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Social Media in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)

February 13, 2012 at 6:00 am PST

This post was authored by my colleague Jessica Kelly (@JessGoddesse)

If you’re wondering why social media should be an key  part of your communications strategy, just note these current statistics demonstrating the ubiquity of the medium:

  • Facebook now boasts more than 800 million active users worldwide, and more than half of these log on to the network on any given day.
  • Twitter too is no slouch (and growing), with 200 million registered users, one quarter of whom tweet daily.

Want more justifying numbers? A recent infographic on MediaBistro lists more compelling stats―like, say, the fact that 56% of consumers are likely to recommend a brand to a friend after becoming a fan on Facebook, and 20% of marketers have closed sales using Twitter.

Given that social media networks are timely (if not immediate) communications platforms that are interactive, and therefore― if used correctly (that is, authentically)―engaging, their success in marketing should come as no surprise. Read More »

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Interactive Video Transforming Teaching and Learning

Cisco recently hosted two customer roundtable discussions on the topic of “interactive video and how is being used in teaching and learning” for K-12 and higher education. There has been much interest in the benefits of using video in teaching and learning,  and as schools, colleges and universities are adopting it more broadly to expand curriculum options,  we are seeing a positive impact on student outcomes. K12 moderator, Alan November, discusses how the  “flipped classroom” model is improving student test scores and the role of video technology as a key enabler.

It’s well worth your time to listen to these very interesting discussions and best practices sharing with our panelists:

  • K-12 Schools: Dr. Susan Holliday, Education Technology Director, Capistrano Unified School District, and Matt Grose, Deer River Public Schools, hosted by Alan November, November Learning
  • Higher Education: Link Alexander, Vice Chancellor Technology Services, Lone Star College System, and James Web, CIO, West Texas A& M University, hosted by John Halpin, Center for Digital Education
  • Cisco Director of Engineering, Chris Barwick, discusses Cisco Lecture Vision and  state-of-the-art technologies available from Cisco to capture, transform and share class lectures

Read More »

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What Really Matters in K-12 Teaching and Learning? “Getting Beyond Folklore”

Over the past 40 years in the U.S., our student to teacher ratio has dropped from 22:1 to 17:1. Our teachers are better educated than ever – fully 62% today own a Masters degree, compared with only 23% in 1971. And we continue to spend – our nation’s investment in K-12 places us 4th in the world at $11,000 per student, trailing only Luxembourg, Switzerland, and Norway.

So, what’s happened to our reading and math test scores over these past four decades? Virtually flat.

Why is this?

Roland Fryer, the Robert M. Beren Professor of Economics at Harvard, would argue it’s due in part to the fact we really do not know what the problems are. His view: “it’s time to apply some science to the problem of student achievement in our schools.”

Read More »

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e-Learning Technology: Promoting Creativity and Collaboration… On a Budget

January 27, 2012 at 10:49 am PST

When speaking with our customers and prospects in the K-12 community, we hear time and again that budget restrictions are a daily reality.

At the same time, these educators fully understand that in order to prepare the next generation for success in the 21st century economy, a “mixed” learning environment (where new, innovative technologies are incorporated into more traditional curriculum) helps to better engage students and improve academic performance.

From the boardroom to the barroom, American citizens, including President Obama, instinctively know that our K-12 public education system needs to be invigorated. From the President’s State of the Union address this week:

Give [schools] the resources to keep good teachers on the job, and reward the best ones. And in return, grant schools flexibility: to teach with creativity and passion; to stop teaching to the test.

Read More »

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State of the Union Challenge: Teaching Skills that Lead to Jobs

As I listened to the State of the Union speech on Tuesday evening, my ears perked up when I heard these words “Growing industries in science and technology have twice as many openings as we have workers who can do the job”. While I agree that this is” inexcusable”, I couldn’t help but feel gratified that President Obama called attention to our deficiency in 21st century skills-based education.

Although unemployment continues to be a challenge in this country, the demand for technology specialists is on the rise. Projected to grow by 10, 20 and in some cases 50 percent in coming years, jobs like Computer Support Specialist, Analysts and Systems Administrators are in high demand. Read More »

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