by Stephen Downes
Jul 01, 2014
Online Upstart’s Goal: MOOC Lectures That Go Viral
The Chronicle: Wired Campus Blog,
Jun 30, 2014
I'm not sure how exactly a company that professionally produces five-minute 'educational videos' with the intent of making them go viral qualifies as "upstart" but I guess in some world anything that is not traditional is an upstart. And ooo, radical: "The course is also piloting a call-and-response model where user response drives content: Mr. Boudreaux will add new videos based on the most common questions he receives from students."
The City and The City: Reflections on the Cetis 2014 Conference
UK Web Focus,
Jun 30, 2014
Summary and reflections on the 2014 CETIS conference that took place in Bolton a couple of weeks ago. Of note, from a talk by Phil Richards, "In the moves towards reducing the range of activities which Jisc works on Phil highlighted a move away from working with standards, and highlighted the NHS as an example of a sector in which large sums of money had been invested in the development of interoperable systems based on open standards which had failed to deliver." Note though that the alternative is not necessarily the employment of proprietary standards. It could be "non-standards based systems, such as “innovative, successful learning technology without standards” such as "Sugata Mitra's 'hole in the wall' work as an example of successful self-organised learning which we should seek to emulate."
Passport for learning
The corridor of uncertainty,
Jun 30, 2014
Interesting proposition: "The holy grail of open learning at the moment is finding a sustainable and reliable model for the validation of non-traditional learning (open courses, MOOCs, practical work experience, self-tuition etc). These forms of learning may be openly documented but have little or no formal credibility when applying to study at a university or applying for a job." I'm not sure I agree. What we want is validation of the person, not validation of the learning.
Anyhow, the point of this post is to introduce "the project VM-Pass which aims to implement the recognition of virtual mobility and OER-learning through a learning passport." If that sounds a lot like Mozilla badges, it is. But "the key to VM-Pass is the validation process that is based on combination of peer review and crowdsourcing. The passport contains information from the course provider on the certificate the learner has earned with transparent links to all criteria. In addition there is the learner's own profile."
Experimental evidence of massive-scale emotional contagion through social networks
Adam D. I. Kramera, Jamie E. Guillory, Jeffrey T. Hancock,
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States,
Jun 28, 2014
To borrow from an old quote, it renders quaint normal concerns about research ethics. Facebook is performing experiments to manipulate users' emptions. From the paper: "We show, via a massive (N = 689,003) experiment on Facebook, that emotional states can be transferred to others via emotional contagion, leading people to experience the same emotions without their awareness." Via William Hughes.
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