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April, 2013:

UWB LT Blog Included as a Leading IT Site to Watch in 2013 by TechnologySchools.org

Leading IT Site to Watch in 2013

We are happy to announce that the UWB Learning Technologies blog has been included in TechnologySchools.org’s list of the Top 100 Leading IT Sites to Watch in 2013. We are very excited to be recognized with other great higher education and IT-related blogs and websites, and we will continue to work hard to produce a high quality resource for the higher education community.

We would like to thank our great team at UWB Learning Technologies and all of our supportive readers!

 

A Roadblock for Online STEM Classes?

In an article published today in The Chronicle of Higher Education, new research is discussed that shows students will be selective in the types of courses they choose to take online. According to a report on the study, students are more willing to take courses online whose content they feel “more comfortable teaching themselves”. Subjects widely mentioned that students found difficult to teach themselves were science and math classes.

However, there has been a lot of evidence that online learning is beneficial to students. The article cites a study by the US Department of Education conducted in 2010 that found that students actually did better in the online courses than in the face-to-face courses that were studied.

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Teaching and Learning with Technology

In this month’s Provost Report at the University of Washington, “Putting Learning First: How Students Learn and How Technology Can Help“, the focus was on strategies for teaching and learning with technology. Although technology in the classroom is something that is fairly widespread, it is still something that needs careful planning and consideration. The report is a great guide of ideas and “best practices” when taking steps toward a tech-friendly classroom.

The report first mentions that a course shouldn’t be organized around a technology tool. The entire purpose of educational technology is to enhance learning through the use of technology…therefore, the technology used should fit in naturally with the course and there must be a purpose for it. All too often, instructors make the mistake of using a technology tool just for the sake of using it. If it’s not helping students learn the course content, it may simply serve as a distraction, or even hindrance. Therefore, it’s important to ask questions like, “what technology could be more effective at getting the point across?” or “How accessible is this technology, both in and out of the classroom?” This reminds me of a graphic Edudemic posted last week in their article “5 Features Technology Must Have Before Classroom Use“:

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Students Test Their Skills and Stamina against the Clock

Attention UW-Bothell students interested in computer programming and interactive media: here is an interesting event worth checking out!

At CodeDay, hosted by local non-profit StudentRND, students group up in competitive teams to be the best coders. With only 24 hours, everyone works vigorously and passionately to design and develop a new, functioning script from scratch.

In this environment of little more than fresh pizza and donuts, whizzing computers, fellow programmers and a lot of innovative energy, age and experience level become irrelevant. In the last Seattle event, the youngest participants were only 14-years old, yet they competed just as well against their high school and college peers. Displaying a wide range of talents and technologies—from coding to graphics design to audio composition and from websites to mobile apps to offline games—the final presentations and awards ceremony mark the long, but meaningful and exciting day’s end.

For the full article by KING 5 about the previous CodeDay event, please click here.

For more information on the Bellevue CodeDay Classic event (Apr 6-Apr 7), please click here.

For more information on the next Seattle CodeDay event (May 25-May 26), please click here.