In case you haven't heard this somewhere else,Rose Luckin tells us the AI revolution is here. I like the idea of a personal AI but the tasks she imagines seem firmly rooted in the past: " it is there to help them and their tutors understand their progress, to help them collate the data that demonstrates and gives evidence for what they’re good at, what they’ve achieved, why they can accomplish a particular job satisfactorily, or why they should be given a place at a university." Um, yes, if I have an AI that's that good maybe I don't need a place at a university.
This is a bit of a snapshot of the state of play in learning technology at universities. This list provided by Duke is intended to be practical - it's what's in production and in use. So it inmcludes the LMS, WordPress site and e-Portfolios, of course. But there's also Coursera, a lecture capture tool, voice thread and even maker spaces. You might want also to look at the tools they're piloting this year: Nudge, Classroom Mode and Gradescope.
People have been working on this for a long time (remember mIDm?) It still isn't solved but there are suggestions that it might be in the coming years. "What is a decentralized identity? To put it simply, it’s a publicly discoverable identity information... Using crypto technology, identities can be defined as a set of keys used in proving the source and validity of information." Ultimately, I think, we'll all have our own personal key (often on an actual key we plug into our computer). This doesn't necessarily connect to a person (and 'fake people' will be a problem). But it does necessarily connect to all activities from that identity, and that's the point.
Even though I didn't really like the dune-buggy diagram (this was far more useful) I enjoyed this article as it offered a broader look at the Online Program Management (OPM) category and promised to cast the net even more broadly in the future. OPM providers "are for-profit organizations that help non-profit schools develop online programs, most often for Master’s level programs." 2U (formerly 2tor) is an example of an OPM and styles itself "a trusted brand steward and the partner of choice to the world’s top universities in bringing the best of themselves into the digital age." Anyhow, Feldstein writes that the new broader services "belong under a larger umbrella that we call 'Digital Enablement Services.' In general, colleges and universities are beginning to move from having a philosophical commitment to student success toward operational excellence at enabling student success."
Although there's a lot of overlap, there's a difference between systems and networks. The main difference is that systems have purpose and goals, and are typically designed or built rather than grown. But otherwise, the ways to create change in a system are similar to the ways to create change in a network. This list in this articles is quite a good list; for networks, just stop using the list at item numbers three through one. What's interesting (from my perspective) is that this is also a pretty good (though very informal) guide to neural networks - the factors described here are the factors neural net algorithms seek to change mathematically.
My off-the-cuff calculation of the impact of digital technologies on cost has always been a two-times-order of magnitude reduction. In other words, something that used to cost $20 - like a CD, maybe - should be 20 cents post-digital. A lot of content has reached this valuation, but a lot - including advanced education - still has a way to go. The lectures described here (surprisingly) still have a way to go - Audible is expensive compared to other audio-only services. But we're getting there. Which is why universities have to focus on something other than content.
This is a case of a university looking at its wider mission, and not merely the transactional relationship it has with students. “Overwhelming student debt is fundamentally reshaping the medical profession in ways that are adversely affecting health care,” the university said. “Saddled with staggering student loans, many medical-school graduates choose higher-paying specialties, drawing talent away from less-lucrative fields like primary care, pediatrics, and obstetrics and gynecology. Moreover, the financial barriers discourage many promising high-school and college students from considering a career in medicine altogether due to fears about the costs associated with medical school.”
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