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.

Very Long-range Strategic Planning

 I have long been interested in long-range planning (Moursund, June, 1987; Moursund, April, 1987). I think about designing and implementing a K-12 educational system for children who currently have an average life expectancy of about 80 years. When they finish (or drop out of) high school, on average they can look forward to at least 60 more years of life. What constitutes a good education for these children?

A recent issue of the MIT Technology Review included a report on The Future of Work by the very successful venture capitalist Steve Jurvetson (November-December, 2015). Successful venture capitalists are good at predicting the future of a company that is just getting started and/or is still very young. Here is a quote from Jurvetson’s predictions:

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Quality of Life

I moved into a modest-sized retirement home (the Eugene Abbey) about four years ago, shortly after my wife died. These two events caused me to start paying more attention to my quality of life (QoL) and the quality of life of others. While living in this retirement facility, I began to explore what I could do to help improve the QoL of the residents. Over the past four years I have helped improve their library, computer facilities, outdoor garden and lawn area, and entertainment facilities. I am pleased by what I have been able to do. (Note: I now live on the Oregon coast, but maintain a small apartment in the retirement home.)

I have put my greatest emphasis into the computer area. Here is a recent note I received from a resident:

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Tell Me Some Good News

Each Tuesday I have lunch with some of my retired colleagues from the University of Oregon College of Education. Recently I posed the following question to them:

This morning I read the news on my tablet computer, listened to the news on the radio, and read a few miscellaneous magazine articles. Essentially every news item fell into my category of “doom and gloom” or I considered it to be relatively inconsequential. I asked my colleagues to share some of the happier and important news they had encountered so far in the day.

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MOOC Enrollment Continues to Grow

The first really large enrollment Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) was run by Stanford University in 2011. During the subsequent four years, the success of these courses as measured by completion rate has been very low. However, the courses have continued to be improved and enrollment in these courses has grown remarkably. Quoting from an article written by Dhawal Shah (12/28/2015):

Student enrollments in MOOCs doubled this year. In fact, more people signed up for MOOCs in 2015 than they did in the first three years of the “modern” MOOC movement (which started in late 2011—when the first Stanford MOOCs took off). According to data collected by Class Central, the total number of students who signed up for at least one course has crossed 35 million—up from an estimated 17 million last year.

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Distant Learning: Potentials and Perils

In this IAE Blog entry, I discuss distance learning, learning in face-to-face environments, and learning as one views and interacts with nature and other aspects of the world. The main focus is on the first two, so let me briefly dispense with the third.

Long before we had schools and the three R’s, people learned by themselves through their interactions with the natural world in which they lived. We are built to learn from what we see, hear, smell, taste, and touch in “nature.” A human teacher can help in this mode of learning, but each of us is innately able to learn through interaction with the natural world.

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