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  • David Vogt 1:55 pm on September 3, 2012
    -24 votes

    Tags: Badges, ,   

    An approach to alternative credentials, badges, are digital tokens that appear as icons or logos on a web page or other online venue. Awarded by institutions, organizations, groups, or individuals, badges signify accomplishments such as completion of a project, mastery of a skill, or marks of experience. Learners fulfill the issuer-specific criteria to earn the badge by attending […]

    Continue reading Badges Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • kstackhouse 6:05 pm on September 6, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I;m not sure I want a Badge from a random website because I visited X times or made a certain amount of purchases. I do see the motivational value when associated with students. Everyone likes a sticker when they have worked hard, a digital one is just as good.

    • cunnian 8:20 pm on September 6, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I’ve seen badges used in Edmodo… both students and instructors can earn them but I suspect that their impact on learning is superficial at best. It seems to be a digital token economy that might be an effective motivator for some students but likely not all most of them.

      • teacherben 10:57 pm on September 6, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        One approach that I have been looking at is that teachers can offer opportunities for students to present learning in more ways, provided the kids has demonstrated some initiative and competency already in that medium. For example, a teacher that usually gets kids to write an essay on a subject, could introduce video instead, but that may not be for everyone and it could take weeks to get all the kids skilled up. But instead, the teacher could say, if you already have at least your level 1 video-editing badge, then this is an option for you. That way, the kids may be inspired to take the time on their own to learn this stuff.

        I am just getting started with this at my school but I am hoping to use this sort of a model to kickstart.

      • Kent Jamieson 10:44 am on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        Good call, these seem quite ‘superficial’; however, it’s always nice to have instant feedback.

    • teacherben 10:53 pm on September 6, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Good timing! My elementary school counterpart and I just spent the last 2 weeks designing and constructing a badge program at our school. We spent a lot of time constructing appropriate tasks and organizing learning materials. This is based around a growing list of skills that teachers seem to expect from kids and yet aren’t being taught–at least not to everyone. We are a 1 to 1 laptop school, so tech features quite heavily into everyone’s classes and yet there are a lot of kids that don’t know the first thing about creating a video or cropping a photo. We use ePortfolios and you keep getting kids putting HD videos and 40MB photos onto their web pages and are surprised when the page takes forever to load. So we have started with image editing, video editing, typing and search. We looked into a few products for setting up such a system. mozilla has a good thing going with OpenBadges, but there is a lot of server-side stuff that is a struggle to get access to so we are just relying on the honour system and emailing kids their badges. Thre is a company called ‘BadgeStack’ that runs an implementation of OpenBadges on their server (or yours, if you like) and they do a lot of the grunt work in setting it up for you. I emailed them the other day and got a response in seconds–eager beavers. It will be interesting to see how a company can turn this into a money-maker.

    • tomwhyte1 8:01 pm on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      As a middle years teacher, and as an adult, this basic behaviorist technic may seem outdated, or at times childish, but the simple fact is – it works. Why else would “Angry Birds” have 1 – 2 – 3 star rating system per level. Everyone wants three stars, why? Simply because it is more, a way to identify superiority. This is a technic that has been recently employed into the Khan Academy, and almost every game or game-based learning tool invented.

      Therefore, should this be ignored because it is not cutting edge? Based upon that rationale we should never use a pencil or paper again, but luckily we do, because they, like badges, are a solid technology that has consistently proven itself through time.


    • jameschen 10:15 pm on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I think it comes down to the extrinsic vs intrinsic motivational factors in education. Whichever is more suitable for the learner would be dependent on the learning style of the individual learner.

      • teacherben 11:00 pm on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        Either way, it has a good chance to be successful. Some kids want the badge. Some kids want whatever their friends have. Still others will see the value in learning the skill and the badge might not mean much to them but it won’t hurt.

        • jameschen 10:03 am on September 10, 2012 | Log in to Reply

          Agreed. It would be interesting to have the students design their own badges too.

    • visramn 4:59 pm on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I think this system would be beneficial for some and not for others. Some people would discredit this form of acknowledgement where as others may be motivated to try harder to achieve this token of appreciation. It is all based on context and the individuals involved.

      • tomwhyte1 8:02 pm on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        Are you thinking of all learners, K-12, or simply adult?

        • visramn 11:44 pm on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

          I think this is the case with all age groups. Incentives can work with individuals of all ages if they buy into them.

    • C. Ranson 7:08 am on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I have just read through the posts about “Badges”, there seems to be some merit in using them in K-12 and their success or value seems to be related to how they are utilized in a program. Younge people are always looking for recognition for their successes. For adult learners if they were recognized similiar to credentialingof some sort and taken seriously they could be useful.

    • longworth 10:42 am on September 10, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I guess I’m a sucker for gold stars because I love this idea. (Maybe because both my parents were teachers) I personally need a bit of credit for my work.

      I do agree that there is definitely merit to this type of system. I also think it works well for the type of person who isn’t generally vocal about their accomplishments. The badges can make concrete just how much one has accomplished. It’s always helpful to have goals to set and I think this system can help students map their way to their goals by meriting smaller accomplishments along the way (so the end doesn’t appear so distant).

    • teacherben 5:59 pm on September 10, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Since I am currently trying to get such a program off the ground at my school, this is an area of personal interest to me.

  • David Vogt 1:53 pm on September 3, 2012
    -17 votes

    Tags: 3D Printing, ,   

    3D printing is the process of creating an object using a machine that putting down material layer by layer until the desired object is formed. Such printers use specifications generated by computer modeling applications or by3D scans of existing objects. This process of creating 3D models is much faster than many traditional methods of creating prototypes or replicas of existing […]

    Continue reading 3D Printing Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • kstackhouse 6:00 pm on September 6, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      This is a very interesting process. A teacher at my school has been looking into this as an option to be used in several courses. Very exiting and I think this has great potential. How affordable is affordable?


    • teacherben 11:13 pm on September 6, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I am running a 3D Design unit at the moment as a test-bed. I will outsource the actual printing part this semester and hopefully, if all goes well, I will get the money in my budget to buy a machine.

      I bought shares in 2 3D printing companies (3D Systems and Stratysis) less than two months ago and have earned over 35% on my money from each! That’s pretty good evidence of a market expanding.

      I joined the local hackerspace here in HK and there was a group of folks who spent months trying to construct a 3D printer (an open source model called the RepRap) last year and got very frustrated with it. It was fragile, often failed and even when it worked, the models were sometimes warped and so on. So a couple of them decided to design and build their own and try to get it on the market. It’s called the MakiBox (http://makibox.com/ and http://www.makible.com/) and they hope to be able to sell it for $350 USD. Current ones start at a little over a thousand bucks, so that’s pretty amazing. They just had an open-house at their brand-new factory in Hong Kong last week. I think this will be an interesting one to follow.

    • Kent Jamieson 10:48 am on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I’ve heard about 3D printing but have never seen it in action…would love to. Your investments seem to be paying off on this technology, but i’m not 100percent that it will be monumental in my own personal practice.

    • Jonathan 12:22 am on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Thanks Ben for the links. In a world where a lot of our tools are going digital, I think being able to produce our digital creations into real world physical objects is really important for us to understand and see what they’ll look like. Not just in the realm of the screen but to hold.

      I remember reading the Steve Jobs Biography and going through a section where the Engineers built several moulded models of what their products would “look” and “feel” like in the hand. This can be of big help to our students.

    • supatel 10:45 am on September 10, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I voted for 3D printing because I have had the opportunity to use one to make a piece for my daughter’s drawer and it is absolutely amazing. Students can create a design using Autocad and ‘print’ a final product. With Alberta Education mandating that students complete 75 hours of Career and Technology Foundations courses, this tool makes for a great integrated math/sci/design studies project.

    • teacherben 6:00 pm on September 10, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Since I am currently trying to incorporate 3D printing into my teaching program, this is an area of personal interest to me.

  • David Vogt 1:40 pm on September 3, 2012
    20 votes

    Tags: , ,   

    Education is breaking free of the confines of the LMS (Learning Management System).   Abundant online (mostly free!) tools and services allow both students and teachers to take advantage of broader resources and potentials within self-managed Open Learning Environments (OLEs).   The inherent flexibility and autonomy encourages learners and educators to ‘own’ the learning experience in authentic, […]

    Continue reading Open Learning Environments Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • jkotler 3:08 am on September 6, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I think open learning environments are important because they gives both learners and educators greater access to valuable resources.

    • kstackhouse 6:03 pm on September 6, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I began using Edmodo two years ago (after trying Twiducate). I was cautioned though by our IT services team to check into where the information was being stored. Since then I make sure that we all use Avatar names and images (not our own) and all work and references use these names to avoid having student data on servers outside of Canada. Is this enough?

    • sonofpat 4:41 am on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      As we continue to lament the fact that education has not leveraged the current technology examples such as this shows that in some areas at least there is some evolution taking place. What is even more fascinating for me is the trend towards constructivism with empowering of students to determine their learning. I believe that we are living in the middle of a storm of change and when it is over education will never be the same again.

      • Kent Jamieson 10:52 am on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        I don’t know if the ‘storm’ will ever be ‘over’. The swirling mix of new technologies and media are almost dizzying. I’m all for Open learning, simply for the fact of what it stands for. Breaking free of the older paradigms, creating a more empowered, connected, and accountable generation of learners.

    • jbrown5 2:53 pm on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      FREEDOM! Our work environment as part of the government is so restrictive and wait times to have any projects completed through the proper channels are so long that we are left wondering what open learning environment could suit our needs.

    • sophiabb 7:42 pm on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Open learning environment presents many possibilities for collaborative learning communities and opportunities that might be more meaningful, engaging and responsive to the teaching/learning experience. I am more excited about the possibilities than the challenges!

    • Eva Ziemsen 8:45 pm on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Open Learning Environments can open doors that would otherwise not be possible. Coming at the topic from the perspective of a media/film educator, I believe virtual worlds, such as Second Life, can provide students the opportunity to learn all aspects of film production, virtually and online. Without going into too much detail, a process called, “Machinima” essentially allows you to capture anything that happens in a virtual world. Therefore, if you can make films virtually and online, film production education could be revolutionized by being taught online.

    • visramn 11:51 pm on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Open learning can allow for all type of learners to learn in a manner that is best suited to them. Traditional means of learning have been very rigid and this has resulted in many students feeling disengaged from their learning. Open learning allows for students to be active participants in their learning. They are linked to their learning because they are in the drivers seat. open learning opens doors for all learners.

    • Shaun Pepper 5:11 am on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I think Open Learning Environments are an obvious learning environment moving forward. I think it is important to create classrooms that mirror the way students learn and interact outside of learning objectives and provincial learning outcomes. This is becoming apparent with TED Ed. and Khan Academy.

    • adi 7:58 pm on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      OLE’s provide options for countries with fewer educational resources. Instead of spending a fortune on an LMS, they can use ‘WordPress’ and an array of other OLE’s. Granted, there is the problem of privacy, but some solutions were mentioned above.

      • adi 8:24 pm on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        The above was the first of three of my Personal Opportunity Polls.

    • cunnian 9:12 pm on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      OLE’s allow almost anyone to engage in lifelong learning in almost any subject. The wealth of resources out there allow for multiple points of entry and can cater to a range of learning styles. As such, this is a very worthwhile endeavour!

    • longworth 10:43 am on September 10, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I believe Open Learning Environments are a wonderful way for educators to take advantage of what’s already out there and build on it. At this point in time I only see the benefits of learning more about different environments and how to use them in teaching / learning. Especially with budget always being on the forefront of concerns for both public and private educators one must start with what already has a foundation and build on that.

    • melissaayers 8:35 am on September 12, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      This is interesting topic, while on initial thought I was a bit against using a public blog for 522 for mainly reasons of privacy, control and ability to provide a safe and comfortable environment for students. However after just a couple of days of 522 I found myself challenging this initial opinion to see what benefits it may offer and it they outweigh what I saw as disadvantages.

  • David Vogt 1:38 pm on September 3, 2012
    -8 votes

    Tags: Digital Identity, ,   

    The backbone of Digital Identity is the ability to employ a single, private, secure identity system as the key to enter any number of applications and environments you might have access to.  In broader strokes however, especially in education, it can encompasses the ownership (by the learner) of the learning experience and the authority to broker the […]

    Continue reading Digital Identity Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • Kent Jamieson 10:56 am on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Does this mean i won’t have to have 26 login names and passwords to remember??? Or am I misunderstanding this concept?

      • jenbarker 11:11 pm on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        I am not sure I understand the concept fully either. However, if as you say, you could have one login name and password to access everything, that would be outstanding.

      • visramn 11:53 pm on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        That would definitely make life easier if that is the case.

    • Jonathan 12:25 am on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I’m envisioning this one as important as building a “brand” for yourself online. I’m thinking of the YouTube personalities that have garnered a large following and promote their products. In particular I’m thinking of musicians that have used YouTube as a launching platform. But imagine that you had created enough of a following on Twitter that you were able to use that to leverage to building a product of sorts.

      Think I’m on the right track?

    • longworth 10:43 am on September 10, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I thinks this may create more of a transparency to who you are and what you are accomplishing ie. My marks, transcripts, schools, interests all streamlined. May be interesting to start to view oneself in this manner…

  • David Vogt 1:38 pm on September 3, 2012
    -10 votes

    Tags: , ,   

    A few years ago Open Source was a real buzz – the future of software well beyond education. While the movement is still very active, the breakthrough promise hasn’t been realized.  Yet.  There are many who believe that the critical mass of openness – including new dimensions such as Open Data, Open Licenses, Open Innovation, Open Educational […]

    Continue reading Open Source Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • visramn 11:57 pm on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I think open source is a wonderful concept because it makes programs, etc, accessible to everyone. Thu,s allowing for more equity and removing access barriers. However, it is difficult to keep programs and software like this going without the generosity of people’s time, resources and donations. All of which are often hard to come-by.

    • teacherben 8:43 pm on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Open source does not necessarily mean ‘coded by volunteers’. Many popular open source projects are almost entirely designed and created by large, for-profit companies who do the work in-house. Openoffice is a good example. At a big company like Sun Microsystems, it made more financial sense for them to design an office suite that suited their needs in-house rather than pay high costs of paying for licenses for thousands of workers. They had a number of other major players as partners (IBM, Apache…) that also contributed code and lowered costs but I don’t think their primary focus was particularly altruistic. (In fact, chipping away at the MS Empire could have provided some impetus as well.) Some companies offer an open source version of a product, then another that includes some proprietary code. Google Chrome is a good example (Chromium is the open source version). They get to make a contribution to the community, save some costs by crowdsourcing some of the technical work porting to other platforms and so on, and if anyone comes up with a really great idea, they can use it to make both versions of the product better (depending on the license.)

    • Pat A Son 3:16 am on September 10, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      The interesting thing about open source software is that it that it has its roots in academia and as such it might expect educators to embrace the concept and products wholeheartedly. How this has not been the case because the prevailing conditions of the times did not support its widespread use.
      First and foremost if one considers a purely Darwinian approach to software adoption then the traditional profit driven capitalist environment that we operate in may place open source software as the proverbial fish out of water when compared to its closed source for profit counterpart. For the most part the concept was new and the old guards i.e. the decision makers in were more comfortable with comfortable to go with what they were familiar with.
      However in the that we are living the business is changing in some areas of the new cyber frontier and companies such as Google have proven that one does not have to sell a closed product to make money. Whereas Linux did not penetrate the pc world much android has taken a dominant place in the new mobile computing world. I believe that effort such as these become popular the world will be more comfortable with the concept and open source products will be accepted more readily than now.

    • longworth 10:44 am on September 10, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I think this is where one can learn the language and take advantage of it….we just have to teach ourselves and teach our students to understand….

  • David Vogt 1:37 pm on September 3, 2012
    20 votes

    Tags: , ,   

    A dream of educators forever, Personalized Learning is reaching a tipping point in terms of the technologies available for realistic implementations.  This marketplace opens to data-driven evaluation enabling learning experiences that cater to individual students learning styles and needs. Opportunity Statement While the venture prospects for Personalized Learning are awesome in the long term, short- and medium-term […]

    Continue reading Personalized Learning Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • jkotler 3:11 am on September 6, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      While I understand the design challenges personalized learning may bring, I believe that adhering to different learning styles is important, especially in an online environment because it better allows the learner to move through the content at their own pace and to successfully gain the intended knowledge and/or skills.

    • Patrick Pichette 9:08 am on September 6, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I have mixed feelings about personalized learning. On the one hand, we are catering to students’ needs in order to better prepare them in the construction of their knowledge. On the other hand, we are encouraging one-dimensional learning as some students become dependent on a learning style and cease to develop some skills that would allow them to learn using different approaches. Is it best to develop finely tuned skills using one particular approach or is it better to have many lower-level skills that can be used to propel students further on their learning path? Or is there some magic mid-level point that maximizes knowledge construction while employing a variety of learning techniques?

    • sophiabb 7:52 pm on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Yes, there may be design challenges; however, I support personalized learning technologies for the opportunity they present to motivate, challenge, engage and empower learners with learning disabilities/challenges. I believe that they can also be designed to exploit the affordances of web/learn 2.0 technologies so that learners can engage with others, as needed.

    • jameschen 12:48 am on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I think this is an interesting venture in educational technology because students will be able to pinpoint the challenges in their learning and have personalized instruction to overcome such challenges. This would be an interesting topic for further investigation, and it ranks as number three on my personal opportunity poll.

    • bryan 10:19 am on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      This is extremely relevant to me as this is a very hot topic within all public schools in British Columbia right now.

      • visramn 11:59 pm on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        This is also something that is encourages by the Calgary Public Board.

    • rebecca42 12:13 am on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I agree for the same reasons Bryan, this is very much an “imminent” issue

    • Paula Poodwan 2:22 pm on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I will always be in favor of Personalized Learning as it gives the opportunity for all styles of learners to be able to achieve their best potential at their own pace . However it will need strong commitment on parental involvement, smaller class sizes, more one-on-one teacher and student interaction, and attention to differences in learning styles. It must be difficult to implement this type of learning in a public school with a large class size.

    • coralk 5:33 pm on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      The ability to analyze individual student performance data to present the most relevant activities and optimize learning represents the biggest and most exciting shift we will see in education in my opinion. This is number one on my personal opportunity poll.

  • David Vogt 1:35 pm on September 3, 2012
    2 votes

    Tags: BYOT, ,   

    In the corporate sector IT managers are trying to cope with the ‘impossible’ situation that workers are insisting on coming to work, and doing their work, with their own mobile and work devices and preferred software (Bring Your Own Device or Bring Your Own Technology (BYOT), creating (for the managers, they say) a tsunami of […]

    Continue reading BYOT Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • Kent Jamieson 11:06 am on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Our school is going completely BYOD next year, with Grades 3-6 having iPads this year, as well as Grade 7 being fully BYOD. I’m all for it, as it further blurs the lines between school and ‘real’ life. Although logistically a nightmare for ICT, the fact remains that eventually nightmares end, we wake up and the sun inevitably rises. Who says it’s just the students that have to learn/adapt/evolve at a school anyway?

    • tomwhyte1 8:06 pm on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I went with this one being in my top three for the simple reason of economics. The pace at which technology moves forward is larger than the size of school districts total operating budget, let along the technology portion of it. Therefore, it makes sense (from a school organization sense) that some of this burden is downloaded onto the teaches and students. Yes, the issue of haves and have nots consistently comes into play, yet this argument can be made for many common items in a traditional classroom, pencils, pens, paper, etc… and the school is aware, and does their best (at least in my case) to provide these necessary resources for those students, therefore should technology be any different?


    • jameschen 12:50 am on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I think having the students bring their own technology into education is the next logical step in education because with the world economy moving on a slippery slope educators and decision makers need to make use of all available resources. I vote this as number two on personal opportunity poll.

    • manny 9:18 am on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Many districts/businesses are employing this initiative for simple economical reasons. However, before it can be successfully implemented, there are a lot of issues that need to be ironed out. In a classroom setting, it can become a logistical nightmare contending with so many types of different technologies. One could easily spend more time troubleshooting than actually teaching.

      • tomwhyte1 8:01 pm on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        I can understand how it might become a logistical nightmare. However, in my school, which is slowly adopting a BYOT approach. We as educators are not responsible for the technology working, for it is not our property nor the districts. However, it is our responsibility to create activities that can be completed with or without technology.


        • teacherben 10:40 pm on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

          I think that a BYOT program would dovetail nicely with a badge initiative. It is tricky to run a lesson on image editing when some kids are using Photoshop, some are using Pages or Keynote, some using Paint.NET and still others using some online tool. But if we design a coherent, student-centered, system based around, in this case, image editing concepts rather than specific skills, then it has a chance to take off. The goal then becomes to support the development of a ‘digital intuition’, where students are able to work their way through unfamiliar software on their own, using concepts that they have learned from other, similar programs.

          • tomwhyte1 7:14 pm on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

            Which I think would parley nicely into 21st century learning skills.

      • supatel 8:48 am on September 12, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        I totally agree with the logistical and technical issues that exit in a BYOD setting. Not all students have or can afford the same software suites. For example, MS Office or Autocad is just too expensive. As educators, its important to adapt to the needs that arise and as a staff we all decided that it would be wise to have student complete all their work in Google Docs, or complete blueprints using Google Sketchup….essentially using free software and cloud technology where available.

        Initially it was sort of a night mare, but we decided as a staff that it was a good idea

    • Shaun Pepper 5:14 am on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I believe that students should be familiar and choose the technology that best suites them in their learning. These BYOT technologies are simply a tool and some people operate better with different tools. I know I like writing with pencil, but some like writing with pen. Should we force everyone to choose pen?

    • stammik 7:28 pm on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      As a number of my colleagues have stated, this is a necessary progression, as most schools including my own, simply can not meet students increasing demand and need for current technology.

    • adi 8:03 pm on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      BYOT would not work in a country like Mexico; it would only expose those who have less. There are still many countries where not all kids have a lap top, IPad, Blackberry or Iphone, and even less so access to the Internet on their mobile device.

    • cunnian 9:21 pm on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I like this idea where it is possible for it to happen. Funding and socio-economics aside, having students use technology regularly affords many possibilities but also moves them from seeing tech as an event (“We get to use the computers today!”) to being a tool (“We get to create a movie today!”).

    • longworth 10:44 am on September 10, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I like the idea but I don’t like the idea of so called public education being so costly to the individual families. So if there’s a BYOD policy in the schools there needs to be a tax incentive and some kind of system in place to support families that can’t afford to manage this. To me it is good in theory but I can see if furthering the divide between have and have nots and the pressure on the parents to provide the better devices (because we all know it’s easier when your device is faster, which means newer). I can’t imagine having to provide and maintain the newest technology for all three of my children.

    • supatel 10:47 am on September 10, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Our school board has installed WAPs in every school with hopes that students bring their own learning devices. As long as students can remember their email username and password, they can log into the LAWN (Learner Accessable Wireless Network), and use the internet as a resource for learning anywhere in the school. Students can use the various apps available on their mobile devices to connect with other learners, or simply use it to access course content housed online.

    • Lisa Nevoral 7:26 pm on September 10, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I would have to say that this is my number one personal choice. My district is going towards BYOT and I would like to see how it could be managed and used within schools.

    • melissaayers 8:39 am on September 12, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      This is an interesting topic, I have seen it in the corporate world but did not realise that it was starting to be addressed in educational institutions as well. While it’s definitely not a field I have too much knowledge (ICT) in I realise the huge potential for an opportunity (and challenge) for entrepreneur if they can embrace this and come up with innovative solutions and support.

  • David Vogt 1:33 pm on September 3, 2012
    -3 votes

    Tags: Blogs, ,   

    According to Technorati, the blog count reached 80 million last year. Even though a quarter of them are most likely bot-created spam blogs, the quantity of content ‘in the cloud’ is still staggering. Blogs give everyone a voice to communicate, teach, spout opinions, learn and network. And with RSS technology, blog posts are quickly pushed to subscribers […]

    Continue reading Blogs Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • Kent Jamieson 11:11 am on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I feel like i’m hogging the comment sections right now, but blogs have been – and always will be – instrumental in my class. Attached to our WordPress class website – which allows for students, parents, fellow teachers the opportunity to see ‘what’s happening in the class’ – blogs have given my students an outlet to express themselves, whether they’re in class or not. My introverted students enjoy the fact that they don’t need to be overtly social in class, and it also allows them to participate in discussions they would normally shy away from. Blogs….good.

    • Jonathan 12:34 am on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Blogs are the new journals. But they are so much more than journals. They turn the audience from just being the teacher to the world. It provides the authentic audience that was missing from many of the paper tasks given to students. Blogs extend the classroom and become the bulletin boards of the classroom in WWW format. Too many good things come out of blogs for me to turn away from this one.

    • jenbarker 11:20 pm on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I would love to examine blogs in more depth. I think their value as ‘learning or e-portfolios’ is just beginning to unfold. Many teachers, including myself have been using blogs for students individual writing. This year I plan to try to have my students document their mathematical understandings through creating digital media (Voice Threads, Podcasts, etc) that they can add to their blogs. All subject areas can be represented on blogs as well as a component on assessment. I am interested in the idea of having student blog that would follow the student from K – Grade 7… no more paper report cards that get lost… everything in one place. As Kent mentioned I also agree that blogs provide a great format for communicating with parents, students, and the general public.

    • longworth 10:44 am on September 10, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I believe there is a lot of opportunity to help the students develop sound literacy practices using blogs. I also enjoy the concept of the public assisting the responses to the blogs (kind of like peer editing but on a bigger scale).

  • David Vogt 1:32 pm on September 3, 2012
    21 votes

    Tags: , , VIL   

    The Visual-Intensive Learning (VIL) marketplace recognizes the rapid trend away from text-intensive information environments to visually-dominated web experiences that is apparent on most web sites but is championed most specifically by sites such as YouTube and Pinterest, as well as immersive collaborative environments and games.  The concept of a “visual learner” is not new, but the streaming, […]

    Continue reading Visual-Intensive Learning Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • avninder 10:05 am on September 5, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Visual-Intensive Learning is becoming more common as it is more user friendly, engaging and interesting than traditional text based learning.

    • grzesko 9:39 pm on September 5, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Visual-Intensive learning is becoming more noticeable as you can almost find a video on any topic and if done right they can be engaging while providing you with the information that you need.

    • jkotler 3:13 am on September 6, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Visual-intensive learning allows for more variety in learning styles as well as a higher level of engagement in regards to increased use of multimedia.

    • jhodi 4:33 pm on September 6, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Visual-Intensive learning can provide powerful and engaging learning opportunities while appealing to a wide array of learning styles.

    • Kent Jamieson 11:14 am on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Youtube, Khan Academy, just two examples of being able to stop, rewind, replay, and re-learn anything you want. Who’s ever said to their teacher, “hey, can you repeat exactly what you just said 3 or 4 times more please?”

    • jbrown5 2:49 pm on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I get a lot more excited to watch a demo, go through a “try me” scenario or play an interactive game than to read through text-intensive PowerPoint slides that have been uploaded as a “course” and I think my students would agree.

    • manny 9:07 am on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I think Visual Intensive Learning is a no-brainer. The definition of literacy traditionally encompassed text based materials but now encompasses multimodal forms of communication such as video production. A great constructivist example of allowing students to become producers of their own works.

    • visramn 12:07 am on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I think the key factor is that Visual Intensive Leaning is a means of encouraging engagement of students. This allows for students to be exposed to content in more than one format. These days you can find videos for anything and everything. Hence, why not use a resource that is already present and that gets a positive response from students.

    • Lisa Nevoral 7:32 pm on September 10, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Visual-Intensive Learning would be my 3rd personal choice. After being in courses with a lot of reading, I can appreciate the fact that some students or learners may learn better with a visually-dominated experience.

  • David Vogt 1:30 pm on September 3, 2012
    -14 votes

    Tags: , Learning Commons,   

    The learning commons, sometimes called an “information commons,” has evolved from a combination library and computer lab into a full-service learning, research, and project space. As a place where students can meet, talk, study, and use “borrowed” equipment, the Modern Learning Commons brings together the functions of libraries, labs, lounges, and seminar areas in a single community […]

    Continue reading Modern Learning Commons Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • bryan 10:24 am on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Learning Commons are important as their seems to be a real push towards replacing traditional libraries with them (at least in BC–it appears that way). Is this a more effective and efficient way of facilitating learning than traditional libraries?

    • longworth 10:45 am on September 10, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I like the idea of this! Maybe this could be useful for schools. I mean I’d rather my tax money go to support public access to the internet and computers and have access to good current technology that we share rather than an individualistic approach. Free internet, free computer use, free software use… I support the concept of expanding spaces such libraries to facilitate a broader audience.

    • supatel 10:52 am on September 10, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      As part of my role as a Learning and Innovation Specialist, we are currently working with a few schools on the L2LC (Library to Learning Commons) initiative. With the way learning is taking place nowadays, where students do most of their learning collaboratively along with the dominant use of web 2.0 tools, there needs to be a shift form the traditional-hush-hush-independent library experience. Changing the library to a learning commons provides more opportunity for students to gain a deeper understanding in a collaborative, social, and communal environment…..but it’s not just about changing the furniture in the library to call it a learning commons. There has to be a pedogogical shift as well 🙂

  • David Vogt 1:29 pm on September 3, 2012
    16 votes

    Tags: , ,   

    Tablets, game systems, smart phones and application like Siri all suggest a trend away from the inefficiencies of the keyboard for virtual interactions.  Touch, Gesture & Voice are some of the more “natural” ways learners will access and immerse themselves in learning experiences. Opportunity Statement Learning technologies venture opportunities in Touch, Gesture & Voice are bountiful in that the introduction […]

    Continue reading Touch, Gesture & Voice Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • jhodi 4:13 pm on September 6, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      These learning technologies allow students to intuitively interact with their learning devices to facilitate learning. My personal use of a tablet to teach math has allowed me to incorporate technology into my classroom in a wide variety of ways and has allowed me to supply my students with fantastic opportunities online.

    • Doug Connery 8:18 pm on September 6, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I never learned to type properly so being a “two finger pecker” on the keyboard is slow and inefficient for me. Other methods such as touch, gesture and voice will help me and others to get the message across.

    • jbrown5 2:57 pm on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I just can’t see going back from the trend of iPads/iPhones/etc – I only see touch, gesture and voice becoming more and more integrated in learning as the technologies to create these learning tools become easier to use.

    • sophiabb 8:21 pm on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I love these technologies and my family does too. From my husband, a high teacher, who is a one finger typist who can now develop his lesson plans/activities quicker; to my daughter who is dyslexic and this lessens some of her anxiety re spelling; and my science nerd son, who is in his comfort zone.

    • jenbarker 11:30 pm on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      When I think of young children who are no longer learning how to type properly, I see these forms of technology as necessary. As well, many children with written output delays use Dragon Dictation to aid in assisting them to get their ideas down. Unfortunately, the most useful version (with the best voice recognition) of this product is very costly.

    • visramn 12:11 am on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      These types of resources open up many doors for students with special needs who may struggle with keyboards. It makes the process of using devices easier for some and can be visual based for those who struggle with vision, reading, etc. It is definitely a more interactive means of using a device.

    • adi 8:12 pm on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Touch, gesture and voice is also linked to the idea of learning through the senses and brain plasticity. It touches upon Dale’s cone of experience http://teacherworld.com/dalescone.gif

    • melissaayers 8:40 am on September 12, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I think like others have already stated these technologies really help further open up the world of learning for those with special needs or learning disabilities. They can aid learning by providing multiple options for all students on how they interact with content and each other, something that I think is only likely to enhance their learning experiences.

  • David Vogt 1:28 pm on September 3, 2012
    -6 votes

    Tags: , ,   

    A capability that has been around for decades, Augmented Reality, is shifting from what was once seen as a gimmick to a bonafide game-changer. The layering of information over 3D space produces a new experience of the world, sometimes referred to as “blended reality,” and is fueling the broader migration of computing from the desktop […]

    Continue reading Augmented Reality Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • jameschen 12:56 am on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I would rank this as number one on personal opportunity poll because I am very interested in learning how bringing technology such as the Google Glass into the educational setting can help learners engage with learning by interacting with the world outside the classroom.

    • melissaayers 8:43 am on September 12, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      This is a field that I find extremely interesting as a software engineer but also like adaptive software something I find daunting. This is due to current time and cost it takes to create this type of learning environment. I feel it’s not something that many educational institutions can afford to develop and use in their current environments. I hope in the future these barriers are reduced and perhaps economies of scale

  • David Vogt 1:27 pm on September 3, 2012
    -13 votes

    Tags: , , Self-Guided Learning   

    Most people prefer to tackle the majority of their continuing learning objectives independently or informally in professional groups, as Self-Guided Learning.  Additionally, the availability and affordability of qualified teachers and accessible learning environments can’t nearly meet the global demand for higher and better educational opportunities. Opportunity Statement Venture opportunities exist in a vibrant global marketplace to […]

    Continue reading Self-Guided Learning Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • Shaun Pepper 5:17 am on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I think that as we become more inundated with more information. Students will need to understand the concept of self learning. Most of what they will learn, will come from outside of school sources. I think it is important to foster these learning environments so that children can teach themselves and become informed when a teacher is not present.

    • adi 8:19 pm on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Though self-guided learning is something people are not used to, and often lack the discipline, our fast changing world is definitely opening a market for it in both formal and informal learning contexts. Workers and professionals often require training on aspects of their job, and even someone who does not work may be in need of learning something that may not be learned in their vicinity.

  • David Vogt 1:26 pm on September 3, 2012
    9 votes

    Tags: 21st Century Skills, ,   

    Recognition of the importance of 21st Century Skills continues to grow, particularly in the area of competencies across digitally-rich domains involving communications, collaboration, critical thinking,  and creativity.  Higher education and employers are seeking systematic ways to support and evaluate the acquisition of these skills. Opportunity Statement A set of 21st Century Skills venture opportunities exists for formal, informal and […]

    Continue reading 21st Century Skills Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • kstackhouse 7:36 am on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      This is a topic where I think I could have great opportunity in my region. Our province has been pushing the ideals of 21st C but no real guidance on how to get there.

    • Peggy Lawson 5:41 pm on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I’m with you there Ken. Lots of talk about 21st Century learning, but how do we move our students, and our teachers, in that direction. While not my 1st choice (I may not have even had it in my Top 3), this is certainly one that interests me.

    • tomwhyte1 8:09 pm on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Of all of the choices given, I found this one the most essential yet, truly not technological. Yes, 21st century does have elements of technology integration, but at its core is the 4 C’s, Creativity, Collaboration, Communication, and Critical Thinking. It is because of those, that I would chose this topic as my number one choice every time. For it is the transferable skills that are important, not a form of technology that may become dated shortly.


      • Jonathan 12:27 am on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        Definitely needs some work in defining what it means. It is too vague at this point and allow for many variations, perhaps that is one of the benefits (allowing for multiple approaches). It’s important we give it a strong definition and what it means to deploy it in the field.

        • tomwhyte1 8:49 am on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

          I am curious as to why this needs a specific/strong definition? The necessary skills are present, Creativity, Communication, Collaboration, Critical Thinking. When one goes further into 21st century, there are other divisions, and groupings to create a basic structure to guide one. However, for myself a specific or strong definition creates limitations on what one thinks can be done, or what should be done. For myself, 21st century and a program known as Destination Imagination go hand-in-hand, which would be severely hampered by what you suggest.


          • Jonathan 10:57 am on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

            I’m definitely torn as to whether it needs a stronger definition or not. I should say that, the freedom to go about 4 Core C’s as we see fit is a beautiful part of our profession. It’s always that dilemma between being too specific or too general. Perhaps you are right and that the flexibility is more of what we need.

            Thanks for mentioning Destination Imagination. It’s neat to see programs like this.

            • tomwhyte1 8:03 pm on September 8, 2012

              I have done a Pilot Project with Pearson on Destination Imagination. I found it very constricting, and anti-intuitive considering the 4 C’s. I guess that is where my concern regarding any form of rigidity comes from.

    • bryan 10:17 am on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      This is an area that is of great interest to me, but from a career ed standpoint and the emphasis that the Ministry of Ed in BC is currently putting on it.

    • Peggy Lawson 6:41 pm on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      As much as anything, 21st century represents a pedagogical shift, from a lecture-driven, teacher-centered classroom to one in which students realize they are part of an interconnected, global community; where instruction is not limited to a single person hired by the school division to stand in front of the classroom but to nearly endless possibilities that require attendance to emerging and every-changing technologies.

      • tomwhyte1 8:04 pm on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        IMHO, such a shift should be encouraged at all times. For is it our job to lecture, or provide our students with the necessary skills they will need for the rest of their lives?


    • Lisa Nevoral 7:28 pm on September 10, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      My school district has really been pushing 21st Century Skills and for me this would be a good opportunity to see how I can support and evaluate the acquisition of these skills. This would be my 2nd personal choice.

  • David Vogt 1:25 pm on September 3, 2012
    -9 votes

    Tags: Adaptive Software, ,   

    As brilliant as most software and apps might seem, they are still severely awareness-disabled, meaning they don’t know and can’t respond to simple user contexts such as who I am, where I am, what grade I’m in, what class this is, what level I’ve achieved, what my learning style is, etc.  The  objective of Adaptive Software is […]

    Continue reading Adaptive Software Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • jameschen 12:59 am on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I think this goes hand in hand with personalized learning and augmented reality.

    • teacherben 8:50 pm on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I met some folks at an electronics show in Hong Kong last year that make adaptive hardware, such as a mouse pointer that is controlled by the tongue and by sucking air in and out of a tube. Neat stuff. Since many countries have legislation in place and public monies available for the purchase of these technologies, there is a lot of opportunity to make big profits. When your customers are government funded organizations, it seems like you can charge whatever you want.

      There was a guy in one of my MET classes last year that was designing ‘switch games’ with his students using flash. the idea behind these games is that you have people who are cognitively normal, but physically challenged. You want to make a game for them that can be played with some sort of simplified input device, but make the game interesting enough to keep them entertained. No simple task.

    • Ranvir 6:03 pm on September 16, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      This is aligned with the thought that robots/ AI software could replace teachers one day. It is very interesting thought, one that would be really valuable and could provide personalized learning experience based on one’s learning context and skill level. Bold thinking!

  • David Vogt 1:22 pm on September 3, 2012
    -23 votes

    Tags: , IOT,   

    Companies like IBM are building “Smart Cities” based on distributed sensors in roads, pipe, etc, providing feedback to control systems.  This is part of a general emerging market called the Internet of Things (IoT) where heretofore inanimate, mute objects are becoming part of an intelligent, active, behind-the-scenes conversation.  So what about “Smart Schools”, where the all of […]

    Continue reading The Internet of Things Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • Patrick Pichette 9:41 am on September 6, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      There are a few interesting technologies related to IoT that could become quite popular in the consumer markets but I’m not sure that they are entirely ready for the education market. I feel as though we are at least 5 years away from most of this technology but in the next 5 to 10 years there should be some benefits that become more apparent. In particular, NFC will likely revolutionize the way we purchase products as we begin purchasing items without the need for a cashier. We’ll likely begin seeing more ‘Costco-like’ approaches where someone verifies your payment to confirm that all items were paid for. There are also some interesting developments in object identification that look to be on the verge of making their way into the marketplace through cell phones, tablets and/or eyewear. This technology has strong potential in the education market but I don’t think it is developed enough to take full advantage of it. In short, it would involve looking at the screen of your phone and pointing the camera at various locations in the area. The phone would then detect where you are and pull up information regarding that particular building, street, or object. So if you point the phone at a hotel, the phone would show a description of the hotel, give you contact info, reservation options, current vacancy availability simply by pointing at the building.

    • Jonathan 12:31 am on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I feel we aren’t that far off of it being in our hands and it being practical. It will take longer to implement in our school systems though. NFC has become a reality. I was down in San Francisco and I was able to pay for my coffee using this technology. I had to go in a few times just to experience the benefit of it. But it was neat and a bit frightening at the same time.

      How about this one? Using our iPhone to scan items out ourselves:

      This stuff is around, but implementation will take longer for sure.

    • Patrick Pichette 5:27 am on September 10, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      NFC is ready for consumer technology but I don’t think it’s going to be ready for education for another 5 years. The same holds for the other technologies I mentioned. I see great potential for it in the future and so it would be a very interesting topic to discuss as part of future emerging markets but they likely won’t have much impact on education in the short term. Then again, that’s just my opinion based on how our school is supposedly considered a leader in technology integration in the area but we are roughly equivalent to the technology used in corporate work world that I experienced in 2000-2005.

    • teacherben 6:02 pm on September 10, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I just bought a class set of Arduino microcontroller kits for a new unit about physical computing that I am introducing in my grade 10 Technology class. This is certainly an area of professional interest to me.

  • David Vogt 1:22 pm on September 3, 2012
    20 votes

    Tags: , ,   

    While tablet and smart phone manufacturers are churning forward at a breakneck pace, making a fortune on humanity’s device-lust, the compelling back-story is what these devices can do – the proliferation of Apps.   And while addiction and burn-out on the distracting nature of most apps is already big news, there is also a rapid emergence […]

    Continue reading Apps Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • avninder 10:11 am on September 5, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      A well designed app can provide easy to find up-to-date information on the go.

    • grzesko 9:42 pm on September 5, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Apps have a lot of potential but I believe they are still in the growth stage with future apps being less of a gimmick and providing more useful learning functions.

    • jhodi 4:27 pm on September 6, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Apps allow students anytime, anywhere learning experiences that can be engaging, yet extremely informative.

    • kstackhouse 7:38 am on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      This is an area with unlimited potential. Well designed Apps in education (games, reference, course material) have a huge market. Since they are at times hard to come by it would be interesting to try to develop one.

    • sonofpat 8:18 am on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Apps are a part of what I consider to be the most significant technology today that is mobile technology. Even as the field is evolving much can still be done in terms of everyday activities.Apps for basic communication such as chatting,e-mail, youtube and social networking are already mature enough to be used in the educational field. This means we do not need to wait for the next big educational app before we start to exploit the power of apps in our teaching. As a matter of fact no is the best time to jump into the apps world follow Jen’s example (https://blogs.ubc.ca/etec522sept12/2012/09/05/nice-to-meet-you/). Get a mobile device and make yourself comfortable…….

    • Eva Ziemsen 8:57 pm on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I am a big fan of apps and believe they have great potential in education, especially media education. I believe there is room for many more useful apps in the context of media education. I am constantly searching for apps that can fulfill niche needs in film production, for example. I am interested in what it takes to design and develop an app, as well as, how to pitch and market an app.

    • Jonathan 12:37 am on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I love apps. But I find it’s too difficult to find the good ones. Even when they are reviewed there needs to be something to help great apps rise to the top. If I was a developer that created a great app, getting traction for it would be difficult. The App Store is cluttered with a lot of useless apps. But with that being said, there is a lot of potential — and finding them needs to be easier for teachers.

    • Mike Rae 2:01 am on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Apps could allow learners to access knowledge when the moment strikes them; best time to learn anything is when you want to.

    • manny 9:14 am on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      The phenomenon of Apps has taken the mobile marketplace by storm. I believe earlier this year the 25 billionth App was downloaded. Unfortunately, it seems as this marketplace is so saturated that it is tough to find a good educational App. There should be a free trial period for a certain amount of time as of right now you must purchase the App to experiment with it. Great marketing from a venture standpoint.

    • jenbarker 11:39 pm on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Apps used to create, collaborate and communicate are great. But apps (and there are a ton of the out there) that are simply skill and drill have no place in today’s classroom. Many teachers are proud of using these apps in their classrooms and tote that they are 21st Century teachers. I would argue that they have simply taken the old, spruced it up and made it new. Using these types of apps does not even come close to what I define as 21st Century Learning.

  • David Vogt 1:20 pm on September 3, 2012
    17 votes

    Tags: , ,   

    Cloud Learning is about employing essentially limitless web-based storage and services (the “cloud”) to enhance the learning experience with unprecedented accessibility, continuity, extensibility and integration. Most analysts believe that humanity’s move from computers to the cloud will be more transformational than our recent move from paper to computers.

    Continue reading Cloud Learning Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • avninder 10:14 am on September 5, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      From CDs to floppies to USBs, the cloud is the next big thing.

    • grzesko 9:36 pm on September 5, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Cloud learning provides a lot of benefits, as it allows greater control on the part of the company using it and in turn giving the user powerful features and flexibility that is accessible through any device.

    • Kent Jamieson 11:30 am on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I know in our school there is a lot of scepticism in terms of ‘where does the information go?’, or ‘who has access to a report card i write?’. Normally, i simply say…’who would want a random Grade 5’s report card anyway?. Cloud…good.

    • jenbarker 11:44 pm on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      If this type of cloud learning would be able to assist Canada educators wishing to use US based programs and platforms, I am all for it. Currently my school is having major challenges understanding what we can and cannot do based on FIOPPA. We are unable to use many outstanding resources because the information is housed in the USA.

    • adi 8:28 pm on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      My second Personal Opportunity Poll.
      Cloud learning as I mentioned in another post could be a great for educational settings where there are less resources. For example, in countries where kids don’t have lap tops, they can use Internet Cafés and continue their work or course in the cloud.

  • David Vogt 1:19 pm on September 3, 2012
    12 votes

    Tags: , ,   

    Game-Based Learning seeks to apply the technologies and engagement factors of the hyper-successful electronic games sector, and of games more generally, to create effective learning experiences.  This includes everything from the creation of original games with learning outcomes embedded in the gameplay (“serious games”) to the game-like animation (“gamification”) of more traditional learning approaches . Opportunity Statement […]

    Continue reading Game Based Learning Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • Peggy Lawson 8:12 pm on September 6, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Not long ago most so-called educational games were better at selling software than at providing true learning experiences. No more. Well designed educational games can provide engaging and often very authenitic educational opportunities for students.

      • kstackhouse 7:40 am on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

        This is one topic that could be tied in with the Apps topic. Rather than having an online game one could develop an App that could be updated or upgraded once the user reaches various levels.

    • sonofpat 10:45 am on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      From where I sit I am convinced that the approach of traditional video gaming was never suited for mainstream education ie large budget, large development teams with no experience or qualification in education and long complicated game play that is aimed at entertainment.
      What is needed are more simple yet enjoyable interactive experiences that challenges as it is played. Scoring, winning or loosing will play second fiddle too learning. Whats more is that you do even have to call these video games but the current students will prefer a simple interactive experience to reading a text book and yes they would mostly be authored by teachers.


    • Eva Ziemsen 8:51 pm on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I am interested in the virtual worlds that exist within games, for example, World of Warcraft is a game that has been used to create Machinima (films recorded in a game/virtual world). Games have existing landscapes and complex avatar physical capabilities, which can be recorded. If there was a way to enable educators to use existing games to teach Machinima, it could present very elaborate and interesting learning opportunities. The issue of copyright of games will come into play, and the focus would become negotiating educational agreements with game companies.

    • Mike Rae 1:55 am on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      In general, video games are something kids do for fun, so using them as a medium for education could potentially ‘trick’ kids into learning while enjoying themselves.

    • rebecca42 12:09 am on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      We are a culture with a big focus on entertainment, so I believe that this area is one that will expand and become more important in education.

    • visramn 12:41 am on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      The net generation of learners thrives on technology. It is a part of every aspect of their life. Gaming is huge in these individuals lives because they have been exposed to it in some shape or form from a very young age. They respond to digital material in a different way. Since they are drawn to and respond to digital tools such as games it makes sense to use these tools as a means of sharing and building on knowledge.

    • stammik 7:36 pm on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      As a secondary school teacher, I feel this form of motiviation could be very effective for engaging teenage learners, though like many of the technologies listed here, it will require computer based classrooms or BYOT to be implemented effectively,

    • Ranvir 3:39 pm on September 11, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      From an instructional design perspective, gamification provides lot of opportunities for motivating learners, engaging them to learn and have ‘fun’ simultaneously and collaborate with like minded peers to form learning communities. I strongly feel that if done right, this can become one of the hottest learning technologies in future!

    • stammik 12:43 pm on September 12, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      As a follow up to this topic, here is an interesting new venture, that is in now in beta testing, for teaching photography. I plan on checking it out for my own students.


  • David Vogt 1:18 pm on September 3, 2012
    12 votes

    Tags: , ,   

    A Massively Open Online Course (MOOC) is an emerging model for interactive online learning experiences designed to accommodate possibly unlimited numbers of learners who potentially arrive, attend, participate, and leave on their own terms.   MOOCs can take advantage of existing social media and gaming environments as platforms to host both formal and informal learning experiences. Opportunity Statement MOOCs are primarily […]

    Continue reading Massively Open Online Courses Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • Doug Connery 8:21 pm on September 6, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Post secondary institutes spend too much money developing courses that already exist with other institutes and as MOOC’s. This is a way to reduce duplication and costs and be more efficient taxpayer dollars.

    • pcollins 4:18 pm on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      My concern would be how realistic is this? The people who have the ability to design the tools for such a venture are not necessarily the people who actually have the knowledge that needs to be learned. I read an article last semester that brought up this very point. There was no easy way to get the designers and the field experts to collaborate. It seems great in theory

    • Paula Poodwan 8:10 pm on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      MOOC is an excellent idea for eager students who want to learn and don’t care about receiving credits or diplomas. I like the idea that the students who enrolled at the institution and the “open” students who pay nothing and who will receive no credit can interact and of course that will add variety and different points of view to the class. However too much information (posts) and interaction can be overwhelming for everyone too , and not to mention the workload for the instructor.

    • coralk 5:30 pm on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I’m very interested to see how MOOCs will progress and what the future will be for these courses, especially now that some institutions are starting to offer credit for certain MOOCs as early as this fall (probably for a fee and some additional assignments so then does that still even qualify as a MOOC?)

    • Ranvir 3:45 pm on September 11, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      MOOC’s are an excellent way to learn from some of the industry’s sought after brains and interested individual across the globe. I am currently taking a MOOC course in Gamification at Coursera and really like the learning experience…

    • melissaayers 8:44 am on September 12, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I really like the idea of massively open online courses. Coming from working with underprivileged youths initially I thought this type of course is ideal especially as it can economise on the costs and can be delivered anywhere at anytime. However, now I realise in general in their current this type of course is not for people who do not already have a reasonable educational background and are very self motivated/organised. Furthermore, they need to also have access to the relevant hardware, software and network infrastructure to participate – something usually not available to the target audience whom I used to think this type of initiative would be most beneficial for. That said for the right audience I feel there is huge potential in this domain and the offering available in iTuneU, Khan Academy etc are just in their infancy.

      As Doug mentioned I also believe there is room to economise (and improve quality at the same time) on course creation and delivery via this type of initiative.

  • David Vogt 1:17 pm on September 3, 2012
    -14 votes

    Tags: , ,   

    Human interaction with information on the Internet, including consumption, creation and distribution, generates data with value that can be mined.  Social media analytics, for example, is a red-hot market as organizations of all kinds seek to understand rapidly-emerging trends.  Learning Analytics applies similar data-mining techniques to create value for learners, teachers, parents, and education systems. Opportunity […]

    Continue reading Learning Analytics Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • Peggy Lawson 8:07 pm on September 6, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I know this won’t be a popular topic – hard to embrace cold, hard, numbers & stats – but learning analytics will play an increasingly important role in data-driven decision making. Without question, my prefered personal direction for Ventures.

    • kstackhouse 7:20 am on September 7, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I think you are right, Peggy. This will be an important tool in helping decision makers. I am not sure this is the topic for me though. 🙂

    • Ranvir 4:05 pm on September 11, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Analytics can be very powerful if appropriate performance indicators and associated data is analyzed correctly. Very valuable educational technology for understanding learner behaviour and informing the teaching practices!

    • melissaayers 8:44 am on September 12, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I think this goes hand with adaptive software to some extent. You can not really have effective adaptive software without lots of data to base decisions on.

  • David Vogt 1:16 pm on September 3, 2012
    24 votes

    Tags: , ,   

    Tablets and related devices have redefined publishing, including textbooks.  No longer is textbook content necessarily closed, static and non-interactive.  The growing expectation of both teachers and students is that Digital Textbooks must deliver a rich, engaging, responsive journey – a thrilling new kind of learning experience. Opportunity Statement Digital Textbooks offer a range of highly-creative and significantly disruptive […]

    Continue reading Digital Textbooks Posted in: Emerging Markets Poll
    • Peggy Lawson 8:09 pm on September 6, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      The days of purchasing classroom sets of expensive textbooks that are expected to last for 5-10 years are long past; information changes too rapidly, and ebooks in various forms are becoming well entrenched to make ebooks a realistic alternative to hard copies.

    • Doug Connery 8:25 pm on September 6, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      E-textbooks are at the point now where customization is cost effective and a reality. Publishers can create e-textbooks with chapters from different books and even from different publishers along with the supplemental e-activities that come with each chapter.

    • Mike Rae 2:08 am on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      Customizing digital textbooks could be very useful to teachers to provide sources from multiple places in one accessible location. On a side note, I just got an email from The Environment and it asked me to proxy vote for this one on its behalf.

    • pcollins 4:23 pm on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      That’s great Mike!
      I really wanted to vote positive for this one for all sorts of reasons but I had used up my eight votes. Let’s put control in the development of relevant resources to the educators – not the publishers. I am still shocked at the audacity big publishing companies have to charge equivalent prices for their digital text copies. And the districts sign publisher specific agreements that curtail an educators ability to bring in the competitions product. It doesn’t compute in cash strapped districts.


    • Paula Poodwan 8:11 pm on September 8, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      The digital textbook is definitely a future of our learning and teaching. I am looking forward to seeing the Digital textbook that is fully equipped with multimedia and interactive functions like hypertext and hyperlink where students can click from one page to another. I’m sure students will be very engaged with the content more than reading the traditional textbook. My nephew who is in his first year at a College in Kelowna just spent $550 on his 4 used textbooks which he will eventually sell back later. I wonder if we will be able to sell or return with the digital ones.

    • rebecca42 12:01 am on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      For the past two years I have been using websites linked to my textbook to beef up my Science instruction and it would be very helpful to have the entire textbooks (with up-to-date information) containing hyperlinks to useful websites all in one spot.

    • coralk 5:28 pm on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I have worked in higher-ed publishing for about 9 years, and we have offered digital textbooks that whole time however the demand for them has grown exponentially in the past 1.5-2 yrs. This is almost completely due to the increase of mobile devices and tablets and particularly the release of the iPad. Etexts allow the option to provide lower cost options that provide greater interactivity and integration of learning objects right into the textbook to provide a better learning experience for students. And I have to also agree with Mike – the environmental impact of the move to digital delivery is massively positive. Not just due to textbook printing but also in their physical delivery which always makes me cringe at this time of year especially.

    • stammik 6:55 pm on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      While textbooks are not commonly used in my own classes, I had a chance to study this topic in depth for ETEC500 and I feel in particular that the content creation side of this technology has great venture potential.

    • adi 8:33 pm on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      My third Personal Opportunity Poll.
      There are many countries like Mexico where textbooks are the main learning tool; however, constant changes in who is in power result in never ending educational reforms and new editions of textbooks costing thousands. As Dog rightly points out, digital textbooks would be much easier to customize, not to mention the many interactive, visual and aural elements they could have.

    • cunnian 9:27 pm on September 9, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      This is a great idea, and fits well with BYOT. Digital textbooks can be interactive, constantly updated and customized to suit the needs of the purchaser. The environmental savings are considerable as well!

    • melissaayers 8:45 am on September 12, 2012 | Log in to Reply

      I do believe this is very important in both todays and future educational contexts. Furthermore, I also believe in terms of software to support this there is lots of room for improvement on the current digital offerings. With the right combination of network infrastructure and software tools delivering up-to-date, relevant and multimedia content are all easily possible.

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