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Advancement of Teaching & Learning
education policy, emerging movements from pre K to college...
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Harvard-for-Free Meets Resistance as U.S. Professors See Threat

Harvard-for-Free Meets Resistance as U.S. Professors See Threat | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
Professors across the U.S. are criticizing a rush to offer free online college courses, challenging a movement designed to spread knowledge and reduce higher-education costs.

Via Dr. Susan Bainbridge
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How do Finnish kids excel without rote learning and standardized testing?

How do Finnish kids excel without rote learning and standardized testing? | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
The OECD’s PISA studies show Finnish students are among the best in the world in reading, math and science.
Linda Alexander's insight:

We've read these reports for awhile, but this article's explanation is much better than many that I've reviewed.  It really gets down to the philosophical underpinnings of why their system works so much better than ours...

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moocnewsandreviews.com -

moocnewsandreviews.com - | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
Thoughtful critique of individual MOOC courses and discussion of the evolving MOOC landscape.
Linda Alexander's insight:

"MOOC News & Reviews is an online publication devoted to thoughtful critique of individual MOOC courses and to discussion of the evolving MOOC landscape.  It is a multi-authored, user-centric blog...

 

 

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Ken Robinson: How to escape education's death valley

Sir Ken Robinson outlines 3 principles crucial for the human mind to flourish -- and how current education culture works against them. In a funny, stirring talk he tells us how to get out of the educational "death valley" we now face, and how to nurture our youngest generations with a climate of possibility.

 

See video at: http://youtu.be/wX78iKhInsc


Via Stewart-Marshall
Linda Alexander's insight:

Rather than "No Child Left Behind" should we have reframed it "Millions Left Behind"? Sir Ken Robinson's latest TED Talk is riveting (as always).  It is a must-see...!  

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Berkeley agrees to help disabled students do homework & research | Inside Higher Ed

Berkeley agrees to help disabled students do homework & research | Inside Higher Ed | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
Linda Alexander's insight:

The following comments are based on personal experiences and are not all necessarily connected to this very important article.

 

There are myraid issues facing students with learning differences across the U.S.  Moreover, visuallly impaired students face even more daunting obstacles. Indeed their college graduate rates are considered the lowest of any population group on campus.  College professors often play an enormous role in their mounting frustrations by producing assigned reading materials late or at the very last moment.  If visually impaired students have access to assigned reading materials prior to the start of classes, student support (or access) services will have ample time to convert materials to audio or other accessible forms. This is too often not the situation.  Therefore, the students who typically need additional time to study and cover all the class materials can be the very last students with access to their class work.  Given everything else on their plates, late access to reading materials can be the final straw in their college survival.  It really doesn't need to be this way. Access Centers (student support) can't do this alone--they need the teaching faculty to be a their partner.  Student support centers are often under staffed and librarians, who must convert reading materials, are pushed by students who then need everything at the very last minute. 

 

Finally, professors often lack sensitivity or have never received professional development related to the range of students and disabilities they will be dealing within in their classrooms.  While assignments must be provided on time, meaning prior to the start of actual classes, universities also need to require their professors to attend additional, ongoing training to better understand the challenges many of their students face on campus.  

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Elizabeth Smart: Abstinence Education Message to Rape Victims Is Wrong

Elizabeth Smart: Abstinence Education Message to Rape Victims Is Wrong | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
Elizabeth Smart became a household name after she was kidnapped from her home in Salt Lake City, UT at the age of 14 and held in captivity for nine months.
Linda Alexander's insight:

With the escape of three women held in captivity in Cleveland, Ohio for almost a decade, Elizabeth Smart's message is timely.  Smart is and remains ever-so impressive; speaking  from her own personal experiences. 

 

This is a must-read article for any states or schools considering abstinence only education.  While there has been evidence-based research for well over a decade telling us that comprehensive sex education is the correct program path, and that abstinence-only education flat out doesn't work (and if often quite harmful), that hasn't stopped the push for these programs in certain conservative quarters.  

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The 50 Best Independent Day Schools in the United States

The 50 Best Independent Day Schools in the United States | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
Linda Alexander's insight:

These rankings are never perfect or all that accurate, but here it goes... (and I would add quite a few of the larger independent schools in Cleveland, Ohio to this list...really can't imagine that there are schools much better elswhere, but guess that depends on the ratings lens)

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Nation’s Online Elementary and Secondary Schools Expand Rapidly, But Academic Performance Lags Behind Other Public Schools, New Report Finds | National Education Policy Center

Nation’s Online Elementary and Secondary Schools Expand Rapidly, But Academic Performance Lags Behind Other Public Schools, New Report Finds | National Education Policy Center | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
"Online Schools Expand, Academic Performance Lags" http://t.co/GbLfFRI89I Lack of teacher training? F2F v Online Apples v Oranges. #EdTech
Linda Alexander's insight:

Bottom-line?  “Even a cursory review of virtual schooling in the U.S. reveals an environment much like the legendary wild west. There are outsized claims, lagging performance, intense conflicts, lots of taxpayer money at stake, and very little solid evidence to justify the rapid expansion of virtual schools.”

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'MOOC' Provider Coursera Jumps Into K-12 and Teacher Education

'MOOC' Provider Coursera Jumps Into K-12 and Teacher Education | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
Coursera, a major name in providing "massively open online courses," takes a step into K-12 schools by arranging to provide teacher training.
Linda Alexander's insight:

This should not surprise anyone...."We want to help K-12 students by helping their teachers," Coursera Co-Founder Andrew Ng said in a statement. "Many schools just don't have the resources to provide teachers and parents the training and support they need. By providing free online courses on how to teach, we hope to improve this."

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Case Western Reserve University's free online courses attract more than 80,000

Case Western Reserve University's free online courses attract more than 80,000 | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
More than 85,000 people have signed up for Case Western University's first free online courses, part of the MOOC -- or massive open online courses -- movement.
Linda Alexander's insight:

When I noticed that Richard Boyatizis was offering a free course through Coursera, Inspiring Leadership Through Emotional Intelligence, I signed up right away.  I guess I wasn't alone in thinking this was too good of an offer to pass up---my classmates include 65,000 other students from around the world.  Boyatizis high profile couple with enthusiastic students who sent this offering out to all their friends, likely accounts for the higher than usual enrollment rates. And there's still time to sign-up today...it starts tomorrow.

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Private Schools Converting to Charter Schools (if you can't beat 'em, join 'em)

Private Schools Converting to Charter Schools (if you can't beat 'em, join 'em) | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
When Sarasota Academy of the Arts opens this fall, the Florida K-8 school still will have the feel of its predecessor, the Julie Rohr Academy. Small c (Choice vs.
Linda Alexander's insight:

If you can't beat 'em, join 'em!  Please do keep in mind that "private" schools and "independent" schools are two, separate school sectors.  The faith-based, private schools appear to be having the toughest time competing against the onslaught of charter and online school choice offerings. Here is an example of a conversation from a private to charter school.  I imagine there will be more to follow their lead...

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I Quit, I Think - John Taylor Gatto (& The Underground History of Education)

I Quit, I Think - John Taylor Gatto (& The Underground History of Education) | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
In the first year of the last decade of the twentieth century during my thirtieth year as a school teacher in Community School District 3, Manhattan, after teaching in all five secondary schools in the district, crossing swords with one professional...
Linda Alexander's insight:

Given the recent rash of protests over standardization and testing, it felt high time to re-introduce John Taylor Gatto's famous op-ed he wrote after winning New York's Teacher of the Year Award almost two decades ago.  

Here is the complete speech on Why Schools Don't Educate:

 

http://www.naturalchild.org/guest/john_gatto.html

 

He spoke then about the need to transform schools--and his voice is still ringing today.  There are also links to other articles as well.

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The Common Core Standards: Truths, Untruths and Ambiguities - Huffington Post (blog)

The Common Core Standards: Truths, Untruths and Ambiguities - Huffington Post (blog) | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
The Common Core Standards: Truths, Untruths and Ambiguities
Huffington Post (blog)
But an emerging anti-core backlash may render their efforts moot in several states. For readers who may not ...
Linda Alexander's insight:

This is a great article in that it analyzes a number of rumors and untruths and seems to be a fairly objective reaction...

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Fisher v University of Texas & class-based affirmative action as an alternative

Fisher v University of Texas & class-based affirmative action as an alternative | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
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Duncanville Student's Classroom Rant Goes Viral

Duncanville Student's Classroom Rant Goes Viral | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
"I want to see a teacher stand up and interact with the students, get involved, discuss, talk, question, and get deep into the subject," said 18-year-old Jeff Bliss.
Linda Alexander's insight:

This student's classroom rant has gone viral.  I can't say I feel comfortable with the outburst, but I certainly understand the reasons for it.  And, later, the student doesn't apologize for his classroom assessment when interviewed by the news media.  Handing out packets everyday to help students prepare for "tests" is an all too common classroom practice rather than fully engaging with the students and bringing learning to life. It isn't about a paycheck...and the teacher's non-engaging, monotone voice tells us part of the everyday story. 

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Geoffrey Canada: Our failing schools. Enough is enough! | Video on TED.com

Why, why, why does our education system look so similar to the way it did 50 years ago? Millions of students were failing then, as they are now -- and it’s because we’re clinging to a business model that clearly doesn’t work.

Via Kat Haber
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Kat Haber's curator insight, May 11, 2013 8:56 AM

Needlessly...business plan failing.

Geoffrey makes us laugh at our failure,

from the first ever TED event on TV: TED Ed on PBS.

Funny, informative, innovative.

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Don't Leave College Without These 10 Digital Skills

Don't Leave College Without These 10 Digital Skills | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it

Graduation season is upon us, and that means college graduates everywhere are preparing to enter "the real world." But chances are your liberal arts degree, as hard-earned and valuable as it is, doesn't equip you with every digital skill you need. 

We've put together a short list of fundamental skills that every college graduate should possess, from simply branding yourself online to learning basic coding. They're guaranteed to increase your overall digital know-how, and you can learn them all on your own.

 Read more at: http://mashable.com/2013/05/06/digital-skills-college/


Via Stewart-Marshall
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Osama El Shareif's comment, May 9, 2013 2:00 PM
Nice article, thanks a lot sir
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Bubble burster: ACT exams soon going digital

Bubble burster: ACT exams soon going digital | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
As early as spring 2015, ACT college admissions exams will be available digitally, the tests' provider said Monday, allowing students to see their results within minutes, not weeks.
Linda Alexander's insight:

I can't imagine why it would take this long for the ACT to sort through an online version.  It doesn't seem to be rocket science to move a test online, although security and the integrity of the test results are, indeed, top concerns. Nevertheless, getting the large testing agencies to offer their services in a manner where students don't have to drive long distances, get up at the crack of dawn to get to a test site, pay for hotel rooms, etc. would finally help provide broader and more equitable access to this highly overrated test.  It is often the less economically advantaged urban and rural students who suffer most.   

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Principal fires security guards to hire art teachers — and transforms elementary school

Principal fires security guards to hire art teachers — and transforms elementary school | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
By Katy Tur, Correspondent, NBC News ROXBURY, Mass. — The community of Roxbury had high hopes for its newest public school back in 2003. There were art studios, a dance room, even a theater equipped with cushy seating.
Linda Alexander's insight:

What a lesson!  I love this story. 

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Struggling Catholic schools strategize to draw new students

Struggling Catholic schools strategize to draw new students | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
CHICAGO (Reuters) - For years, headlines about Catholic schools in the United States have told gloomy tales of falling enrollment and multiple closings.Between 2000 and 2013, 2,090 U.S.
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Higher Ed CIOs Can't Ignore MOOCs Or Politics

Higher Ed CIOs Can't Ignore MOOCs Or Politics | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
Now more than ever, a higher education CIO's job hinges on both surviving the academic politics of the institution and mastering bleeding-edge technologies.

Via EDTECH@UTRGV
Linda Alexander's insight:

The link within this piece is worthwhile scanning as well..

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Frederik Truyen's curator insight, May 3, 2013 9:24 AM

Another argument for strong corporate IT governance, so that you can mobilize IT capabilities for your business goals.

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What's Wrong with College Grads?:The 40 Percent

What's Wrong with College Grads?:The 40 Percent | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
NEW YORK, April 30 (Reuters) - More than 40 percent of recent U.S. college graduates are underemployed or need more training to get on a career track, a poll released on Tuesday showed.
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Colleges Adapt Online Courses to Ease Burden

Colleges Adapt Online Courses to Ease Burden | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
Universities begin blending open online courses, created to deliver elite college instruction to anyone with an Internet connection, to their offerings.
Linda Alexander's insight:

The new online offerings will be most attractive to students who need remedial work prior to even starting college, and students not able to enroll in a required class or two prior to their graduation.  MOCCs are performing an important role as change catalysts---finally pushing Universities to address "consumer" needs.  Universities, after all, are long-standing business enterprises that too often forget they are there to serve their students first, and not their tenured faculty and embedded administrative teams.  

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For the Undecided, Some Resources to Help Make a College Choice

For the Undecided, Some Resources to Help Make a College Choice | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
In anticipation of the May 1 deadline of making a college choice, we present some recent resources from The New York Times to help students decide where to enroll.
Linda Alexander's insight:

A nice laundry list of online resources..

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No Rich Child Left Behind

No Rich Child Left Behind | Advancement of Teaching & Learning | Scoop.it
Family income is now a better predictor of children’s success in school than race.
Linda Alexander's insight:

The surprising discoveries within this piece, since we've known for awhile that family income is a better predictor of a children's success in school than race, et. al is the amount of time upper income parents are now devoting to extra-curricular activities, but more so investing all their resources---time, money and knowledge--on what it takes to be successful in school and life. 

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