Why hasn’t e-learning transformed education?

Posted in Research on October 4th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“This autumn, you may have seen your child start school with a shiny tablet. Your teenager may have left for university with a slim new laptop. You yourself may have enrolled on a part-time course, accessing digital resources and staying in touch through your phone or computer. Education at all levels has changed in the digital age, but transformation has been slow …” (more)

[Claire McAvinia, RTÉ, 3 October]


Thoughts on Computers in Education

Posted in Teaching on July 5th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“Over at the World Conference on Computers in Education people are tweeting about change, innovation and transformation. David Putnam is saying things like ‘Should we fail to radically change our approach to education, the same cohort we’re trying to “protect” could find that their entire future has been scuttled by our timidity’. Strong words indeed but fundamentally alarmist and not really based on any evidence …” (more)

[educationandstuff, 5 July]


I screen, you screen …

Posted in Life on June 27th, 2017 by steve

“I can’t be the only person who gets horrible eye-strain and frequent migraines from looking at computer screens for many hours a day. But my job, in the physical sense, is basically reading screens and typing stuff into computers. Like so many of us. Then there’s the generalised version of the ‘spending too much time reading crap on Twitter’ problem …” (more)

[Crooked Timber, 27 June]


Is That All There Is? Higher Education’s Struggle to Leverage Digital Teaching and Learning

Posted in Teaching on December 12th, 2016 by steve

“In the late 1990s and early 2000s, what we might now call ‘the early days’ of online higher education, advocates of technology-mediated learning imagined themselves as outsiders, rebels working on the margins of higher education …” (more)

[Keith Hampson, Higher Education Management, 11 December]


New rules could spell end of high taxes on electronic school books

Posted in Teaching on December 2nd, 2016 by steve

Ireland“New rules being proposed by the European Commission could see an end to high taxes on electronic school books. At the moment EU rules mean that all electronic publications have VAT (valued added tax) of 23% levied on them at the point of sale …” (more)

[Charlie Weston, Independent, 1 December]

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Shouldn’t lectures be obsolete by now?

Posted in Teaching on November 24th, 2016 by steve

UK“Lectures remain by far the most common form of teaching in universities – right down to the way academics are called ‘lecturers’. But many predicted that digital technology would have killed off the lecture by now …” (more)

[Matt Pickles, BBC News, 23 November]

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‘This House Believes Artificial Intelligence Could, Should and Will Replace Teachers’ – The future of mass higher education

Posted in Teaching on November 11th, 2016 by steve

Ireland“… Often when I ask lecturers the question, ‘If computers could replace lecturers, should they?’ I get a negative response justified by various quite valid arguments that teachers will always be required for one reason or other. However, the question they are answering is not the one posed …” (more)

[Well I wouldn’t start from here anyway!, 10 November]

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Thumbs down for educational technology?

Posted in Teaching on October 25th, 2016 by steve

Scotland“It is exactly 30 years ago today that I took delivery of my first personal computer. It was an Apple Macintosh, and it had an incredible 1 megabyte of RAM and, er, no hard drive …” (more)

[Ferdinand von Prondzynski, University Blog, 24 October]

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STEM and the gender imbalance

Posted in Research on August 8th, 2016 by steve

Ireland“Hardly a week goes by without there being an article in the newspapers on the need to encourage more women into STEM disciplines. The arguments seem to be threefold. Firstly, there are serious skills shortages in certain STEM disciplines, notably ICT, and in that context, the female population is an untapped ‘resource’ …” (more)

[educationandstuff, 8 August]

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New online marking scheme to be trialled for exams

Posted in Teaching on June 7th, 2016 by steve

Ireland“A new online marking system is being trialled in the State exams this year. Instead of papers being marked in the traditional way, students’ scripts will be scanned and converted to digital images that examiners will access on their home computers …” (more)

[Katherine Donnelly, Independent, 7 June]

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Students using laptops and tablets in class perform worse in exams, study says

Posted in Teaching on May 13th, 2016 by steve

Ireland“Students that are allowed to use laptops and tablets in the classroom for note taking fare significantly worse in exams than those who are prohibited from using devices, a study claims. Researchers found that use of devices had a ‘substantial negative effect’ on university students’ performance …” (more)

[Cara McGoogan, Independent, 12 May]


Innovation in University Learning and Technology

Posted in Teaching on May 11th, 2016 by steve

Ireland“Presented and produced by Seán Delaney. On this week’s programme my guest is Professor Leigh Graves Wolf who is the assistant director of the Hub for Innovation in Learning and Technology at Michigan State University …” (more, audio)

[Inside Education on 103.2 Dublin City FM, 11 May]

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Technological skills shortages must be addressed

Posted in Governance and administration on May 9th, 2016 by steve

Ireland“As Ireland steadily rebuilds itself in a new post-recession era, recruitment is firmly back on the agenda for Irish employers. The latest edition of the Hays Salary and Recruiting Trends Guide, which surveyed over 1,300 employers and employees across Ireland, showed that 79% of organisations predict increased business activity in 2016, while 86% plan to recruit over the next year …” (more)

[Richard Eardley, Irish Examiner, 9 May]

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Students relying on online notes ‘just kidding themselves’

Posted in Teaching on February 12th, 2016 by steve

Ireland“At the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Education and Social Protection recently, Irish students’ over-dependency on online notes was criticised by Dr Greg Foley, an associate dean for teaching and learning at Dublin City University …” (more)

[Marie Coady, Irish Times, 11 February]

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UCD inquiry into alleged ‘revenge porn’ image sharing

Posted in Legal issues on February 6th, 2016 by steve

Ireland“An investigation is under way at University College Dublin following reports that male students allegedly shared explicit images of women they had sexual relations with … ” (more)

[Aine McMahon, Irish Times, 5 February]

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Snapshots of library training spaces in Ireland

Posted in Teaching on February 5th, 2016 by steve

Ireland“In DCU Library we recently discussed whether we wanted to keep our training rooms in their present form. Since the library opened in 2001 we have had two training rooms, largely unchanged …” (more)

[Jack Hyland, libfocus, 5 February]

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Finding out about Learning Analytics

Posted in Teaching on February 3rd, 2016 by steve

Ireland“I’m attending the JISC Learning Analytics network meeting (information), which is giving a good overview on the emerging development of learning analytics, and its integration into higher education …” (more)

[Michael Seery, Is this going to be on the exam?, 3 February]

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Eight technologies that are changing education

Posted in Teaching on February 2nd, 2016 by steve

Ireland“From real-time tracking systems that enable parents to follow their children’s progress in school to plagiarism alerts in universities, technology is changing how people learn and are taught …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 2 February]

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Students, attendance and online notes

Posted in Teaching on February 1st, 2016 by steve

Ireland“Sir, – We note with interest the debate in recent days regarding students’ experiences of third-level teaching and learning (‘Students have unrealistic expectations, academic says’, January 21st). Since 2008, we have collaborated with colleagues in a multi-institutional research project across Ireland examining students’ use of online learning systems at third level …” (more)

[Eamon Costello, Irish Times, 1 February]

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The Future of Work (and What it Means for Higher Education), Part 2

Posted in Governance and administration on January 28th, 2016 by steve

Canada“Yesterday we looked at a few of the hypotheses out there about how IT is destroying jobs (particularly: good jobs). Today we look at how institutions should react to these changes. If I were running an institution, here’s what I’d do: …” (more)

[Alex Usher, HESA, 28 January]

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