OLDaily, by Stephen Downes

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August 31, 2011

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The OWYP Approach to Education
OWYP Staff, YouTube, August 31, 2011.

Anjali Daryanani wrote, by email, "I work for One World Youth Project, an education not-for-profit that connects classrooms around the world, and we were in touch a few months ago. I'm wondering if you could help me out: we developed a video of how we connect classrooms through social media, which may be interesting and useful to educators around the world. I'm wondering if you could help us publicize this video on some way." Done. See also this lengthier video. This is the saort of project I can get behind because it fosters many of the values - diversity, interactivity, openness - that I support in my other work.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Interaction, Project Based Learning, Video]

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The Ultimate Guide To Google+ For Educators
Steven W. Anderson, Edudemic, August 31, 2011.

Found via Rich Kiker on Google Plus, the Ultimate Guide to Google+ for Educators, by Steven W. Anderson, is a LiveBinder (first time I've seen that application of 20 or so pages with links to Google+ resources. I'd hesitate to call it a "guide" - it's more like a reference library.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Google]

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Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada
Various Authors, Website, August 31, 2011.

The Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada (AUCC) has a new website. As Academica reports, "homepage features a rotating graphic banner showcasing the association's University Commons blog, its recent pre-budget submission, and the cross-Canada tour of Ursula, its mascot." I hadn't seen the blog before (it's not in my feed reader, though). It looks pretty good; the latest pst, for example, is a nice discussion from Daniel Woolf on rebalancing the university's two roles of teaching and research.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Web Logs, Canada]

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Why School Reform Is Impossible
Seymour Papert, Website, August 31, 2011.

Seb Schmoller passed this link along to me. It raises the question, in my mind, of what would constitute the "grammar of School". What are the systemic elements that interplay in such a way as to resist any reformation of a part, 'snapping back' to its original shape in an apparent failure of innovation. To me, "what is the grammar of school?" is a question with six parts: what are the patterns, regularities and rules describing School; what is the basis of truth and meaning in School; in what context do we find School; how is School used to assert, perform and interrogate; what is the basic for learning, inference and discovery in School; and what are the dynamics of Change (if any) within School?

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Schools]

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Annual survey shows a satisfied student body
Rosanna Tamburri, University Affairs, August 31, 2011.

Wgat's wrong with a series of surveys assessing university programs that samples "on a rotating basis: all undergraduate students, first-year students, and graduating students." Right: there's no sampling of people who were rejected, peopl would could not afford the programs, or people who dropped out or failed. So is it any surprise that "almost 90 percent of respondents said their university experience either met or exceeded their expectations." No, of course not. So does the Canadian University Survey Consortium receive a passing grade for this piece of propaganda? Not a chance. They should be sent away to the corner until they can come back with a fair and balanced survey of both winners and losers in the post-secondary education marketplace. And University Affairs should know better than to run this piece as news without commentary.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Marketing, Experience, Canada]

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Meet Athabasca U - Canada's First OER university
Various Authors, WikiEducator, August 31, 2011.

According to this press release, "The President of Athabasca University has confirmed the University’s commitment to join the OER Foundation and support the OER Tertiary Education Network (OERTen) initiative as a founding anchor partner." This follows Empire State College (ESC) of the State University of New York (SUNY) joining last week. Moreover, there is currently a SCoPE seminar "discussing aspects of the OERu model." WikiEducatpr's OERu and P2PU have very similar models, whereby an OER initiative is tied to university credentialing and support. I'm not sure exactly what to make of the model. On the one hand, it's clearly a step forward in improving access to educational opportunities. On the other hand, it has the feel of a rearguard action to protect further erosion of the university sphere of influence, and is in this sense a bit regressive. But I'm in wait-and-see mode at the moment, and we'll see whether open educational resources translates in any meaningful way to open access.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Open Educational Resources, Canada, Open Access]

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Floating University
Various Authors, Big Think, August 31, 2011.

Big Think, an educationally-focussed group blog, has launched something called The Floating University, which appears to be an other entrant into the massive online university market. The first course, "Great Big Ideas: An Entire Undergraduate Education While Standing on One Foot," features lecturers Leon Botstein, Steven Pinker, Tamar Gendler, and Joel Cohen. Just one difference between this model and our model: their course costs $495. I don't think they're working on the same 'free learning' agenda I am, somehow.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Web Logs, Online Learning]

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Copyright 2010 Stephen Downes Contact: stephen@downes.ca

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