A report by the US Department of Education Technology from February 2013 (anyone know why this is still a draft?) that shares how we should measure and promote non cognitive factors like grit, tenacity and perseverance. This is one paper to share and discuss.
Two studies were released in an attempt to "quantify the benefits of mobile technology in education and the infrastructure needed..."
In these students students had tablets and Internet access at home and at school. Of course, I'm not sure that it is tablet computers that give benefits, Internet access, cloud computing, or a combination, but I'm sure these studies will be touted by many far and wide. Of course, remember if they had strapped the tablets to the kid''s back and hadn't used them - they would have had lower scores. All improvement is all in how technology is being USED to teach.
"The studies put Android tablets in the hands of students and their teachers in two schools — eighth-graders at Stone Middle School in Fairfax County Public Schools and fifth-graders at Falconer Elementary School in Chicago Public Schools — and provided wireless access to the students both in school and away from school. (The devices were HTC Evo tablets.) Researchers then followed the students' activities over the course of a year, with the aim of evaluating "how access to these devices for communication with teachers and classmates increases comfort with technology, extends the learning day, and allows students to develop digital citizenship skills within a safe and secure learning environment.""
If you need "proof" of the merit of journalism programs, look no further than the "enemy" that has been the excuse for killing many journalism programs -- test scores. Read this NCTE position paper about journalism in the curriculum which states:
"It is important to note that a body of research provides data showing that students who participate in journalism programs do better on testing and college language arts courses. In Journalism Kids Do Better (Dvorak, Lain, Dickson), research shows students who take journalistic writing courses score higher on the Advanced Placement English Language and Composition exam than students who take only AP or honors English courses. They also score higher on college entrance exams such as the ACT. “We’ve done a number of research studies that show that high school journalism is equal to or exceeds standard English [courses], Dvorak said. “Journalism students’ writing skills, their sensitivity to audience, their use of grammar, punctuation, spelling, their concern with accuracy, their use of sources -- all of these things tended to be significantly higher in their performances.”"
I would also argue that many students who are not reached by AP or honors courses can be highly engaged in journalistic pursuits. If you want a strong writing program, make sure you have a school newspaper. Share this with your newspaper and annual staff advisors to help reinforce the merit of journalism programs with your board of education and administrators.
If you'd really like to get into the Lumosity program, here is the application form to get into it. Here's info from the press release. This is a cool app that is supposed to improve many parts of cognition. I have it on my list to try and it is very interesting to me. Here's the link and some info:
"Preliminary results from the Spring 2012 semester found that students who trained with Lumosity improved more on a battery of online cognitive assessments than students who did not train. Additionally, effects were dose-dependent; engaging in more Lumosity training led to greater improvements on the assessments. Insights from the 2012-13 LEAP academic year on the effects of cognitive training on students’ real-world academic outcomes are forthcoming.
Educators are increasingly interested in enhancing their students’ cognitive and behavioral factors. More than 75 percent of all teachers who applied for the Fall 2013 LEAP semester believe training with Lumosity will promote: cognitive enhancement, increased ability to pay attention, improved self-confidence, and improved general attitude toward learning."
Yes, this study was funded by Booktrack (a 2011 study), however, I find that the information is fascinating. By setting sound tracks of different mood music, this study showed:
*Virtually all subjects performed moderately to significantly better on information retention tests.
* Subjects reported a strong correlation with interacting with the enhanced platform and an ability to focus.
There are other results on this, but I find this fascinating and find this a very interesting point to consider as ebooks evolve. Will ebook authors attach music to different pages? Will reading become more cinematic and theatrical? All kinds of interesting thoughts here.
If you want students to draft work in Google Docs, you have to teach them about the Research pane. It lets you search for the appropriate license (click the down arrow) and set the citation method. You can insert photos, search Google Scholar and a dictionary, your own files, and even the web. When you mouse over the item, you have the option to cite the source or insert a link. Very cool and handy for writers. This is an older feature that hasn't gotten the press it deserves in classrooms. If you have Google Apps for education this is a BIG DEAL because it simplifies finding pictures and does many other things that online citation generators do all within Google Docs.
Interesting study of children, preschool and later school success.
"Children's later school success appears to have been enhanced by more active, child-initiated early learning experiences. Their progress may have been slowed by overly academic preschool experiences that introduced formalized learning experiences too early for most children's developmental status."
This trend is especially prevalent in programs that serve low-income children. Compensatory early childhood programs such as Head Start and state-sponsored pre-kindergarten for low-income families and preschoolers with special needs are designed to help children acquire skills needed for later school success.
Beginning in the 1980s, leading early childhood experts expressed concern about the wisdom of overly didactic, formal instructional practices for young children (e.g., Elkind, 1986; Zigler, 1987). They feared that short-term academic gains would be offset by long-term stifling of children's motivation and self-initiated learning. Later research suggests that these early concerns were warranted
They cautioned that early academic gains in reading skills associated with didactic instruction of preschoolers "come with some costs" that could have long-term negative effects on achievement.
imilarly, when the highly didactic Direct Instructional System for the Teaching of Arithmetic and Reading (DISTAR) was discontinued after third grade, children's previously high achievement in reading and mathematics declined
How research paywalls keep today's research from becoming best practice
I saw this on Fran Drescher's Twitter account from the Cincinnati Business courier and am quite floored by it. Am I the only one who doesn't know this? How about all of the little kids I see where parents are handing them their ipad and smart phones for play purposes. I jusst need to know more but it is based on a study presented at the Pediatric Academic societies meeting in DC. Of course, they recommend hand washing.
But pregnant women should be careful - a 10x increase in maternal PBDE's is associated with a 4 point IQ deficit. Of course, we also have the age old question here of causation or correlation. I do think we need to know more and also if the equipment we're purchasing to use with young children has PBDEs in them.
If you know more, please leave comments. It does say that some manufacturers are voluntarily phasing these out.
"Small children should not touch electronic items such as TVs, mobile phones, computers and other products, according to University of Cincinnati researchers.
Chemicals found in such items and in many other products, including older carpets and furniture, can cause behavioral and cognition problems, they have found."
The Internet Archive has ended over 450,000 journal articles from the JSTOR early Journal content or pre-1923 materials. It you work in arts, humanities, economics, politics, math and other sciences you may be interested in perusing this catalog.
"Investigators determined that intervention to counteract friends’ influence may have more of an effect in junior high than in high school, and that parents remain influential on smoking behavior through high school — indicating another possible intervention target.
“Based on social developmental model research, we thought friends would have more influence on cigarette use during high school than junior high school,” said first author Yue Liao, M.P.H., Ph.D.
“But what we found was friends have greater influence during junior high school than high school. We think the reason may be that friends’ cigarette use behavior may have a stronger influence on youth who start smoking at a younger age. During high school, cigarette use might represent the maintenance of behavior rather than a result of peer influence.”
Yes, this is the article. But you know what - if you use the ipad as a doorstop - does it make the classroom better? iPads IN the classroom don't make it better, I would argue that technology, used properly, can improve achievement. But technology used improperly is like the human voice used improperly -it can harm. Anyway, since this is making the rounds, you might want to take a look.
FAscinating tool that lets you upload data and make predictions. This would have been a lifesaver in 1990 when I took "Artificial Intellegence Applications in Market Research" at Georgia Tech. IF you are working with predictive modeling at the college level, you should look at the powerful feature set available here.
This is an example of a consent form for research for a research student done at the University of Georgia. If you are a researcher, you'll want to check with your university as to the proper way to format and secure permissions, however, as students become researchers, I have questions about securing permission for research. This is an area we need to discuss and understand because students can now be viable, authentic researchers and perhaps may have links to more accurate data collection techniques than researchers. What happens when researchers partner with students to collect data? A whole new world of research is opening up, so research forms are worth collecting.
If you are a researcher or college professor and you're not reading Justin Reich, Edtechresearcher, you should be. I like Justin because he helps me see clearly the different "sides" in debates and connects it to research. This is totally not my area but he explains the conversation in a way that anyone can understand. In this week's article, he shares the differences and debates between Connected Learning and Blended learning, and no, they are not the same thing. So, educate yourself before using these terms.
"By contrast, advocates of Connected Learning hold more radical beliefs about the inadequacy of fundamental structures of schooling and learning. Connected Learning advocates argue that universal curriculum is a dated concept for an era of infinite subspecialties and a deeper understanding of learner variation. They argue that understanding learning through the activities of schools is far too limited a canvas for the age of lifelong and lifewide learning. They argue that technologies are not best suited to optimizing student pathways through a prescribed curriculum, but for connecting learners with mentors, peers, and resources for learning experiences that tap into students interests and passions and span from school to home to library to cultural institutions to informal learning spaces."
A set of studies of more than 70 research studies has yielded some interesting results. here is just a glimpse of some of the findings
"When it comes to nutrition, there's not much evidence that multivitamins do any good, but having pregnant and lactating moms and young kids take Omega-3 fatty acid supplements (particularly DHA) likely does. Just having books in the home might not help, but interactive reading with children under 4 could boost IQ by around 6 points."
I think if this is your area of research, you'll want to drill down into this meta analysis.
World register of marine species. It is open data -you can download and use it. We are going to see a new world of open data where students are explorers. Do they know how to download and use it? Do you? The data divide will be there for kids who don't know how to analyze data on spreadsheets. This is part of the STEM future we should be moving towards. Why not start here?
A document that I've referenced about creating collaborative, engaging teams.
"Engagement theory is based upon the idea of creating successful collaborative teams that work on ambitious projects that are meaningful to someone outside the classroom. These three components, summarized by Relate-Create-Donate, imply that learning activities:
occur in a group context (i.e., collaborative teams)
have an outside (authentic) focus"
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