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Classrooms Go Mobile to Enrich Student Learning

October 1, 2012 at 9:40 am PST

School is back in session, and from all the parents I’ve talked to, there’s been a new addition to the old school essentials list -- notebook, lunch and now,  a smartphone. We’ve reached a time where mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets, are entering classrooms at an accelerated rate. In fact, recent numbers in Canada showed that the back to school season is starting to rival the holiday season for buying cellphones.

In 2011, we asked nearly 3,000 college students and young professionals how fundamental they feel the Internet is. An astounding one in three respondents equated the Web’s importance with air, water, food and shelter. It’s safe to assume the younger set feels the same:  Research conducted by Project Tomorrow found that from 2009 to 2010 smartphone use for middle and high school students jumped 42 percent, so younger student are obviously adapting early expectations of anywhere, anytime online access.

If schoolchildren are using mobile devices on their own time to connect with parents and friends, it makes sense for schools to be working these devices into the learning mix, too. In fact, according to The Journal’s Mary McCaffrey, schools must go mobile to better personalize their students’ learning experiences.

Here are three ways mobile collaboration contributes to the learning environment: Read More »

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San Jose State University and the New Economics of Higher Education

Public higher education institutions in America are being squeezed with vice-like force unlike anything they’ve experienced before.  Legislatures are reducing their funding, for profit and not-for-profit competitors are proliferating and many civic and business leaders are questioning the very value of a college diploma.  University presidents and the regents or boards they serve are stuck in an “iron triangle”:  on one angle is access, their raison d’être and why their respective legislature chartered them in the first place – educate the people in our state. On the other angle is cost, which using conventional thinking rises when one provides access to the masses. The third angle is quality, which also is thought to be compromised when access – and costs – rises. What’s a university leader to do?

Invest his/her way out of the “iron triangle” and change the economics.  This is precisely what President Mohammad “Mo” Qayoumi of San Jose State University (SJSU) is doing.

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Grant Resources for Education Technology Innovation

September 11, 2012 at 6:30 am PST

The Huffington Post recently reported on the status of education funding in the U.S. The news was not good. According to a new report by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, more than half of U.S. states will cut education budgets this year.

In this resource-constrained environment, taking advantage of grant resources for education technology innovation is critically important. Cisco is teaming with the Grants Office, LLC, to deliver a series of free webcasts to provide information, insights and tips on grant funding for U.S. education. Webcast topics will cover an important range of grant opportunities. Click on the links below for additional information on the grant programs covered in each session.

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The Flipped Classroom

Just been reading a white paper from Cisco about the Flipped Classroom -- linked here for download FlippedClassroomWhitepaper_D8_V5.

The paper describes how the teaching and learning model used around the world today has it roots in the 18th century.  This is based the premise that lessons are delivered in real time by teachers and lecturers and then students do further study and review the content.  Following is an extract from the paper which sets the scene.

“For the first 19 years of his career in education, Jon Bergman–like most educators–rarely had the time to speak to more than a few students each day in his high school chemistry classes. His teaching model followed the conventions established generations ago: Standing at the front of his classroom, he delivered lectures to students who furiously scribbled notes. He presented homework each evening, which was briefly reviewed the next day in class before beginning a new lab. Students who quickly grasped the concepts Bergman presented did well enough on tests to pass his class; those who struggled or were reticent to ask for help did not.
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Connected Educator Month Closing Sessions

August 22, 2012 at 11:41 am PST

The U.S. Department of Education declared August Connected Educator Month (CEM), and more than 140 of the nation’s leading education organizations, communities, and companies (including Cisco) have come together to celebration and explore the power of professional online communities to advance the field of education. Throughout the month, educators have been participating in 400+ webinars, guided tours, live chats and forums, as well as blogging and tweeting using the #ce12 hashtag,  to explore how online communities can enable educators to take control of their own professional development

Through the Connected Learning Exchange, Cisco provides an online community of educators from schools, colleges and universities to foster collaboration and showcase innovative and practical strategies that can dramatically improve education everywhere. We are also pleased to host, via WebEx, seven of the concluding CEM webcasts on August 30th and 31st, on a range of important topics including Personalized Learning, Teacher Led Change, 21st Century PD and the concluding session on Connected Educator Month: What We’ve Learned. Descriptions and registration links are included below.

Please also check the CEM calendar and continue to participate in all of the remaining CEM activities.

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