by Stephen Downes
[Sept] 18, 2014
Personal Learning in a Connected World: Learning and Performance Support Systems
Stephen Downes, [Sept] 18, 2014,
Future of E-Learning Environments, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
This presentation outlines the NRC's Learning and Performance Support Systems program as an instance of a personal learning environment. It situates this program in a context where education depends on the development and refinement of critical literacies, which are in turn fostered by the interactive and communicative capacities of the PLE.
A New Weighted Keyword Based Similarity Measure for Clustering Web pages
Shihab Rahman, Dolon Chapa, , Shaily Kabir,
International Jpournal of Computer, Information Technology (IJICT),
Long-time readers (really long-time readers) will know of my affinity for similarity - it was similarity that led me to connectionism and networks. To me similarity still forms the semantic basis for categorization, causation and other predictive events. So this sort of article, which outlines a proposed similarity measure for clustering web pages, speaks to me. And it's not a long jump from calculating keyword weights to calculating weights of connections between them. More from the most recent IJICT, just out.
Competency vs Time
I think it's a bit backward, but Tim Klapdor responds to a recent post by arguing that not caring about time is anti-student. "Who’s time don’t they care about? The students. They can take as looong as they like, why would they care, it’s not their time and it’s not their expense. I think framing competency based education like has an air of contempt for the student and the value of their time." I think his interpretation of the meaning of "don't care about time" is different from the author's original intent.
Educational iPad apps still popular with nine to 11s
The opposite of the headline appears to be the main story here - while educational applications capture the attention of those under nine, as they grow older they tend to shift to "more open-play adventure games, casual/social games and puzzle/creative games." Of course there's no reason these can't be educational games in their own right, but they're not overtly educational, and while the author suggests that some titles retain their popularity with the older crowd, it seems to be a losing proposition. Anyhow, there are some good links to popular applications here, as well as a number of top ten lists.
The Open Education Professional Directory
Open Education Consortium,
If you're looking for speakers, consultants or experts to assist you with issues related to open educational resources, you can't do better than the The Open Education Professional Directory. As Mary Lou Forward from the Open Education Consortium writes, "Through the directory, agencies, institutions and other parties interested in open education can find experienced professionals that fit their needs. Open education professionals will be able to more easily find colleagues for joint projects and other collaborations. The directory will also provide greater exposure and visibility for individuals and the open education movement in general." I'm listed, as are dozens of others to choose from.
Is there a Canadian market for American online programs?
online learning and distance edcuation resources,
Really good article from Tony Bates that comprehensively answers the question in the title. It begins with a dead-on accurate remark about hiring consultants, and then explains why the Canadian higher education market is what they call 'mature': costs are lower in Canada than the U.S., Canadian education is already high quality, and most every Canadian already has access to the learning they need ("51% of Canadians go on from high school to university, and 60% to some form of publicly-funded post-secondary education"). Conversely, Canadian universities face significant barriers marketing in the U.S.: "the U.S. accreditation system is byzantine and bizarre, and totally ill-adapted to the move to online, distance education." Also, "many U.S. citizens don’t even know where Canada is, let alone know whether the University of Waterloo is a bona fide institution."
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