I work in the Learning and Performance Support Systems program at the National Research Council, a multi-year effort to develop personal learning technology and learning analytics. I am one of the originators of the Massive Open Online Course, write about online and networked learning, have authored learning management and content syndication software, and am the author of the widely read e-learning newsletter OLDaily.


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My Adult Learning Principles for the 21st Century

I like this article by Kristin Glavis, a student at Saint Joseph's University. She outlines three major principles of adult learning that have guided her through her education:

  • Self-confidence - "confidence in their abilities, good self-esteem, support from others, and trust in others" (Merriam, Caffarella, & Baumgartner).
  • Experience - "people draw from their experiences in all aspects of their life—not just in the formal education setting."
  • Adaptability - "Adult learners seek out educational opportunities because they want to learn- they’re self-directed."

These are not going to be found on any formal curriculum, but they are at the heart of effective learning at any age. In a seminar last night I discussed differences between previous and current generation learners, and the difference comes down to these three elements with respect to new and digital technologies. We should be looking at how to instill these at younger ages and across more disciplines.

Today: 677 Total: 677 Kristin Glavis, HASTAC, 2016/12/07 [Direct Link]

Students Want Their Personal Data to be Used to Improve the College Experience, Survey Says


This is the sort of survey that gets repeated uncritically in news media like Ed Tech magazine. All we know of the methodology is that is was conducted "among" 1,000 university students in the U.S. who were sent email invitations and answered an online survey. We don't know how many of them answered. And it's not their "personal data", exactly: the survey "defined personal student information as any data the school manages about a student, from application to meal plan." So, in other words, not personal data.

Today: 159 Total: 621 Meghan Bogardus Cortez, EdTech, 2016/12/07 [Direct Link]

In Search for the Open Educator: Proposal of a Definition and a Framework to Increase Openness Adoption Among University Educators

In an article dedicated to definition careful word use is most important, so it's not a good sign when the title says "in search for..." instead of "in search of...". And the definition of an 'open educator', offered about half way through, though strong in concept, suffers from similar word usage flaws. One part refers to "past and potential students" but omits current students. Another says "Uses open educational content" and then describes the creation and release of OERs. It advocates  "allowing learners to contribute to public knowledge resources" when there's no real way an educator could prevent them from doing so. A shorter, sharper and clearer definition would be more appropriate.

Today: 333 Total: 841 Fabio Nascimbeni, Daniel Burgos, International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 2016/12/07 [Direct Link]

Introducing Gomix


I've spent the last few hours wrapping my mind around GoMix. As Anil Dash says, "Think of Gomix as sort of an App Store connected to CodePen connected to Heroku." And if that doesn't help you, well you understand why it's taking me a bit. The idea is that you have an interface to write applications, in an environment where you can search for and copy other people's applications, and run them and share them with your friends, like this multi-user quest game. It's weird (to me) not having a server to set up and host my application; it feels like working without a net. Except that the code is portable, and I could run it pretty much anywhere in a similar environment. This isn't my first go at this; I messed around with it last June while it was still called HyperDev.

Today: 110 Total: 582 Anil Dash, Medium, 2016/12/06 [Direct Link]

PISA 2015 Results: Excellence and Equity in Education


The PISA 2015 results are in, announced with a big splash this morning. Topping the charts across the three disciplines are Singapore, Japan, Estonia, Finland, and Canada, along with four Chinese cities and states. Interestingly, three Canadian provinces - Alberta, Quebec and British Columbia - are at the very top of the rankings. In addition to the tables - which of course all media will focus on - there is a lot of interesting reading in this report, especially with regard to the importance of social equity to achievement in education, the influence of parental income and education, the non-influence of the size of immigrant population, and the role of attitudes and self-efficacy in learning. There is also an associated speech and sample questions set (which you have no excuse for not getting perfect).

Today: 139 Total: 993 OECD, 2016/12/06 [Direct Link]

December 2016 Preview Clips

Take a listen to our December 2016 preview clips!

Today: 128 Total: 1716 , , CC BY-NC-ND, Ecampus Research Unit | Oregon State University, [Direct Link]

Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care.