by Stephen Downes
Mar 26, 2015
Innovative Efforts for Universal Quality Education
This report summarizes "an international workshop on 'Innovative efforts for universal quality education'." It states: "If education systems are to provide disadvantaged groups with quality education, the knowledge, skills and abilities acquired by students need to be relevant to the environment, improve their employability and be aligned with their work aspirations." Short PDF, most of the useful content is in the 'Highlights' on page 3.
CMI-5 Course Structure
So as soon as I get a handle on things, there's a new thing. Today's it's this: "CMI-5, a soon-to-be standard which is also conformant to the Experience API (xAPI)." Sigh. This is a link to the GitHub version of the specification. The document basically defines "LMS Course Structure Import/Export [and] LMS course definition as it pertains to runtime data used by Learning Activities."
The Ultimate Guide to BPMN2
I'm not enamoured of Creative Commons's recent initiative to license 'open business practices' as outlined here, because it seems to legitimize the nidea that business practices can be licensed, which seems wrong to me. But I guess it's becoming a thing, which is why it now becomes relevant to link to this item from SourceForge (I don't know whether the URL will work for you; it's part of an email campaign. The direct link is here and I don't know whether that will work either - it's all very private-like - or you can just grab the PDF directly from here and skip the marketing pitch, and if they complain I'll explain about the concept of SourceForge and sharing and all that). "Business Process Model and Notation 2.0 (BPMN2) is one of the best things to happen in business process management in a long time - and many people and organizations who could benefit from BPMN have yet to give it a try." It makes me wonder who is behind all this and what they hope to achieve.
The hidden costs of success are too high for low-income students
As a low-income student when I was a student, I can personally attest to this: "paying for event admissions, society membership fees, travel costs for conferences and for food and drinks at informal social gatherings. The second kind of success-cost is the loss of income or opportunity when there’s inadequate time to both earn a living wage and earn extracurricular and volunteer experience, in other words, 'time' costs." I earned money every weekend working at the 7-Eleven in Cedarbrae - but that meant I wasn't participating in weekend events. It underscored for me how much the real purpose of university lies in creating connections and building networks.
Why Free Is Not the Future of Digital Content in Education
I long ago accused Wired of selling out to advertisers, and this column (not coincidentally authored by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt’s Chief Content Officer) does not dissuade me of that criticism. Here is the argument, in one sentence: "If we do not get educational content right, students are less likely to gain the knowledge and skills they need to succeed in college and careers." If this were true, nobody would have succeeded before academic publishers came onto the scene. But in fact, almost any content will do if learners are motivated, and no content will do if learners are not motivated. And the reason why free can work and is working is that it's created by and for people who are motivated. That's why it's enough of a threat to an academic publisher that they felt compelled to write an op-ed in one of their captive publications.
This newsletter is sent only at the request of subscribers. If you would like to unsubscribe,
Know a friend who might enjoy this newsletter? Feel free to forward OLDaily to your colleagues. If you received this issue from a friend and would like a free subscription of your own,
you can join our mailing list. Click here to subscribe.