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What caught my eye was this description of "a competency-based micro-credentialing program called the University Learning Store (ULS).... conceived of as an online store for learning, where students can purchase mini-courses both to acquire and to be assessed on discreet competencies." Offered by the University of Wisconsin Extension's Continuing Education, Outreach and E-learning (CEOEL) it's (to me) a natural locus for experimentation. And that is the main subject of this course, a wiki-based offering with content contributed by students that could be (might be? may never be?) recognized by the university.Web: [Direct Link] [This Post]
It's funny how the after-school activities seem more educationally relevant than classes, when when they're not relevant at all. That's why this description of an after-school coding club appeals to me. Drawing on Mitch Resnick's book Lifelong Kindergarten as a guide, Angela Brown describes how her coding sessions sometimes stay on topic and sometimes stray far from the original idea. And I really like this: "How do we know if our Code Club is successful? I hope we never know. Resnick suggests instead of trying to measure learning, to document it. This made me think of approaches like floor-books in kindergartens." Yeah.Web: [Direct Link] [This Post]
The script for the On-Demand Education Marketplace (ODEM) reads like it came straight from the Christensen playbook: "The platform reduces costs and improves access to premium education by directly connecting educators with students and eliminating inefficient and costly intermediaries." The idea is that you have to buy cryptocurrency to do this (I don't see why online payments wouldn't have worked as well). Mostly, it's a recommender system. "ODEM uses artificial intelligence to seamlessly manage complex requests, organizing complete educational programs around the world." It then uses Ethereum to manage smart contracts between educator and learner.Web: [Direct Link] [This Post]
I love how Geoff Cain mixes a new spirit of optimism and positivity with a couple of 'get off my lawn' moments. The positivity he finds in the Open Pedagogy Notebook created by Robin DeRosa and Rajiv Jhangiani to “support community sharing of learning materials and ideas around access to knowledge and knowledge creation.” I've added the feed to my reader.
Ah, but the cranky moments in Cain's post are to be savoured, even if they have nothing to do with the site just cited. The first: "I can get really annoyed when I come across a pay-wall when trying to access materials that are openly licensed... What part of open don’t you understand?" Totally. And the second: "Is the project 'sustainable'? If by 'sustainable' you mean provide a means for a corporation to make money off of the hard work of other educators, then no, maybe not." Nor would we want it to be. We need to reclaim the concept of 'sustainable' for human systems, not factory farms.Web: [Direct Link] [This Post]
The suggestion here is that "similar to e-commerce firms, online-degree programs are beginning to incorporate elements of an older-school, brick-and-mortar model." I would comment that the e-commerce physical storefront is a novelty, not a trend, but let's continue. "Richard DeMillo, the executive director of the Center for 21st Century Universities at the Georgia Institute of Technology... wouldn’t be surprised if universities start fusing the best of the online experience with the best of the physical experience, possibly like 2U is trying to do with WeWork. 'Think of it as the storefront for the university,' DeMillo said." This may mean transforming their existing physical presence, but the trend in education is not toward converting online to in-person. And as you rad through the article it becomes that this is more of a hope being expressed rather than an actual thing.Web: [Direct Link] [This Post]
What Were The Most Requested Moodle Features From The Glasgow Audience? MoodleMoot UK & Ireland 2018
Last year Blackboard celebrated their 20th anniversary as a company, and this year Instructure celebrated their 10th. Yes, the company with Canvas, the "new" LMS solution, is a decade old. To gain historical perspective, it is interesting to compare each company's first ten years in business in terms of primary financials - revenue and income - and performance in their core North American Higher Education market.
We can only go so far in comparing the companies on this basis, however, due to different circumstances.
- Most importantly, Blackboard helped create the LMS market and therefore had significant portion of its expansion in a greenfield situation, picking up clients who had not previously used an institution-wide LMS. Canvas entered the market well after saturation, with greater than 90% of institutions already having a standard LMS.
- Blackboard developed its product line pre-cloud, with on-premise hosting being the primary deployment model. Canvas was cloud-native, developed on top of AWS infrastructure.
- Blackboard's growth was heavily based on corporate acquisition of competitors - Prometheus, WebCourse, WebCT in the first decade - while Instructure's growth has been almost exclusively organic.
- Both companies sold in more than just the North American Higher Ed (NAHE) LMS market, even if that was the core. Blackboard acquired two companies in 2000 and launched a card-reader transaction business, and they played somewhat in the K-12 and corporate learning space. Instructure developed Bridge for corporate learning, Arc for video platform, and it has a heavy presence in the K-12 LMS market.
Interestingly, both companies went public in Year 7 (Blackboard in 2004, Instructure in 2015).
With that in mind, let's compare revenue, operating income - both derived from public SEC filings and adjusted to 2018 dollars - and market share in their core NAHE market. The financial data comes from public filings, and data for 2018 for Instructure are estimates based on their outlook presented in the most recent quarterly earnings release. Market share data is based on our LMS Market Analysis service and associated financial analysis for premium subscribers.
- Blackboard raised ~$185 million in venture financing pre-IPO while Instructure raised ~$95 million (both in 2018 dollars). Part of this difference can be attributed to the much higher costs associated with pre-cloud enterprise software deployment models.
- Blackboard's revenue was higher than Instructure's at similar points, and their operating income was mostly positive after Year 6. Instructure has maintained a significant loss each year from operations. One way to explain this difference is that Blackboard's used funds for corporate acquisitions, thus fueling growth, while Instructure invested funds into sales & marketing and organic growth. This is not the whole story, but it is a big difference between the two companies.
- In market share represented as a percentage, Blackboard's growth was much faster, but this was in a period where the market was developing and not all schools had a standard LMS. When viewing this market share in raw numbers, we see that Instructure's growth would have exceeded Blackboard's were it not for the Year 9 WebCT acquisition.
- Blackboard was already showing organic market declines (in NAHE market share %) and slowdowns in raw numbers outside of the immediate WebCT acquisition of customers. Instructure's organic growth shows no signs yet of slowing down, is less lumpy and more predictable.
The post Comparing the First Ten Years of Blackboard and Instructure in LMS Market appeared first on e-Literate.
According to this survey (92 page PDF) of internet experts, "Some 47% of these respondents predict that individuals’ well-being will be more helped than harmed by digital life in the next decade, while 32% say people’s well-being will be more harmed than helped. The remaining 21% predict there will not be much change." Count me as being among the 47%. Yes, the internet helps people do bad things. And these get all the headlines. But the internet also helps people do good and noble things, and in the end, these outweigh the bad.Web: [Direct Link] [This Post]
The Open Science Handbook has launched version 1.0 on Gitbooks. "The Handbook is available under Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication (CC0 1.0 Universal) and is oriented to practical teaching of Open Science principles. It was written by 14 experts during a book sprint organized by FOSTER and the TIB Hannover in February 2018. After including suggestions from the community the handbook was moved to Github and we can announce the release of version 1.0 now." It is intended to be a living text and will be revised through contributions in the future. The 'science' aspect of it (as in, for example, the description of the scientific method) is pretty rudimentary, but it will do for now.Web: [Direct Link] [This Post]
This is being posted to an NPR website as an example of good teaching, but my concern here is that this approach is not grounded in a proper understanding of critical thinking (which is why I recently wrote Critical Thinking for Educators). The non-standard approach is something called 'claim-evidence-reason' where the reason 'explains why' the evidence supports the claim. This misunderstanding of argument form makes it impossible for students to learn how arguments work. Moreover, the examples used are often poor, in some cases literally begging the question, and grammatically incoherent throughout. That these are being used for English language learning (ELL) only compounds the problem, because students are led to misunderstand the roles of different words in day-to-day use. If you're going to teach language and logic, you need to be somewhat proficient in it yourself.Web: [Direct Link] [This Post]