Notes from Information Technology Based Higher Education and Training ITHET 2013, Antalya

A New Strategy for Higher Education and Training
Shirley Alexander

Some intro stuff about the buildings being built for the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS).
   - leads to questions about designing learning for the future
   - reference to the old 'cranking ifo into students' heads diagram

- claims about the future:
       - work at own time, place, etc
       - computers will revolutionize learning
   - along came MOOCs
   - investment in MOOCs: $100M
       - will take time but will have a major impact

- why things will change...
   - Bondi beach: people ran way from the storm front
   - cost
   - decrease in public funding
   - questions whether the investment is worth it
   - disaggregation of higher education

- cost - taxpayers spend $7B in Australia on HE
   - suggestion they should fund only courses where there is a clear public benefit
   - Ernst & Young - only 3 ways universitys can survive
        - status quo - requires streamlining
        - niche dominator
        - become 'transformers' and change completely what they do
   - Georgia Tech & Udacity - $7000 for an online masters degree
        - people are enrolling in the hundreds in that degree
        - people on campus may ask why they're paying an additional $33K

- disaggregation - what sudents want:
    - learn new things,
    - employment, or
    - broader opportunities

- what should be in a course? what employers say:
    - interpersonal skills & communication
    - passion, desire, commitment, attitude
    - fourth place - calibre of academic result
- what students say:
    - engaging classes (and podcasts of them)
    - more F2F time with academics
    - more feedback & faster turnaround
    - etc. - and they want electronic versions of all those things

- week by week - attendance in a f2f class - down to 31% by end of semester

- What students need to do in order to learn:
    - have learning goals, then,
    - access ideas and content (itunes, YouTube, MOOC, etc) - high
          - so before they come onto campus they have been engaged already
    - on campus: making sense, testing ideas, action of some sort, perhaps industry internship, nore MOOCs
    - receiving feedback on those actions - from network, or perhaps 1-1 confersation with academics
    - reflect - think, maybe write a blog, etc.

- the new buildings don't have a single standard lecture theatre in them
    - (but then we see a lecture theatre photo - but with chairs on casers and tiered tables
    - engineering - labs - but also - remote labs using simulations
    - support for peer learning, groupwork (picture or room with tables)
    - picture of studio-type spaces

- Learning 2020 Projects:
    - nuanced timetabline system
    - change in workload models
    - data-intensive university
    - eg., event lifecycle analytics

- analytics in teaching and research:
    - mapping courses to identify 1st year attrition and 'killer' subjects
    - student dashboard & personalization
    - seeing high attrition rates in engineering courses
    - i-Educator - outreach program by student service unit
          - reduces attrition rate by half in contacted students
    - understanding why pass rates <20 br="" courses="" in="" killer="">          - resources: social networking, teaxhers, pathways, etc
          - factors included: interval between adjacent subjects

- personalization - the 'holy grail'
   - eg. Knewton, Sigmo
   - numeracy


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Linking Theory With Practice
Blanka Klimova
Uni of Hradec Kralove, Czech


- many young graduates cannot find employment after leaning school - about 1900 annually in Czech Republic - rates between 2.7 - 13 percent
- number of graduates increased from 8000 16000 2001-12

- our uni member of Hradec IT cluster
    - about 20 companies from Hrdadec region
    - company experts invited to give lectures
    - companies offer students topics for final projects
    - staff do research for companies & offer workshops
    - one-day job fair since 2008, includes presentations from companies (300-400 students)


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Control Engineering Edication Critical Success Factors Modeling via Fuzzy Cognitive Maps
Engin Yesil
Istanbul Technical University (ITU)

- ITU ABB Process Control Laboratory
        - fuzzy cognitive maps (FCM) - various presentations

- FCM firected signed graphs with feedbacks - model events, values, goals as collection of concepts by fgraphinh causal links between these
- eg. FCMis a 4-tuple - concepts, weights, connections, functions
- two approaches:
     - expert based
     - automated learning based
- expert-based approaches - but these can be subjective and introduce errors; use more than one expert
     - define important concepts - eg. using self-study report, reserach studies from literature
     - identify relationships - uses survey
     - determine weights - aggregate expert weights
- simulation - code written in Mretlab - sigmoid transformation function


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Didactic Reflection of Learning Preferences in IT & Managerial Fields of Studuies
Petra Poulova
Uni of Hradec Kralove, Czech


- online course run in three different ways:
    - materials selected by leanring styles
    - or by teaching styles
    - or as selected by student

- Johnson's concept of learning styles:
    - combination lock metaphor
    - 'learning combination' inventory - four patterns:
            - sequential, precise, technical and confluent 

- No statistally signif. difference between groups
    - as determined by test scores
    - why? it students prefer everything?
          - it's our experience that IT students are different from every other student
          - anything online is fine, but they reject anything printed

- some discussion of Bloom;s - adaptation for digital literacies, adds 'communication'

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Building Effective Blended Learning for Engineering Studies
Samra Mujacic
Uni of Tuzla, Bosnia and Herzegovina

- developemnt of learning tech and learning styles
- bringing together educational resources of a different nature - resulting 'blend' is more valuab;e
- this is the model developed at College of Computing and Business Communications eMPIRICA

- blended learning: mixes face-to-face and online learning
   - blend:  f2f(driver), rotation (flipped), flex, online lab, self-blend, online driver
   - model based on pedagogical, tech, mmanagement and institutional factors
   - dominent model: 80% e-learning, f2f 20%
         - LMS: eCampus + IWB-video capture (YiuTube channel) + Adobe Connect + WebEx

- analysis of blended learning model, compared with traditional learning model
   - analysis:
   - blended students better in IT related subjects;
   - group A had better results in engineering math & business English

Conclusion
   - efficient blended learning is more than eTexts and productivity tools
   - eMPIRICA approach better for teachers and students


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Skill Learning Environment for Posture and Motion
Masaru Okada
Wakayama University Japan

- in traditional method, motion skills are learned by observation - it is difficult to pick up on this
- new method proposed: use a life-sized model using artifical reality (AR)
   - orientation sensor produced by MicroStrain

- evaluation experiment - 10 male students in thier 20s, motion example: Aikido
    (Aikido chosen because it's slow, performed in a small area, and posture is important to master the motion)
    Result: only the experimental group has improved

- note: the control group watched the video before the pretest, then only watched the same video during instruction; the test group watched the bvideo before, and used the simulation during instruction. As a commenter pointed out: this is a test on whether feedback helps, not a test of some particular tech.

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Do Engineering: Delivering First Class Online Engineering Education with Graphical System Design
Michael Haddad - National Instruments Arabia

Online learning:
- access to education to hundreds of thousands of people
- platform for dissemination of a wide variety of topics
- ideally suited for arts, humanities, finance...

But...

- engineering still relies in theories and equations - there isn't really th idea of learning by doing, so
   - engineering courses have low completion rates
   - retention of concepts is very low
- eg. MIT engineering courses stufy:  8% completion rate (yikes)
- so, how do we address this?

Let's do engineering.
   - how does a student's brain work? David Barret, Olin College
   - cycle of learning - net gain after rest is small compared to what wasoriginally retained
   - so, give them stimulus: high emotion reinforces neural connections
        - eg., make paper airplanes to win competition
   - as a result, net gain much higher
   - so, doing engineering is essential

How can online students do engineering to build systems?
   - future eengineers will either design or use systems, so they have to understand system-level design
   - systems are everywhre, from the Tesla motor to the smartphone
   - Berkeley research: best way to learn system-level design is a platform-based approach
        A. Sangiovanni-Vincentelli, 'Designing Platform Based Design', EEDesign, Feb. 2002
        - because engineers spent more time figuring out the tools than actually doing engineering

Graphical system design:
   - top-level, the application domain (measurement, test, monitoring, embeddedm control...)
   - middle: platform
   - bottom-level: work environment: desktops and laptops, NI CompactDAQ, PXI and modular installatioons, NI Compact RIO

The platform API should provide several tools for interacting with data online
   - eg. LabVIEW Web Services
   - eg. Data Dashboard - download for android tablet or iOS
          - build their own applications, eg. windmill monitoring system

So, when we look at doing engineering, there are two approaches:
   - direct access, on campus, to advanced applications - ike robots, etc. - high cost; or campus access in central lab
   - open couyrses, MOOCs, highly distributed hardware
   - LabVIEW crosses these two envirnments

Centralized lab: eg., NI ELVIS Multi-Disciplinary Teaching Platform
   - combines various functions: oscilloscope, digital multimeter, function generator, etc.
   - fully programmable
   - supports teaching eco system - from engineering to bio
   - interactive remote labs: (Massive Open Online Labs - MOOLs) - iLAT use of MIT labs, for example
   - such a system is scalable
        - you can have centralized labs on multiple universities,
        - served through a common broker,
        - which can provide access to thousands of clients

So, how are they used?
   - students build circults, analyze them, collect data
   - the circuits access these labs - these are preset experiments that are assembled for them (so they never insert the transistor backwards)
   - but you want them to be able to touch and use the hardware...
       - so, eg., NI myDAQ - similar to the ELVIS, whuch does a bunch of things

Use case: Rice University MOOC
   - Dr. Johnson, spring 2013 - 350000 studnets - but no lab component
   - Echoes 'Fundamentals of Electrical Engineering'
   - being developed for 2014 with experiments

Use case: Georgia Tech (the $5K masters)
   - they want to guarantee that the experience online is the same as in person
   - so they are making optional books + equipment they can buy

Use case: Circuits by Tsinghua University
   - China MOOC in edX online for myDAQ integrated in circuits
   - uses NI myDAQ - but needs more, to provide access to controls....
         - with 'systems on a chip' we can introduce electronics for controls
         - eg. myRIO - enabled system design platform with api, wifi access, etc

I asked whether there are use cases where teams of people in different locatiosn colaborate to design a single system - response is that this is possible, but we are not MOOc providers. So it still needs to be developed.


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Technology for Learning: Flipping Instruction
Keith Willey, the University of Technology, Sydney

Flipped instruction:
   - a form of blended learning (Wikipedia)
   - transmission-based in-class lectures replaced with participative leanring activities
   - humanities have been doing this forever, with books
   - but STEM students have a different mindset, they want to be led a bit first

Features of flipped instruction:
   - we want to release class time to be used for interactive and collaborative activities
        - because learning is socially and culturally constructed
        - meaningful learning happens when students are engaged in social activities
   - need to create opportunities for feedback, to get feedback from studnets
   - class time is freed up for higher-level activities: analysis, evaluation, creation
        - this includes assessments and providing feedback

(failed attempt to show a couple videos)

Misconceptions about flipping:
   - it's not less work - it's actually more work
   - many students find they dion't have the time to consume the flipped lectures
   - students thought they 'paid' to be taught by an expert - student culture resists change
   - many students don't have the confidence to exercise their judgement

Assessment:
   - Ramsden (2003) - assessment deisgn and methods have the biggest impact on student learning
   - Tang (1994) - is assessment seen as requirin passive acquisition and accurate reproduction of details, students will adopt a surface approach employing low-level cognitive strategies
   - Carless (2007) - diagram of learning-oriented assessment
        - assessment usually though of as measurement
        - but there's also a leanring aprt - we want assessment tasks as learning tasks - feedback as fed forward
   - formative vs summative assessment - as soon as we make assessment summative, students get strategic

Validity of assessment:
   - Sadler (2010) - assessment fidelity - elementss that contribute to a grade correctly identified as academic achievement
                           - vs. grades for efforts, attendance, participation, revision, compliance, memory
                   - lower thresholds for interim quality judgements send a muffled message
                           - you need to give people the chance to practice the stuff that will be on the exam
                   - cumulative assessments in which early understandings are recorded misrepresent the achievement in the course
                           - some people might be really good at the little quizzes each week, but others learn more globally
                           - need to use threshhold exams where earlier results can be overruled

Activity design:
   - begin with understanding of how it is going to be assessed
   - what opportunity can I give them to learn it?
   - then - and only then - do I look at the resouces

Supporting scaaffolding
   - get them to explain why they deisgned they activity they did
   - and what learning opportunity this affords
   - how can students evaluate their learning from the activity?
   - how will the activity impact on their reality - how does it help them see their world differently?

Technology's role....
   - should be more than about efficiencies and sustainability
   - use simulations and enquiry-based learning activities
   - they should facilitate collaboration and peer learning and development of professional judgement
        - writing for the tutor should be dead - we want students readinge ach others' assignments
        - example: Tim's Tutor online simulation (by Emona)
        - example: SPARK PLUS software - a way for students to self-assess each others' work
   - they should provide new perspectives and views to address threshold concepts (these are difficult-to-understand concepts that open up a whole new way of thinking) - give them more incremental access to these concepts
   - should provide access to analytics to understand how students learn

Flipping recommendations:
   - start small, learn from feedback and imporve, and make things short
   - spend more time preparing the flip
   - take the opportunity to learn from student feedback and dialogue
   - design appropriate and valid assessment


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MOOCs and/or E-lectures - a means of virtualizing university education
Thomas Ottoman, Germany

- crucial point in xMOOCs - high quality content production
   - EU - significant funding for content production 1995-2005
   - but most online cousres did not survive the initial funding period
- a feasible alternative - recordings of live lectures
   - this is now a routine service at many universities
   - access to e-leactures doesn't empty lecture theatres

- engagement of the teacher:
   - lecturing is still seen as the main duty of a university teacher
   - so why should a professor engage in a MOIOC?
         - prestige
         - attraction of grant money and VC
         - personal financial benefits
         - in the long run, financial or other rewards appear to be indispensible to keep teachers involved in online teaching
         - example: The VFH - 3000 students enrolled
         - media fees paid by students (have to do thuis in Germancy, there's no tuitions for brick & morter)
         - or, online tecahing may reduce teaching load
         - example: VHB (Virtual University Bavaria) = 100K students per year
                 - the reason student take these is credits count fully toward degrees

- involvement of students:
    - MOOCs have high dropout rate, there's no entry requirement, no dropout cost
    - students tend to behave like watching TV, there are many rubbernecks and lurchers
    - MOOCs students cannot be perosnally taught, need tests, discussion forums, etc
    - MOOCs follow the 'Darwinistic approach'f teaching and learning

- e-Lectures production - digital or analog?
    - turns a perfect event into time- and space- independent mode
    - make optimal use of current technology for recording, storage, distribution, etc
    - provide added value: replay, searching, browsing, etc.
Not as easy as it seems - professors use multiple tools today. 3 main forms of recording
   - screen grabbing
   - VCR recording
   - object-based recording

Screen-grabbing
   - take snapshots of presentation screen, synch with audio, present as video
   - eg. Camtasia
   - problem is it destroys the object-base of presented media & symbolic information

VCR recording
   - done in background through projector - you don't need software on the presentation computer
   - eg. matterhorn open source lecture capture
   - object information is lost

Object-based
   - object remains intact, can be searched, etc
   - but you need dedicated recording and replay software - eg. Lecturnity

Essentials:
   - prepare slides as templates to be filled-in at presentation time
   - use a large graphics tablet
   - cut the recording into chunks of about 20 minutes
   - take care of the audio stream - use high quality microphones
  
E-lectures portal at Frieberg - one of the most accessed servers
   - students like to download lectures
   - permanent problem: management of digital rights
         - copyright laws allow use in limited classrooms
         - so they have to password-protect classes


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