The interface between students and institutions providing the education is gradually evolving into a very different scenario. While aspirers can take up courses and degrees online, the thirst to know more about a specific subject area and deepen one’s own knowledge is also being catered to by a variety of provisions available in the internet. For example, the online portal named edX. If you are thinking that Universities like MIT, Berkeley, Stanford, Harvard etc. are out of your reach, you need to have a reality check. Because, edX has made it possible for you to have access to a range of select courses from these every institutes.
edX: Education just a click away
edX is what most of us have secretly wondered about. A joint initiative by the Harvard and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, this online portal aims at providing free courses to students who wish to grasp at their subject field. Moreover, this is a free service that the students can get. One thing that people should be clear about is the fact that, while a student enrolls for a course in edX, he or she cannot transfer credits. Nevertheless, one can definitely get a certificate on completion of the stipulated course curriculum and assignments etc. Hence, if getting a free certification of MITs is something that you had kept under the inconspicuous wraps of your secret desires, edX is where you can unfold them.
recently reputation.com had asked us about how can experts build their brand on the internet. Here is our interview on the reputation.com.
Realizing the potential of free online college classes, and with an increasing interest to let more students access to college and help them graduate on time, educators are working on the measly task of harnessing online materials to meet the toughest challenges in American higher education.
To address issues on financial consequences along with the reducing the number of seats available in public institutions, and keep students on track to graduation, universities are beginning to experiment with adding the new “massive open online courses ”, created to deliver elite college instruction to anyone with an Internet connection.
While the courses, known as MOOCs, have enrolled millions of students around the world, most who enroll never start a single assignment, and very few complete the courses. Therefore, to reach students who are not ready for college-level work, or are struggling with introductory courses, universities are beginning to add extra supports to the online materials, in hope of improving success rates.
At San Jose State, for example, two pilot programs infuse material from online classes into the instructional mix and allow students to earn credit for them. Mohammad Qayoumi, the university’s president is enthusiastic about implementing this innovation, knowing that its failure can lead to finding out what went wrong and doing better the next time.
In one pilot program, the university is even working with Udacity, a company co-founded by a Stanford professor, to assess whether online mentors being hired and trained by the company, working round-the-clock, can help more students work through three fully online basic math courses.
As early signs look promising, Udacity and San Jose State are planning to expand these classes to 1,000 students, and are adding new courses in psychology and computer programming, with tuition fee of only $150 a course. Such pilot courses for credit are open to both San Jose State students and local high school and community college students.
San Jose State has already achieved remarkable results, arranging circuits course with online materials from edX, a non-profit online provider, the subject being a struggle for would-be engineers. Ms. Ellen Junn, the provost believes that blending M.I.T.’s online materials with live classroom sessions will help more students to succeed. Dr. Anant Agarwal, the president of edX enthusiastically agreed to Ms. Junn’s request and arranged for San Jose State to offer the blended sessions to students, bringing out striking outcome being a success rate of 91 percent of those in the blended section, as compared with 59 percent in the traditional class. Dr. Junn says that, “We want to bring all the hyperbole around MOOCs down to reality, and really see at a granular level that’s never before been available, how well they work for undeserved students.”
San Jose State announced that next fall, it will pay a licensing fee to offer three to five more blended edX courses, probably including Harvard’s “Ancient Greek Heroes” and Berkeley’s”Artificial Intelligence.” And over the summer, it will train 11 other California State campuses to use the blended M.I.T. circuits course.
Josh Jarret, a higher education officer at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which in the past year has given grants to develop massive open online courses for basic and remedial courses, said “For us, 2012 was all about trying to tilt some of the MOOC attention towards the more novice learner, the low-income and first-generation students. And 2013 is about blending MOOCs into college courses where there is additional support, and students can get credit. While some low-income young adults can benefit from what I call the free-range MOOCs, the research suggests that most are going to need more scaffolding, more support.” Read more…
In today’s blog we have shown an interesting info-graphic created by HWA, which depicts some good reasons to accentuate the need to hire an online tutor and solve the learning needs of students in today’s education scenario.
Image Credit: Help with Assignment.
Teaching can be a very satisfying and rewarding career. Every single day in a teacher’s life is like a new lesson opened, as he has to think of innovative ways to bring forth his knowledge to teach his disciple. Being an educator fills a vital need in every child’s development. However, the pay that many teachers receive does not adequately reflect their efforts and contributions they make to the society, which has forced many to look for employment opportunities in addition to teaching. A good number of teaching professionals have thus realized that working online is profitable, convenient, and can be very easy to access with just a little knowledge about the Internet. Teachers already deal with many tasks online as they utilize the Internet to research information on a theme that they may want to cover in the class.
Today’s post covers some such avenues on the internet, that the teachers can look for, to make additional income.
- Sell educational content on Teachers Pay Teachers
Teachers pay Teachers is an online open marketplace where teachers buy and sell original educational resources in downloadable formats. It is a unique site that allows interested teachers to sell their thematic lesson plans, teaching guides, research papers, worksheets etc online to other teachers. Any teacher from any discipline at any grade level can take up membership here. Basic membership is free while Premium members are charged a minimal registration fee.
Basic Sellers earn 60% of their gross sales less the transaction fees, while Premium Sellers earn 85% of their gross sales and do not have to pay any transaction fees. Sellers get paid on a quarterly basis via Pay Pal.
Teacherspayteachers.com currently has about 300,000 items for sale in addition to more than 80,000 free resources. More than 1 million teachers have bought or sold items on Teacherspayteachers.com since its inception. Site founder Paul Edelman confirmed that teachers have earned $5 million in sales during August and September. After paying for the site fees, teachers have collectively earned more than $20 million on the site since it was founded.
- Build and sell courses on Udemy
Udemy is an online platform that gives instructors a place to design courses on any topic they want to teach. Instructors can use video, PowerPoint, PDF, audio, zip files and live classes to conveniently build a course and share their expertise with anyone across the world, with an internet connection. Udemy brings to the Internet real opportunities for passionate people as it allows not only instructors affiliated with educational institutions, but anyone with a common objective, to potentially earn money for teaching audiences across all kinds of categories and subjects. Paid instructors receive 70% of the revenue from course sales, while 30% is retained by Udemy.
According to Udemy, teaching is the new way to make six figures on the Web . The 2-year-old, San Francisco based start-up claims that their top 10 instructors have individually made more than $50,000 in revenue last year, while the top instructor has earned $200,000. Udemy has 6,000 courses created since its launch in 2010 and there are more than 70,000 lecture views every month. Taking a look at the salaries of top 10 instructors on Udemy confirms success in their objective. Read more…
Education has seen many technological advances over the last few decades. Studies have shown that technology improves performance and motivates students, making learning more meaningful. Combining education and technology creates a more stimulating learning environment and ameliorates confidence.
But has constant use of digital technology by the students, started to interfere with learning? There is certain urgency in answering this question. Today’s overly digital generation calls for re-looking at the actual and potential relationship between technology and student learning.
This interesting presentation on PREZI, created by JiEun Yoo, takes you through the effects of digital technology on learning.
There is a widespread belief among teachers that students’ constant use of digital technology is hindering their attention span and ability to handle pressure when put forth with challenging tasks. Different surveys of teachers have revealed that today’s students are not skilled enough to think critically or synthesize information they find with the aid of technology. Teachers who did not participate in the surveys re-emphasized their findings in interviews, adding that they had to work harder to capture and retain students’ attention these days.
The research conducted by two well known research organizations Pew Research Center and Common Sense Media, studied that media use among children and teenagers ranging from 8 to 18 years age group has grown so much that on an average they spend twice as much time with screens as they spend in school. The researchers however note that their findings are subjective opinion of teachers and should not be taken as a conclusive proof that widespread use of digital gadgets affects students’ ability to concentrate. However, the researchers who performed the studies, as well as scholars who study technology’s impact on behaviour and the brain, emphasize that these studies are significant because of the vantage points of teachers, who spend hours a day observing their students.
Hope Molina-Porter, an English teacher in California, is worried that technology is deeply altering the way students learn. Having an experience of 14 years in teaching accelerated students, she has noted a marked decline in the depth and analysis of written work in her students. She wonders if teachers are adding to the problem by adjusting their lessons and teaching methods to accommodate shorter attention spans.
Many teachers have expressed the fact that today’s relatively easy online research process has resulted in fewer original thoughts, less critical thinking, and not as much actual synthesis of information by their students. They point out that students find information online and just copy and paste them directly into documents, without adequately analyzing it. This not only elevates concerns about their understanding of concepts and practice of unfair plagiarism, but also worries some teachers that students are not developing adequate ability to think critically about the information they supposedly research on. A brief list of the areas of concern as seen by the teachers is given below:
- Students’ overexposure to gadgets accompanied by the use of latest technology has resulted in multi-tasking that often contributes to lack of focus and weakened ability to retain knowledge.
- Students do not prioritize enough time for critical tasks, and often rely on the various digital tools available at their disposal, to waste time and procrastinate, giving rise to concerns over their time management skills.
- Some students’ addiction to online gaming and video games exhausts their time and attention.
- Overexposure to digital technology is not really contributing to make students more technologically literate or more efficient.
- Students have grown so accustomed to getting quick answers with a few keystrokes that they are more likely to resign when an easy answer eludes them. Read more…
Learning from online tutors has become a much sought after method . Today’s competitive and swiftly paced life, steeped with stress, has forced many parents to consider online tutorials as an additional tool to meet their children’s educational needs. Massive growth in the use of Internet based technology has accelerated the popularity of online teaching. Teaching today’s youth is no longer encumbered by borders. Online tutoring implies imparting education through the means of computer, high-speed broadband connection and other technological inputs. With the help of web interface, the student and the tutor indulge in the process of interactive learning.
Before investing significantly in a dedicated online tuition, both the student and the parents have to measure the effectiveness of online tuition and identify the benefits of using internet as a tutoring platform, over the traditional method. Today’s blog details some pros and cons of taking online tuition to promote academic excellence in students.
Advantages of online tutoring to Students:
- Online tutoring connects the student with a skilled tutor, which relieves parents of the challenge to find someone locally. A good tutorial service provider allows the student to choose his/her own tutor. Parents can be convinced about the quality of tuition the tutor may provide by having a thorough look at his profile and credentials.
- Lesson plans, comments from tutors, diagnostic tests, and instructional content for learners are defined by the tutors. Parents can also access the same to check on the progress of their child.
- Highly qualified teachers from remote locations can cater to demands of students in widespread areas. For e.g.: A tutor in mid west can teach a student in New York even with a 2 hour difference in their time zones. Tutors from remote areas may even offer competitive pricing as compared to tutors in New York.
- Students can choose to take lessons at their own convenient timings and pace.
- Tutorial services also offer one tutor per student. This is immensely helpful, since some students lack certain competence that can be positively concentrated on, when individual attention is paid to them. Through dialogue with parents, diagnostic tests, and a personalized learning plan, students can receive the type of instruction they particularly need even in advanced subjects like Maths, Statistics, Science..etc.
- Tuition is provided by the same qualified tutor just as in regular one-to-one tuition but there is no geographic boundary. Neither the student nor the tutor spends valuable time traveling to reach each other.
- Online tutoring is often more affordable than hiring someone to come home to teach or work with the child at school. Private tutoring for a student in US can cost anywhere from $100 an hour or even more, while an online session with an online tutor would cost $30 an hour on an average. Registering for a monthly plan may prove more economical.
- Schools and Universities are increasingly using online tools as teaching resources. Children become familiar with this style of learning for the future. Read more…
A bill in California’s Legislature, likely to be passed on Wednesday, would make it mandatory for public colleges and universities to award students with credit for taking some faculty-approved online courses which are oversubscribed on campus. As it seems likely to pass, it will have a significantly positive impact on the higher education scenario in America.
If this bill can win approval by state lawmakers, California would become the first state in the country to require public universities to grant credit for courses not taught by their own instructors.
The legislation would call for some of the eligible courses likely to be offered free under the banner of “massive open online courses,” or MOOCs, i.e.; If students cannot take a certain class the traditional way, they can turn to offerings from companies such as Coursera, Udacity and StraighterLine, or the nonprofit EdX, a joint project of Harvard and MIT or even Pearson, the educational publishing and testing company. These companies offer affordable online courses.
“We want to be the first state in the nation to make this promise: No college student in California will be denied the right to move through their education because they cannot get a seat in the course they needed,” said Darrell Steinberg, the president pro tem of the Senate, who will introduce this bill. Governor Jerry Brown has also been a strong advocate for online education as a means to reduce college costs.
Mr. Steinberg worked with Dean Florez, a former California Senate majority leader, in putting together this new legislative proposal. Mr. Florez was quoted as saying that the online courses would only supplement the classes taught at California’s public colleges, so that students would not be affected by delay in enrollments. He added that his own son had to wait for three semesters at Santa Monica Community College to get into a math class he needed.
Currently, over enrollment accounts for the major reason why only 16% of the students in the California State University (CSU) system graduate within four years. According to Senator Steinberg, a Democrat from Sacramento, the state’s 112 community colleges each had an average of 7,000 enrolled students who were on waiting lists. Parents and students have a reason to cheer with the bill being passed.