Larry Berger "is exactly right that there is a fundamental problem with the assumptions behind what he calls the engineering model of personalized learning," writes Phil Hill. Berger argues that he "spent a decade believing in this model—the map, the measure, and the library, all powered by big data algorithms" but that ""the map doesn't exist, the measurement is impossible, and we have, collectively, built only 5% of the library." He reiterates his minority and irrelevant definition of 'personalized learning' as "teaching practices that are intended to help reach students in the metaphorical back row" but beyond that doesn't say more about Berger's commentary. And Berger's commentary is important, and importantly right.
This is another phase of their Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) project. The idea is to deliver media content embedded in the email meddage, rather than having you open it in your browser (this of course ensures you never leave the Google environment). Why is this important? Well, it reflects the increasing importance of email to marketers as they lose their ability to position their content in social media. " The opaque algorithms of Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram can make promoting content organically (i.e., without paying) a tricky matter," writes Mark Wilson. The benefit to the consumer? According to Wilson, it's that they will no longer get lost on their phone. Um hm.
This post summarized an article by Shalina Chatlani reporting on (unpublished?) results from Lou Pugliese, director for the Technology Innovation Action Lab at Arizona State University, and Kate Smith, vice president of academic affairs at Rio Salado College. They report four key findings: "take a strategic portfolio approach to digital learning, build capabilities and expertise to design for quality in the digital realm, provide the differential student support to succeed in fully online learning, and engage faculty as true partners, equipping them for success." Bates adds a few other findings from the literature.
I always worry about claims that something fires up students' idealism, because propaganda also does that, and it has nothing to do with learning. The jury is still out on this initiative. It describes a partnership between a group called Hearts on Fire and Skype in the Classroom where "teachers now have access to inspiring speakers and innovative content online." Microsoft's take is that it is Skype performing a valuable service. "“Skype in the Classroom makes it easier for me to connect my students with people in the real world,” Leslie says. “It’s not always feasible to put them on a bus and take them somewhere. Experts may not be local. This makes the connection so much simpler and more efficient.” I'd feel more comfortable if the content of these inspiring messages were public, as in a Google Hangout, so we can see hat's being pumped into classrooms.
I don't think the real problem with OERs is quality. Sure, it's nice to choose the better of two resources, if given a choice, and limited to using only one. But why limit yourself. Look at both! But of course looking at both is exactly the opposite of the model where course designers select the one-and-only resource from a library to create prepackaged courses to students. Anyhow, the story here is that "Macmillan Learning is launching a new course materials product that brings together open educational resources, instructor supplements and on-demand support. Dubbed Intellus Open Courses."
This is an application of Chapelle's media selection criteria for computer assisted language learning (CALL): language learning potential, learner fit, meaning focus, authenticity, positive feedback, and practicality. Once the domain of programmed instruction systems like Plato, CALL today is "based on the communicative approach to second language acquisition (SLA) with authentic communication derived from meaningful activities beyond academia." The article also notes that the The Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) International Association has a CALL Interest Section that is very active and "other professional associations that focus on CALL include the European Association for Computer Assisted Language Learning (EUROCALL) and the Computer-Assisted Language Instruction Consortium (CALICO)."
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Copyright 2018 Stephen Downes Contact: email@example.comThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.