The organization notes that the “widespread collection of sensitive information” by education technology vendors, such as web browsing history, biometric data and students’ geolocation, could “present unique exploitation opportunities for criminals.”
Source: Common Sense Media
A new Pew Research study shows that kids are trying to negotiate between worry that they spend too much time on their phones and anxiety when they are separated from their devices.
Pew found that teens who worry about excessive screen time are not more likely to change their behavior. Among those who say they spend too much time on their phones, 53 percent have cut back on mobile usage. That’s not far from 55 percent of teens who have cut back, despite feeling like they spend too little or the right amount of time on their mobile device.
The internet-enabled devices listen to what users say, send audio recordings to the cloud, translate that information into commands, and respond accordingly—providing users with a personal digital voice assistant such as Amazon's Alexa, which teachers are now using to help with everything from setting a classroom timer to leading a group of 3rd graders through a spelling test.
"When you make decisions about using these tools, you're making them on behalf of everyone in the room," Gillmor said by way of advice to K-12 leaders. "Think about your most vulnerable, most marginalized students and the impact these kinds of surveillance technologies can have on them and their families."
Extension schools were the original attempt by higher education to offer a low-cost version for the non-elite. Thanks to a recent push towards online courses, Harvard University’s Extension School now has more students than the rest of Harvard combined. Well, unless you count the students in MOOCs, those free online courses, which are offered through a different division of the university. Let’s face it, the number of different types of degrees you could get from Harvard is getting confusing, and the same could be said for many other universities as well.
[W]hen it comes to the instructors answering students, a clear anomaly came to light. Instructors were 94% more likely to respond to comments made by white male students. Significant evidence supports the presence of such bias in brick-and-mortar education. According to the authors, “boys generally receive more attention and comments from instructors than girls in primary education … There is also evidence that teachers treat Black students more negatively than White students … and reinforce social aspects of behavior for Black girls while highlighting academic behaviors of White girls.” These biases have been documented in all levels of education.
As online learning extends its reach, though, it is starting to run into a major obstacle: There are undeniable advantages, as traditional colleges have long known, to learning in a shared physical space. Recognizing this, some online programs are gradually incorporating elements of the old-school, brick-and-mortar model—just as online retailers such as Bonobos and Warby Parker use relatively small physical outlets to spark sales on their websites and increase customer loyalty. Perhaps the future of higher education sits somewhere between the physical and the digital.
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