Notes on the ‘Internet of things’
This report may have interest for FLL network members:
Recently made available from: Link to report here.
As the Internet of Things (IoT) becomes more popular on campuses across the country, leading colleges and universities are preparing for the increase in data coming from sensors, smart devices and other technologies, and the resulting demand on their networks. The “connected” or “smart” campus, as it has become known, leverages a combination of sensors, big data and analytics, and other IoT technologies for better decision-making in myriad ways. In June 2017, the Center for Digital Education (CDE) surveyed 138 higher education officials to determine the status of connected campus projects. CDE also queried leaders about their understanding of terms like “connected” and “smart” and the perceived benefits of such projects. The questions targeted several areas, including education and engagement, safety and operational efficiencies.
“Education is the post powerful weapon which you can use to change the world”, said Nelson Mandela. And he is quoted at the beginning of Stortingsmelding 25 2013, from June 13th Parliament Whitepaper 2013-2014 Education for Development. Find the report enclosed here, as it is of high relevance to potential proposal for for the upcoming Norglobal Call at the Norwegian research Council — RCN.
The way to development is via knowledge genera- tion, information and skills. Education lays the groundwork for individuals’ and societies’ devel- opment and is essential for development and growth. A renewed global effort to achieve good quality, relevant education for all will give a signifi- cant boost to the work to fight poverty, create jobs, foster business development, improve health and nutrition, and promote gender equality, peace and democracy. It is high time that we renew our efforts in the field of education, and Norway intends to be a driving force and contribute actively to this work.
This blog post will be followed up, but meanwhile: A few more citations to set the direction:
There is not equal access to education in today’s world. Access to, completion of and quality of education are unevenly distributed within and between countries. Through political engagement and development cooperation, Norway can be a driving force in the ef for ts to ensure access to good, relevant and inclusive learning.
The significance of such a boost for education is amplified by the global information economy, with its ever-increasing demands for a well-educated population, where the threshold for exclusion from the labour market is steadily being lowered. In a global context, a low level of qualifications in developing countries is increasing the gap between rich and poor countries. In order to con- tribute to economic growth, equal opportunities, and the realisation of universal rights and develop- ment, it is important and appropriate that Nor way helps to reduce the gap between rich and poor both within and between countries by focusing on education in development policy.
Hanushek and Woessmann (2009) find an even stronger correlation between the quality of a country’s education and its economic growth than do researchers who use quantitative measures for education, although the latter also have significant explanatory power. This is mainly due to the strong correlation between the number of years of schooling and the level of knowledge. However, it is the quality of the education and the skills acquired that determine the significance of education for productivity and growth. This applies particularly in developing countries.
Happy to announce a new research group member — Renée Schulz, a colleague and friend to many of us for years. Renée is currently working as Assistant Professor for the Department of ICT at the University of Agder, mainly involved in gamification and serious games as well as the digitalization of courses (a master course in multimedia, a MOOC, and courses in (e-)health sciences). Her main research areas are Human-Computer Interaction and Interaction Design. She recently handed in her PhD thesis with the title “Listening to Teacher’s Needs: Human-centred Design for Mobile Technology in Higher Education”.
During the period of her PhD, she was an exchange researcher at Osaka University (大阪大学) at the Graduate School of Information Science and Technology.
Our annual Future Learning Lab event – World Learning Summit – brought together 150 attendees on June 7th this year for an full-day open dialog with three keynoters as well as a dozen panelists expanding on the keynotes on roundtable dialogs. The first keynote was given by Cathy Casserly, a former CEO of Creative Commons, an associate of Institute for the Future as well as a former consultant to a range of thought-leading companies. Cathy stepped in on short notice also last year, replacing Karl Mehta from the online learning company EdCast. Cathy is now a consultant for the National Science Foundation in the United States. The next two keynotes are long-time senior staff at UNESCO, with a focus on Open Education Resources: Sir John Daniel and Stamenka Uvalic-Trumbic. Open Education Resources (OER) was the key theme on the first day of the summit for all three keynotes. You can read more about it here: www.worldlearningsummit.com
On the following two days, we had academic workshops with a wide range of project presentations and scientific publications presentations from our soon to come out WLS Scientific Proceedings. Here is the program.
We also ran a keynote particularly aimed at the debate concerning 21.Century Skills and the future challenge of matching work with education skills and competency needs. Keynote speaker was Dr. Joseph Press, who works with the Center for Creative Leadership in Zürich Switzerland. A stellar workshop that falls well in with the Future Learning Lab´s research agenda.
The scientific proceedings was a new feature of the summit this year. Another new feature was the implementation of student assistants in research. About ten students participated with making short videos. These were uploaded to our website. You can find them here: Twitter.
On October 20th, Future Learning Lab offers a full day workshop on uses of video in student driven learning. CEO at WeVideo in Oslo, Erik Ræstad, is here to pilot us through som key issues relating both to uses of video as technology and more profoundly; how to tell an enganging story? Video is clearly one aspect of 21st Century literacy skills — so how do we master it, as lecturers, as tutors? And as students?
The workshop is based on discussions held during our June 2016 World Learning Summit. We´ll present one DDU-financed project on uses of video in social science courses — we have one BA course in English going and one MA course in Norwegian, both exploring uses of video to collaborate and reflect together on course material.
Lots of good tips and conversations. More info on this page.
Our summit in June 2016 was a great success, with close to 300 people visiting the first open day, and about 200 following up on day 2, about 100 on day 3. Visit our testimonials page to see comments as they come in.
A main feature was of course Peter Norvig, head researcher at Google in Mountain View, California. We were fortunate to have the collaboration of Aftenposten, BI Norwegian Business School, NHO/Abelia, and Oslo EdTech cluster. More will be posted as we process the presentation videos and upload some of the key presentations.
The program for our 2017 version of the summit is under way. We can already announce a keynote featured talk by Catherine Casserley — former CEO of Creative Commons. And there is lots more to come.
Happy to announce Derek Woodgate as our newest FLL member. Read more about him: Derek Woodgate is a consulting futurist, author, university lecturer and curator. He is President of The Futures Lab, Inc. an international futures-based consultancy, founded in 1996, which specializes in creating future potential for major corporations and institutions, He is also Vice-President and Director of Learning at the company’s non-profit arm LIFE (Learning Innovations in Future Education and Chief Creative Office at TFL’s “living the future” events company, FEEL (Future Entertainment and Events Lab). Derek is co-creator of the highly successful “living the future” event STEAM3 – The Future of Learning.
Derek is also an Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Information and Communications Technologies at the University of Adger in Norway; and Adjunct Professor in the Learning Technologies Division of the College of Education and Human Development at Georgia State University in Atlanta, GA, USA. At both universities he teaches courses on the science of foresight and its application for the future of education and learning. As a leading futurist, Derek’s principal expertise is in the interplay between emerging multimedia technologies, experiential learning and the future, topics on which he is a regular conference speaker and writer. Derek is due to complete his PhD at the University of Adger by the end of 2016. His dissertation is titled: “The impact of emerging multisensory augmented reality technologies on the future of experiential learning”.
His book, Future Frequencies (2004) was considered paradigm shifting in the foresight field, and his various pieces already published from his forthcoming book Future Flow give a fresh look at how experiential manifestations can be designed to be adaptive to personal aesthetics, imagination, moods, and emotions in order to facilitate new approaches to exploration, innovation, and learning.
Derek’s other published works include: The Future of Advertising – a chapter in “PR Rules: The Playbook” (2014) and he co-authored Calling the Toads—A Burroughs Compendium” (1999), with Lee Ranaldo of Sonic Youth, Allen Ginsberg, and Douglas Brinkley.
Derek is a founding member of the Association of Professional Futurists; former President of the Centex Chapter of the World Futures Society and a member of the World Futures Studies Federation.
Our modes and ways of learning have changed dramatically over the past few decades. Take a look a little further – say, 200 years back – and the beginning of the information revolution introduced newspapers with, until then, unheard of information speeds. The enlightenment brought new ideas. Time of travel decreased. Imaginations of the world and its many variations, increased. Cities were formed, nation-states were formed, international alliances were forged, as was our common understanding of education. We may take it for granted, but perhaps we should not take the future of education for granted at all? Educational institutions, perhaps especially Higher Education, are among the most resilient and long-lasting institutions of the West. The only institution that bears comparison in the English-speaking world, is the Catholic church. Oxford University dates back to the 1200´s. And yet, the movement that began with the introduction of the Mosaic web browser in 1993, the coming of the Internet, and the development of the Personal Computer, has changed — if not everything, then certainly – a lot.
These are the sorts of reflections marking a book that bears reading and commenting: Davidson, Cathy N. David Theo Goldberg (2009) The Future of Learning institutions in a Digital Age, Cambridge, Massachussetts: The MIT Press
- How should we think about the future of learning? What will future learning institutions look like, and what ought they to look like? Professors Davidson and Goldberg ask refreshingly fundamental questions. Their starting point – in this book and other collaborative works – is simply this: While learning spaces keep changing, at alarming speeds, institutions of learning have changed mostly “around the edges”. They remain fundamentally the same. One reason for this is simply the success of education as a social institution. Universities work. Our education systems have been effective.
- But now sources of information abound in a variety of ways. Ways of exchanging information have changed. How we interact with information, individually and as institutions, have changed dramatically. How information shapes and reshapes us has changed. A lot.
- And so has our way of understanding these issues, except perhaps in education – where a deeper and more probing approach is needed when it comes to how we understand the fundamentals of education´s digital future.
- Institutions of higher education are based on hierarchies, physical location and presence, as well as privileged access. Modern learning spaces now emerging, are characterised by networking, multi-levelled participation and information being accessible everywhere, all the time.
- From that perspective it becomes an open question whether and how higher education institutions will manage networks of tenured faculty, junior faculty, adjunct faculty and emeriti faculty – -as one example. Another example: What happens to student hierarchies defining and contrasting BA from MA from PhD, when information is accessible at low costs without enrolment into programs and institutions of distinction?
The book contains a wealth of well-placed questions and observations.
Hvordan påvirker digitaliseringen hverdagslivet vårt? Les UiA forsker Morten Goodwins kronikk på www.forskning.no – her er åpningen:
/ “Da minibanker ble innført på slutten av 70-tallet, var de både billigere og bedre enn bankansatte. Ingen med vettet i behold vil i dag kreve minibanker fjernet for å få flere funksjonærer i arbeid. Det minibanken gjorde for bankfunksjonærene, vil den kunstige intelligensen gjøre for minst halvparten av dagens yrker.
Forskningen innen den kunstige intelligensen har gjort enorme fremskritt de siste årene og månedene. Den blir stadig bedre enn oss mennesker på flere og flere områder. Snart lærer den oss noe vi aldri vil glemme: Vi er alle utkonkurrert av kunstig intelligens. “/
Future Learning Lab Partners with EdCast to Launch Global Educator Teach‐A‐Thon
Competition to award grand prize of $100,000 to inspire educators to share their knowledge in 10 min.
SAN DIEGO, April 19, 2016 – Future Learning Lab has partnered with EdCast to announce the launch of the Global Educator Teach‐A‐Thon, a new annual competition for educators to showcase the impact and power of social learning technology.
Designed to challenge professional and independent educators to embrace the sharing economy, The Global Educator Teach‐A‐Thon is the first ever open‐knowledge viral challenge to help students and adults worldwide to learn from free open content. Educators and those with a passion for a specific subject or discipline are invited to demonstrate their teaching acumen by recording and uploading short video lessons from their smartphone. The educator(s) who garner the highest user engagement will win the grand prize of $100,000. Additional partners include: Arizona State University, The KIPP Foundation, Reach Newschools Capital, Pencils of Promise, the Sustainable Development Solutions Network, Teach For All, Teach For America, and Tata Trusts.
“We’re thrilled to team up with EdCast on the Global Educator Teach‐A‐Thon,” says Oddgeir Tveiten, Founder of Future Learning Lab. “The competition gives educators a fantastic venue to share their knowledge and have an impact on lifelong learners all over the world.”
“We’re challenging the status quo when it comes to the way we share and retain knowledge,” says Karl Mehta, CEO of EdCast. “This global competition is about pushing the boundaries of social innovation, and encouraging people from around the world to use their creativity to make learning the ultimate shared experience.”
How it works
Participation is free, and all interested applicants can visit www.edcast.com/corp/GET for more information. All interested educators will be contacted regarding their selection to participate.
EdCast is a social knowledge network built to enhance the human ability to learn and get smarter. EdCast Knowledge NetworksTM power social, mobile and cloud‐based learning for world‐class institutions, enterprises, governments and nonprofits and enables millions of lifelong learners to gain knowledge every day. The EdCast executive team has a track record of building large‐scale transformational technology; all are passionate about the global impact of mobile and online learning. EdCast is a Stanford StartX company backed by tier one VC firms. The Company is based in Mountain View CA, with offices worldwide.
Registration is now open for the June 13-16th 2016 World Learning Summit. As announced at the Stanford 2015 summit close in May 2015, the summit in 2016 promises to be an equally wide-ranging event, with high-level keynote speakers and intens interactions. Please find information about the event here: www.wls.futurelearningab.org
We are very happy to announce the main keynote team: Peter norvig (Chief Scientist at Google), Keith Devlin (Executive Director at Stanford Univesity’s H-Star Institute) and Michael Shanks (Professor at Stanford University and a key member of the program at the Hasso Plattner Institute for Design – also known as the “d.Schoo”l).
In addition, we will be adding some surprise entries in the world-ranking division, as speakers and engaged mentors in ur planned workshops. Stay tuned for more updates.
Starting August 2015, Future Learning Lab will begin actively pursuing bitesized content interaction and complete course delivery in our new knowledge cloud enabled by EdCast.
There is a long story behind this, but the short version is simple: It was only when we found EdCast that we began to have any serious thought that we actually could pursue the world of MOOCs in a meaningful way. The hopelessly Victorian-style approach applied by Coursera and EdX to the world´s education and learning challenge will effectively be their downfall in the public domain. Their world will be commercial. We approached them, and the question was this: Are you one of the top 100 universities in the world?
We´re not. And that was that. Not interested. As seen from universities outside of the sphere of the world´s “top 100” – a list that one could seriously question, no matter how it is constructed – the prospect of becoming a “client” is not so interesting. Whatever else one might think about the word cultural imperialism, the world of contemporary MOOC-thinking certainly falls within it.
Who ever heard of societies opening the world for people to effectively learn more efficiently — on the basis of new technologies — only to let market forces close it again for the benefit of a few select and highly resourceful universities?
Access, cost and cultural connectivity
What the world needs is access, and a better understanding of the difference between education, learning and socialization. We´re in the middle of a globalizing revolution in the world of learning. But education is – in the end always local. There is locality. And there are people. If it is not local, it cannot be global. Accordingly, the presence of instructors and the physical points of meeting to collaborate on learning, will continue to be important.
The jury is still out as far as the Coursera / EdX collaboration model is concerned. Knowing what happened to the music industry, then film, and then publishing, there is good reason to closely monitor the immediate future of learning and education institutions. It´s not a revolution in the coming, it is a revolution happening.
What we at the Future Learning Lab like about EdCast is simply this: It enables us as university and college educators to produce learning content autonomously, because we have access to a production platform, a delivery platform and an interaction platform including learning analytics. It frees us from the prospect of being constrained as clients. It allows us to do what educators should do: Teach. And it allows us to to this now, instead of next year.
Thank you, EdCast. Finally someone who understands what this is about.
In a different life, professor Jeppe Bundsgaard worked with some of us in the Future Learning Lab to establish Contact Education as a story-telling pedagogical tool — and we did well together…. However, as life takes over and projects emerge that also take us elsewhere, paths part. In 2015 we´re lucky to have professor Bundsgaard back with us in our newly established Expert Panel, bringing a lot of expertise on proposal work as well as the forefront of ICT-related learning and teaching. Bundsgaard will be coming to our May 2015 Summit in Silicon Valley, and he will have fresh results to report from several large demonstration projects in Denmark.
Jeppe is professor of ICT in Education at Department of Education, Aarhus University, Denmark. His main areas of research is 21st Century skills and project and scenario based education.
He has participated in developing several practice scaffolding interactive platforms to support K-12 students’ work in scenarios as for example journalists, advisory engineers, textbook authors, and dedicated members of the community. These experiences and research in instructional design, scenario based education and progressive education has led him to outline the foundations for a visual design language for development and activation of collaborative learning designs, called Collaborative Learning Modeling Language (ColeML).
Having worked in the area of progressive education for a number of years, professor Bundgaard argues that it has become clear how progressive education is not an easy thing to propagate in the traditional school system.
That explains why his work to a larger extent has focused on implementation and dissimination. This is among other things the objective of the Demonstration School Projects he is heading.
First to be asked to join our Expert Panel, Anne Swanberg represents a unique Nordic point of view, in that she runs one of the only Learning Labs at institutions of hi her education dedicated to an over-all transformation of learning: The Norwegian School of Business and their BI Learning Lab. We´re proud to have Anne in our team. For our May 2015 conference, BI is represented by other members of the Norwegian School of Business. That said, Anne is part of several projects and proposals. Her university college runs a series of demonstration projects that Anne oversees, and for us this gives a valuable point of resonance. Read more about Anne here.
The rest of or short bio includes this, among other things:
In 2010 she assigned by the BI Provost to build up a new competence center. She was then in the process of defending her doctoral thesis “Learning with style – The relationships among approaches to learning, personality, group climate and academic performance”.
Swanberg holds a master degree from University of Calgary in lifelong learning “Master of continuing education” where she completed her thesis in 2000: “Students assumptions about online learning”. Swanberg has a master in general business as her first degree.
Prior to the director appointment, she was an associate professor in project management as well as in organizational behavior. She has been teaching online classes the last 15 years and she worked with course design for just as long. Innovative teaching has been her interest since 1984 and she has been engaged in several R&D projects with internal and external funding.
We´re pleased to be able to include Michael Carter in our Future Learning Lab expert panel. Mike has a deep interest in learning and a better basis for refection on emergent technologies than most: From his background in Silicon Valley high-tech to his current interest in K8 an K12 learning by gaming, he is an extremely valuable addition to our team. Read the rest of his bio here.
At our conference in May 2015, we will run an invitation-based workshop on game based learning particularly aimed at contemporary issues like climate change, and how to tell that story in a persuasive and action-changing manner using game-based story-telling strategies. Mike will be with us for that workshop, and we look forward to it.
From his bio you can read this, among other things.
His academic career includes professing history at Dartmouth and directing academic computing at Stanford. As Co-PI of an ethnographic study of digital youth he helped scholars and teachers learn what kids do online. He edited and published essays, reports, and a new journal on digital media and learning for the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation with the MIT Press.
At Digital Pictures Mike created What’s My Story? to help children learn to speak for themselves. As Chief Playwright at Zookazoo.com he designed and produced games for kids in a virtual world. He helped design a new generation of online mathematics courses for the William and Flora Hewlett and Bill & Melinda Gates foundations and created over a dozen math games to accompany them (nrocmath.org).
We´re happy to present Dr. Shigeru Miyagawa, Professor, MIT and UTokyo as opening keynote speaker on Friday May 29th 2015, as we kick off our conference Future Learning Summit 2020.
Dr. Miyagawa is professor at MIT and for the past several years also UTokyo. He was on the original MIT team that proposed OpenCourseWare and he is former Chair of the MIT OpenCourseWare Faculty Advisory Committee. He was awarded the President’s Award for OCW Excellence from the Global OpenCourseWare Consortium.
He is also Co-director of Visualizing Cultures (visualizingcultures.mit.edu) with the Pulitzer Prize-winning historian, John W. Dower, which was awarded MIT Class of 1960 Innovation in Education Award.
Susan Singer to open the summit
We are very pleased to announce that professor Susan Singer has accepted our invitation to open the May 30th Summit on the future of learning, at Stanford University. Here is a short bio on Susan. And you will find more about her here.
Susan Rundell Singer is Division Director for Undergraduate Education at the National Science Foundation and the Laurence McKinley Gould Professor, in the Biology and Cognitive Science Departments at Carleton. She pursues a career that integrates science and education. In addition to a PhD in biology from Rensselaer, she completed a teacher certification program in New York State.
A developmental biologist who studies flowering in legumes and also does research on learning in genomics , Susan is a AAAS fellow and received both the American Society of Plant Biology teaching award and Botanical Society of America Charles Bessey teaching award. She directed Carleton’s Perlman Center for Learning and Teaching, was an NSF program officer in Biology, and is a co-author of the Vision and Change in Undergraduate Biology report and an introductory biology text.
She served on numerous boards, including the NSF EHR advisory committee, Biological Sciences Curriculum Study Board, the American Society of Plant Biology Education Foundation, and the Botanical Society board of directors; is a member-at-large for the AAAS Education Section; participates in the Minnesota Next Generation Science Standards team; and was a member of the National Academies’ Board on Science Education. She has participated in six National Academies studies, including chairing the committees that authored America’s Lab Report, Promising Practices in STEM Undergraduate Education and Discipline-based Education Research: Understanding and Improving Learning in Undergraduate Science and Engineering.
Future Learning Lab´s Spring 2015 conference is set for May 30th, at Stanford University. It will be a collaboration between Future Learning Lab, H Star Institute at Stanford University, the recently established Zephyr Institute in Palo Alto and EdCast — a recent addition to the world of on-line learning providers, with a home base in Palo Alto.
We first met up with Edcast in October 2014, at our Stanford-based workshop Imagine Classrooms of Tomorrow. Since then we have been pursuing several ways to collaborate.
We learned about their exciting plans to promote international conversations on the future of learning in a globalized world. We, on the other hand, also found a receptive ear to our efforts at creating an international meeting space that actively promotes global collaboration on a resolutely practical level. We are concerned with students worldwide, with teacher and with learners. We are concerned with a mounting skills deficit. And many of us are educators. We´re hoping to provide a space defined by educators, and open for everyone else.
At the May 30th conference we will seek to highlight some of these challenges, as seen from the users´s point of view. Edcast will bring its network, H Star has a long history for international collaboration on these issues, and we are very fortunate to have the strengths of these stakeholders with us to look at the challenge from an international (not global, but inter-national) perspective. Several H Star staff members have been with us in Europe for events several years now, underscoring the relevance of what we try to do.
Across the world university leaders, education managers, teachers, entrepreneurs, decision-makers, students, investors and other stakeholders are asking what the future holds in store for learning? Technologies now globalize, digitalize, dramatize, trivialize, commercialize and politicize education – at all levels.
Before and after the coming of the internet there were other globalizing forces shaping and reshaping education in school, at universities, at the work place and in society. Yet, it is only three years now since a first pioneer went on stage at Ted Talks and reported on the implications of having 165000 students in “the classroom” in a course on artificial intelligence. That was Peter Norvig, from Google. And there was no classroom, really. Except in between.
Perhaps a more profound change now comes from an increased understanding of the virtual media spaces and how they work? Connection, access, adaptation and integration now happens at institutional and individual levels.
What will the next five years bring us of changes in world learning? Beyond MOOCs, scales, and trends: Where do we as educators stand?
With the coming of network society, we see a new level of mobility among students and educators. We see education reaching new groups – in spite of US and UK discussions of soaring tuition costs, education is actually reaching out.
The European discussion on MOOCs is – for various reasons – quite different than the North-American one. This is one reason why this first broadly comparative European report on MOOCs ought to be read carefully. It was launched on March 3rd, 2015. See the executive summary below. Download the entire report from here.
First, the approach and phenomenon was launched in the US, with trials and early errors duly made and noted. As the next stage MOOC development goes global one is likely to see institutional issues and barriers coming to the surface in the discussions and approaches. Second, the European approaches reflect the “public service” philosophy and standards commonly found at institutions of higher learning. As seen from that angle, the MOOCs phenomenon may be not so much an aspect of combatting increasing costs of education as a meaningful tool to overcome institutional and nation-state barriers in an increasingly globalized and networked education world.
Here is the Executive Summary:
Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) have continued to attract considerable media coverage as governments and universities respond to the open and online education movement. Three years after the MOOCs began its rise, it is clear that the HE institutions in the EU are gaining speed in this movement.
This report on MOOCs intends to contribute to literature on MOOCs in Europe. Its specific aim is to present data on the perception and objectives of European higher education institutions on MOOCs and the main drivers behind the MOOC movement. In addition, the report makes a comparison with similar studies conducted in the United States in 2013 and 2014 and to data produced by the European University Association (EUA) between October and December 2013. The report made clear that involvement is still increasing, but also that arguments to get involved differ from those in the US.
The main source is a survey conducted by the project HOME – Higher education Online: MOOCs the European way, partly funded by the European Commission’s Lifelong Learning Programme. The survey was conducted in October – December 2014. In total 67 institutions responded out of 22 European countries representing in total about 2.8 millions of students.
Institutional MOOC involvement
Out of participated institutions 71,7% of the institutions has a MOOC or is planning to develop one. While in the US the number of institutions having a MOOC or planning to introduce them has decreased from 14,3% to 13,6%, in Europe it has increased from about 58% in EUA study to 71,7% in this study. This confirms the EUA statement that ‘interest in MOOCs has far from peaked in Europe’. The results of this survey are comparable with the survey from 2013 from EUA. This indicates a steady, but not revolutionary increase in MOOC involvement and opinions during this last year.
Throughout the report the results of the institutions already offering MOOC next to all respondents are discussed to counteract for possible bias. In general only small differences between both groups are observed.
Validating definitions of what’s a MOOC
It is important to note that MOOCs remain relatively poorly defined. To be able to make assertions about MOOCs, it should also be clear what we mean by a MOOC. This survey is used to shed more light on the importance of each MOOC letter.
A MOOC differs to other open online courses by the number of participants. According to a large majority (71,6%) “MOOCs should provide a sustainable model for the mass”. In addition 50,1% finds it (highly )relevant for their institution that “MOOCs must be designed for massive audience”.
MOOCs can be positioned in the broader development of open education. However, open has many dimensions and can have many interpretations. An essential characteristic of open education is the removal of barriers to education. As such the survey included questions related to several barriers to learning.
The institutions (70%) do not support the idea that MOOCs should be paid for except for getting a formal credit as part of an accredited curriculum. I.e., there is no strong support for a little fee in the MOOC definition. Next a large majority of institutions is supporting the openness in MOOCs regarding open accessibility, open licensing and the freedom to select for different kinds of
Institutional MOOC strategies in Europe EADTU 2015 3
The recent announcement by the Gauteng provincial government to initiate a paperless classroom project as well as the Western Cape government’s commitment to spend R1.2-billion to implement e-learning in 1 250 local schools, is a big step towards bridging the education gap in South Africa, according to Athol Wesselink, Chief Technical Engineer at OpenWeb. Wesselink says that poor education outcomes may be remedied by the implementation of e-learning, which will hopefully see all public-schools connected to the internet and students provided with tablets and other electronic devices.
“The use of technology to support education will not only enhance pupil’s access to quality tutorials and learning material, but will also develop their digital savvy and computer literacy – a skill that has become increasingly vital when entering the national workforce.”
A conference to check out — PhD´ers: An interesting network to begin with, the EDEN network hosts an annual conference that is well worth looking into for future learners in the Nordic region. There are tons of great conferences out there. This one is a favorite because it combines two elements: A better view of digital transformations, and on the other hand the practical skills deficit that now confronts education institutions, work life and policy-makers. Ahesd there are challenges galore – this is a conference combining astute academics with practical approaches to new learning. A couple of blurbs below:
” Whilst there is growing public interest and high demand worldwide for knowledge and education, and intensive social media movements are experienced both on the provider and user communities’ side, the issue of skills deficit is contributing to the critical public approach”. Here is the link. Set for Barcelona June 9-12th this year, here is the scope:
” The ever-improving performance of mobile devices and the development of networking infrastructure continue to increase the appeal of new powerful instruments. The rapid spread of technologies, reflected in their untameable demand and use, the momentous development of research as well as practices inevitably transform the information society – mostly outside of institutional settings and often along unexpected pathways.Whilst there is growing public interest and high demand worldwide for knowledge and education, and intensive social media movements are experienced both on the provider and user communities’ side, the issue of skills deficit is contributing to the critical public approach.”
After President Obama´s State of the Union address in mid January 2015, the reflection below by Susan Pinker, printed in New York Times on January 30th, stands out. In the address, Obama envisioned open Internet in every classroom, providing access of information to everyone and especially otherwise disadvantaged students. But according to Pinker, the solution may be the opposite.
Says Pinkerton: When it comes to uses of technology and impacts on teaching, access to the wide range of media tools for learning is as likely to widen the learning and knowledge gap as it is to decrease it. Economists at Duke University (Jacob Vigdor and Helen Ladd) tracked uses of networked computers among a high number of disadvantaged students, finding that reading and math skills significantly dropped — it did not increase. “Students tend to witness a persistent decline”, when gaining access to a home computer between ages 5th and 8th grade. “What´s worse, the weaker students (boys, African-Americans) were more sdversely affected than the rest”, she adds.
One might add that hhe general framework of the article falls well into the perspective oncer coined as the “knowledge gap” hypothesis, set forth in the 1970´s by media researchers Tichenor, Olien and Donohue at the University of Minnesota — relating to media literacy. It is especially within that perspective that Pinkterton´s reference to Nicholas Negroponte´s grand project One Laptop Per Child, staring out in 2006, becomes important. It was a program to introduce the world´s children – all of them — to PCs, cheap and affordable enough for everyone. Children would ideally be empowered to go online and teach themselves — in ways not too far off from Sugata Mitra´s Hole in the Wall project, from about the same time.
Relating in a direct way to David Conover´s lecture at the 2014 annual Future Learning Lab conference, in Norway, Pinker´s review points to research from the US. The general framework points to two things: First, uses of technology in the classroom depends a lot on the quality of the teaching support that comes with it. Second, the decisive factor is not the technology, but the teaching. In Norway, David Conover demonstrated success with applying Minecraft as game engine in teaching students from minorities and children/teen-agers at risk: What is more, Conover´s also demonstrated the cirtues of keeping things simple, and haviong an instructional design as well as a mentoring presdence in the classroom.
The mounting research evidence does not support the general virtue of adding technology and networking to students classroom experience. On the contrary, what the evidence shows is the continued importance of authoritative and mentoring teachers. So, the evidence actually points to the importance of working over the teacher´s training curricula, everywhere, to enable teachers to make good use of technology.
According to Pinker and NYT, technology does have a role in the class room — even after the novelty wears off. The effective ness is however a function of its relevance to the learning tasks at hand. “While we are waiting to find out, the public money spent on wiring up classrooms should be matched by training and mentorship for teachers,” she adds. And we should all listen carefully.
An interesting video from TedTalks: We´ve also added a new blog page for more video postings. Here is the link.
Here is a note on the upcoming Spring Roundtable on the globalization of learning, hosted by Future Learning Lab, HStar Institute Stanford University and Zephyr Institute in Palo Alto. The Roundtable will ideally organize between 50 100 people from Silicon Valley and invited guests. The event is booked for a Stanford venue, but we are still keeping a small opening for change of days – since we still hope to get a commercial sponsor for the event.
As it now looks, the plenary session will be hosted by Oddgeir Tveiten and Matt Bowman. A number of keynotes will be given in rapid sequence, with a follow up Q/A roundtable discussion, which we hope to stream and otherwise make available.
Keynoters will be: Keith Devlin, Michael Shanks, Donna Kidwell and marti Hearst.
For a brief review:
- Keith Devlin is co-founder of the H Star Institute at Stanford University and an associate of Future Learning Lab since 2011.
- Michael Shanks is professor of Archeology at Stanford University and a long-time associate with the D School.
- Donna Kidwell is professor at St. Edwards University in Texas, President of Webstudent International and also a long-time associate of the Future Learning Lab.
- Professor Marti Hearst specializes in new technologies and learning, from her vantage point as professor at the Department of information Science, UC Berkeley.
Oddgeir Tveiten is co-founder of Future Learning Lab – as professor of media studies and journalism studies at two university institutions in Norway.
Matt Bowman is co-founder of EdSurge, and now recently also the Zephyr Institute in Palo Alto.
More information on the speakers and Roundtable will be posted.
Mid November 2015: Following up on our September – October 2014 workshop at Stanford University, the Future Learning Network will be hosting our annual 2015 conference around the same time and theme: Imagine Classrooms of Tomorrow. At the workshop in 2014, we invited a range of different perspectives – brought up and presented by academics, entrepreneurs, media commentators and more. The end result was a solid learning experience and a better network.
At the conference in 2015,our hope is to achieve more of the same, for more people — growing the network. We have some exciting speakers, a very nice venue, and the support of the Nordic community of innovators and interest parties in Silicon Valley. Our hope is that as many as possible of our Nordic peers will seek out the conference, join the network and otherwise partner with us to make it a solid event.
For the conference poster, program and updates, please go to this poster page. Please continue to come back. The closer we get to the conference, the more frequent will be the postings and updates.