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The Stanford Education Experiment Could Change Higher Learning Forever

The Stanford Education Experiment Could Change Higher Learning Forever
Sebastian Thrun and Peter Norvig in the basement of Thrun's guesthouse, where they record class videos.Photo: Sam Comen Stanford doesn’t want me. I can say that because it’s a documented fact: I was once denied admission in writing. I took my last math class back in high school. Which probably explains why this quiz on how to get a computer to calculate an ideal itinerary is making my brain hurt. Last fall, the university in the heart of Silicon Valley did something it had never done before: It opened up three classes, including CS221, to anyone with a web connection. People around the world have gone crazy for this opportunity. Aside from computer-programming AI-heads, my classmates range from junior-high school students and humanities majors to middle-aged middle school science teachers and seventysomething retirees. Solid understanding? Apply this rule to a computational problem and you can make efficient predictions based on otherwise unreliable data. Related:  Online Learning

The Professors Behind the MOOC Hype - Technology Dave Chidley for The Chronicle Paul Gries, of the U. of Toronto, has taught MOOCs on computer science. By Steve Kolowich What is it like to teach 10,000 or more students at once, and does it really work? The survey, conducted by The Chronicle, attempted to reach every professor who has taught a MOOC. Hype around these new free online courses has grown louder and louder since a few professors at Stanford University drew hundreds of thousands of students to online computer-science courses in 2011. Princeton University's Robert Sedgewick is one of them. Like many professors at top-ranked institutions, Mr. His online course drew 80,000 students when it opened last summer, but Sedgewick was not daunted. It paid off. The Chronicle survey considered courses open to anyone, enrolling hundreds or even thousands of users (the median number of students per class was 33,000). But the participants were primarily longtime professors with no prior experience with online instruction. Why They MOOC Mr.

Khan Academy and the Effectiveness of Science Videos | Action-Reaction This must-watch video is from our friend Derek Muller, physics educator and science video blogger. Derek writes: It is a common view that “if only someone could break this down and explain it clearly enough, more students would understand.” The apparent reason for the discrepancy is misconceptions. There is hope, however. References 2008 Muller, D. 2008 Muller, D. 2008 Muller, D. 2007 Muller, D. The implication of Derek’s research, both for online science videos and for in-the-classroom science lessons, are obvious. Like this: Like Loading... Stanford Professors Launch Online University Coursera - Liz Gannes There seems to be something in the water at Stanford University that’s making faculty members leave their more-than-perfectly-good jobs and go teach online. Coursera co-founders Andrew Ng and Daphne Koller Stanford computer science professors Daphne Koller and Andrew Ng are on leave to launch Coursera, which will offer university classes for free online, in partnership with top schools. Mountain View, Calif. Compared to Udacity, a similar start-up from former Stanford professor Sebastian Thrun that’s creating its own classes, Coursera helps support its university partners in creating their own courses, which are listed under each school’s brand. Some might doubt that universities would want to share their prized content for free online with a start-up, but Coursera has already signed up Princeton, Stanford, the University of Michigan and the University of Pennsylvania as partners, with a set of classes launching April 23.

Bill Gates' classroom of the future - Mar. 8, 2013 NEW YORK (CNNMoney) Today, classes are too big. Lessons are taught the same way to dozens or hundreds of students -- each of whom has different learning style. Technology can, and should, change that, Gates argues. "Being there physically doesn't add much value," Gates told CNNMoney in an exclusive interview. Gates envisions a college of the future in which students watch lessons online, delivered by the brightest minds in the field. "If you want the very best lectures, if you want the cost efficiency, you have to break down and say, 'you know, let's take someone else's material," Gates said. With the money saved from hiring professors, resources could be poured into labs and study groups. Gates' idea is one of many visions for the quickly transforming education system in the United States. Related story: Community college grads out-earn bachelor's degree holders Gates' main theme was personalized learning, which can be enhanced by new technology.

Coursera Raises $16 Million To Bring Free Online Education to Millions The Internet is revolutionizing education, as several companies and organizations disrupt the online education space including Open Yale, Open Culture, Khan Academy, Academic Earth, P2PU, Skillshare, Scitable and Skype in the Classroom. The Internet has changed how we interact with time and each other. We can be learning all the time now, whenever we want, and wherever we want. For the past year, renowned Stanford University professors Daphne Koller and Andrew Ng have experimented with new online learning tools like videos, quizzes and peer-to-peer platforms to teach free classes to just under a million students. “Imagine a future where top university professors in the country are teaching not just hundreds of thousands of students but hundreds of millions,” says Andrew Ng. Features on Coursera include: A common issue raised against online education is the importance of quality, which many believe can’t be successfully scaled and can’t be generated by computers. olly via shutterstock

4 Reasons Your Brain Loves to Learn Online Are we offloading our brains onto the web? Are programs better than teachers at knowing what we know? Do virtual badges motivate more than grades? What is it about cartoon foxes that helps us learn to code? As you can read in our piece “How the Internet Revolutionized Education”, we’ve been tracking on-line education closely for some time now– talking to experts and keeping tabs on an industry that’s exploding as predicted. We’ve analyzed here four different special powers of online teaching that make brains very happy. 1) Memory: This is your brain on-line. According to Columbia neuroscientist Betsy Sparrow and her team, “We are becoming symbiotic with our computer tools”. Dr. So is offloading our brain making us dumber? “Accessibility [of information] changes the relative importance of certain topics in much the same ways that a calculator changes the relative importance of some things.” Our dependence on the web for facts might even be making us smarter. 3) Rewards: Badges? – Free Online Courses Built by Professors Top Schools from Berkeley to Yale Now Offer Free Online Courses On average, it will cost $55,600 to attend Princeton, Penn, Michigan or Stanford next year. But now you can enroll in online courses at all four universities online for free. The universities won't just be posting lectures online like MIT's OpenCourseWare project, Yale’s Open Yale Courses and the University of California at Berkeley’s Webcast. Rather, courses will require deadlines, evaluations, discussions and, in some cases, a statement of achievement. "The technology as well as the sociology have finally matured to the point where we are ready for this," says Daphne Koller, a co-founder of Coursera, the for-profit platform classes will run on. "This is a group that didn't grow up at a time when there weren't browsers," Koller adds. Coursera grew out of an experiment in Stanford's computer science department that opened up a handful of classes to non-Stanford students via the Internet. Koller and Ng are the second pair of Stanford professors attempting to scale the idea past Stanford.

In 2011: How the Internet Revolutionized Education As connection speeds increase and the ubiquity of the Web pervades, free education has never been so accessible. An Internet connection gives lifelong learners the tools to become autodidacts, eschewing exorbitant tuition and joining the ranks of other self-taught great thinkers in history such as Albert Einstein, Alexander Graham Bell, Paul Allen and Ernest Hemingway. We can be learning all the time now, whenever we want, and wherever we want. And because of that, we’re seeing explosive growth in online education. We’ve featured several companies and organizations in the past year that are disrupting the online education space including Open Yale, Open Culture, Khan Academy, Academic Earth, P2PU, Skillshare, Scitable and Skype in the Classroom. Now that we’ve reached the end of 2011, it’s time to look back at our previous posts and remind ourselves how far we’ve come and catch up on all that’s happened. Insider How the Internet is Revolutionizing Education Stay in or drop out? News Apps

Online learning: Campus 2.0 When campus president Wallace Loh walked into Juan Uriagereka's office last August, he got right to the point. “We need courses for this thing — yesterday!” Uriagereka, associate provost for faculty affairs at the University of Maryland in College Park, knew exactly what his boss meant. MOOCs had exploded into the academic consciousness in summer 2011, when a free artificial-intelligence course offered by Stanford University in California attracted 160,000 students from around the world — 23,000 of whom finished it. Similar conversations have been taking place at major universities around the world, as dozens — 74, at the last count — rush to sign up. The ferment is attributable in part to MOOCs hitting at exactly the right time. There is reason to hope that this is a positive development, says Roy Pea, who heads a Stanford centre that studies how people use technology. Large-scale pedagogy “When one professor can teach 50,000 people it alters the economics of education.” Learning curve

Stanford Professor Gives Up Teaching Position, Hopes to Reach 500,000 Students at Online Start-Up - Wired Campus The Stanford University professor who taught an online artificial-intelligence course to more than 160,000 students has abandoned his teaching position to aim for an even bigger audience. Sebastian Thrun, a research professor of computer science at Stanford, revealed today that he had given up his teaching role at the institution to found Udacity, a start-up offering low-cost online classes. He made the surprising announcement during a presentation at the Digital–Life–Design conference, in Munich, Germany. The development was first reported earlier today by Reuters. During his talk, Mr. Thrun explored the origins of his popular online course at Stanford, which initially featured videos produced with nothing more than “a camera, a pen, and a napkin.” Mr. He concluded by telling the crowd that he couldn’t continue teaching in a traditional setting. One of Udacity’s first offerings will be a seven-week course called “Building a Search Engine.” Teaching the course at Stanford, Mr.

Virtual Schools Booming As States Mull Warnings DENVER -- More schoolchildren than ever are taking their classes online, using technology to avoid long commutes to school, add courses they wouldn't otherwise be able to take – and save their school districts money. But as states pour money into virtual classrooms, with an estimated 200,000 virtual K-12 students in 40 states from Washington to Wisconsin, educators are raising questions about online learning. States are taking halting steps to increase oversight, but regulation isn't moving nearly as fast as the virtual school boom. The online school debate pits traditional education backers, often teachers' unions, against lawmakers tempted by the promise of cheaper online schools and school-choice advocates who believe private companies will apply cutting-edge technology to education. Is online education as good as face-to-face teaching? Virtual education companies tout a 2009 research review conducted for the U.S. Still, virtual schooling at the K-12 level is booming. Online:

Introduction to Online Learning: Are You Ready to Be an Online Learner? "Change is the end result of all true learning." — Leo Buscaglia You’ve seen all those great commercials about attending school from home in your pajamas, or maybe you’ve heard from someone you know that taking university classes online is a wonderful solution for working parents who want to get a degree. It could be that you just want the freedom that seems to go with online learning. But how do you know if you’re ready to be an online learner? These ten tips may help you figure out what is right for you. Tip #1: Consider What Type of Learner You Are and What Your Preferences Are Some of us like to have hands-on involvement when we are learning; others prefer listening to someone explain how to do something. Tip #2: Have the right personality for online learning Are you an outgoing, social person who enjoys being around people, or are you more introverted, preferring instead to work alone? Another aspect of personality to consider is your level of self-motivation. Tip #5: Ask questions.