Friday, February 21, 2014

CHE: Harvard and MIT Release Visualization Tools for Trove of MOOC Data

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Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have released a set of open-source visualization tools for working with a rich trove of data from more than a million people registered for 17 of the two institutions’ massive open online courses, which are offered through their edX platform.

The tools let users see and work with “near real-time” information about course registrants—minus personally identifying details—from 193 countries. A Harvard news release says the tools “showcase the potential promise” of data generated by MOOCs. The aggregated data sets that the tools use can be also downloaded.

The suite of tools, named Insights, was created by Sergiy Nesterko, a research fellow in HarvardX, the university’s instructional-technology office, and Daniel Seaton, a postdoctoral research fellow at MIT’s Office of Digital Learning. Mr. Nesterko said the tools “can help to guide instruction while courses are running and deepen our understanding of the impact of courses after they are complete.”


Source and Link To Tools Available At:


Thursday, February 13, 2014

Inside Higher Education: The iPhone and the MOOC

February 12, 2014 - 9:00pm  / Joshua Kim

I’ve discovered the secret (sort of) for getting through a MOOC (mostly). Don’t use a computer.

In my vast experimenting in the open online education field (an N of 1 - namely me), I’ve found that I significantly more likely to make it through a MOOC if I consume the course materials via my iPhone.

Why forgo the power of the keyboard and the pleasure of a large screen when accessing the latest and greatest in open online learning?  3 reasons:

1. Multitasking:

 Whoever said that multitasking is a myth has never witnessed me MOOC (can I use it as a verb?) while running (slowly) on my treadmill. My iPhone sits on that little treadmill shelf. My laptop not so much.

 The big problem with MOOCs is that they do not come with an extra hour in our day. Maybe MOOCs should be bundled with caffeine pills. The reality is that the only way that I’m going to MOOC is if I can do so while doing something else. Joining the open online learning movement while driving seems like a bad idea (I’d get distracted from the curriculum), exercising seems like the only part of my day that is a candidate for new MOOC time.  

2. Not Multitasking:

The other great advantage of logging into my MOOCs on my iPhone is that the iPhone is lousy at switching between tasks. What a great feature.  

 With my laptop the lure of e-mail is a click away. I wish that my fancy MacBook Air was something more than an e-mail appliance (you’ve got mail - always - answer it!), but that is the sad fact of life. 

I’ll stay with one thing on an iPhone for 30 minutes. Try that on your computer.

3. Consuming: 

 The final reason why I’m migrating to solely MOOCing on my iPhone is that I’m really bad at MOOCS. Mostly I only want to watch the videos (at 1.5 speed).The forums don’t hold all that much interest.  The assignments - forget about it.

At some point we will all realize that open online education is like Twitter. Dip in the stream when you are so moved. Stop feeling guilty. Sign up promiscuously and graze as the mood strikes. 

The people who learn the most from MOOCs will be the people who teach (and help create) the MOOCs. We will learn many many wonderful things. 

Those on the other end of the (sometimes small screen) should not feel so much pressure.

How do you MOOC?

Source Available At:


Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Web Course > Bringing Library Services to Mobile Devices > March 3-29 2014

Instructor: Scott La Counte /  Dates: March 3-29, 2014 / Credits: 1.5 CEUs  / Price: $175

It is estimated that 1 out of 4 people own a Smartphones (i.e. phones classified as having Internet access like iPhones, Windows Phones, and Android Phones); every year, more patrons are demanding libraries bring their services to the gadgets they love. Upon completion of this four week course, you will better understand the best (and cheapest) ways to bring your library services to mobile devices, from smartphones to eReaders and tablets. We will also discuss the best ways to make sure your library’s homepage fits onto phones of any size, and look into practical solutions for creating both web apps and native iPhone / Android apps.

Course Objectives

  • Understand the difference between mobile apps and native apps and the importance they play in libraries
  • Recognize the best mobile services for your library and budget
  • Develop a plan of action for training staff and patrons to use new services
  • Hear from other librarians about what they have already implemented into their library with regard to mobile services
  • Discuss current trends in technology and how they might change what libraries offer in the future
Scott La Counte is the head librarian for the Southern California Institute of Technology. Scott holds a BA in Comparative Religion and English Literature from Cal State Fullerton, and an MLIS from San Jose State University. He has given presentations on mobile application development at several different conferences, and is the author of Going Mobile: Developing Apps for Your Library Using Basic HTML Programming (ALA Editions Special Reports, 2011), Build Your Own App for Fun and Profit (Huron Street Press, 2012), and Quiet, Please: Dispatches from a Public Librarian (Da Capo Press, 2008).

Course Structure 

 This is an online class that is taught asynchronously, meaning that participants do the work on their own time as their schedules allow. The class does not meet together at any particular times, although the instructor may set up optional sychronous chat sessions. Instruction includes readings and assignments in one-week segments. Class participation is in an online forum environment.

Source and Registration Link Available:



Sunday, February 10, 2013

A/V Now Available > American Libraries Live > Mobile Services: The Library in Your Pocket > February 14 > 2 PM (ET)

Jason Griffey will return to run another engaging, fantastic interactive discussion with another great panel. Jason will be joined ... by Maurice Coleman and Robin Hastings. [snip]

Maurice Coleman has been the technical trainer at Harford County (MD) Public Library in NE Maryland for 7 years and had a consulting practice since the 1990’s. He has 20 years of experience training all ages how to sensibly use technology and computer hardware and software.

He hosts the library training podcast T is for Training, is on the board of the American Library Association Learning RoundTable and writes for the  Learning Round Table blog, ALALearning. For his work he was named a 2010 Library Journal Mover and Shaker, and received the Citizens for Maryland Libraries Davis McCarn Technology Award.

Robin Hastings is the Director of Technology Services for the North East Kansas Library System in Lawrence, KS. In that capacity, she provides consulting services for libraries in the NEKLS region and manages the NEKLS tech staff who provide technology assistance for those libraries as well. She can also be found presenting about all the cool things that can be done in libraries at various conferences around the world. She has presented on Mashups, Cloud Computing, RSS, Drupal, Library Learning 2.0 and many other topics. She is the author of the Collaboration 2.0 Library Technology Report, published by ALA and of the Microblogging and Lifestreaming In Libraries book in the Tech Series published by Neal-Schuman and LITA as well as several articles in library-related journals.

Twitter Hashtag = #alalive

Source Available At


Recording Available At


Sunday, January 13, 2013

FREE Boise State University Mobile Learning Initiative Webinars

We invite all who are interested in learning more about Boise State’s Mobile Learning Initiative, with an eye toward thinking about mobile learning on their own campuses, to participate in a series of  ... [free] webinars to be offered ... Spring 2013 [semester].

[NOTE: Registration Is Required] 

All webinars will be held from 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM (Mountain Time)[  1:00 PM - 2:00 PM ET] on a Thursday. [snip]

February 14, 2013

Library Instruction for Mobile Devices

Albertsons Library has successfully leveraged the use mobile devices for helping students learn research skills. Librarians are now going to classrooms and teaching two instruction sessions — 1) finding information and 2) evaluating information. The library sessions provide hands-on, active learning opportunities for student teams, built around the use of iPads to explore library resources. In fall 2012, this included instruction to seventy-four classes in Boise State's "University Foundations 100" course, the first course in our general education program. Ten classes of junior level transfer students received an additional session — 3) advanced searching techniques. The instruction curriculum is purposefully designed using mobile teaching and learning strategies.

March 14, 2013

Collaboration, Cooperation, and Coordination: How Campus Partners Make the Mobile Learning Initiative Work

Boise State University’s Mobile Learning Initiative is a cooperative effort with leadership and contributions from several independent campus units, including Academic Technologies, Albertsons Library, the Center for Teaching and Learning, and the Office of Information Technology (not to mention all of the academic departments and programs involved, and their faculty). At this webinar, you’ll hear from representative of all of these groups, who will talk about how we have addressed the challenges of distributed governance of the Mobile Learning Initiative and made it all work as a whole.

April 11, 2013

B Mobile at the Program Level: Integration of Mobile Learning Across an Academic Program

From fall 2010 to spring 2012, Boise State explored the implementation of mobile learning in individual classes through our mLearning Scholars projects. Beginning in the summer of 2012, we took it to the next level. We initiated a project to integrate mobile learning across an entire academic program. Our Master of Applied Historical Research program was selected as our first "mProgram," requiring students in the program to purchase a mobile device and implementing mobile learning activities with an eye toward creating a cohesive experience across courses. This webinar will discuss their planning and preparation, and their experiences through the first (nearly) two semesters.

Past Workshops

November 29, 2012

Going Mobile at Boise State: Helping Faculty Explore Ideas and Get Started

Mobile learning initiatives have sometimes focused on getting devices into the hands of students. Early on, we decided that before such an initiative could be successful at Boise State, we needed to prepare faculty to effectively use teaching and learning strategies that leverage the capabilities of mobile devices. Opportunities to explore these capabilities, their potential impacts on teaching and learning, and the individual and institutional infrastructure and support needs for success are important to facilitate this faculty preparation. We've  offered a day-long B Mobile symposium, a week-long Teaching and Learning in a Mobile Environment Summer Institute, a mLearning Scholars semester-long cohort experience, and other faculty development options. This webinar will discuss these offerings -- what we did, how we did it, and the results achieved.

Webinar Recording Available At 


Duration = ~ 66 Minutes

Slides Available At


October 25, 2012

Concierge Service and Technical Support for Mobile Learning

This webinar presents a case study for walk in support, embracing concepts learned from information commons and how it all comes into play with mobile learning. As the University uses more mobile devices in the classroom, the need for support changes and grows. Accordingly, support organizations need to adapt and flow with the changes. Join us as we discuss what has worked, where we needed to improve, and how we have addressed the issues of supporting the mobile learning environment.

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Sources Available At 

Registration Available At 


Monday, January 7, 2013

UNESCO Working Paper Series on Mobile Learning

Today there are over 5.9 billion mobile phone subscriptions worldwide, and for every one person who accesses the internet from a computer two do so from a mobile device. Given the ubiquity and rapidly expanding functionality of mobile technologies, UNESCO is enthusiastic about their potential to improve and facilitate learning, particularly in communities where educational opportunities are scarce. This Working Paper Series scans the globe to illuminate the ways in which mobile technologies can be used to support the United Nations Education for All Goals; respond to the challenges of particular educational contexts; supplement and enrich formal schooling; and make learning more accessible, equitable, personalized and flexible for students everywhere.

Illustrative Initiatives and Policy Implications

Exploring the Potential of Mobile Technologies to Support Teachers and Improve Practice

Key Issues to Consider and Implications for Policy Makers and Planners

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Increasing Student Engagement and Retention Using Mobile Applications Smartphones, Skype and Texting Technologies

Logo: Emerald home.

Series: Cutting-edge Technologies in Higher Education v. 6D
Contributor(s): Laura A. Wankel (editor), Patrick Blessinger (editor), Charles Wankel (series editor),
Format: Paperback, 229 x 152mm , 250 pp
Publication date: 05 Feb 2013
Imprint: Emerald Group Publishing Limited
ISBN: 9781781905098
ISSN: 2044-9968

Price: $79.99  


Increasing Student Engagement and Retention Using Mobile Applications: Smartphones, Skype and Texting Technologies examines new research on how mobile technologies are being used in higher education to increase learner engagement in an epoch of increasing globalization and diversity. These enabling technologies are reshaping and reframing the practice of teaching and learning in higher education. Through case studies, surveys, and literature reviews, this volume will examine how mobile technologies are being used to improve teamwork and leadership skills in students, to create engaging communities of practice, and how these technologies are being used to create inter-cultural and global experiences. This volume will also discuss frameworks for adopting and deploying these technologies.