Category Archives: Opinion

An opinion piece

Universities and Social Media

My friend Inger Mewburn (@thesiswhisperer) recently wrote a thoughtful piece in The Conversation web site entitled Academics behaving badly? Universities and online reputations. For the record I think that the points she made were valid and true but I also think that there is an underlying issue that remains uncovered. Simply put, it is that …

Read more

Why I don’t like institutional e-portfolios

There was a reasonable amount of discussion at the #pleconf last week on the role of e-portfolios in personal learning environments and who should be responsible for providing e-portfolio tools for students. I think the ground swell view was that e-portfolios are important but that students should be able to choose how they create their …

Read more

Why do (social) networks matter in teaching & learning?

Alec Couros is keynoting (or unkeynoting) at the Melbourne leg of the Personal Learning Environments conference (pleconf) being held next week. He’s asked for help in crowdsourcing his keynote by asking us why networks matter in teaching and learning? I’m going to ignore the ‘teaching’ word and just concentrate on the ‘learning’ word because that …

Read more

Blackboard Acquires Moodlerooms and Netspot

Blackboard have set the cat amongst the pigeons with their announcement today that they have acquired both Moodlerooms and Netspot to help run a new business to support and host open source learning management systems. Both George Siemens and Audrey Watters have already posted their initial views on this and both provide an interesting and …

Read more

Early Thoughts on MITx

MIT today announced MITx which appears to be an open learning initiative. They describe it as “an online interactive learning platform” that will offer a portfolio of MIT courses. organize and present course material to enable students to learn at their own pace feature interactivity, online laboratories and student-to-student communication allow for the individual assessment …

Read more

Teaching lecturing online: is this the definition of irony?

This morning I was unfortunate enough to attend a vendor presentation for a series of online academic staff development modules. Basically a series of SCORM packages (so HTML pages, images and Flash content with a little xml thrown in). I won’t mention the vendor’s name for fairly obvious reasons.

Dropping out and dropping in – Steve Jobs and higher education

People that know me know that I didn’t always agree with Steve Jobs but I have no doubt of his creative skill and vision and his impact on modern life. I also think he had a huge impact on education and not always in the ways you might expect. I’ve been watching the Stanford University …

Read more

Blogging and trust in Universities

It seems to me, as an interested observer of the higher education landscape over more years than I care to think about, that we are reaching the point where it can be argued that the private sector is behaving increasingly in ways that universities should behave and some universities are increasingly behaving in ways that …

Read more

Prof: ‘Engage Students Through Their Laptops’ — Campus Technology

  I was interested to see this new lecture enhancement technology being bought to market. Prof: ‘Engage Students Through Their Laptops’ — Campus Technology. I particularly liked this quote: “The key is to engage students through their laptops or cellphones, so they don’t drift off onto social networking sites” Of course maybe they actually prefer collaborating …

Read more

The Cloud as a disruptor of educational technologies

The number of higher education institutions (HEIs) moving their student email (and, in many cases, staff email) to a cloud solution continues to grow. Every other day there is a new report one one HEI or other adopting either Google or Microsoft. Intrinsically I am not against this although I do find it interesting how …

Read more