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Documenting and Assessing Learning in Informal and Media-Rich Environments

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ISBN: 9780262328708 9780262527743 Year: Pages: 168 Language: English
Publisher: The MIT Press
Subject: Education
Added to DOAB on : 2019-01-17 11:41:32
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An extensive review of the literature on learning assessment in informal settings, expert discussion of key issues, and a new model for good assessment practice. Today educational activities take place not only in school but also in after-school programs, community centers, museums, and online communities and forums. The success and expansion of these out-of-school initiatives depends on our ability to document and assess what works and what doesn't in informal learning, but learning outcomes in these settings are often unpredictable. Goals are open-ended; participation is voluntary; and relationships, means, and ends are complex. This report charts the state of the art for learning assessment in informal settings, offering an extensive review of the literature, expert discussion on key topics, a suggested model for comprehensive assessment, and recommendations for good assessment practices.Drawing on analysis of the literature and expert opinion, the proposed model, the Outcomes-by-Levels Model for Documentation and Assessment, identifies at least ten types of valued outcomes, to be assessed in terms of learning at the project, group, and individual levels. The cases described in the literature under review, which range from promoting girls' identification with STEM practices to providing online resources for learning programming and networking, illustrate the usefulness of the assessment model.

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education

The Future of the Curriculum

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ISBN: 9780262315197 9780262518826 Year: Pages: 152 Language: English
Publisher: The MIT Press
Subject: Science (General) --- Education
Added to DOAB on : 2019-01-17 11:41:33
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An examination of curriculum innovations that are shaped by new ideas about digital media and learning.Although ideas about digital media and learning have become an important area for educational research, little attention has been given to the practical and conceptual implications for the school curriculum. In this book, Ben Williamson examines a series of contemporary curriculum innovations in the United States, Great Britain, and Australia that reflect the social and technological changes of the digital age. Arguing that the curriculum is always both forward- and rearward-looking, Williamson considers how each of these innovations represents a certain way of understanding the past while also promoting a particular vision of the future.The curriculum initiatives are all examples of what Williamson calls “centrifugal schooling,” expressing a vision of education and learning that is decentered, distributed, and dispersed, emphasizing networks and connections. In centrifugal schooling, a curriculum is actively assembled and improvised from a heterogeneous mix of people, groups, coalitions, and institutional structures. Participants in curriculum design and planning include local governments, corporations, foundations, charities, and nongovernmental organizations. Among the curriculum innovations Williamson examines are High Tech High, a charter school network in San Diego that integrates technical and academic education; Opening Minds, a “competence-based” curriculum used in 200 British secondary schools; and Quest to Learn, a “school for digital kids” in New York City (with a sister school in Chicago). He also describes two major partnerships: the Partnership for 21st Century Skills, which advocates for “21st century readiness” for American students; and the Whole Education Alliance in Britain, a network of “third sector” educational organizations.

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education

Measuring What Matters Most

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ISBN: 9780262312899 9780262518376 Year: Pages: 192 Language: English
Publisher: The MIT Press
Subject: Education
Added to DOAB on : 2019-01-17 11:41:33
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An argument that choice-based, process-oriented educational assessments are more effective than static assessments of fact retrieval.If a fundamental goal of education is to prepare students to act independently in the world—in other words, to make good choices—an ideal educational assessment would measure how well we are preparing students to do so. Current assessments, however, focus almost exclusively on how much knowledge students have accrued and can retrieve. In Measuring What Matters Most, Daniel Schwartz and Dylan Arena argue that choice should be the interpretive framework within which learning assessments are organized. Digital technologies, they suggest, make this possible; interactive assessments can evaluate students in a context of choosing whether, what, how, and when to learn.Schwartz and Arena view choice not as an instructional ingredient to improve learning but as the outcome of learning. Because assessments shape public perception about what is useful and valued in education, choice-based assessments would provide a powerful lever in this reorientation in how people think about learning.Schwartz and Arena consider both theoretical and practical matters. They provide an anchoring example of a computerized, choice-based assessment, argue that knowledge-based assessments are a mismatch for our educational aims, offer concrete examples of choice-based assessments that reveal what knowledge-based assessments cannot, and analyze the practice of designing assessments. Because high variability leads to innovation, they suggest democratizing assessment design to generate as many instances as possible. Finally, they consider the most difficult aspect of assessment: fairness. Choice-based assessments, they argue, shed helpful light on fairness considerations.

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education

Learning at Not-School

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ISBN: 9780262311991 9780262518246 Year: Pages: 100 Language: English
Publisher: The MIT Press
Subject: Education
Added to DOAB on : 2019-01-17 11:41:33
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A review of research on “not-school” learning that investigates what is distinctive in the quality of learning in these settings.Schools do not define education, and they are not the only institutions in which learning takes place. After-school programs, music lessons, Scouts, summer camps, on-the-job training, and home activities all offer out-of-school educational experiences. In Learning at Not-School, Julian Sefton-Green explores studies and scholarly research on out-of-school learning, investigating just what it is that is distinctive about the quality of learning in these “not-school” settings.Sefton-Green focuses on those organizations and institutions that have developed parallel to public schooling and have emerged as complements, supplements, or attempts to remediate the alleged failures of schools. He reviews salient principles, landmark studies, and theoretical approaches to learning in not-school environments, reporting on the latest scholarship in the field. He examines studies of creative media production and considers ideas of “learning-to learn”-that relate to analyses of language and technology. And he considers other forms of in-formal learning—in the home and in leisure activities—in terms of not-school experiences. Where possible, he compares the findings of US-based studies with those of non-US-based studies, highlighting core conceptual issues and identifying what we often take for granted.Many not-school organizations and institutions set out to be different from schools, embodying different conceptions of community and educational values. Sefton-Green's careful consideration of these learning environments in pedagogical terms offers a crucial way to understand how they work.

Keywords

education

Digital Media and Technology in Afterschool Programs, Libraries, and Museums

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ISBN: 9780262294768 9780262515764 Year: Pages: 96 Language: English
Publisher: The MIT Press
Subject: Education
Added to DOAB on : 2019-01-17 11:41:34
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An investigation of how three kinds of youth organizations have integrated digital practices into their programs.Digital media and technology have become culturally and economically powerful parts of contemporary middle-class American childhoods. Immersed in various forms of digital media as well as mobile and Web-based technologies, young people today appear to develop knowledge and skills through participation in media. This MacArthur Report examines the ways in which afterschool programs, libraries, and museums use digital media to support extracurricular learning. It investigates how these three varieties of youth-serving organizations have incorporated technological infrastructure and digital practices into their programs; what types of participation and learning digital practices support; and how research in digital media and learning can contribute to better integration of technology within and across these organizations. The authors review a range of programs (including the long-running Computer Clubhouse movement, established in 1993 in partnership with MIT's Media Lab), and then use the idea of “media ecologies” to investigate the role that digital media play (or could play) in these “intermediary spaces for learning.” They call for less anecdotal, more empirical and methodologically sound studies to help us understand the affordances of digital media for learning within and across these programs; for research focused on the relationship between digital media and the effectiveness of youth-serving organizations; and for further study of schools within childhood media ecologies.

Keywords

education

Opening Up Education

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ISBN: 9780262033718 9780262515016 Year: Pages: 504 Language: English
Publisher: The MIT Press
Subject: Education
Added to DOAB on : 2019-01-17 11:41:34
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Experts discuss the potential for open education tools, resources, and knowledge to transform the economics and ecology of education.Given the abundance of open education initiatives that aim to make educational assets freely available online, the time seems ripe to explore the potential of open education to transform the economics and ecology of education. Despite the diversity of tools and resources already available—from well-packaged course materials to simple games, for students, self-learners, faculty, and educational institutions—we have yet to take full advantage of shared knowledge about how these are being used, what local innovations are emerging, and how to learn from and build on the experiences of others. Opening Up Education argues that we must develop not only the technical capability but also the intellectual capacity for transforming tacit pedagogical knowledge into commonly usable and visible knowledge: by providing incentives for faculty to use (and contribute to) open education goods, and by looking beyond institutional boundaries to connect a variety of settings and open source entrepreneurs. These essays by leaders in open education describe successes, challenges, and opportunies they have found in a range of open education initiatives. They approach—from both macro and micro perspectives—the central question of how open education tools, resources, and knowledge can improve the quality of education. The contributors (from leading foundations, academic institutions, associations, and projects) discuss the strategic underpinnings of their efforts first in terms of technology, then content, and finally knowledge. They also address the impact of their projects, and how close they come to achieving a vision of sustainable, transformative educational opportunities that amounts to much more than pervasive technology.Through the support of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, an electronic version of this book is openly available under a Creative Commons license at The MIT Press Web site, http://mitpress.mit.edu. ContributorsRichard Baraniuk, Randy Bass, Trent Batson, Dan Bernstein, John Seely Brown, Barbara Cambridge, Tom Carey, Catherine Casserly, Bernadine Chuck Fong, Ira Fuchs, Richard Gale, Mia Garlick, Gerard Hanley, Diane Harley, Mary Huber, Pat Hutchings, Toru Iiyoshi, David Kahle, M. S. Vijay Kumar, Andy Lane, Diana Laurillard, Stuart Lee, Steve Lerman, Marilyn Lombardi, Phil Long, Clifford Lynch, Christopher Mackie, Anne Margulies, Owen McGrath, Flora McMartin, Shigeru Miyagawa, Diana Oblinger, Neeru Paharia, Cheryl Richardson, Marshall Smith, Candace Thille, Edward Walker, David Wiley

Keywords

education

Quest to Learn

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ISBN: 9780262294171 9780262515658 Year: Pages: 164 Language: English
Publisher: The MIT Press
Subject: Computer Science --- Education --- Science (General)
Added to DOAB on : 2019-01-17 11:41:34
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The design for Quest to Learn, an innovative school in New York City that offers a “game-like” approach to learning. Quest to Learn, an innovative school for grades 6 to 12 in New York City, grew out of the idea that gaming and game design offer a promising new paradigm for curriculum and learning. The designers of Quest to Learn developed an approach to learning that draws from what games do best: drop kids into inquiry-based, complex problem spaces that are built to help players understand how they are doing, what they need to work on, and where to go next. Content is not treated as dry information but as a living resource; students are encouraged to interact with the larger world in ways that feel relevant, exciting, and empowering. Quest to Learn opened in the fall of 2009 with 76 sixth graders. In their first semester, these students learned—among other things—to convert fractions into decimals in order to break a piece of code found in a library book; to use atlases and read maps to create a location guide for a reality television series; and to create video tutorials for a hapless group of fictional inventors. This research and development document outlines the learning framework for the school, making the original design available to others in the field. Elements in development include a detailed curriculum map, a budget, and samples of student and teacher handbooks.

Shadow Libraries

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Book Series: International Development Research Centre ISBN: 9780262345705 9780262535014 Year: Pages: 320 Language: English
Publisher: The MIT Press
Subject: Education --- Science (General)
Added to DOAB on : 2019-01-17 11:41:31
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How students get the materials they need as opportunities for higher education expand but funding shrinks.From the top down, Shadow Libraries explores the institutions that shape the provision of educational materials, from the formal sector of universities and publishers to the broadly informal ones organized by faculty, copy shops, student unions, and students themselves. It looks at the history of policy battles over access to education in the post–World War II era and at the narrower versions that have played out in relation to research and textbooks, from library policies to book subsidies to, more recently, the several “open” publication models that have emerged in the higher education sector.From the bottom up, Shadow Libraries explores how, simply, students get the materials they need. It maps the ubiquitous practice of photocopying and what are—in many cases—the more marginal ones of buying books, visiting libraries, and downloading from unauthorized sources. It looks at the informal networks that emerge in many contexts to share materials, from face-to-face student networks to Facebook groups, and at the processes that lead to the consolidation of some of those efforts into more organized archives that circulate offline and sometimes online— the shadow libraries of the title. If Alexandra Elbakyan's Sci-Hub is the largest of these efforts to date, the more characteristic part of her story is the prologue: the personal struggle to participate in global scientific and educational communities, and the recourse to a wide array of ad hoc strategies and networks when formal, authorized means are lacking. If Elbakyan's story has struck a chord, it is in part because it brings this contradiction in the academic project into sharp relief—universalist in principle and unequal in practice. Shadow Libraries is a study of that tension in the digital era.ContributorsBalázs Bodó, Laura Czerniewicz, Miroslaw Filiciak, Mariana Fossatti, Jorge Gemetto, Eve Gray, Evelin Heidel, Joe Karaganis, Lawrence Liang, Pedro Mizukami, Jhessica Reia, Alek Tarkowski

Stealth Assessment

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ISBN: 9780262315227 9780262518819 Year: Pages: 102 Language: English
Publisher: The MIT Press
Subject: Computer Science --- Education
Added to DOAB on : 2019-01-17 11:41:33
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An approach to performance-based assessments that embeds assessments in digital games in order to measure how students are progressing toward targeted goals.To succeed in today's interconnected and complex world, workers need to be able to think systemically, creatively, and critically. Equipping K-16 students with these twenty-first-century competencies requires new thinking not only about what should be taught in school but also about how to develop valid assessments to measure and support these competencies. In Stealth Assessment, Valerie Shute and Matthew Ventura investigate an approach that embeds performance-based assessments in digital games. They argue that using well-designed games as vehicles to assess and support learning will help combat students' growing disengagement from school, provide dynamic and ongoing measures of learning processes and outcomes, and offer students opportunities to apply such complex competencies as creativity, problem solving, persistence, and collaboration. Embedding assessments within games provides a way to monitor players' progress toward targeted competencies and to use that information to support learning.Shute and Ventura discuss problems with such traditional assessment methods as multiple-choice questions, review evidence relating to digital games and learning, and illustrate the stealth-assessment approach with a set of assessments they are developing and embedding in the digital game Newton's Playground. These stealth assessments are intended to measure levels of creativity, persistence, and conceptual understanding of Newtonian physics during game play. Finally, they consider future research directions related to stealth assessment in education.

Safe Spaces, Brave Spaces

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ISBN: 9780262037143 9780262535960 Year: Pages: 192 Language: English
Publisher: The MIT Press
Subject: Political Science --- Education --- Philosophy
Added to DOAB on : 2019-01-17 11:41:31
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How the essential democratic values of diversity and free expression can coexist on campus.Safe spaces, trigger warnings, microaggressions, the disinvitation of speakers, demands to rename campus landmarks—debate over these issues began in lecture halls and on college quads but ended up on op-ed pages in the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal, on cable news, and on social media. Some of these critiques had merit, but others took a series of cheap shots at “crybullies” who needed to be coddled and protected from the real world. Few questioned the assumption that colleges must choose between free expression and diversity. In Safe Spaces, Brave Spaces, John Palfrey argues that the essential democratic values of diversity and free expression can, and should, coexist on campus. Palfrey, currently Head of School at Phillips Academy, Andover, and formerly Professor and Vice Dean at Harvard Law School, writes that free expression and diversity are more compatible than opposed. Free expression can serve everyone—even if it has at times been dominated by white, male, Christian, heterosexual, able-bodied citizens. Diversity is about self-expression, learning from one another, and working together across differences; it can encompass academic freedom without condoning hate speech.Palfrey proposes an innovative way to support both diversity and free expression on campus: creating safe spaces and brave spaces. In safe spaces, students can explore ideas and express themselves with without feeling marginalized. In brave spaces—classrooms, lecture halls, public forums—the search for knowledge is paramount, even if some discussions may make certain students uncomfortable. The strength of our democracy, says Palfrey, depends on a commitment to upholding both diversity and free expression, especially when it is hardest to do so.

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