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Thu Nov 29, 2012, 12:11 PM

The Most Important Education Technology in 200 Years

If you were asked to name the most important innovation in transportation over the last 200 years, you might say the combustion engine, air travel, Henry Fordís Model-T production line, or even the bicycle. The list goes on.

Now answer this one: whatís been the single biggest innovation in education?

Donít worry if you come up blank. Youíre supposed to. The question is a gambit used by Anant Agarwal, the computer scientist named this year to head edX, a $60 million MIT-Harvard effort to stream a college education over the Web, free, to anyone who wants one. His point: itís rare to see major technological advances in how people learn.

Agarwal believes that education is about to change dramatically. The reason is the power of the Web and its associated data-crunching technologies. Thanks to these changes, itís now possible to stream video classes with sophisticated interactive elements, and researchers can scoop up student data that could help them make teaching more effective. The technology is powerful, fairly cheap, and global in its reach. EdX has said it hopes to teach a billion students.


Free Online Education websites and resources...

Khan Academy http://www.khanacademy.org/

edX (Harvard, MIT, Cal Berkeley, U of Texas) https://www.edx.org/

Udemy http://www.udemy.com/

Coursea https://www.coursera.org/

Udacity http://www.udacity.com/

Education Portal http://education-portal.com/

MIT Open Courseware http://ocw.mit.edu/index.htm

Universities with the best free online courses http://goo.gl/eRzv

TED Talk - Daphne Koller: What we're learning from online education

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Arrow 8 replies Author Time Post
Reply The Most Important Education Technology in 200 Years (Original post)
True Earthling Nov 2012 OP
geckosfeet Nov 2012 #1
Spike89 Nov 2012 #2
True Earthling Nov 2012 #5
HiPointDem Nov 2012 #7
msongs Nov 2012 #3
proud2BlibKansan Nov 2012 #4
HiPointDem Nov 2012 #6
FarCenter Nov 2012 #8

Response to True Earthling (Original post)

Thu Nov 29, 2012, 12:55 PM

2. Truly innovative and game changing, but not an education online

Quasi-interactive course delivery can actually flip the traditional paradigm of education on its head, but for all the potential, it isn't some magic pill that can replace educators. Really, it isn't that much different from the introduction of cheap books and libraries. Learners haven't really been starved for data/information to digest.

A very few topics (and few learner types) do lend themselves to primarily "lecture-based" learning--those classes are perfect for online delivery. However, the vast majority of learning always has and always will involve as much guidance and personalized tutoring as the student can get. If that weren't true, everyone could have simply gone to the local library, grabbed the textbooks used in college and given themselves a degree.

Without any doubt, online delivery (the flipped classroom) can massively benefit students when combined with a good teacher who now may be freed from the task of lecturing and can dedicate their time and expertise toward contextualizing and personalizing that online content for their specific students.

As a disclaimer, I am a book editor at an ed-tech publishing/teacher membership organization. One of "my" books is specifically about online lectures and many others touch on the topic.

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Response to Spike89 (Reply #2)

Thu Nov 29, 2012, 10:59 PM

5. Salman Khan has been preaching the flipped classroom...

Watch the video lectures at home and do homework in the classroom with teacher assistance. This model makes more sense in that students can progress at their own pace and receive more one on one interaction.

Salman Khan talks about how and why he created the remarkable Khan Academy, a carefully structured series of educational videos offering complete curricula in math and, now, other subjects. He shows the power of interactive exercises, and calls for teachers to consider flipping the traditional classroom script -- give students video lectures to watch at home, and do "homework" in the classroom with the teacher available to help.


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Response to True Earthling (Reply #5)

Thu Nov 29, 2012, 11:08 PM

7. there's nothing new about 'flipped classrooms' but the label.


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Response to True Earthling (Original post)

Thu Nov 29, 2012, 01:21 PM

3. the lead pencil with an ERASER? that's my vote! nt

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Response to True Earthling (Original post)

Thu Nov 29, 2012, 11:07 PM

6. more education deform bullshit from the world of finance capital, which is presently making


a grab for michigan's education sector's capital & resources.

so sick of hearing this crap touted as innovation.

it's a resource grab, and there's nothing innovative about khan academy or any of the other repackaged garbage on their menu.

concentration of wealth, theft of public resources, assembly line education for the masses.

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Response to True Earthling (Original post)

Thu Nov 29, 2012, 11:22 PM

8. This is mainly learning technology, rather than education technology

Education involves:
- admissions, both to the institutions, to the class, and to the course,
- teaching, the organization and presentation of information, problems, strategies, excercises, labs, etc.,
- learning, the absorption of the information and expertise in the skills etc., by the student and
- credentialing, the assessment of whether the student has memorized the information and can apply the skills successfully.

This really addresses the learning part.

Autodidacts of the world will find this empowering. Hundreds of millions of people will learn a huge amount of material and significantly improve their competitiveness in the global economy.

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