computer-based educational tools
Teachers, Parents, and Pupils asked to support PUMO in Developing unique Online Courses and Teacher’s Training through Seminars and Survey
The PUMO Project has set out to address the education of pupils living away from their home countries in situations where there are no schools in their first language. PUMO intends to develop a series of online courses to support learning progress in subject areas specific to their countries of origin – this includes language skills, but also other subjects not necessarily addressed by the schools in their country of habitation. The potential educational disadvantages of mobility due to, for example, parents’ employment are thereby to be minimized through a detailed training programme for interested teachers and technology-enhanced support in the form of online educational resources (courses). In order to ensure this training and support programme successfully approach the needs of both mobile pupils and the teachers who help them, the PUMO Project is conducting a series of questionnaires and introductory seminars for teachers, parents, and representatives of the state educational systems to describe the state-of-the-art, to identify the needs and requirements, and further to help teachers to integrate and use these online courses.
The PUMO Consortium has already organized successful seminars in the partner countries of Estonia, Greece, Latvia, Lithuania, and Sweden in order to present the project’s aims and receive feedback regarding project subject matter. A series of personal interviews will take the place of an introductory seminar in Germany and will be held in June – Primary and secondary school teachers, representatives of the state education system, and involved parents are invited to participate. These interviews will be held per telephone or via Skype (with or without video accompaniment as desired). Parent organisations are especially welcome, as their intimate familiarity with the situation of their children and subject matter in their countries of origin are of special relevance for PUMO. The introductory interviews will address the identification of the current educational situation of the emigrant population in the country, the support of distance-based language and culture courses, and the best composition of the teachers’ training programme.
Both the German introductory interviews and the other completed seminars are complemented by an on-going online survey for all target groups of the project. PUMO thereby invites all interested individuals to submit their opinions through the following multilingual links:
- For state representatives of school systems:
- For parents of mobile pupils:
- For pupils in primary education:
- For pupils in secondary education:
- For teachers:
PUMO appreciates your insight and desire to support pupils on the move. For more information on the PUMO Project, please visit the project website at www.pumo.info.
Anesthesia Illustrated is a global open-access initiative, spearheaded by the Stanford AIM lab. Its goal is to disseminate high quality educational content and learning objects, all designed to support anesthesia education around the world.
The goal of Anesthesia Illustrated is to share the work being developed for educational use at Stanford and Yale Universities with the broader anesthesia community. Additional content partner institutions may be joining the project in the near future.
The initiative is based on high-quality multimedia-based visual educational content, given freely in an open access manner under a Creative Commons Attribution – Non-commercial –license.
LINQ 2013 Attracts 200 Professionals from Fields of Open Education, Learning Technology, and Quality Management to Rome
2nd International Conference on “Learning Innovations and Quality: The Future of Digital Resources” (LINQ 2013) Concludes Successfully.
More than 200 attendees from four continents and over 30 different countries contributed to a vibrant conference dialogue at LINQ 2013 carried out over May 16th and 17th. LINQ 2013 participants gathered at the global headquarters of the United Nations’ Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) in Rome, Italy to discuss the future of international learning innovations and quality. Keynote speeches by prominent experts in the fields of educational innovation and representatives of the European Commission, UNESCO, and CEDEFOP complemented a great variety of on-going research projects and state-of-the-art papers presented during the conference. In his introductory speech, the LINQ Conference Chair Christian M. Stracke pointed out the need for bridging learning innovations and learning quality, which is the core objective of LINQ. The success of LINQ 2013 has inspired conference organizers from the University of Duisburg-Essen to begin preparations for LINQ 2014, expected to take place on the island of Crete next May.
Highlights from the LINQ 2013 Plenum on May 16th include elaboration by António Silva Mendes, Director of the European Commission and Coordinator of the European Union’s Lifelong Learning Programme on the importance of quality improvement in learning outcomes. Silva Mendes asserted the efficacy of learning programmes in promoting employment chances, the role the EU can play in supporting member states transfer successful schemes to other members, and the importance of developing benchmarking activities to monitor said schemes’ success in new contexts. Tony Bates of Tony Bates Associates provided LINQ 2013 with an analysis of the most recent forms of open education, concluding that open access education must be accompanied by quality assessment to ensure its value for learners. UNESCO OER Chairs Rory McGreal (University of Athabasca) and Fred Mulder (Open University of the Netherlands) emphasized the advantages Open Educational Resources (OER) have provided to contemporary learners – Rory McGreal underlined the need for free education and open mobile access, whereas Fred Mulder explained the broad, multifaceted meaning of open education, including demand-side arguments for opening up education.
Further keynote speakers included the expert and inventor of the term “e-learning” Jay Cross of the Internet Time Alliance, who focused on the need for integrating learning into work and the value of happiness for learning. Christian-Friedrich Lettmayr, Director of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training (CEDEFOP) presented current trends in vocational training in Europe. Ignasi Labastida, board member of the OCW Consortium and Creative Commons, explained the value and benefits of open licenses and pled for an opening and sharing of educational resources. Miguel-Angel Sicilia of the University of Alcalá expounded on linked open data and its connections to the evolution of the semantic web, exemplifying this “web of linked learning” through the Virtual Open Access Repository VOA3R (www.voa3r.eu). Finally, Christian M. Stracke introduced the International Association ICORE for Open Research and Open Education and the results of its first meeting on the day before LINQ 2013.
On May 17th four parallel sessions gave invited speakers, research projects, and paper authors thematic space in which to present their work. More information about LINQ can be found online at the official LINQ website at www.learning-innovations.eu, including videos of the complete conference, the conference proceedings, and information about future events. For the most up-to-date news on the results of LINQ 2013 as well as LINQ 2014, including new opportunities for participation, please follow @LINQ_Conference on Twitter and like www.facebook.com/LINQConference on Facebook.
About the 2nd European Conference on
Learning Innovations and Quality:
“The Future of Digital Resources”
The main goal of LINQ 2013 was to bring together a variety of academics and professionals in active in the field of Innovations and Quality in Lifelong Learning (LLL) for an innovative exchange of the latest developments in education and training innovations and quality on both a European and international level. Potential points of access to this field included new learning methods and design, Technology-Enhanced Learning (TEL), quality standards and certification, human resources development, competences and skills, digital resources, learning materials, and online collaboration and communities.
LINQ 2013 attracted submissions from throughout Europe, as well as Asia, America, and Africa. More than 150 researchers and practitioners answered the LINQ 2013 call for papers and projects. This year thus showed a continuation in the high level of interest which made LINQ 2012 such a successful conference in Brussels last year. The Global Headquarters of the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in Rome, Italy provided an ideal location for LINQ 2013. The first day of the conference began with a plenary which included remarks from prominent keynote speakers. The second day was divided into four parallel sessions, allowing the chosen project and paper submitters to present their work.
More information about LINQ online:
The overall objective of this highly practical material (in Spanish) is to facilitate a basic understanding of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and allow teachers to develop an appropriate educational intervention targeted to these students within a general inclusion framework, bringing together science, ethics and empathy.
The material is divided into 10 modules. The first five offer relevant knowledge about people with ASD and their needs, and the following are guidelines for an oriented educational intervention.
The Louvre Museum’s (France) "Closer Look" interactive multimedia tool allows users to see the details of an artwork through a magnifying glass, while commentaries and animations provide historical and artistic background.
Formal analysis and contextual research combine with close-ups and videos to give the viewer more information than they would get if they went to the museum and saw the work in person.
Some of the famous art pieces dissected using this multimedia tool are the Mona Lisa, the Winged Victory of Samothrace and the Seated Scribe.
The “Closer Look” commentaries and texts are available in French, English and Japanese.
The European Award for Best Content for Kids highlights existing quality content for 4-12 year-old children and encourages the production of new content that will offer young people online opportunities to learn, play, discover and invent. The competition, organised by the Insafe network within the framework of the European Commission's Safer Internet Programme, was launched on 9 May and will run in most EU member states and also in Iceland, Norway and Russia during 2013.
Any form of online content may be submitted to the Best Content for Kids competition - from websites, blogs and videos to apps and games – but it must be designed for use by children or young people. Children can enter as individuals or in groups (i.e. school classes or youth groups). Adult submissions can come from online professionals and non-professionals alike.
National and European winners will be awarded in four different categories:
- Adult professionals
- Adult non-professionals
- Individual young people (up to 3 youngsters)
- School classes/groups of young people (at least 4 youngsters)
The national first prize winner in each category will go on to compete at the European level. The top-three European resources in each of the four categories will be recognised at an awards ceremony in Brussels on Safer Internet Day in February 2014.
The closing dates of the competition depend on each country. For further information about how to take part in the European Award for Best Content for Kids, visit www.bestcontentaward.eu
Working Together is a kit with a range of games and activities to help parents/ carers engage with children’s learning in the early school years.
Working Together is part of a strategy of the British government’s Department for Education to increase parental engagement in their child’s learning and development. The kit includes:
- A children’s folded-paper ‘chatterbox’ game to make - designed to prompt questions and activities with the child
- A card game with questions to ask the child about school and what they are learning
- A bookmark to colour in and keep
- A handy wall chart and stickers to help parents record and reward the child's learning progress, month by month
- Top tips for parents
Agrega2 is an OER platform developed by the Spanish Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports, the Autonomous Communities and Red.es.
The Agrega2 platform aggregates the pre-college educational digital repositories of all the Ministries of Education of the Spanish Autonomous Communities. The contents are organised according to the curriculum and are ready to be downloaded and used by teachers and students.
The platform has access nodes in all the Ministries of Education of the Autonomous Communities (CCAA) and the Institute of Educational Technology (ITE) and Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports (MECD).
MDX (Learning Materials Online) is a cooperative repository offering open education resources produced by several universities from Catalonia and the Valencian Community (Spain).
The purpose of MDX is to make the participant institutions’ teaching production more visible and widespread, thus contributing to educational innovation, on the one hand, and free access to knowledge on the other.
The aims of MDX are:
- To facilitate the management of teaching materials and objects produced by the universities by arranging them and integrating them within a common server.
- To offer the academic staff of the participating universities a resource server that allows the materials produced to be filed and subsequently retrieved.
- To provide users with permanent, simple and fast access to the teaching production of member organisations.
- To add value to the materials collected through elements such as the permanent address, standardised citations or consultation data.
- To establish and apply preservation mechanisms in order to ensure the durability of the materials.
- To encourage the publishing and editing of teaching materials in electronic formats.
More than 18 million students, staff and researchers at institutions across the UK could start to benefit from a faster and more secure connection when using their institution’s cloud-based IT services, thanks to a new peering arrangement signed on 21 May 2013 between Microsoft and Janet, the UK’s research and education network..
Connecting the networks privately eliminates the need to traverse data over the public internet. This enables a high bandwidth connection for students and staff to use Windows Azure. Bandwidth is managed, ensuring high-speed delivery with no delay or latency.
The move to peer the Microsoft Windows Azure data centre to the Janet network comes as part of a new strategic alliance between the two organisations.
“Cloud computing has the potential to revolutionise research by offering vast compute resources on-demand. At Newcastle University, we already have over £20M of research projects that are supported by the cloud. However, one of the major barriers holding back further cloud adoption is the time it takes to transfer large datasets from the lab to the cloud for analysis. This new link between Janet and the Azure Cloud removes this barrier, and will allow a far greater range of research projects to fully exploit the benefits of cloud computing,” said Paul Watson, Professor of Computing Science at Newcastle University.
The alliance agreement also means any UK education institution can benefit from standard terms and conditions on Microsoft’s cloud-based productivity software suite Office 365, negotiated by Janet.