IAE Blog

Information Age Education (IAE) is an Oregon not-for-profit corporation founded by David Moursund in August 2007. The IAE Blog was started in August 2010.

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David Moursund

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Information Age Education is pleased to announce a new, 96-page free book.

Sylwester, R., & Moursund, D., eds. (March, 2014). Understanding and Mastering Complexity. Eugene, OR: Information Age Education. Download the PDF file from http://i-a-e.org/downloads/doc_download/256-understanding-and-mastering-complexity.html. Download the Microsoft Word file from http://i-a-e.org/downloads/doc_download/255-understanding-and-mastering-complexity.html.

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Quoting from http://www.nngroup.com/about/:

Since 1998, Nielsen Norman Group has been a leading voice in the user experience field: conducting groundbreaking research, evaluating interfaces of all shapes and sizes, and guiding critical design decisions to improve the bottom line.

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If you are a fan of the science fiction Star Trek series, then you are familiar with the Holodeck. It is a virtual reality in which Star Trek characters can interact with virtual people and environments. A person in the Holodeck “room” can move around, interacting with the environment, and talking and interacting with the virtual and “real” people in the room. For example, in one Star Trek episode set nearly 300 years in the future, Isaac Newton, Albert Einstein, and Steven Hawking join the Star Trek character Lt. Commander Data in a bridge game. The computer-generated Newton, Einstein, and Hawking appear to be just as “real” as if they were alive 300 years in the future.

Today’s computer games in which a player can be represented by an Avatar and interacts with computer-generated characters is a step toward a Holodeck. Computer simulations, such as those used to help train airplane and spaceship pilots, provide excellent examples of current applications of virtual reality in education.

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Posted by on in Self-Directed Learning

 I have read innumerable articles about how to improve teachers, teacher education, and our overall educational system. Many focus on what we should “do” to or for students to help them learn the required curriculum. Somewhat surprisingly, relatively few provide concrete advice on what constitutes a good learner and what both teachers and students can do to help students become better learners.

This is why I was pleased to encounter the following article:

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Posted by on in Improving Instruction

One of the unifying goals of education is to help prepare students for their possible futures. To do this well, we must forecast likely futures and provide students with an education that will help them to thrive in these possible futures. We must also prepare students to adapt to unforeseen changes. Thus, forecasting the future is an important aspect of designing and implementing a good educational system.

IBM recently published its annual five-year forecast for technological changes. See:

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Posted by on in Brain Science and Education

In recent weeks I have been revising and updating the IAE-pedia entry on Brain Science. This entry currently contains 29 sections, each dealing with a specific education topic in brain science. The brain science section on Attention is currently—and deservedly—receiving a lot of attention. This IAE Blog entry is based on the IAE-pedia Brain Science entry on Attention.

We all know what it means to “pay attention.” And those of us who know children certainly routinely see examples of children who are or are not paying attention to the needs/wants of their parents, childcare givers, teachers, and friends.

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Posted by on in Improving Instruction

Transfer of learning is the process of a person making use of his or her learned knowledge and skills in new environments and in new problem-solving and task-accomplishing situations. Recently the IAE-pedia document on Transfer of Learning was substantially revised and updated. This IAE Blog entry provides a summary of an important part of the updated IAE-pedia document.

Here are three general categories or types of transfer of learning. This information is useful to teachers and their students.

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On October 18-19, 2013, I presented three talks at the Alberta Math Teachers Association Conference held in Edmonton, Alberta. The conference was very well designed and well run. I learned a great deal from the sessions I attended. This IAE Blog entry summarizes my presentations and some of my suggestions for improving math education. You will find Suggested Readings at the end of this IAE Blog entry.

My Keynote Address: Math Maturity

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In the past couple of weeks, Information Age Education has made substantial progress in editing and updating its IAE-pedia. I believe the entry on Digital Filing Cabinets is one of the more important entries in the IAE-Pedia. See http://iae-pedia.org/Digital_Filing_Cabinet/Overview.

The idea is very simple. We now have quite good technology that makes it easy for each preservice and inservice teacher to accumulate a personal library of “good stuff.” I call such a collection a Personal Digital Filing Cabinet.

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Posted by on in International Education

 

I think of myself as a citizen of my local community (Eugene-Springfield), my county (Lane), my state (Oregon), my country (U.S.), and my world (Gaia). I am interested in how well “my” regions are doing, and what I can do to help improve the quality of life of the people in each of these regions. My approach is through helping to improve informal and formal education.

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Our current informal and formal educational systems are firmly planted in the past and present. However, technological, research, and cultural advances are now occurring so rapidly that educational systems must change considerably to prepare students for the complexities of the various possible futures they'll live in. You can get a sense of some of these changes by browsing the IAE document What the Future is Bringing Us at http://iae-pedia.org/What_the_Future_is_Bringing_Us.

A New Series in the IAE Newsletter

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“If you don't know where you are going, you're likely to end up somewhere else.” (Lawrence J. Peter; American educator of “Peter's Principles” fame; 1919–1990.)

Personal Goals

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Posted by on in Improving Education

 

I am growing weary of all of the “blame it on the teachers” articles I encounter in the popular media. This IAE Blog entry suggests that if you are unhappy with the results of our current informal and formal educational systems, you can find many better scapegoats than our teachers.

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The 8/19/2013 issue of my local newspaper, the Eugene Register-Guard, carried an article by Drs. Oz and Roizen titled Doctors Are Deadly Serious about Prescriptions. Learn more about Dr. Oz at http://www.doctoroz.com/.

Here is some information from this article:

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Recently I was skimming the August 19, 2013, edition of my hometown newspaper, the Eugene Register-Guard. Two very short articles caught my attention:

            Cuts will hit Head Start hard.

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Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) are a game changer in education. See  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Massive_open_online_course. Here are two quotes that help provide some of the (relatively short) current history of MOOCs.

Quoting from a 8/2/2011 IAE Blog at  http://i-a-e.org/iae-blog/entry/stanford-university-is-offering-a-free-artificial-intelligence-course.html:

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Here is an article that I found quite interesting:

Niccolal, James (7/10/2013). Move over, Linpack: Supercomputers get new performance test. Computerworld. Retrieved 7/14/2013 from  http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9240708/Move_over_Linpack_Supercomputers_get_new_performance_test.

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Posted by on in Improving Education

We each have our own opinions as to what schools are doing and/or should be doing to prepare students for their 21st century adult lives. My recent Web search of the expression 21st century skills returned more than 19 million hits.


The articles I browsed tended to present an author’s opinion of what constitutes the important 21st century knowledge and skills. Many articles talk about goals of precollege education, such as preparing students for careers and further education. Others recognize that education has broader goals than these practical one. See my list of educational goals at http://i-a-e.org/iae-blog/general-educational-goals-in-the-united-states.html.

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Keith Devlin is a mathematician and math educator. I first encountered his work when I read his book, The Math Gene (2000). Keith Devlin is the Executive Director of the Human-Sciences and Technologies Advanced Research Institute (H-STAR) at Stanford University and The Math Guy on NPR's Weekend Edition. He writes Devlin's Angle, a monthly column sponsored by the Mathematical Association of America.


Devlin teaches at Stanford University, the home of the first Massively Open Online Course (MOOC). He has twice taught such a course, Introduction to Mathematical Thinking—most recently in fall 2012. He blogs about this activity at http://mooctalk.org/.

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Dr. Jo Boaler is Professor of Mathematics Education at Stanford University, editor of the research commentary section of JRME, and author of seven books, including What's Math Got To Do With It? Formerly, she was Marie Curie Professor of Mathematics Education, University of Sussex, England and a mathematics teacher in London comprehensive schools. See https://ed.stanford.edu/faculty/joboaler.

The purposes of this IAE Blog entry are to advertise a free online no-prerequisite math education staff development course she will be offering starting in July 2013, and to make a few comments about the course. I strongly recommend the course.

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