Runo highlighted the role of microlearning in building, deploying and utilizing online education.
Microlearning, he said, is most useful for small skillsets, meaning digestible, small bits of information that are best transferred in quick-hit bites, not lengthy lessons.

Saturday, May 23, 2020

Dance students adjust to curriculum changes, self-accountability of online learning - YASMIN MADJIDI, Daily Bruin

Online learning for dance students has not quite been en pointe. The switch to virtual classes has left dance students searching for ideal spaces to move, relying on self-accountability to stay motivated, said third-year dance student Justin Gamboa. Although professors have adapted their course materials to mold to the spaces each dancer has available to them through increased journaling and posting the dances online ahead of class, Gamboa said it has been difficult to get an individualized experience. He said he chose to stay enrolled this quarter because the close community within the dance program provides support during this stressful time of uncertainty.

Friday, May 22, 2020

Move to online learning has positives and negatives for students with disabilities - ITLIN BROWNE, Daily Bruin

Many students with disabilities have faced challenges related to online learning. The Center for Accessible Education, an office that provides accommodations to students with disabilities at UCLA, has received more accommodation requests than before the transition to online learning, said Norma Kehdi, the CAE associate director of counseling services, in an emailed statement. Students have reported difficulties handling distractions and procrastination, have struggled to adjust to the new learning system or have seen their conditions worsened by pandemic-related stressors, Kehdi said. However, some students enrolled in CAE have requested fewer of their usual accommodations this quarter.

Thursday, May 21, 2020

Here’s the Syllabus for Your Summer Crash Course in Online Education - Rebecca Koenig, EdSurge

Below, you’ll find a syllabus intended to help you advance from emergency remote instruction toward more substantive practices and philosophies. The recommended readings and key concepts were suggested by experts across higher ed. Main contributors are credited at the end.

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Changing Market for Postsecondary Education - Ray Schroeder, Inside Higher Ed

The COVID-19 pandemic has served to accelerate the changing market for postsecondary education.Employers are seeing expanding pressure to provide rapidly changing advanced technical services and products. Their needs are growing while the supply chain of qualified workers is tightening. As a result, we are seeing a growing demand for lifelong learning. We are already seeing students of all ages returning for continuing and professional education.

The Inexorable Logic of Distance Learning - James A. Bacon, Bacon's Rebellion

Distance learning was already on the rise at Virginia higher-ed institutions before the COVID-19 epidemic prompted college administrators to send students home and complete their classes online. Many faculty and administrators are hoping that they can revert to the status quo of good o’d fashioned face-to-face classes when the epidemic subsides. But will normalcy be restored? Or will the flirtation with online classes accelerate the spread of distance education?

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Higher Ed Needs a Long-Term Plan for Virtual Learning - James DeVaney, et al; Harvard Business Review

As the emergency subsides but normal fails to return, higher ed institutions need to do more. There’s a good likelihood that virtual learning — in some capacity — will need to be a part of education for the foreseeable future. Higher ed institutions need a response framework that looks beyond the immediate actions. They have to prepare for an intermediate period of transition and begin future-proofing their institutions for the long term.

Monday, May 18, 2020

Are you a vicitim of Zoom Fatigue? - by Ray Schroeder, Inside Higher Ed

Zoom has become part of the lexicon of our lives. It is the way many of us meet and teach. In a similar way, we use Google Hangouts and other analogous synchronous meeting apps for live classes and the myriad of meetings that previously populated our workdays. If you are like me, you have three or four Zoom sessions a day. They are with the same colleagues as before, but they just don’t feel the same as in-person meetings. Those routine meetings can become anxiety-producing and exhausting. Research is being conducted in real time as we experience the impact of virtual conferencing on a daily basis.

Sunday, May 17, 2020

New Udemy Report Shows Surge in Global Online Education in Response to COVID-19

Udemy today released “Online Education Steps Up: What the World is Learning (from Home),” a special data report that provides a comprehensive look at online learning and teaching around the globe as the COVID-19 pandemic, shelter-in-place orders, and social distancing impact the world.  As remote working becomes the new normal, the findings reveal significantly increased demand globally across every segment:
425% increase in enrollments for consumers
55% increase in course creation by instructors
80% increase in usage from businesses and governments

Saturday, May 16, 2020

The Rise Of Online Learning - Ilker Koksal, Forbes

Online learning has shown significant growth over the last decade, as the internet and education combine to provide people with the opportunity to gain new skills. Since the COVID-19 outbreak, online learning has become more centric in people's lives. The pandemic has forced schools, universities, and companies to remote working and this booms the usage of online learning. Even before the pandemic, Research and Markets forecasts the online education market as $350 Billion by 2025, so the numbers might be updated after analyzing the growth impacts of COVID-19 on the online learning market.

Friday, May 15, 2020

UDL is essential in post-secondary pandemic learning - BY KIMBERLY COY, e-Campus News

Leveraging Universal Design for Learning, or UDL, will help ensure effectiveness and a level of normalcy in an unexpected new learning reality.  UDL comes from an educational framework first conceptualized in architecture with Universal Design – creating spaces that are accessible to all – and the challenges of special education, where learning and teaching based on the “average” student was not effective.

Thursday, May 14, 2020

COVID-19's Ultimate Impact on Online Learning: The Good and the Bad - Michael Horn, Campus Technology

Higher education's current move to [remote-teaching] online learning may be leaving a sour taste in the mouths of students and faculty across the country, but there is a silver lining. On the bad side, given that college and university faculty hastily moved courses online without much support, online learning is being done poorly in many quarters of the United States. It's consequently getting a bad reputation at many campuses.... Online learning will grow from where it was pre-COVID-19, when already over a third of postsecondary students took at least one online class and roughly 30 percent of graduate students studied exclusively online.

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Building Online Learning Courses: University vs. Corporate - Brian Runo, MarketScale

Brian Runo shares a quick comparison of the differences in creating online learning courses for universities versus corporations in this episode of MarketScale’s Online Learning Minute. There are a few main differences that make online learning much simpler to execute for corporations.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Student-Centered Remote Teaching: Lessons Learned from Online Education - Shannon Riggs, EDUCAUSE

While online and remote education may not be synonymous, today's new remote educators can benefit from the "lessons learned" by experienced online educators who are providing high-quality, engaging learning experiences for their students. The one "lesson learned" I see as the most significant for faculty as they begin to teach from a distance is to consider the new learning environment from a student-centered perspective.