Essen, April 2013 - To discuss this matter, the University of Duisburg-Essen invites educators and researchers to a European conference on May 16 and 17, 2013. Some main points of dialogue will include defining quality in learning and innovations in learning resources.
Recently Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) have shaken up the blogosphere and media reports on higher education. These courses make use of open digital resources for learning and have attracted hundreds of thousands of online learners at no cost. A digital resource for learning can be a written text, pictures, slides, videos, a 3-D simulation or a website combining all of them into ready-made curricula including tools for (self-)assessment for educators or learners. More and more digital resources with open licenses facilitate educators and learners in editing, improving, and adapting to different learning situations inside or outside of the classroom and in turn share their own work with the online community. These open digital resources provide the foundation for a borderless exchange of teaching and learning methods in many different fields. But a potential conflict exists between open learning resources and the quality of those resources. Restrictions on the certification of the creators of such content or the access to learning materials through paywalls have to some degree defended the quality of those resources in the past. How can creators ensure that their digital resources meet an appropriate level of quality and how can users be certain that said resources are worth their time?
The LINQ conference will bring together current initiatives from all areas of education - schooling, adult learning, informal and on-the-job learning - to demonstrate their online resources and methods of quality development and thereby address this potential conflict. An example of such an initiative is VOA3R (Virtual Open Access Agriculture and Aquaculture Repository), a European research project consortium of a variety universities and research centres. This group is building a hub for resources in agriculture and aqua-science through a social network in which researchers can share, comment and rate content. Through the VOA3R platform advances are being made in the sharing, reciprocal reviewing, and rating of learning innovations in the aforementioned fields, thereby addressing the important aspect of learning quality which should accompany learning development. These advances have proven of great interest to the Global Headquarter of United Nations' organization Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) - LINQ conference host and supporter of the VOA3R project.
In Rome, discussions will deal with the following questions:
· How can the quality of resources be improved and what does “quality” actually mean for teachers, learners and institutions?
· Are teachers and educational institutions ready to make use of the wealth of resources and how do they find the “right” thing?
· Will the future of digital resources be determined by metadata, i.e. the data about data, feeding databases and search engines?
· What must be done to ensure that we can still access valuable resources in 15 years from now (think about your files from 1998)?
· Do more easy-to-find resources lead to better learning?
Especially but not exclusively for those who do not plan to travel to Rome in May, the University of Duisburg-Essen is inviting interested parties to exchange views on the future of digital resources on Facebook: www.facebook.com/LINQConference. Two conference fee waivers will be given away to Facebook-Followers.
The “Policy guidelines for mobile learning” developed by UNESCO seek to help policy-makers better understand what mobile learning is and how its unique benefits can be leveraged to advance progress towards Education for All.
UNESCO believes that mobile technologies can expand and enrich educational opportunities for learners in diverse settings. Yet most ICT in education policies were articulated in a pre-mobile era and they do not seek to maximize the learning potentials of mobile technology. The rare policies that do reference mobile devices tend to treat them tangentially or ban their use in schools.
Today, a growing body of evidence suggests that ubiquitous mobile devices – especially mobile phones and, more recently, tablet computers – are being used by learners and educators around the world to access information, streamline administration and facilitate learning in new and innovative ways.
Developed in consultation with experts in over 20 countries, UNESCO’s “Policy guidelines for mobile learning” have broad application and can accommodate a wide range of institutions, including K–12 schools, universities, community centres, and technical and vocational schools.
Policy-makers are encouraged to adopt UNESCO’s policy recommendations, tailoring them as necessary to reflect the unique needs and on-the-ground realities of local contexts.
The document was presented during the UNESCO Mobile Learning Week 2013, held from 18 to 22 February in Paris.
Born in Athens, European Union (EU) Special Representative for Human Rights Stavros Lambrinidis is an attorney, a former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Greece and a former Vice-President of the European Parliament. The speech he delivered at the Tech @State High Level conference in Washington, USA, highlights the EU's commitment to protecting human rights and democracy by promoting internet freedom.
Democracy cannot exist without both offline and online freedom of expression, according to Stavros Lambrinidis, EU Special Representative for Human Rights. To that end, the EU must uphold its norms, principles, and values in both offline and online worlds, he stressed. In his speech, delivered at the Tech @State High Level conference, Lambrinidis outlined the EU's action plan for reaching this objective.
One of the next steps will be to develop and publish a set of EU guidelines on freedom of expression—online and offline—that will include the protection of bloggers and journalists. The handbook will help unfurl the EU's view on the restriction of freedom, access to the Internet, and the arrest of bloggers, already made public through repeated condemnation of such acts.
Other planned action includes sending clear political messages against increased internet censorship, and possibly curbing the export of materials intended for internet monitoring and/or telecommunication surveillance in violation of human rights. The EU has already adopted sanctions prohibiting the export of this kind of technology to Syria and Iran, in hopes of preventing authoritarian regimes from using them against human rights defenders.
STAY IN – Student guidance at university for inclusion is a two-year project co-funded under the European Commission’s Lifelong Learning programme, Erasmus Multilateral Projects. The project aims to provide a comprehensive on-going guidance service, including e-guidance, to students in higher education to contribute to increasing their educational achievement.
Guidance services at university are generally focused on access (learning guidance), and exit (placement, career services). Support for students during their studies is less well-addressed, or not addressed at all. However, most students dropping out from university, point to the need for continuous support during the study lifecycle. This is particularly the case for distance students, given the fact that support services are often available only at the universities’ premises.
STAY IN therefore seeks to design and develop a service capable of supporting students in higher education during their academic career, by offering guidance and e-guidance to access available opportunities within the universities and in the communities where the universities are active. Guidance is conceived of as personalised support for each student to tackle potential obstacles that lead to disengagement and drop-out. Key expected results include:
- an integrated guidance and counselling system for universities, covering processes, methods, tools;
- an eGuidance platform for European universities, designed and developed in order to address the specific needs of higher education institutions and higher education students for of guidance and counselling services, and suitable for supporting on-going guidance and counselling;
- an updated picture of the practices across Europe on guidance for inclusion, and of the student’s point of view on guidance and e-guidance needs during their educational experience.
The Trend Report: Open Educational Resources 2013 describes trends in open educational resources (OER) and open education in the Netherlands and elsewhere, from the perspective of Dutch higher education.
Famous designs created by renowned designer Zandra Rhodes, and worn by global icons such as Princess Diana, Jackie Onassis and Elizabeth Taylor, are just some of the 500 dresses and garments that have been painstakingly prepared, catalogued and photographed over the past 18 months and included in the Zandra Rhodes Digital Study Collection.
Known for her bright pink hair and cutting-edge designs, Zandra Rhodes has remained one of the most recognisable names in fashion over the last five decades and remains relevant with the likes of Kylie Minogue, Sarah Jessica Parker and Paris Hilton wearing her dresses today.
Actress Joanna Lumley kickstarted the initiative, working with the University for the Creative Arts (UCA) to launch this Jisc-funded digital archive. That has implied locating, preparing, photographing, researching, and cataloguing 50 years of fashion collections in order to successfully compose the Zandra Rhodes Digital Study Collection.
Hype again or useful tool in the difficult times? - VISIR Consultation about the role of ICT in education
What do you think about the potential of ICTs for cost reduction, transferability of learning outcomes, employability and for scalability of innovation in education?
Join the short VISIR survey and share your opinion to discuss how the policy can contribute to finding solutions!
How can educators incorporate augmented reality into education? What projects are currently being employed? Come to Aumenta.me 2013, on 20 April 2013 in Valencia, Spain, to learn more!
Aumenta.me comes back for its second edition with a conference will feature the educators, researchers, materials designers and companies who use augmented reality in everyday education. The event, sponsored by the non-profit Asociación Espiral, Educación y Tecnología and the public Institute for Human Centered Technologies Lab Human, will take place in Valencia, Spain.
The Ireland International Conference on Education (IICE) is biannual conference that takes place in April and October. 2013's edition will kick off in Dublin, from 15-17 April.
The so-called 'knowledge triangle' is key to Europen innovation policy and the focus of the Ireland International Conference on Education: a collaborative relationship between the fields of education, research, and innovation.
The ultimate aim is to connect research and practice, bridge the knowledge gap, promote research esteem and the evolution of pedagogy. Participants are invited to present papers that encompass conceptual analysis, design implementation and performance evaluation are welcome.
There are still places available for the training week in Berlin that will be taking place from the 21st to the 25th of October, 2013.
The course is based on a combination of video education and social media methods and is a hybrid outcome of these two EU projects: www.web20erc.eu and www.viducate.net. The aim is to explore creative approaches in the online and offline use of video within education.
You can apply at your National EU Agency for funding. The deadline for application is the 30th April 2013.
You can find the course description here.