Tag Archives: uopeople

EDUKWEST Sunday Review

Sunday Review for the Week of March 3rd 2014

In this week’s Sunday Review you will find stories about China’s rapidly changing education system, fundings, mergers & acquisitions we haven’t covered in detail, opinion pieces about elite universities and low-income students and how much a BA will costs students offline compared to online.

Continue reading

University of the People Accreditation

HEDLINE: University of the People receives Accreditation

Abstract

University of the People, the world’s first tuition-free university founded by Israeli serial entrepreneur Shai Reshef, announced that it has received accreditation by the Distance Education and Training Council.

Continue reading

UoPeople

University of the People (UoPeople) receives $500k Grant from Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

UoPeople

It looks like 2012 is becoming a great year for UoPeople, the world’s tuition-free, non-profit online university that wants to give everyone access to quality higher education no matter where they are and what financial situation they are in. To date, more than 1500 students from over 130 countries have been accepted to UoPeople.

Today, UoPeople announced new financial support in form of a $500,000 grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

“We are working very hard on the attainment of accreditation, and are extremely proud of having the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation partnering with us in this quest. Accreditation is important for us, our students and our graduates to as it will afford students significantly better employment prospects upon graduation – thus further improving their lives.”  – Shai Reshef, President of UoPeople

“UoPeople is a part of an emerging set of programs and institutions that is challenging the status quo and effectively meeting non-traditional student needs by leveraging innovative pedagogical and business practices and providing affordable, quality paths to postsecondary credentials. We are proud to be a part of the next major step for UoPeople: attaining accreditation.” Anh Nguyen, Senior Program Officer on the foundation’s Postsecondary Success team

Besides the growing support from individuals around the globe which was recently manifested in surpassing the 1 million Facebook fan mark, UoPeople also finds support by foundations and in academia as the grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation follows recent awards by the William & Flora Hewlett Foundation, the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation and the Intel Foundation.

Subscribe to review:ed Subscribe to EDUKWEST Video via RSS Subscribe to EDUKWEST Audio via RSS
Subscribe to EDUKWEST Audio via iTunes
Download Episode Download Episode Video Download Episode Audio
PlayPlay
ENT Audio Podcast

Pearson is like Shopping at Walmart – ENT #20 06-05-2012 (Audio)

ENT Audio Podcast

Ed News Ticker #20

Pearson is like Shopping at Walmart

  • recorded: June 5th 2012
Subscribe to ENT Subscribe to ENT Audio via RSS Subscribe to ENT Audio via iTunes
Podnova Player button Miro Video Player
Download Episode Download Episode Audio

Tech & Startups

1. Smarterer Grabs $1.75M From True Ventures & Google Ventures

Boston-based startup Smarterer has been quietly building a gamified platform that provides job searchers with a simple way to show employers what they know by taking quizzes in subjects that range from engineering to music.

Smarterer crowdsources its test designs and employs a smart ranking system to give its candidates a score and lets them broadcast their successes to the world. Today, the startup offers more than 500 skills and today announced that its community has now answered over 10 million questions — at an average of 70K questions per day.

To harness this growth, Smarterer is taking on another round of capital, as it officially closed $1.75 million in series A financing today, bringing its total funding to $3 million.

Source: TechCrunch


2. College Kids Start A Social Enterprise To Tell Stories For Good

Teach Twice reaches out to communities around the world and works to create a children’s story based on local culture–or arranges to translate an already-existing book. They print and sell the book back home, and send the proceeds to build schools or send kids to class in the community where the story originated.

“The Teach Twice book enhances the education of two children and two communities worlds apart, yet connected through a shared commitment to education and a desire to learn from books and from each other,” says the group’s website.

Teach Twice placed third in a Vanderbilt business plan competition and won a semifinalist grant in the Dell Social Innovation Challenge. Other startup funding came from a successful campaign through Kickstarter, where Teach Twice raised more than $7,500 in less than two months.

Source: FastCo Exist


3. Students Can Win a Gaming Scholarship

The scholarship by online gaming broadcast network TwitchTV will give students a chance to “take passion and make it a profession,” said Matthew DiPietro, TwitchTV’s vice president of marketing. “We are giving a people an opportunity to make a living off of their video game streaming activity.”

The San Francisco-based company will announce the scholarship program at the Electronic Entertainment Expo video game conference (E3). Applicants may apply on Twitch.TV.

TwitchTV is giving away $50,000 to support five young gamers. Gamers will need at least a 3.0 GPA — plus demonstrated skill in any game — to win a $10,000 scholarship.

Source: Mashable


4. Facebook to introduce accounts for children under 13?

Facebook is testing new features that would give children under 13 access to the giant social network, according to a report published Monday in the Wall Street Journal. Although one version of this new program would require children to have accounts that are linked to an adult so that supervision is easier, some parents have raised concerns about allowing pre-teens access the network at all due to Facebook’s past handling of privacy-related issues. Others, however, argue that plenty of younger children already access Facebook anyway despite the 13-year-old age limit, and that Facebook is wise to make it official.

Source: GigaOm


K12 & Higher Ed

5. All but three states reject ‘pink slime’ in school lunches

The U.S. Department of Agriculture says the vast majority of states participating in its National School Lunch Program have opted to order ground beef that doesn’t contain the product known as lean finely textured beef. Only three states — Iowa, Nebraska and South Dakota— chose to order beef that may contain the filler.

The product has been used for decades and federal regulators say it’s safe to eat. It nevertheless became the center of national attention after the nickname “pink slime” was quoted in a New York Times article on the safety of meat processing methods. The filler is made of fatty bits of beef that are heated then treated with a puff of ammonia to kill bacteria.

Source: Christian Science Monitor


6. University of the People now has more than 1 million Facebook Fans – Adding new Advisors

University of the People, the world’s first tuition free online university, surpassed the 1 million Facebook fan mark today. For comparison, Harvard has 1.7 million fans on Facebook, Stanford 370.000.

As UoPeople founder and president Shai Reshef recently stated, the non-profit is gaining more and more momentum. Over the past weeks UoPeople expanded the Advisory Board, added Dr. Dalton Conley as new Dean of Arts & Sciences and created a new Presidents Council.

Source: EDUKWEST


7. Ranking of top 10 countries and their higher ed systems

Universitas 21, a global network of research universities, recently released its official rankings based on the results of a year-long study.

The study’s authors examined education systems in 48 nations around the world, relying on four measures: resources (investment by government and private sector); output (the amount of research schools produce and their impact); connectivity (how well they collaborate with other nations); and environment (campus diversity and breadth of opportunities). The researchers then adjusted the data for population.

Source: Good


8. More lectures in Arabic at universities in the Arab world

Arab universities are coming under increasing pressure to use Arabic as a medium of instruction and expression in higher education.

In the latest development, in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Ryan Gjovig, head of common educational proficiency assessment at the National Admissions and Placement Office, called on universities to offer degrees in Arabic to provide students with an alternative to learning through the medium of English.

Source: University World News


9. WWII veteran Jack Fletcher graduates from high school 70 years later in Spur, Texas

Jack Fletcher was in his senior year of high school in Spur, Texas, when World War II broke out. Graduation would have to wait — 70 years, as it turned out.

Fletcher traveled the world after the war and now lives in Australia, but a special ceremony brought him back as an honorary graduate of the Spur High School Class of 2012, NBC station KCBD of Lubbock reported.

“I had to look to make sure they put a certificate in there,” he laughed after the graduation ceremony. “I was afraid they were kidding me!”

Source: MSNBC


Study & Research

10. Your words matter

Ineffective or negative communication may lead to more than just a bad day; new research has shown that it can change the neural pathways in our brains and foster long-lasting negativity. On the other hand, there’s evidence to suggest that positive words expressing values such as kindness and respect can go a long way toward building a better brain.

A new book “Words Can Change Your Brain,” co-authored by Loyola Marymount, Mark Robert Waldman and Andrew Newberg, M.D. argues that our minds are hardwired to respond favorably to certain types of speech and negatively to others. Starting in childhood, humans’ brains are molded by the words they hear, and they claim that teaching children to use positive words helps them with emotional control and can even increase their attention spans. Their book describes “compassionate communication,” a method they believe can help people express themselves more effectively, but it also offers a fascinating overview of the latest science around speech and neuroscience.

Source: Salon


11. Ericsson: 85% of the world will see 3G/4G in 2017

It took 12 years for 3G technologies to touch half of the world’s population, but getting to 85 percent coverage will only take another five, according to wireless infrastructure vendor Ericsson. New HSPA+ and LTE network deployments will lead to a near blanketing of the world’s populated areas with mobile broadband by 2017.

Source: GigaOm


In other News

12. U.S. Cuts Sesame St. Funds in Pakistan After Elmo Show Caught Red Handed

The United States has cancelled funding for a $20 million project that brought Sesame Street to Pakistan after allegations that funds were being misused by a Pakistani puppet theatre.

The project was a co-production between U.S.-based Sesame Workshop, and Rafi Peer Puppet Workshop, based in Lahore. Newspapers reported today that Rafi Peer was allegedly using the money given by the U.S. to pay off old debts, and rewarded lucrative contracts to sources. Other allegations include building a fancy residential complex featuring swimming pools with the U.S. funds.

Source: ABC News

Play
Walmart

Pearson is like Shopping at Walmart – ENT #20 06-05-2012

ENT - The Ed News Ticker

Subscribe to ENT Subscribe to ENT Video via RSS Subscribe to ENT Audio via RSS
Subscribe to ENT Audio via iTunes
Download Episode Download Episode Video Download Episode Audio

Tech & Startups

1. Smarterer Grabs $1.75M From True Ventures & Google Ventures

SmartererBoston-based startup Smarterer has been quietly building a gamified platform that provides job searchers with a simple way to show employers what they know by taking quizzes in subjects that range from engineering to music.

Smarterer crowdsources its test designs and employs a smart ranking system to give its candidates a score and lets them broadcast their successes to the world. Today, the startup offers more than 500 skills and today announced that its community has now answered over 10 million questions — at an average of 70K questions per day.

To harness this growth, Smarterer is taking on another round of capital, as it officially closed $1.75 million in series A financing today, bringing its total funding to $3 million.

Source: TechCrunch


2. College Kids Start A Social Enterprise To Tell Stories For Good

Teach TwiceTeach Twice reaches out to communities around the world and works to create a children’s story based on local culture–or arranges to translate an already-existing book. They print and sell the book back home, and send the proceeds to build schools or send kids to class in the community where the story originated.

“The Teach Twice book enhances the education of two children and two communities worlds apart, yet connected through a shared commitment to education and a desire to learn from books and from each other,” says the group’s website.

Teach Twice placed third in a Vanderbilt business plan competition and won a semifinalist grant in the Dell Social Innovation Challenge. Other startup funding came from a successful campaign through Kickstarter, where Teach Twice raised more than $7,500 in less than two months.

Source: FastCo Exist


3. Students Can Win a Gaming Scholarship

TwitchTVThe scholarship by online gaming broadcast network TwitchTV will give students a chance to “take passion and make it a profession,” said Matthew DiPietro, TwitchTV’s vice president of marketing. “We are giving a people an opportunity to make a living off of their video game streaming activity.”

The San Francisco-based company will announce the scholarship program at the Electronic Entertainment Expo video game conference (E3). Applicants may apply on Twitch.TV.

TwitchTV is giving away $50,000 to support five young gamers. Gamers will need at least a 3.0 GPA — plus demonstrated skill in any game — to win a $10,000 scholarship.

Source: Mashable


4. Facebook to introduce accounts for children under 13?

FacebookFacebook is testing new features that would give children under 13 access to the giant social network, according to a report published Monday in the Wall Street Journal. Although one version of this new program would require children to have accounts that are linked to an adult so that supervision is easier, some parents have raised concerns about allowing pre-teens access the network at all due to Facebook’s past handling of privacy-related issues. Others, however, argue that plenty of younger children already access Facebook anyway despite the 13-year-old age limit, and that Facebook is wise to make it official.

Source: GigaOm


K12 & Higher Ed

5. All but three states reject ‘pink slime’ in school lunches

pink slimeThe U.S. Department of Agriculture says the vast majority of states participating in its National School Lunch Program have opted to order ground beef that doesn’t contain the product known as lean finely textured beef. Only three states — Iowa, Nebraska and South Dakota— chose to order beef that may contain the filler.

The product has been used for decades and federal regulators say it’s safe to eat. It nevertheless became the center of national attention after the nickname “pink slime” was quoted in a New York Times article on the safety of meat processing methods. The filler is made of fatty bits of beef that are heated then treated with a puff of ammonia to kill bacteria.

Source: Christian Science Monitor


6. University of the People now has more than 1 million Facebook Fans – Adding new Advisors

University of the PeopleUniversity of the People, the world’s first tuition free online university, surpassed the 1 million Facebook fan mark today. For comparison, Harvard has 1.7 million fans on Facebook, Stanford 370.000.

As UoPeople founder and president Shai Reshef recently stated, the non-profit is gaining more and more momentum. Over the past weeks UoPeople expanded the Advisory Board, added Dr. Dalton Conley as new Dean of Arts & Sciences and created a new Presidents Council.

Source: EDUKWEST


7. Ranking of top 10 countries and their higher ed systems

Education SystemsUniversitas 21, a global network of research universities, recently released its official rankings based on the results of a year-long study.

The study’s authors examined education systems in 48 nations around the world, relying on four measures: resources (investment by government and private sector); output (the amount of research schools produce and their impact); connectivity (how well they collaborate with other nations); and environment (campus diversity and breadth of opportunities). The researchers then adjusted the data for population.

Source: Good


8. More lectures in Arabic at universities in the Arab world

Arabic UniversitiesArab universities are coming under increasing pressure to use Arabic as a medium of instruction and expression in higher education.

In the latest development, in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Ryan Gjovig, head of common educational proficiency assessment at the National Admissions and Placement Office, called on universities to offer degrees in Arabic to provide students with an alternative to learning through the medium of English.

Source: University World News


9. WWII veteran Jack Fletcher graduates from high school 70 years later in Spur, Texas

WWII graduateJack Fletcher was in his senior year of high school in Spur, Texas, when World War II broke out. Graduation would have to wait — 70 years, as it turned out.

Fletcher traveled the world after the war and now lives in Australia, but a special ceremony brought him back as an honorary graduate of the Spur High School Class of 2012, NBC station KCBD of Lubbock reported.

“I had to look to make sure they put a certificate in there,” he laughed after the graduation ceremony. “I was afraid they were kidding me!”

Source: MSNBC


Study & Research

10. Your words matter

neuroscienceIneffective or negative communication may lead to more than just a bad day; new research has shown that it can change the neural pathways in our brains and foster long-lasting negativity. On the other hand, there’s evidence to suggest that positive words expressing values such as kindness and respect can go a long way toward building a better brain.

A new book “Words Can Change Your Brain,” co-authored by Loyola Marymount, Mark Robert Waldman and Andrew Newberg, M.D. argues that our minds are hardwired to respond favorably to certain types of speech and negatively to others. Starting in childhood, humans’ brains are molded by the words they hear, and they claim that teaching children to use positive words helps them with emotional control and can even increase their attention spans. Their book describes “compassionate communication,” a method they believe can help people express themselves more effectively, but it also offers a fascinating overview of the latest science around speech and neuroscience.

Source: Salon


11. Ericsson: 85% of the world will see 3G/4G in 2017

3G coverageIt took 12 years for 3G technologies to touch half of the world’s population, but getting to 85 percent coverage will only take another five, according to wireless infrastructure vendor Ericsson. New HSPA+ and LTE network deployments will lead to a near blanketing of the world’s populated areas with mobile broadband by 2017.

Source: GigaOm


In other News

12. U.S. Cuts Sesame St. Funds in Pakistan After Elmo Show Caught Red Handed

Sesame Street PakistanThe United States has cancelled funding for a $20 million project that brought Sesame Street to Pakistan after allegations that funds were being misused by a Pakistani puppet theatre.

The project was a co-production between U.S.-based Sesame Workshop, and Rafi Peer Puppet Workshop, based in Lahore. Newspapers reported today that Rafi Peer was allegedly using the money given by the U.S. to pay off old debts, and rewarded lucrative contracts to sources. Other allegations include building a fancy residential complex featuring swimming pools with the U.S. funds.

Source: ABC News

Picture by Daniel Christensen via Wikipedia

PlayPlay
University of the People 1 million

University of the People now has more than 1 million Facebook Fans – Adding new Advisors

University of the People 1 million

University of the People, the world’s first tuition free online university, surpassed the 1 million Facebook fan mark today. For comparison, Harvard has 1.7 million fans on Facebook, Stanford 370.000.

“It is with the greatest of joy that we witness the growing acceptance of this innovative model from traditional higher education, industries and businesses, through the individual involvements of these extraordinary scholars and leaders.” Shai Reshef

As UoPeople founder and president Shai Reshef recently stated, the non-profit is gaining more and more momentum. Over the past weeks UoPeople added a group of new advisors to the board that reads like the who is who of higher education.

  • Dr. Ariel Kalil, Professor in the Harris School of the University of Chicago, and Director of the Center for Human Potential and Public Policy will join UoPeople’s Arts & Sciences Advisory Board.
  • Ms. Gabriele Zedlmayer, Vice President of the Office of Social Innovation at Hewlett-Packard (HP), will join UoPeople’s Computer Science Advisory Board.
  • Dr. Shay David, Chief Revenue Officer and Co-founder of Kaltura will join UoPeople’s Computer Science Advisory Board.
  • Dr. Terry Fulmer, Professor & Dean of the Bouvé Col­lege of Health Sci­ences at North­eastern Uni­ver­sity will join UoPeople’s Arts & Sciences Advisory Board.

The expansion of UoPeople’s Advisory Boards comes on the heels of the announcement in April of National Science Foundation Alan T. Waterman Award Winner Dr. Dalton Conley becoming the new Dean of Arts & Sciences for UoPeople

UoPeople also announced a new Presidents Council in May which consists of

  • Oxford Vice Chancellor Emeritus Sir Colin Lucas
  • New York University President John Sexton
  • Academy of Paris Rector Emeritus Mrs. Michele Gendreau-Massaloux
  • Institute of Technology in Bombay Director Professor Devang Khakhar
  • George Washington University President Emeritus Steve Trachtenberg

The Presidents Council will be integral to advancing the mission of UoPeople: to democratize higher education with tuition-free, online programs designed for students otherwise marginalized due to financial, geographic, personal or societal constraints.

Subscribe to review:ed Subscribe to EDUKWEST Video via RSS Subscribe to EDUKWEST Audio via RSS
Subscribe to EDUKWEST Audio via iTunes
Download Episode Download Episode Video Download Episode Audio
PlayPlay
ENT Audio Podcast

Ed News Ticker #2 for April 18th 2012 (Audio)

ENT Audio Podcast

Ed News Ticker #2

  • recorded: April 18th 2012
Subscribe to ENT Subscribe to ENT Audio via RSS Subscribe to ENT Audio via iTunes
Podnova Player button Miro Video Player
Download Episode Download Episode Audio

More problems with the Aakash tablet

The Aakash tablet may be facing further delays en route to schools everywhere, as DataWind, lead manufacturer of the device, has sued its Hyderabad-based manufacturing partner, Quad Electronics, for allegedly signing a deal with IIT Jodhpur–the designers of the tablet. IIT Jodhpur and DataWind, collaborators in the early stages of the Aakash project, fell out over the final features on the devices DataWind turned out.

Source: Fast Company


Web based video chat services Tinychat surpasses 20m users – is profitable

Tinychat surpassed 20 million users. Just about a year and a half ago Tinychat only had about one million users. The site currently sees about 400,000 daily users and signs up about 50,000 new users every day. The average user now spends a good 22 minutes on the site per session.

Source: TechCrunch


Microsoft planning web based Skype version?

New Microsoft job listings say that the company is looking for new hires “to help us bring [the] Skype experience on to the Web.” There is not much more information but there have been rumors about this project a couple of months ago, already.

Source: The Verge


Link to your Kickstarter or IndieGoGo project directly from inside a YouTube Video

YouTube creators can now link their videos to projects on Kickstarter and Indiegogo. The company says that these crowd-sourced fundraising platforms were already being used by many YouTube creators, so it wanted to make it easier for those folks to connect their YouTube viewers to their project’s page.

Source: TechCrunch


StaighterLine raises $10 million for online college education platform

StraigherLine offers a low-cost, subscription-based service that allows students to take a variety of accredited, general ed courses online. The round was led by FirstMark Capital, with contributions from City Light Capital and existing investor Chrysalis Ventures, among others. StraighterLine will use its new capital to accelerate its outreach to colleges, employers, and students, and focus on building a viable, next-gen market for credit-bearing, web-based general ed courses.

Source: TechCrunch


Schoology raises $6 million Series B from First Mark Capital

Schoology, an online learning platform that helps teachers organize lessons and collaborate with students, announced a $6 million Series B round of funding led by FirstMark Capital. It supplements the firm’s existing education investments in companies like Knewton, StraighterLine and Lumosity.

Source: Forbes


Coursera launches with $16 million funding

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. Coursera helps support its university partners in creating their own courses, which are listed under each school’s brand. It is backed with $16 million in funding led by John Doerr at Kleiner Perkins and Scott Sandell at NEA. It has no immediate plans to charge for courses or make money in other ways.

Source: All ThingsD


2tor announces securing a $10 million revolving credit line with Comerica Bank

The announcement comes on the heels of the company’s $26 million Series D financing, closed on April 2, 2012. Comerica Bank arranged a $10 million credit facility based on 2tor’s strong industry track record and anticipated growth. The new credit line will provide 2tor the flexibility required to fund its growth and execute on strategic initiatives.

Source: 2tor


Dr. Dalton Conley new Dean of Arts & Sciences at University of the People

UoPeople announced the appointment of Dr. Dalton Conley as Dean of Arts & Sciences. Dr. Conley succeeds Dr. Preetha Ram, who will remain involved with UoPeople as an advisory member of the Arts & Sciences Advisory Committee.

Dr. Conley is currently University Professor and Dean for the Social Sciences at NYU. He is also Adjunct Professor of Community Medicine at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), and serves as a Senior Advisor to the UN Millennium Project.

Source: UoPeople


Google wants to to inspire Computer Science students with the Computer Science Summer Institute

Google has created the Computer Science Summer Institute (CSSI). Up to 60 aspiring computer scientists will be selected to attend one of the all-expenses-paid CSSI sessions at either Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, California or Google’s office in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Our first session will take place from June 24 – July 12, 2012, while the second will take place from July 22 – August 10, 2012.

Source: Google


Rosetta Stone and Lodi Unified School District Announce Language-Learning Program on the iPad Device

Lodi Unified School District adopted the Rosetta Stone TOTALe Course HD iPad app for second- and third-grade English language learners whose language development had reached a plateau. Lodi Unified School District is utilizing a blended learning model that combines classroom instruction with individualized independent study using the full Rosetta Stone TOTALe® solution, including the TOTALe Course HD application.

Source: BusinessWire


Citeligher partners with Cengage to turn databases into virtual note cards

Citelighter, a browser extension for collecting notes online, is teaming up with Cengage Learning to turn paid research databases such as Questia into a stack of free virtual note cards.
With Citelighter’s first product, students can highlight any text on any web page and click a “capture” button to save it in a virtual notebook.

Source: Mashable


Taliban poison 150 schoolgirls to oppose female education in Afghanistan

About 150 Afghan schoolgirls were poisoned on Tuesday after drinking contaminated water at a high school in the country’s north, officials said, blaming it on conservative radicals opposed to female education. Some of the 150 girls, who suffered from headaches and vomiting, were in critical condition, while others were able to go home after treatment in hospital, the officials said.

Source: Reuters


Study wants to know how valuable users consider their personal information

Researchers at Queen Mary University in London are starting a new project aimed at finding out just how valuable we consider our personal information. The study asks volunteers to download a free Android app, which feeds users basic questions, such as “How are you doing?,” “Where are you?” and “Who are you with?” every day for two weeks. They think these answers will mimic the sort of information data companies are mining from our phones.

Source: Mashable


Study show a significant perception bias of high school math teachers against white girls

A study by two University of Texas sociologists, Catherine Riegle-Crumb and Melissa Humphries, has indicated that high school teachers tend to view white female students as being weaker at math than white male students even when test results indicate similar ability. The study if the first to show a significant perception bias against white girls.

Source: Education News

Play
ENT - The Ed News Ticker

Ed News Ticker #2 for April 18th 2012

ENT - The Ed News Ticker

Subscribe to ENT Subscribe to ENT Video via RSS Subscribe to ENT Audio via RSS
Subscribe to ENT Audio via iTunes
Download Episode Download Episode Video Download Episode Audio

More problems with the Aakash tablet

The Aakash tablet may be facing further delays en route to schools everywhere, as DataWind, lead manufacturer of the device, has sued its Hyderabad-based manufacturing partner, Quad Electronics, for allegedly signing a deal with IIT Jodhpur–the designers of the tablet. IIT Jodhpur and DataWind, collaborators in the early stages of the Aakash project, fell out over the final features on the devices DataWind turned out.

Source: Fast Company


Web based video chat services Tinychat surpasses 20m users – is profitable

Tinychat surpassed 20 million users. Just about a year and a half ago Tinychat only had about one million users. The site currently sees about 400,000 daily users and signs up about 50,000 new users every day. The average user now spends a good 22 minutes on the site per session.

Source: TechCrunch


Microsoft planning web based Skype version?

New Microsoft job listings say that the company is looking for new hires “to help us bring [the] Skype experience on to the Web.” There is not much more information but there have been rumors about this project a couple of months ago, already.

Source: The Verge


Link to your Kickstarter or IndieGoGo project directly from inside a YouTube Video

YouTube creators can now link their videos to projects on Kickstarter and Indiegogo. The company says that these crowd-sourced fundraising platforms were already being used by many YouTube creators, so it wanted to make it easier for those folks to connect their YouTube viewers to their project’s page.

Source: TechCrunch


StaighterLine raises $10 million for online college education platform

StraigherLine offers a low-cost, subscription-based service that allows students to take a variety of accredited, general ed courses online. The round was led by FirstMark Capital, with contributions from City Light Capital and existing investor Chrysalis Ventures, among others. StraighterLine will use its new capital to accelerate its outreach to colleges, employers, and students, and focus on building a viable, next-gen market for credit-bearing, web-based general ed courses.

Source: TechCrunch


Schoology raises $6 million Series B from First Mark Capital

Schoology, an online learning platform that helps teachers organize lessons and collaborate with students, announced a $6 million Series B round of funding led by FirstMark Capital. It supplements the firm’s existing education investments in companies like Knewton, StraighterLine and Lumosity.

Source: Forbes


Coursera launches with $16 million funding

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. Coursera helps support its university partners in creating their own courses, which are listed under each school’s brand. It is backed with $16 million in funding led by John Doerr at Kleiner Perkins and Scott Sandell at NEA. It has no immediate plans to charge for courses or make money in other ways.

Source: All ThingsD


2tor announces securing a $10 million revolving credit line with Comerica Bank

The announcement comes on the heels of the company’s $26 million Series D financing, closed on April 2, 2012. Comerica Bank arranged a $10 million credit facility based on 2tor’s strong industry track record and anticipated growth. The new credit line will provide 2tor the flexibility required to fund its growth and execute on strategic initiatives.

Source: 2tor


Dr. Dalton Conley new Dean of Arts & Sciences at University of the People

UoPeople announced the appointment of Dr. Dalton Conley as Dean of Arts & Sciences. Dr. Conley succeeds Dr. Preetha Ram, who will remain involved with UoPeople as an advisory member of the Arts & Sciences Advisory Committee.

Dr. Conley is currently University Professor and Dean for the Social Sciences at NYU. He is also Adjunct Professor of Community Medicine at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), and serves as a Senior Advisor to the UN Millennium Project.

Source: UoPeople


Google wants to to inspire Computer Science students with the Computer Science Summer Institute

Google has created the Computer Science Summer Institute (CSSI). Up to 60 aspiring computer scientists will be selected to attend one of the all-expenses-paid CSSI sessions at either Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, California or Google’s office in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Our first session will take place from June 24 – July 12, 2012, while the second will take place from July 22 – August 10, 2012.

Source: Google


Rosetta Stone and Lodi Unified School District Announce Language-Learning Program on the iPad Device

Lodi Unified School District adopted the Rosetta Stone TOTALe Course HD iPad app for second- and third-grade English language learners whose language development had reached a plateau. Lodi Unified School District is utilizing a blended learning model that combines classroom instruction with individualized independent study using the full Rosetta Stone TOTALe® solution, including the TOTALe Course HD application.

Source: BusinessWire


Citeligher partners with Cengage to turn databases into virtual note cards

Citelighter, a browser extension for collecting notes online, is teaming up with Cengage Learning to turn paid research databases such as Questia into a stack of free virtual note cards.
With Citelighter’s first product, students can highlight any text on any web page and click a “capture” button to save it in a virtual notebook.

Source: Mashable


Taliban poison 150 schoolgirls to oppose female education in Afghanistan

About 150 Afghan schoolgirls were poisoned on Tuesday after drinking contaminated water at a high school in the country’s north, officials said, blaming it on conservative radicals opposed to female education. Some of the 150 girls, who suffered from headaches and vomiting, were in critical condition, while others were able to go home after treatment in hospital, the officials said.

Source: Reuters


Study wants to know how valuable users consider their personal information

Researchers at Queen Mary University in London are starting a new project aimed at finding out just how valuable we consider our personal information. The study asks volunteers to download a free Android app, which feeds users basic questions, such as “How are you doing?,” “Where are you?” and “Who are you with?” every day for two weeks. They think these answers will mimic the sort of information data companies are mining from our phones.

Source: Mashable


Study show a significant perception bias of high school math teachers against white girls

A study by two University of Texas sociologists, Catherine Riegle-Crumb and Melissa Humphries, has indicated that high school teachers tend to view white female students as being weaker at math than white male students even when test results indicate similar ability. The study if the first to show a significant perception bias against white girls.

Source: Education News

PlayPlay
Ed News Ticker

ENT: 2tor, Livemocha, Coding Students, $6 million to Educate the World & more

Ed News Ticker

Ed News Ticker December 6th 2011


Gene Wade – TEDxSF – Building the World’s Most Affordable and Accessible Private University Online

TEDx talk by Gene Wade, the Founder and CEO of UniversityNow, a venture-backed start-up, whose vision is a world in which education is universally affordable and accessible to all who seek it.

Source: TEDxSF


Tech startup 2tor rides surge in online education

2tor is still the highest funded startup in education with $65 million in total.

While there are other companies in the space of online education, both Johnson and Katzman agree 2tor doesn’t have an parallel competitor offering the same level of to their high-quality but welcome the emergence of one. “I would love for more people to try to do what we’re doing,” says Johnson.

Source: Reuters


Livemocha takes a crack at Rosetta Stone in retail

According to Livemocha’s CEO Michael Schutzler, sales of the boxed product sold at Barnes & Nobles are going really well.

“(The) bulk of Rosetta Stone’s sales that generate actual margin are in retail. Berlitz has been there for decades,” said Schutzler. “Our partners are Merriam Webster … and therefore we think we have a shot at winning in this arena as well.”

Source: GeekWire


High School Class Gives New Meaning to Learning Apps

At Winchester High School in Massachusetts students are engaged with mobile app development.

“Kids are immediately attracted to mobile technology,” Downs said. “I thought it would be great if I could develop a course that would take advantage of this interest they have and at the same time connect it to software that a majority or students could actually be interested in learning.”

Source: theJOURNAL


It only takes $6 million to Educate the World

Shai Reshef, founder and president of the University of the People (EDUKWEST interview) explains that it would only take a budget of $6 million for the institution to reach sustainability and fulfill its goal of free education for everyone, forever.

Source: Big Think


Funding, Grants & Book Deals: Thiel Fellows Are Making The Grade (With More Classes To Follow)

The Thiel Foundation has decided to launch a second class in 2012. The program is now accepting applications, with a deadline of December 31st. Candidates must be under 20 years of age until that date.

Source: TechCrunch


Behind A Big Data Veteran, GoingOn Brings A Next-Gen Social Platform To Academia

GoingOn pivoted into an on-demand platform for academic institutions which allows them to build their own private social networks.

The ambitious and far-reaching goal for GoingOn, CEO Jon Corshen tells us, is a large-scale platform play: To create a fundamentally new piece of the academic technology ecosystem, one that sits between and ties together LMS, SIS, and the Portal.

Source: TechCrunch


National Literacy Trust highlights book-free millions

Almost four million children in the UK do not own a book, according to a report by the National Literacy Trust.

Source: BBC


UoPeople

UoPeople and Hewlett Packard launch Research Internship Program

After the recent announcement of the partnership between University of the People and New York University that will enable top performing students from UoPeople to apply for the Abu Dhabi campus of N.Y.U. another exciting collaboration has been announced at ISTE.

Hewlett Packard will open research internships to students of UoPeople as part of the HP Catalyst Initiative.

“HP has a longstanding commitment to global citizenship and education, and we strongly believe in the work UoPeople is doing to democratize higher education,” said Gabi Zedlmayer, vice president, Office of Global Social Innovation, HP. “By educating the underserved through online classrooms, UoPeople exemplifies the innovative use of technology, and we are thrilled to contribute to this effort by welcoming UoPeople into the consortia.”

There are two aspects that are going to have an impact on UoPeople. On the one hand, the university can apply for research funding and actively engage in research, on the other hand it enables UoPeople to give students the possibility to gather experience in a work environment.

“Our mission is not only to educate students, but to find them jobs and integrate into the world market,” said Shai Reshef, founder and president, University of the People. “With the support of a leading technology company like HP, we can equip our students with the experiences they need to launch successful careers and truly contribute to their countries and to the world.”

I am looking forward to have Shai Reshef back on EDUKWEST early next week where we are going to talk in detail on those partnerships and how it will help UoPeople to disrupt higher education.