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Dr. Jonassen- Let Us Learn to Solve Problems
September 21, 2005 In the ITForum discussion of David Jonassen's problem-based theory of learning, Thad Crews laments the lack of empirical evidence to support the theory. This article examines the role of empirical evidence with respect to Jonassen's theory and argues that acceptance (or non-acceptance) is not so much a matter of experimentation as of the adoption of one or another conceptual framework. [Comment]


Jonathan Kozol: Still Separate, Still Unequal: America's Educational Apartheid, September 21, 2005
Scathing account of the continuing segregation in American schools (you can draw your own parallels on a worldwide basis). The author concludes, "The promulgation of new and expanded inventories of 'what works,' no matter the enthusiasm with which they're elaborated, is not going to change this. The use of hortatory slogans chanted by the students in our segregated schools is not going to change this. Desperate historical revisionism that romanticizes the segregation of an older order (this is a common theme of many separatists today) is not going to change this. Skinnerian instructional approaches, which decapitate a child's capability for critical reflection, are not going to change this. Posters about 'global competition' will certainly not change this. Turning six-year-olds into examination soldiers and denying eight-year-olds their time for play at recess will not change this." [Comment]

Clifford A. Lynch and Joan K. Lippincott: Institutional Repository Deployment in the United States as of Early 2005, D-Lib September 21, 2005
According to this article, "institutional repositories are becoming well-established as campus infrastructure components – around 40% of the respondents have some type of institutional repository operating, and 88% of those that do not yet have a repository have planning work underway." Interestingly, when the authors looked at the size of these repository, they concluded that "it is clear that no two institutions are counting the same things." DSpace and bepress were the most commonly used software applications. [Comment]

Dave Tosh: Darren Cambridge, ERADC September 21, 2005
Dave Tosh introduces us to the new blog being authored by Darren Cambridge, "a well known academic in the arena of e-portfolios." [Comment]

Jeff: Maps: A Full Scale Explanation, SEGA Tech September 21, 2005
Nothing earth-shaking about this item. I just like maps. [Comment]

Tom Hoffman: School Walk Out Organized Online, ESchool News September 21, 2005
OK, so 1500 students walked out of class at DeWitt Clinton High School in the Bronx. Nothing really unusual. More interesting is that they used an online sevice, Sconex, to organize it. Even more so, as Tom Hoffman notes, is the use of these message boards (if you can hack into them) "not simply as a security measure, but as a way to better understand the kids sitting in front of us." Of course, if you're caught, remember, hacking is a felony - right Tom? [Comment]

Unattributed: A Field Guide to Learning management Systems, Learning Circuits September 21, 2005
George Siemens links to this "short report on learning management system product features, pricing models, implementation, etc." This isn't a guide to specific systems, but to purchaser attitudes and trends. Siemens comments that "the statistics are a bit depressing (and quite indicative of how organizations view an LMS). What did survey respondents view as most valuable aspects of an LMS? Testing, reporting, and compliance tracking." Such is the state of education, that it has come down to this. PDF. [Comment]

Unattributed: Moodteller: Estimating Mood Levels in LiveJournal, September 21, 2005
You might this this is pretty useless, except, if you can (accurately) estimate mood based on the content of LiveJournal posts, you can probably estimate any of a wide range of tacit phenomena - how much someone likes you based on email messages, degrees of customer hostility based on product feedback, anger at politicians based on letters to the editor. Way cool. Via elearningpost. [Comment]

Judy Baker: Span the Silos for Comprehensive Distance Education, EDUCAUSE Blogs September 21, 2005
The author taps into a common problem: departments that operate independently tend to remain insular, and staff within those departments remain unaware of the nature and work of the other department. The solution proposed - job shadowing, wherein an employee from one department shadows one from another department for a day or so - is less satisfactory. It takes too much time and is too disruptive, with too nebulous a gain, for most employees to contemplate. It seems to me that, rather than mandating direct personal instruction (which is what job shadowing amounts to), a combination of online strategies would be more appropriate. Personal blogs, unregulated cross-departmental mailing lists and instant messaging could all be used to bring staff from different departments closer together. Ah, but the design of such communication is another matter, and convincing departments to work openly an art in itself. [Comment]

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