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by Valerie Strauss
"The Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development, which brings the world the international testing program of 15-year old studentsknown as PISA, just issued a new report called “Measuring Innovation in Education: A New Perspective, Educational Research and Innovation.”
"Yes, the OECD is measuring innovation in education. There are, of course, innovation metrics for evaluating businesses, but schools aren’t businesses and shouldn’t be operated as if they were. So what exactly constitutes “innovation” in the educational world as viewed by the OECD?"
by Gregory Ciotti
"When it comes to creativity, one of our biggest concerns is usually how we can be more creative, or how to come up with better ideas. Research in this area is all over the place, but I've gathered some of the most practical studies out there to help you utilize specific techniques that can boost your creativity."
by Lisa Johnson
"So What is a Wicked Good Idea? It is more than pin-worthy… it is something that forces you to stop and challenges you to think differently. In this two-part series, we will delve into professional development ideas that not only make you halt and take notice… but also jump-start your imagination and inspiration and drive you to pluck them and take action by remixing them or even creating one of your own."
by Kevan Lee
"The complete beginner's guide to creating a social media marketing plan, for those brand new to social media and looking for a straightforward way to start."
Jim Lerman's insight:
A practical and useful guide put together by the folks at Buffer. Nicely done.
by Sam Frizell
"New data show that the 13 states that raised the minimum wage this year are adding jobs at a faster pacethan those that did not.
"State-by-state hiring data released Friday by the Labor Department reveal that in the 13 states that boosted minimum wages at the beginning of this year, the number of jobs grew an average of 0.85 percent from January to June. The average in the other 37 states was 0.61 percent."
A case study by Howard Rheingold
"Phonar, an abbreviation of PHOtography and NARrative, is an in-person course at Coventry University in the UK and an open online course for as many as 35,000 participants around the world who co-create learning communities through a variety of media including blogs and a blog hub, Twitter (using the #phonar hashtag), and a Google+ community. The class grew out two forces that were created by the advent of digital media and global networks: (1) the problem of how to monetize cultural products such as photographs now that they can be so easily reproduced and distributed; and (2) the phenomenon of open, connected, hybrid courses that take place simultaneously online and in a physical classroom. In Phonar, the subject matter of photography as a vehicle for transmedia storytelling meshes with — and mutually amplifies — the networked forums through which students and instructor communicate."
description by EdSurge
"To catch up with peers who have low risk factors, a high-risk child would need to make nearly twice as much progress during a year in kindergarten. At least, that's the disheartening conclusion of Kindergartners' Skills at School Entry, a report from the Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit behind Sesame Street. The Sesame Workshop also shared an Educational Framework for School Readiness, which outlines preschoolers' development paths on 20 core school readiness skills, from memorizing the alphabet to curiosity to self-regulating their emotions."
by Jill Lapore
"Every age has a theory of rising and falling, of growth and decay, of bloom and wilt: a theory of nature. Every age also has a theory about the past and the present, of what was and what is, a notion of time: a theory of history. Theories of history used to be supernatural: the divine ruled time; the hand of God, a special providence, lay behind the fall of each sparrow. If the present differed from the past, it was usually worse: supernatural theories of history tend to involve decline, a fall from grace, the loss of God’s favor, corruption. Beginning in the eighteenth century, as the intellectual historian Dorothy Ross once pointed out, theories of history became secular; then they started something new—historicism, the idea “that all events in historical time can be explained by prior events in historical time.” Things began looking up. First, there was that, then there was this, and this is better than that. The eighteenth century embraced the idea of progress; the nineteenth century had evolution; the twentieth century had growth and then innovation. Our era has disruption, which, despite its futurism, is atavistic. It’s a theory of history founded on a profound anxiety about financial collapse, an apocalyptic fear of global devastation, and shaky evidence.
"Most big ideas have loud critics. Not disruption. Disruptive innovation as the explanation for how change happens has been subject to little serious criticism, partly because it’s headlong, while critical inquiry is unhurried; partly because disrupters ridicule doubters by charging them with fogyism, as if to criticize a theory of change were identical to decrying change; and partly because, in its modern usage, innovation is the idea of progress jammed into a criticism-proof jack-in-the-box.
"The idea of progress—the notion that human history is the history of human betterment—dominated the world view of the West between the Enlightenment and the First World War. It had critics from the start, and, in the last century, even people who cherish the idea of progress, and point to improvements like the eradication of contagious diseases and the education of girls, have been hard-pressed to hold on to it while reckoning with two World Wars, the Holocaust and Hiroshima, genocide and global warming. Replacing “progress” with “innovation” skirts the question of whether a novelty is an improvement: the world may not be getting better and better but our devices are getting newer and newer."
Jim Lerman's insight:
You've heard about this battle; now read it for yourself. In the pages of the New Yorker, Lapore takes on Clayton Christensen in a no-holds-barred, heavyweight, intellectual boxing match -- arguing that "disruption" and its supporters lie at the root of what ails the age we live in.
From the website
"This report is a synthesis of ongoing research, design, and implementation of an approach to education called “connected learning.” It advocates for broadened access to learning that is socially embedded, interest-driven, and oriented toward educational, economic, or political opportunity. Connected learning is realized when a young person is able to pursue a personal interest or passion with the support of friends and caring adults, and is in turn able to link this learning and interest to academic achievement, career success or civic engagement.
"This model is based on evidence that the most resilient, adaptive, and effective learning involves individual interest as well as social support to overcome adversity and provide recognition.
"This report investigates how we can use new media to foster the growth and sustenance of environments that support connected learning in a broad-based and equitable way. This report also offers a design and reform agenda, grounded in a rich understanding of child development and learning, to promote and test connected learning theories."
by Steve Kolowich
"The University of Zurich says it has cleared up the bizarre case of the MOOC that went missing. But the university is offering few clarifying details to the public, which has been left to piece together theories from the university’s statements and from cryptic tweets by the course’s professor about an unspecified experiment he might have been trying to conduct.
"As I reported this morning, the content of a massive open online course taught by one of the university’s lecturers, Paul-Olivier Dehaye, vanished last week without explanation, leaving an empty husk on Coursera’s platform. The course, “Teaching Goes Massive: New Skills Required,” was one week into its planned three-week run when the videos and other course materials disappeared. Coursera officials said Mr. Dehaye, a mathematician, deleted the materials on July 2, and the company has since restored them. But the company’s officials initially were as confused as everyone else."
* Research Papers *
ALL ARTICLES AVAILABLE FOR FREE DOWNLOAD AS PDFs.
by Dave Jarrat
"In their effort to improve outcomes, colleges and universities are becoming more sophisticated in how they analyze student data – a promising development. But too often they focus their analytics muscle on predicting which students will fail, and then allocate all of their support resources to those students.
"That’s a mistake. Colleges should instead broaden their approach to determine which support services will work best with particular groups of students. In other words, they should go beyond predicting failure to predicting which actions are most likely to lead to success."