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ICYMI: Friday January 30, 2015

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Staring Myself Down – original content by Walter

Lamar Alexander: Federal Accountability Of Schools and Teachers A Failure

Decoding Dyslexia [INFOGRAPHIC]

Microsoft’s “Classroom of the Future”

Further Explanation of the Transformational 6 Questions on Technology Use

Tenkely: To Change Education, Change Your Mindset

Learning vs. Knowledge Building

The Wonderful & Terrifying Implications of Computers That Can Learn [VIDEO 19:47]

Higher Education May Earn Your Child Middle Class Status, If It’s Still Around

Data Mine: Schools Still Separate and Unequal

Schlechty’s Levels of Classroom Engagement [INFOGRAPHIC]

Sackstein: “Having This Growth Mindset is a Very, Very Challenging Thing” [VIDEO 3:28]

Reforming While White

How Does Your Smartphone Know Your Location? [VIDEO 5:04]

Common Core Standards in Action

Fostering Women Leaders: A Five-Question Check

Google, Deep Learning and the Neural Net

How Mobile Technology Impacts Learning

The Case For and Against Infographic Resumes

2015 eLearning Statistics [INFOGRAPHIC]

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2015 eLearning Statistics [INFOGRAPHIC]

20150123-Top 10 eLearning Stats for 2015Countless reports, surveys, and studies have shown that eLearning industry isn’t showing any signs of slowing down. In fact, an increasing number of individuals, corporations, and institutions are turning to eLearning as they recognize its effectiveness and its convenience. This eLearning Industry infographic highlights important eLearning stats and facts for 2015.

View the original post here.

The Case For and Against Infographic Resumes

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Reposted from Fast Company:

In a competitive job market it’s tempting to want to make yourself stand out. And since we are such a visually driven culture (studies show that you can convey more information faster with pictures than you can with words), it’s not surprising that some job seekers are considering turning their resumes into infographics.

These visualizations of data are everywhere, from the best places in the world to start a business to the sleep schedules of some of history’s greatest minds. And some believe that the data on your resume is the next logical step. Matt Cooper, CEO of Visual.ly, an online visual content marketplace, argues that it’s getting more difficult to fit an entire career into a simple chronological list.

“The world has gotten so competitive that employers are less likely to take a risk on a new employee without doing a thorough check of their job performance. And that means data – lots of it,” he says. But before you turn everything on your resume into a bar graph and pie chart, there are a few things to consider…

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How Mobile Technology Impacts Learning

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Reposted from techradarpro:

Technology has been making inroads into education for decades. But the mobile revolution is changing education in more fundamental ways than just providing a new gadget that delivers information. Mobile devices, particularly tablets, are changing the way we learn and think about learning.

Last year, a Pew Research Center-Harvard University study found that one in four teenagers in the US owns a tablet computer. According to the US Department of Education, almost every classroom has at least one computer, and Internet connectivity is also available in more than 90% of classrooms. These technology-driven trends are fundamentally transforming the way students learn. Instead of requiring students to read a lesson in a book or complete a linear module via desktop, tablets are enabling them access to engaging, interactive lessons.

As technology continues to disrupt learning, it’s important for educators to make sure students don’t become too isolated and that they have opportunities to converse and collaborate. Innovations like tablet-based tutoring can enable two-way conversations and increase collaboration, giving students the best of both worlds in a changing education environment. Here are five ways mobile technology is transforming education…

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Google, Deep Learning and the Neural Net

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Reposted from Medium Backchannel:

“I need to know a bit about your background,” says Geoffrey Hinton. “Did you get a science degree?” Hinton, a sinewy, dry-witted Englishman by way of Canada, is standing at a white board in Mountain View, California, on the campus of Google, the company he joined in 2013 as a Distinguished Researcher. Hinton is perhaps the world’s premier expert on neural network systems, an artificial intelligence technique that he helped pioneer in the mid 1980s. (He once remarked he’s been thinking about neural nets since he was sixteen.) For much of the period since then, neural nets — which roughly simulate the way the human brain does its learning— have been described as a promising means for computers to master difficult things like vision and natural language. After years of waiting for this revolution to arrive, people began to wonder whether the promises would ever be kept.

But about ten years ago, in Hinton’s lab at the University of Toronto, he and some other researchers made a breakthrough that suddenly made neural nets the hottest thing in AI. Not only Google but other companies such as Facebook, Microsoft and IBM began frantically pursuing the relatively minuscule number of computer scientists versed in the black art of organizing several layers of artificial neurons so that the entire system could be trained, or even train itself, to divine coherence from random inputs, much in a way that a newborn learns to organize the data pouring into his or her virgin senses. With this newly effective process, dubbed Deep Learning, some of the long-standing logjams of computation (like being able to see, hear, and be unbeatable at Breakout) would finally be untangled. The age of intelligent computers systems — long awaited and long feared — would suddenly be breathing down our necks. And Google search would work a whole lot better.

This breakthrough will be crucial in Google Search’s next big step: understanding the real world to make a huge leap in accurately giving users the answers to their questions as well as spontaneously surfacing information to satisfy their needs. To keep search vital, Google must get even smarter.

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Fostering Women Leaders: A Five-Question Check

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Reposted from McKinsey Insights:

Uncomfortable conversations are often necessary to identify the pragmatic actions that can improve a company’s odds of developing women leaders. The good news is that the rewards – a stronger workforce that fully taps the available talent across the economy – are well worth it. The power to change and to keep moving forward lies in our hands.

The challenges are well known: women in business continue to face a formidable gender gap for senior-leadership positions. Moreover, there are fewer and fewer women at each step along the path to the C-suite, although they represent a majority of entry-level employees at Fortune 500 companies and outnumber men in college-graduation rates. Increasingly, the barriers too are well known: a mix of cultural factors, ingrained mind-sets, and stubborn forms of behavior, including a tendency to tap a much narrower band of women leaders than is possible given the available talent pool.

Much has been written about the nature of the challenges. I want to focus on what companies can do to take action. In this article, I’ve distilled some forward-leaning practices into five questions that can serve as a fitness test for your top team. In my experience, an organization that is making progress on such issues tends to explore them in concert. At the very least, these questions can help generate the kinds of challenging conversations that executive teams around the world should be having. The stakes are too high not to have them. As I heard the CEO of a US healthcare company say recently, “The business case is simple: my company needs the best talent. Why would I handicap that by 50 percent?”

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Common Core Standards in Action

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Reposted from Education Safari:

Friday afternoon,  I had an end of first trimester parent-teacher conference with my 2nd grader’s teacher, Mrs. W. I have mentioned Mrs. W. before, in my blog post about Common Core Standards back in October. She is a veteran teacher of more than 25 years. Her husband, now retired, begs her every summer to retire with him so that they can do more traveling together. Mrs. W.  loves teaching way too much. They do travel in the summer, but when the fall rolls around, poor Mr. W. has to go find a project to tinker with or something to do.

I’m really amazed at the progress my youngest child is making. It is very different from the standard that his older brother experienced at the same grade level. Instead of filling in the blanks for reading comprehension, or answering  a question in a single phrase, he writes entire sentences that give the reader comprehensive information.  Mrs. W. instructs them to “P.Q.A. – put the question in the answer.” That means, find the keywords inside the initial question and use that to build your answer sentence.

Mrs. W. is not in the least intimidated by Common Core standards in her classroom. She went over some of the weekly tests with me to illustrate the new standards at this grade level, and I thought I would share some of those illustrations here…

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