What is Adaptive Learning? #FutureEdTech

Guest Blog with Brightspace by D2L


Adaptive learning
has become one of the most talked about technologies in education. Gartner Canada Inc. recently named adaptive learning as the number one strategic technology to impact education in 2015. With this anticipation brings different perceptions—and even some confusion—about what adaptive learning is and its role in shaping teaching and learning.

This post is the first in a series dedicated to adaptive learning. First up, let’s establish exactly what it means.

Definition

”Adaptivity” is the “adjustment of one or more characteristics of the learning environment.” These adaptive actions take place in three different areas:

  1. Appearance/Form: How the learning actions—such as content, the addition of text, graphics, and/or video, etc.—are displayed to the learner. Most of today’s adaptive platforms call this “content consumption” and expect knowledge to be obtained by simply reading the content.
  2. Order/Sequence: How the learning actions are ordered and branched depending on the learning progress, such as pathways.
  3. Guidance towards Goal/Mastery: Actions of the system that lead a learner towards success. This allows for changes according to the most optimal learning outcomes, level of difficulty, and the learner’s increasing knowledge or skill level.

The value is different for everyone

The whole idea of “personalized learning”—and by extension, adaptive learning—is to help meet the needs of each student’s learning process. However, students still rely heavily on their instructor’s feedback and guidance to confirm that they’ve met the requirements.

With growing classroom sizes, this can be difficult to scale. That’s where technology can help.

The adaptive technology landscape today

In our survey of the adaptive technology landscape, we found that there are many solutions focused on adjusting learner pathways. These may be different pathways students can take within a learning environment. They are typically organized as pre-set categories and applied in a rules-based method with a decision tree. Students might take a test on the first day that will be used to create their individual path and content.

Adapting to a learner’s style and pace is another frequently applied model. While its value remains largely unproven, many adaptive platforms highlight its benefits. Most recent adaptive technology is data-driven and captures ongoing data from students’ actions. These systems use their results, creating learning actions and pathways that change and improve over time for each student.

The real opportunity can be found in taking the results of students who have completed adapted online courses and feeding those back into the system. This makes pathway learning transferable. What helped a student on the far side of the world can become valuable to a student next door.

Our view: it’s about exploration

At its core, adaptive learning allows students to select the steps or pathways they want to pursue rather than having it dictated to them. Effective technology can assemble and adapt the whole learning management system, not just a single piece of content at a time.

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Join Brightspace by D2L at Future EdTech 2015. They’ll be speaking on ‘Leveraging technology to support student retention‘ at 14.00-14.30 on the 2nd June.

REGISTER FOR YOUR FREE PASS HERE.

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How do we change the culture of higher education to support and enable true transformation? #FutureEdTech

Guest Blog with Oracle

oracleIt’s certainly no secret that higher education globally is under going significant change. While it’s always difficult to have clear perspective when one is in the middle of a shift or period of dynamism, I believe this change is more profound than any we’ve seen in our lifetimes as higher education professionals, but I will also say that the change yet to come in the next 5-10 years is likely to be even more significant. Technology is underpinning a lot of these changes, but questions of culture, tradition, and historical precedent are being considered alongside discussions of the overall cost of education, the “return on investment,” student experience, and what truly defines “institutional excellence,” all questions that we hope to address at some stage during our upcoming participation in the Ovum Future EdTech conference in London.

All of us have been exposed to extremist predictions of massive reductions in the number of higher education institutions as a result of financial pressures and declining enrollment; the advent of MOOC’s (massive open online courses) and their purported ability to essentially replace the traditional model of delivering education content; the rapid ascent (and subsequent decline) of certain for-profit models of education; and in technology circles how everything “cloud” will allegedly solve all of our problems, financial as well as technical, and “solve world hunger” at the same time.

But lost in a lot of this hyperbole are a number of nuggets of positive change that have come from some of the forces I’ve just outlined. We’ve seen significant improvements in the delivery of education content through flipped classrooms and blended learning environments. MOOC’s haven’t replaced the traditional models of delivering education but they have had a positive influence on how students can be more effectively engaged and can learn at their own pace, while advances in technology have made on-line learning very interactive and engaging versus the passive models of the past.

In the “back office” of higher education, there has been significant pressure to drive operational efficiencies because of the draw-down over the past decade in public funding support for education, and as a result, albeit slowly, higher education has begun to adopt modern and more standard business processes in areas where bespoke process does not contribute significantly to the overall mission of teaching, learning and research. Furthermore because of the increased expectations around the “return on investment” in education, since more and more of the cost is being shouldered by the student and parent, more focus and emphasis is being placed on the overall student experience.

oracle2Underpinning all of this is a statistic I’d like to cite that comes from a survey conducted in the US annually by Casey Green of the Campus Computing Project that points to executive leadership (Vice Chancellors, Presidents, Provosts, etc.) of most institutions being significantly less sanguine about the effectiveness of IT investments in advancing the overall mission of the institutions versus their IT staff. In some cases this gap is as large as 20% in terms of those that rate these investments as “very effective” versus those that do not. This either speaks to unrealistic expectations, a failure to effectively communicate, or some other issue that perhaps we can explore during the upcoming Ovum Future EdTech conference.

One topic that I hope to address when I speak to the conference attendees during our session “Cloud Forecast: For Once A Very Promising Outlook” surrounds the larger general conversation in the higher education (and indeed across the entire education) sector that is quite prevalent: the general recognition that higher education is in need of significant change (transformation) – such as how education is delivered, how classrooms are organised, how information technology is leveraged, delivered, consumed, etc.  but it always comes back to how do we change the culture of higher education to support or enable true transformation – new ways of thinking, new business models and revenue sources, non-traditional programmes, competency based education models, mostly on-line programmes, etc.  – I hope to offer some ideas on the aforementioned points, and of course discuss how this cultural change is needed in order to extract maximum value from technology investments in the coming years.

For more information, please visit:
Oracle in Higher Education
Oracle Higher Education Cloud – Modern Campus. Modern Platform. 

The Author:
coleclark
Cole Clark
Global Vice President, Education and Research, Oracle

Oracle

Oracle is our Mission Critical Sponsor at Future EdTech, taking place on the 2nd – 3rd June 2015 at Millenium Gloucester Hotel in London – the first and only event in Europe enabling transformational change and innovation in higher education via technology.

Join Cole Clark, Global Vice President, Education & Research at Oracle, for his session Cloud Forecast: For Once A Very Promising Outlook at 9:40am, Wednesday, 3rd June. Please also visit the exhibition stand to find out more.

REGISTER FOR YOUR FREE PASS HERE.

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Cloud solutions for the modern campus #futureedtech

Seize the initiative – transform your campus

Supporting new business models, recruiting top talent, architecting more efficient business processes, and delivering personalised student experiences are top-of-mind-issues for campus leaders everywhere. And with competition heating up, colleges and universities are under tremendous pressure to transform their campuses to meet the demands of modern students, faculty, and staff.

To address these challenges, campus leaders are looking to innovate with cloud technologies that help them modernise their systems and processes and transform to a Modern Campus.

The Oracle Higher Education Cloud for the Modern Campus

Provides a solution, enabling institutions to:whitepaper

  • Target Omni-channel outreach and engagement to personalise every student’s journey
  • Find, recruit, develop, and retain top faculty and staff
  • Simplify processes, standardise systems, and prudently steward resources
  • Identify at-risk students and intervene in time to keep them on track
  • Promote a data-driven culture
  • Increase transparency and improve traceability

DOWNLOAD THE WHITE PAPER HERE.

ovum
About Oracle

Oracle are proud to be the Mission Critical Sponsor of the Future Edtech Conference and Exhibition taking place at the Millennium Gloucester Hotel in London, 2 – 3 June 2015 – the first and only event in Europe enabling transformational change and innovation in higher education via technology.

Join Cole Clark, Global Vice President, Education & Research at Oracle, for his session Cloud Forecast: For Once A Very Promising Outlook at 9:40am, Wednesday, 3rd June. Please also visit the exhibition stand to find out more.

REGISTER FOR YOUR FREE PASS HERE.

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Making the most of your Information Investments: Webinar with Ovum & Canon

When: Thursday 28th May 2015 at 14:00

In today’s always-on working environment, knowledge workers are overloaded with information. Even though investments in information management have been on the rise, the tools and training that workers need to properly share, store and use this information are often lacking – resulting in a loss of efficiency and productivity. Ovum and Canon have brought together a range of primary research studies, getting to understand the point of view of both end-users and enterprise IT departments around how they use and manage information.

Join us to examine:

• The scale of the information mis-management problem
• The potential solutions to it
• The benefits of getting information management right

Ovum in partnership with Canon, are offering an introductory webinar to help today’s businesses making the most of their information investments. Please join us.

Register for FREE here!

The Speakers

CanonQuentyn Taylor
Director of Information Security
Canon Europe Ltd

View full profile

 

OvumRichard Absalom
Senior Analyst
Enterprise Mobility and Productivity
Ovum

View full profile

 

About Canon

Canon Europe is the regional sales and marketing operation for Canon Inc., represented in 116 countries and employing 17,000 people across Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA).

Founded in 1937 with the specific goal of making the best quality camera available to customers, Canon’s tireless passion for the Power of Image has since extended its technology into many other markets and has established it as a world leader in both consumer and business imaging solutions.

Its solutions comprise products, ranging from digital compact and SLR cameras, through broadcast lenses and portable X-ray machines, to multi-function and production printers, all supported by a range of value added services.

Canon invests heavily in R&D to deliver the richest and most innovative products and services to satisfy customers’ creative needs. From amateur photographers to professional print companies, Canon enables each customer to realise their own passion for image.

Canon’s corporate philosophy is Kyosei – ‘living and working together for the common good’. In EMEA, Canon Europe pursues sustainable business growth, focusing on reducing its own environmental impact and supporting customers to reduce theirs using Canon’s products, solutions and services. Canon has achieved global certification to ISO 14001, demonstrating a world-class environmental management standard.

Further information about Canon Europe is available at: www.canon-europe.com

Register for FREE here!

Free Ovum Webinar: Leverage the tactical and strategic value of ICT in new institutional operating models #futureedtech

Leverage the tactical and strategic value of ICT in new institutional operating models

Held in partnership with Ovum’s Future EdTech Conference, this complimentary webinar is now available for download.

Introduction:
Nicole Engelbert (Director, Research & Analysis, imageedit_5_8005314402Industries, Ovum) presents this insightful 30 minute Webinar on “How to successfully integrate ICT into institutional strategy and decision-making to deliver transformational change”. Hear how to empower your institution to be more flexible and agile in the delivery of services and academic programs, accelerating the pace of innovation and ultimately improving its standing.

Webinar_image

Download your FREE Webinar here.


 

future-edtech-728x90This webinar is brought to you by Ovum in partnership with the Future Edtech Conference 2015.

Informed by input from our expert Advisory Board and exclusive Analysts’ insight, this two-day conference is Europe’s ONLY event offering undiluted Higher Education focus and will have the impact lacking from larger, less focused events. You will be able to maximise the return on your time out of the office by making valuable connections and benefiting from an agenda that is 100% relevant to your institution’s needs.

Click here for more information.

Social Media Is a Versatile Multi-Tool @InsideHigherEd #futureedtech

Source: Inside Higher Ed by Eric Stoller

One of my favorite examples when describing the versatility of social media is to talk about a Swiss multi-tool. With a wide array of accoutrements, the multi-tool is a great way to frame the many uses of social media within student affairs work. Recently, in a post about “The Rise of the Student Affairs Digital Communicator,” I talked about the evolution of student affairs practitioners in terms of social media fluency and use. After reading that particular post, a faculty member in a higher education / student affairs graduate program contacted me and asked what I would include in a social media / digital communications course for student affairs grads. My answer was broad in scope, and like a Swiss multi-tool, the versatility of social media was represented. In no particular order, and by no means complete, here is the list that I quickly typed up and sent in reply:

Social Data: It’s always useful to know some statistics when it comes to learning about social media. I’m a big fan of the Social Media Update from the Pew Research Center.

Strategic Communications and The Business of Social Media: Digital Communications 101 knowledge, for student affairs work or a business, can be enhanced by checking out these 8 communications resources.

Digital Accessibility: There is so much work that needs to be done to ramp up the overall state of social media accessibility. I would start with learning how to caption/subtitle YouTube videos.

Social Media Metrics: What does success mean in the digital realm? Are you looking for likes, followers, engagement, mentions, page views, etc? Note to self, write up a post in the future on social media metrics. For now, try to avoid vanity metricsand definitely visit Matt Hames’ posts on LinkedIn for some quality writing on digital data.

Social Media Sites & Apps: You’ll never stop learning in the social media arena. Developers keep iterating/creating and audiences shift over time.

Digital Professional Development: Connecting with peers, colleagues, mentors, friends, brands, schools, etc. is a wonderful way to keep informed, ask questions, and grow as a professional. My favorite method is the ubiquitous hashtag on Twitter.

Blogs: I would be remiss if I didn’t include blogs in this list. As digital hubs, content repositories, and engagement platforms, blogs are almost as relevant in 2015 as they were more than a decade ago.

Social Listening: Using social media for engagement is a terrific facet of the various sites/apps that represent the social sphere. However, you can use social media to “listen” for campus themes which can be useful for all sorts of educational initiatives.

Digital Enrollment Management: Needless to say, strategic enrollment management professionals understand the value of strategic social media communications.

Career Development / Digital Identity: Working on establishing a digital presence requires thoughtfulness and fluency. This section could probably be an entire course just by itself.

Digital Advising/Engagement: Learning tips on how to advise and engage via social media seems like an obvious section in an educational landscape that is made up of a variety of learners. For online-only students, social media and digital communications are going to be instrumental in advising, retaining, and supporting individuals who you may never see in-person.


 

Join the Future EdTech Event taking place in London on 2-3 June 2015.

250+ delegates and 50+ speakers will come together at Future EdTech 2015! 

Download the event brochure here.

Future Edtech Brochure
Register your free pass.

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Digital Literacy, Engagement, and Digital Identity Development @InsideHigherEd #futureedtech

Source: Inside Higher Ed by Eric Stoller

seven-elements-digital-literaciesThe seven elements of digital literacies model from Jisc represents a useful visual/model for those of us who teach, speak, and write about all things digital. When you think broadly about each of the 7 elements, connections can be made that resonate with student affairs work. The section on communications and collaboration is especially relevant for those of us who work to enhance student engagement and create opportunities for digital community.

The career and identity management element matches up perfectly to the concept of digital identity. When students transition into higher education it is often the case that their digital identity will also be in a state of transition. Career services and orientation programs are in the perfect spot for providing educational efforts on digital identity.

Information and communication technology (ICT) is perhaps the largest element in the model in terms of overall evolution and flux. Digital devices, applications, and services seem to change on a daily basis as “new” and “shiny” tend to dominate the news cycle. This is the digital literacy element that requires a good amount of experimentation, discovery, and dissonance.

Jisc, the UK’s leading resource for digital solutions for education and research, provides a plethora of information on digital literacy on their web channels. According to Jisc, “digital literacy looks beyond functional IT skills to describe a richer set of digital behaviors, practices and identities.”

Speaking of digital literacy/identity resources, a fantastic complement to the Jisc digital literacies model is David White‘s work on “visitors and residents.” Breaking free from the all-too-rigid digital native/immigrant narrative, White writes about a “continuum of ‘modes of engagement'” that embraces nuance and varying levels of digital fluency.

When we think about digital literacy, it is important to think broadly about the many aspects of all things digital. How we engage students, staff, and faculty via digital means requires a thorough understanding of our own digital identity. Working to enhance the digital literacy of students as well as faculty and staff is absolutely critical for digital engagement and identity.

You may have noticed that I shared two UK-based resources in this post. That is due to the fact that my wife and I recently moved to the UK. Getting plugged into UK higher education social media channels has been quite enlightening and informing. I’m looking forward to expanding the many resources that I share on a weekly basis on this blog and am excited to connect with the UK higher education community.

Join the Future EdTech Event taking place in London on 2-3 June 2015. Do not miss your chance to join 250+ of your peers including 50+ hand-picked speakers in London this June, claim your free pass today.

Download the event brochure here.

Register your free pass here.

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