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The Not-So-Silent Revolution: The Internet of Everything in Higher Education

September 29, 2014 at 9:13 am PST

Change has come slowly to higher education.  This is understandable given the relative success that the American university system has had in granting four-year degrees that have helped students garner higher long-term earnings.  Regardless, the traditional university system is facing crushing pressure from increasing student loan debt, rising costs, and expectations of hyper-connected students who want to learn anytime, anywhere from any device.

While the MOOC movement raised eyebrows and started people thinking differently about new delivery models, the sort of cataclysmic change some thought would happen with the advent of MOOCs didn’t.  Most institutions, while including some form of virtual learning in their course line-ups, have remained doggedly tied to the traditional, in-person lecture-hall format for the majority of their classes.  Talk about the need for a major revolution.

We believe that the Internet of Everything (IoE) is the catalyst for a revolution that we necessarily need to see in higher education. In fact, I believe that IoE will take the industry by storm.  Successful universities will quickly learn how the IoE can and is helping to create compelling, Connected Learning Experiences for faculty, staff, and students, and then they will begin leveraging this important trend to transform how they’re educating students now and in the future.

IoE is the networked connection of people, process, data, and things and represents the confluence of multiple technology trends: mobility (ubiquitous, high-speed mobile networks, smart devices, and apps); cloud computing, social networks, instant collaboration with anyone, anywhere; data analytics, and finally, an explosion in connected “things,” via inexpensive, intelligent sensors.  IoE brings these elements together with standards-based IP networks, and Cisco projects that it will generate a staggering $19T in value over the next ten years.  Of this, $258B of the IoE value-at-stake will come from solutions for Connected Learning alone.

The network, which is at the heart of IoE, must be stable, scalable, reliable, and capable of handling the increased rate of traffic from the explosion of mobile devices, the use of video, and the implementation of new applications for communications and collaboration.   It must be safe, secure, wired, and wireless, easy to manage and administer, and it must be designed to meet future growth requirements.

A number of universities have embarked on major change initiatives that take advantage of the IoE shift, and they are yielding concrete results: San Jose State University, Duke University, the 4-Virginia Universities, and others.  These institutions are providing ubiquitous wi-fi, access to a world of experts, immersive learning environments, collaborative workspaces, blended learning environments, and a sharing of courses, content, professors, and credit.  They have acknowledged that change is coming and that new technologies are accelerating change.

We are kicking off Educause today in Orlando, and we will undoubtedly be hearing a lot about IoE this week. Come by and visit the team in our booth at #Edu14, and check out this SlideShare to learn more about how IoE is transforming Higher Education.

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Two CSR Nonprofit Partners Win Tech Innovation Awards

Two of Cisco’s Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) nonprofit grantees, Gooru and Worldreader, have won 2014 Tech Awards from the Tech Museum of Innovation for their work in applying technology to some of the world’s most urgent educational challenges.

Gooru is a free, open-source education search engine. Educators worldwide can use it to personalize and share instructional K-12 content customized to individual students’ needs. The website contains over 16 million videos, slides, digital textbooks, and interactive content that provide engaging ways to teach K-12 science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). Cisco support is helping Gooru integrate Lessonopoly – a repository of more than 11,000 teacher lessons and study packs – into its platform.

Gooru provides more than 200,000 young people around the world with training and e-readers with extended battery life.

Gooru provides an online platform for educators worldwide to personalize and share instructional content customized to each student’s needs.

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Converged Access Enables Next Gen Classrooms at PCTI

pcti_iconPassaic County Technical Institute (PCTI) is a leading career and technical high school located in Wayne, New Jersey. Listed among the best high schools three years in a row according to US News & World Reports, PCTI is the largest school of its kind in the state and represents a progressive learning community both in terms of teaching and adopting technology.

Converged Access is a WLAN deployment mode that helps deliver common intelligent services across wired and wireless networks for security and policy, application visibility, network resiliency, smart operations and more. Catalyst 3850, Catalyst 3650, Catalyst 4500E switches, and Cisco 5760 WLAN Controllers (WLC) are capable of supporting Converged Access mode.

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IoE Can Be Key to More Energy Efficient Colleges

July 28, 2014 at 12:58 pm PST

The Internet of Everything (IoE) is becoming more real than ever, particularly in education. As we begin to see this massive transformation taking place, schools for both K-12 and higher education are utilizing Cisco networks to run applications and pilot projects that benefit both the students and the faculty.  We expect to see more and more of these examples in education, specifically, as schools, colleges, and universities find new and different ways to leverage these technologies.

Schools and colleges have proven that initiatives around Bring Your own Device (BYOD) and Connected Learning are part of the bigger picture when connecting people, process, data and things. But what may not immediately come to mind is that IoE can drive energy efficiency for colleges.

On Tuesday, July 22, journalists and analysts heard from Chicago-based leaders in local government, public safety and education about the impact of IoE in public sector during Cisco’s two-day IoE and Innovation event held in the Windy City. Read More »

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Children Learn Coding and Collaboration at Cisco

July 24, 2014 at 5:29 pm PST

“If you want to use the music from Frozen in your game, do you know how to download a gif to match?” Not the average question I have heard in a conference room at Cisco headquarters in San Jose, California, especially when asked to 7-year-old girls! The girls were part of a group of 14 children participating in a coding camp held at Cisco and put on by Embark Labs. The goal of the event is to teach 7 to 10 year olds to have fun while learning how to program.

Teacher Brian VanDyck and Embark Labs Founder Jessie Arora watch as the students work on their coding projects

Teacher Brian VanDyck and Embark Labs Founder Jessie Arora watch as the students work on their coding projects

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