Popular Online Videos Teach Crafty Ways to Cheat on Tests
by Jeffrey R. Young
Oct. 1, 2008, Chronicle of Higher Education
“Some schemes for cheating on exams seem like more work than actually studying — like printing a counterfeit Coke-bottle label with answers on it to sneak a cheat sheet into class. A popular video on YouTube demonstrates the cheating technique, and it’s one of many “how to cheat” videos available online.”
The Spellings Plan for Simplification
by Doug Lederman
Oct. 1, 2008, Inside Higher Ed
“Margaret Spellings and her staff clearly haven’t started packing up their offices just yet. In a speech tonight at Harvard University, the U.S. education secretary will unveil a proposal to greatly simplify the process by which students apply for federal financial aid. Under the plan, which flows from a set of ideas floated by Under Secretary Sara Martinez Tucker at an Education Department summit in July, the Free Application for Federal Student Aid would shrink from more than 100 questions to 26, and students would find out before their senior year of high school how much federal financial aid they would qualify for.”
” ‘This all flies under the rubric of needing to make this process much much less burdensome,’ Spellings said in an interview in her office Monday. ‘Right now, it’s like we’re trying to keep people out of college, not get them in. … The whole thing is, ‘You want to go to college? Here are seven pages of bureaucracy, and here’s what you’re going to have to do to get it.’ As opposed to, ‘Here’s a simple way to do it, and here’s what we’re going to do for you, so you can get it.’ It’s the whole psychology.’ ”
Online Campus, Part II: The Spinoff
by Andy Guess
Sept. 30, 2008, Inside Higher Ed
“When the University of Illinois first announced its plan to create a separate, for-profit online education arm called Global Campus in 2006, observers saw potential for a significant shift in a landscape dominated by profit-seeking companies and a few successful models at public universities. That sentiment lasted only as long as it took faculty leaders to get hold of the proposal, however, which they rejected for relying heavily on non-tenure-track instructors, among other reasons.”
“Eighteen months later, after a slow start for the online campus, some faculty may be coming around to the university administration’s attempt to resurrect some of that initial blueprint, albeit in altered form. As a result of a 2007 compromise with faculty members, Global Campus doesn’t currently operate as a stand-alone entity. It partners with existing university departments on all academic offerings, and existing university faculty control course content. Partially for that reason, and without significant incentives to do so, many professors have been reluctant to lend their resources to the enterprise. Officials predicted enrollments of up to 10,000 online students within five years of the initial incarnation’s launch, but so far, Global Campus has logged 121 students in its five programs so far.”
“Last week Joseph White, the university’s president and a strong backer of the initiative from the beginning, proposed a return to one of the original goals for Global Campus: achieving separate accreditation, which the administration argues would allow it to more freely expand and adjust offerings to market needs, and to hire its own faculty.” . . .
‘Stuck in the Shallow End’: Education, Race, and Computing
by Scott Jaschik
Oct. 1, 2008, Inside Higher Ed
“Jane Margolis is a scholar of equity issues raised by technology whose previous book was Unlocking the Clubhouse: Women and Computing. Her new book, which (like the previous one) is published by MIT Press, focuses on how issues of class and race affect access to technology and training. Stuck in the Shallow End: Education, Race, and Computing is based on research by Margolis in Los Angeles high schools serving students of varying socioeconomic backgrounds. Margolis, a senior researcher at the University of California at Los Angeles Institute for Democracy, Education and Access, responded via e-mail to questions about the book.”
Bill Would Boost Public TV’s Learning Power: ‘Ready to Compete Act’ Would Open Public Television Archives for Educational Use
by Meris Stansbury
Sept. 30, 2008, eSchool News
“Schools across the United States soon could have online access to a vast amount of educational content from public television archives to help raise student achievement, if a new bill called the Ready to Compete Act (H.R. 6856) is enacted. Co-sponsored by Reps. John Yarmuth, D-Ky., and Ray LaHood, R-Ill., the bill would reauthorize two existing federal programs: Ready to Learn, which aims to improve literacy by encouraging the creation of educational public TV programming, and Ready to Teach, which intends to boost teacher quality through the development and use of public TV content for teacher professional development.”
“In addition, the bill would create two new programs: Ready to Achieve and Ready to Earn. Ready to Achieve would create a national, on-demand, online digital media service that would allow teachers to access public television’s extensive archives of educational content. Ready to Earn would allow stations to create new resources to address the needs of adult learners in a changing economy. The goal behind both of these new initiatives is to prepare learners more effectively for the 21st century workforce by tapping into the potential of digital technologies to explore science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) disciplines, as well as history, literacy, and other subjects.” . . .
UPDATED: Broadband Data Collection Bill Approved By Congress
Sept. 30, 2008, Updated: Oct. 1, 2008, C-Net|News.com
by Stephanie Condon
“Providing universal broadband may very well start with simply finding out who has broadband access and who doesn’t. The House of Representatives on Monday passed a bill that could help answer that question by improving broadband data collection. Passed unanimously in the Senate on Thursday, the Broadband Data Improvement Act received minor, technical amendments from the House and was returned to the Senate for approval. The Senate is expected to approve it by unanimous consent and send it to President Bush for his signature. The legislation, introduced by Sen Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii) in 2007, calls for the Federal Communications Commission to collect a broader swath of information regarding who has broadband access. The commission would also be required to identify tiers of broadband service in which most connections can transmit high-definition video, as well as collect demographic data for geographical areas not served by any advanced telecommunications provider. The bill also requires other government offices to collect information, such as whether Internet subscribers use dial-up or broadband. The bill also establishes a grant program for organizations to track and promote Internet usage.”
“Update: Congress passes bill aimed at measuring Internet access
Congress has passed legislation that will require the government to keep closer tabs on who has access to the Internet and who does not. Supporters hope the Broadband Data Improvement Act will help policymakers better identify areas of the country that are falling behind when it comes to high-speed Internet access. The bill passed both houses of Congress, with the Senate approving a final version Tuesday on a voice vote.”
Studios Sue to Bar a DVD Copying Program
by Brad Stone
Sept. 30, 2008, New York Times
“Six major movie studios sued RealNetworks, the Seattle-based digital media company, on Tuesday over its new $30 software program that allows people to make digital copies of their DVDs. As the opening warning on every DVD indicates, Hollywood has bitterly opposed such copying. The studios have argued that it threatens their emerging business of digital downloads and can motivate buyers to rent, copy and return DVDs instead of buying them.”
“RealNetworks, the company behind RealPlayer software and the Rhapsody music subscription service, said RealDVD gives users the freedom to do things like make backup copies of favorite discs or take movies along on a laptop while traveling. It has argued that RealDVD is now legal because of a favorable decision last year in a case against Kaleidescape, a Silicon Valley-based manufacturer of high-end media servers.” . . .
Security Risks Rise as Smartphones Become Smarter
by Jeremy Kirk
Sept. 29, 2008, IDG News Service
“As wireless devices become more numerous within businesses, their convenience will be counterbalanced by an increasing potential for security problems, according to a Gartner analyst. New trends in the wireless industry are making it easier for hacking attacks, said John Girard, a Gartner vice president, who spoke at the IT Security Summit in London on Monday.”
“A few years ago, there was not a lot of standardization across wireless devices. Differing operating systems, differing implementations of mobile Java, and even varying configurations among devices with the same operating system made it hard to write malicious code that ran on a wide array of devices, Girard said. But that’s changing as the quality control gets better on widely used platforms such as Microsoft’s Windows Mobile and the Symbian operating system, he said. That standardization makes it easier for attackers to write code that will run on many devices.” . . .
Logging On for a Second (or Third) Opinion
by John Schwartz
Sept. 29, 2008, New York Times
. . . “Reliance on the Internet is so prevalent, said the report’s author, Susannah Fox, the associate director at Pew, that “Google is the de facto second opinion” for patients seeking further information after a diagnosis. . . . There are so many sites today and the landscape is changing so rapidly that it would take an encyclopedia rather than a newspaper to list them. But they can be grouped into five broad, often overlapping, categories:” general interest, medical research sites, patient sites, disease-specific sites, and Web tools.” . . .
Also see: Health on the Web
100+ (E-)Learning Professionals to Follow on Twitter
by Jane Hart
Centre for Learning & Performance Technologies
“I (Jane Hart) am often asked for the names of (e-)learning professionals – from both education and corporate learning – as well as other related professionals to follow on Twitter. I started this list with 101 names on it, now thanks to many people who have submitted recommendations, it has grown. If you know someone you think should be on the list, email me.”
Study: College Students Prefer Classes with Online Learning
Sept. 23, 2008, University of Wisconsin-Madison News
“What do today’s undergraduate students expect from their educational experience? Online lectures are moving to the top of the list, according to a new study released by the University of Wisconsin-Madison E-Business Institute, a campuswide initiative conducting multidisciplinary research on e-business strategies, emerging information technologies and innovative business practices.”
“The study, set against the backdrop of a national trend for webcasting college lectures, was designed to understand student attitudes and assess preferences for the value of adding lecture capture to existing courses. One key finding is that an overwhelming 82 percent of the undergraduates in the sample said they would prefer a course that records and streams lecture content online.” . . .
“Agriculture Under Secretary for Rural Development Thomas C. Dorr today announced the selection of 105 recipients in 41 states for Distance Learning and Telemedicine grants totaling $28.2 million. “These funds will increase the range of educational opportunities available to students in rural communities and improve access to health care for countless numbers of rural Americans,” said Dorr. ‘The projects will also open the door to the expansion of technology, increasing rural economic opportunities, promoting strong and vibrant communities.’ ” See the list of grant recipients at http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/rd/newsroom/2008/09-18-2008-DLTrl.pdf
An initiative of the radiologist Robin Smithuis for the Radiology Society of the Netherlands, this site provides up-to-date radiological education for radiology residents and radiologists. It focuses on on common clinical problems in which imaging plays a major role in the management of the patient. The subjects are presented by experts in the field. Subscribe to the newsletter and get a mail when a new article is published.
The Connie Martinson Talks Books Collection consists of more than 2,500 television interviews with prominent authors of fiction and nonfiction taped over the last 30 years. Included in the collection are interviews with Maya Angelou, Ray Bradbury, Al Gore, Rosa Parks, Gore Vidal, Barack Obama, Studs Terkel and Joyce Carol Oates. The “Connie Martinson Talks Books” television series originates from L.A. CityView Channel 35 and can be seen on government-access cable outlets around the country and PBS in New York — and now in the Claremont Colleges Digital Library. Donated by Connie Martinson to the Drucker Institute and the Transdisciplinary Studies Program at Claremont Graduate University.
A multi-media project from the Royal Philharmonic Society and Classic FM to promote active listening. The project is designed to encourage people to think about the way they listen to music. Includes concerts and discussions, listening notes for the concerts and broadcasts, interviews with leading musicians and hearing experts, with opportunities to exchange opinions, investigate your personal listening skills and perceptions, and participate in a national survey of listening habits.
A new international and free to Web scientific journal dedicated to the publication and discussion of research articles, short communications and review papers on all aspects of ocean science, experimental, theoretical and laboratory. The primary objective is to publish a very high quality scientific journal with free Web-based access for researchers and other interested people throughout the world. Ocean Science covers: ocean physics (i.e. ocean structure, circulation, tides and internal waves); ocean chemistry; biological oceanography; air-sea interactions; ocean models, physical, chemical and biological and biochemical; coastal and shelf edge processes; and paleooceanography.