National programme aims to enhance the digital capacity of university teaching staff to improve the educational experiences and digital skills of Irish university students

Posted in Teaching on November 8th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“The Irish Universities Association (IUA) today officially launched the Enhancing Digital Capacity in Teaching and Learning in Irish Universities (EDTL) project as the final event of the World Conference on Online Learning. This is an ambitious three-year project, funded by the Higher Education Authority’s Innovation and Transformation Programme …” (more)

[IUA, 7 November]

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On-line Testing for Continuous Assessment

Posted in Teaching on November 7th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“The biggest issue for me and many others about on-line education is assessment. The security and integrity of the assessment is paramount – this is easy to implement in an exam hall with Invigilators watching your every move, but not so on-line. Proctoring a test is not so easy – software is the only way to go? For end of semester/year exams, some institutions will insist on students attending the College to sit the exam in the traditional exam hall …” (more)

[Careful With That Axe, Eugene, 7 November]

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Why we need to reconsider the value of the virtual classroom

Posted in Teaching on October 29th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“Online programmes are on the rise in the Irish university sector, with everything from certificates and diplomas to undergraduate and postgraduate degrees now being offered in a fully online or ‘blended’ mode. Their champions argue that online offerings attract students wishing to combine study with paid employment or those tailoring continuous professional development around young family or caring needs …” (more)

[Áine Mahon and Shane Bergin, Irish Times, 29 October]

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Will AI replace university lecturers? Not if we make it clear why humans matter

Posted in Teaching on September 6th, 2019 by steve

“Many UK universities are struggling financially, but there’s one option that is rarely discussed: replacing lecturers with artificial intelligence (AI) machines …” (more)

[Mark Haw, Guardian, 6 September]

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NUI Galway president says cheating remains low despite threat by new technology

Posted in Teaching on August 9th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“The President of NUI Galway says while instances of exam cheating are increasing, overall the number of cases remains extremely small. Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh is reacting to new figures which reveal ‘smart watches’ are being linked with increases in cheating at colleges nationwide …” (more)

[Galway Bay FM, 8 August]

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Surge in university students wearing banned smartwatches in exams

Posted in Legal issues, Teaching on August 8th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“Universities have recorded a sharp increase in the number of students wearing banned smartwatches in exam halls. Most third-level institutions prohibit the use of Fitbits, Apple Watches and other devices which allow users to upload and access documents …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 8 August]

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Education publisher Pearson to phase out print textbooks

Posted in Teaching on July 16th, 2019 by steve

International“The world’s largest education publisher has taken the first step towards phasing out print books by making all its learning resources ‘digital first’. Pearson said students would only be able to rent physical textbooks from now on, and they would be updated much less frequently …” (more)

[BBC News, 16 July]

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The Robots are Writing: Will Machine-Generated Books Accelerate our Consumption of Scholarly Literature?

Posted in Research on June 25th, 2019 by steve

“Last month, Springer Nature announced the publication of their first machine-generated book – an experimental proof of the efficacy and impacts of algorithmically curated scholarly resources. In the age of ‘robot reporters’ and auto-generated novels, Springer intends to lead the way in seriously examining the value of machine learning to aid readers at all levels …” (more)

[Lettie Y Conrad, The Scholarly Kitchen, 25 June]

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Why tech success rates have turned around

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Teaching on March 13th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“Recent headlines about high dropout rates in technology courses probably caused a wobble among some students currently considering their CAO choices. There are graduate jobs aplenty out there right across the STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) spectrum, and they are very well paid. But are they only for a select band of maths geniuses? …” (more)

[Katherine Donnelly, Independent, 13 March]

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Apology after ‘consent app’ proposal sent to UCD computer science students

Posted in Governance and administration on March 12th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“The head of computer science at University College Dublin (UCD) has apologised after the school distributed an email from a student seeking help developing a phone app aimed at combatting women ‘retracting’ consent after sex …” (more)

[Jack Power, Irish Times, 12 March]

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Colleges and companies to partner on courses for ‘future economy’

Posted in Governance and administration on March 5th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“Some 90 companies are going to partner with Irish third-level colleges in running postgraduate courses and research programmes to train students in key skills needed in the digital science, data, and information and communications technology (ICT) sectors …” (more)

[Kevin O’Sullivan, Irish Times, 5 March]

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Minister for Education and Skills Joe McHugh TD and Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys TD launch Technology Skills 2022: Ireland’s Third ICT Skills Action Plan

Posted in Governance and administration on February 18th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“The Minister for Education and Skills Joe McHugh TD and Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation Heather Humphreys TD today (Monday 18 February 2019) have announced targets to deliver more than 47,000 graduates with high level ICT skills by 2022 …” (more)

[Department of Education and Skills, 18 February]

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The rise of the ‘smart university’?

Posted in Teaching on January 15th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“A few years ago for this blog, I interviewed the then Irish Minister for Education and Science, Ruairi Quinn. He was one of those relatively rare examples of an education minister with a real understanding of and sympathy for higher education, and indeed a set of civilised and cultured values …” (more)

[Ferdinand von Prondzynski, University Blog, 15 January]

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New research shows prevalence of sleep texting among college students

Posted in Life on December 14th, 2018 by steve

“Conditions like sleep walking and sleep talking are well known, there are even documented cases of driving and committing murder (homicidal somnambulism) while asleep. Sleep texting, however, is a fairly new area of inquiry but a new study from Villanova University in the United States claims that a significant number of young people are waking up to find they’ve messaged friends in their sleep …” (more)

[Marie Boran, Irish Times, 13 December]

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Dramatic fall in number of students entering third-level to study computing

Posted in Governance and administration on December 7th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“There has been dramatic 8% fall in the number of students entering third-level to study computing courses. Employment prospects are good with 81% of recent Irish tech graduates now walking straight into a job, overwhelmingly in Ireland. But despite a high demand for these graduates, and some of the best starting salaries in the economy, interest in a career in this field has dropped significantly over the past five years …” (more)

[Katherine Donnelly, Independent, 7 December]

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Forum-Funded report on the Use of Technology in Assessment Published Today by Minister for Higher Education

Posted in Teaching on October 11th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“A new report, on the use of technology for assessment by academic staff in higher education, was launched today (Wednesday 10 October) by the Minister for Higher Education, Mary Mitchell O’Connor, TD. The report was written by Trinity researchers, Dr Ann Devitt and Dr Mairead Brady, and was funded by the National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, in partnership with the Irish Research Council, to provide insight and transparency into this critical issue in education …” (more)

[National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, 10 October]

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Government Launches Trinity Report on Technology in Assessment

Posted in Teaching on October 11th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Minister for Higher Education Mary Mitchell O’Connor today launched a Trinity report on use of technology for assessment by academic staff. Carried out by Trinity researchers Dr Ann Devitt and Dr Mairead Brady, the report was funded by the National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education …” (more)

[Jordan Nann, University Times, 10 October]

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Hiccups and Reflections on On-line Teaching #vlog10

Posted in Teaching on October 9th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Week 4 has now passed – a third of the way through the semester. Hiccups are still happening and causing me some frustration. here are some reflections on last evening’s class …” (video)

[Careful With That Axe, Eugene, 9 October]

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Some Advice for On-line Educators Part II – ‘Don’t Lecture’! via @MFPaulsen

Posted in Teaching on September 28th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Following up from my post earlier this week where I mentioned some advice given in a 2003 book by Professor Morten Flate Paulsen, comes some further pedagogical recommendations from Prof Paulsen. These are based on surveys he conducted in Scandinavian countries in the late 1990s and early 2000s – still relevant today I think …” (more)

[Careful With That Axe, Eugene, 28 September]

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Some Advice for On-line Educators Part I via @MFPaulsen

Posted in Teaching on September 24th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Now that I am heading into my second week as an on-line educator, I am reminded of some great advice from Professor Morten Flate Paulsen given many years ago that still stands today. In his book ‘Online Education and Learning Management Systems’ (published in 2003) Paulsen tells us …” (more)

[Careful With That Axe, Eugene, 24 September]

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