This article appeared in Higher Education today, but behind a paywall. It however appears to be substantially the same as the article that appeared on the Centre for Global Higher Education website in May of 2017 (35 page PDF, 15 pages of which are bibliography). It notes that "higher education is usually seen as serving the public good," and that support from the public may be contingent on this, but raises the question of who defines the public good and how is it defined? These questions are especially relevant given "The ‘private good’ view of higher education" which "reached its most explicit formulation with the 2001 General Agreement on Trades and Services (GATS) which recognised higher education as a publicly traded service, thereby transforming it from a public good into a ‘commodity’." Good discussion which ultimately casts the answer to the question as a renewed sort of "negotiation" with the public. Of course, if the public is locked out by means of a paywall, there's not much "negotiation" happening, is there?
The original headline for this article (preserved thanks to RSS) was "APLU enlists 130 universities in collaboration on completion and equity gaps," but this new headline completgely changes the emphasis, which makes me worder what I'm reading. Anyhow, the story is that the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) "released details on an ambitious project involving 130 universities and systems that have pledged to work together in 16 “clusters” to boost their student access and completion rates while also curbing equity gaps." Now my first thought on reading this was that the universities are finally realizing that the gap between educated and uneducated creates an existential threat to universities, but if it's really only about completion rates, then maybe not.
The key element is 'trust' (which they could have put in the headline, but then it wouldn't be clickbait). "AI only works with continuous feeding of data... If that data does something to break consumer trust then the relationship can be difficult to repair. Customers value human qualities like morality and fairness, but AI algorithms don’t always deliver." The argument here is that AI is here to stay because it delivers return on investment (ROI), and if that ROI is threatened by lack of trust, then the ethical framework will be put in place to ensure trustworthiness. "Businesses that focus on user experience in their AI products have the most to gain in the years ahead." Not sure I believe it, but there it is.
This feels like a paid placement on CNBC from a job skills company (but it's real news, so they wouldn't deceive is in this way, right?). It's based on a (sponsored) survey Freelancing in America 2018, released Wednesday, that says "freelancers put more value on skills training." I think it's true that the jobs of the future don't exist today, but the same could be said for any number of skills! Like, say, newsreader! The shift from degrees to competencies doesn't protect us from the future, and it's misleading to suggest that it does. The future of work won't be about degrees, sure, but it won't be about skills either. It will be about track record - what we have done, and (by inference from that) what we can do in the future.
In ‘The Ethics of Belief’ (1877) William Kingdon Clifford gives three reasons for believeing that belief without evidence is morally wrong (quoted from the article):
I am always wary of arguments that conclude that we have a 'duty' or 'responsibility' because these are easily abused by others and almost always require that we act against our own self-interest, sometimes in devastating ways. But each of these can be seen in a way that aligns the collective interest with perosnal interest, and that's what gives them force.
Why has Mastodon survived despite the scepticism of early critics? This article makes a good case as to why those sceptics were wrong. Essentially, survival for Mastodon - an a distributed open source federated network supported by users - is very different from survival for a typical start-up, which has to grow fast and raise funding or die. It's also about quality of experience, not quantity of users, writes Peter O'Shaughnessy. "For people only worried about their “reach” then yes, Mastodon won’t be as valuable. But most Mastodon users won’t miss those kind of people from Twitter very much!"
Clayton R. Wright's excellent list is now available. He writes, "The 40th version of the Educational Technology and Education Conference list comprises 1,719 confirmed events. The listings for November and December, 2018 have been updated since distribution of the previous list.
"Though some might question the costs and need of academic conferences now that digital communications is widely available (Colleen Flaherty, 2017), others note the cost of not travelling to conferences - the cost of academic isolation (Matt Reed, 2017). There are merits to both sides of the argument. One could attend a virtual conference one year and an in-person conference the next. Each type of event will offer different experiences. When it is feasible, most of us humans seem to prefer to interact in person. Also, a "serendipity effect" often occurs during in-person conferences - by wondering around and meeting different people, one discovers, by chance, the unexpected. I also hope that the serendipity effect applies to this list - as you review it, you may discover events that are not only new to you but perk your interest."
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Copyright 2018 Stephen Downes Contact: email@example.comThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.