Tumblelog by Soup.io
Newer posts are loading.
You are at the newest post.
Click here to check if anything new just came in.

June 17 2013

04:00

News Coverage Conveys Strong Momentum for Same-Sex Marriage

News stories focused on support for same-sex marriage outnumbered those opposing it by roughly 5-to-1 in the two months marked by Supreme Court deliberations on the issue, according to the latest study in Pew Research's LGBT in Changing Times series. Did statements of support vary by media sector? Did reactions on Twitter differ from the news media? How was the topic covered in LGBT outlets? The new study offers answers.

read more

August 24 2012

16:49

A few thoughts about MOOCs: Massive Open Online Courses

Educators are talking about the phenomenon of large-enrollment free online courses offered by very reputable professors and universities.

Now the University of Texas “is in negotiations with Coursera and edX, two of the most prominent companies engaged in the mass distribution of course content from elite universities for free online” (source: Texas Tribune). So I have to wonder if more large public universities — such as my employer, the University of Florida — will go this route as well.

I started a six-week course in computer programming at Udacity, another MOOC provider, but I wasn’t able to finish it because of work demands. Maybe I’ll get back to it. I’m not sure. But I found the course to be extremely well presented, and I was learning new things and enjoying the process. So I must say I’m a fan.

In an article published today, education analyst Kevin Carey wrote:

MOOC credentials … will signal achievement selectivity. Instead of running a tournament to decide who gets to take the class and very likely get an A-minus or A, they’re running tournaments to decide who did best in the class.

That rang a bell in my mind — and here’s why: There’s a stay-with-it aspect to finishing a degree program. Plenty of people begin a bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree program and fail to finish it. So one thing you know about a person with a degree is that he or she completed something. Then there’s the brand of the school he or she attended: good or bad? Party school or academic powerhouse? Expensive? Elitist? Etc. No one much cares about your GPA unless you’re applying to a higher degree program. Your major counts more in some career fields and less in others.

But for the free, open, online course: Did you stick to it even though there was no grade? Even though there was no degree as an end goal? I think that’s what Carey is getting at — because, yes, pressure from many corners results in far too many students getting A’s or B’s that some years ago would have been C’s. And people who get C’s today would have outright failed in some cases in the past.

It may never come to pass that people receive the same kind of credit (official academic credit, provable with a transcript) from MOOCs that they get from completing a traditional college degree. But given the way traditional education is going — I’m talking about brutal budget cuts (especially in Florida) as well as grade inflation — maybe completion of a MOOC will mean you have in fact learned something thoroughly, while completion of a degree will mean only that you showed up and took the tests.

The standard of quality indicated by Udacity’s decision (last week) to cancel one of its courses is another thing that intrigues me about these new companies focused on MOOCs. The professor had spent 45 hours recording material for the course. Udacity had edited most of the video. But then, for reasons Udacity did not clarify, the organization decided not to offer the course, even though 20,000 students had signed up for it.

16:49

A few thoughts about MOOCs: Massive Open Online Courses

Educators are talking about the phenomenon of large-enrollment free online courses offered by very reputable professors and universities.

Now the University of Texas “is in negotiations with Coursera and edX, two of the most prominent companies engaged in the mass distribution of course content from elite universities for free online” (source: Texas Tribune). So I have to wonder if more large public universities — such as my employer, the University of Florida — will go this route as well.

I started a six-week course in computer programming at Udacity, another MOOC provider, but I wasn’t able to finish it because of work demands. Maybe I’ll get back to it. I’m not sure. But I found the course to be extremely well presented, and I was learning new things and enjoying the process. So I must say I’m a fan.

In an article published today, education analyst Kevin Carey wrote:

MOOC credentials … will signal achievement selectivity. Instead of running a tournament to decide who gets to take the class and very likely get an A-minus or A, they’re running tournaments to decide who did best in the class.

That rang a bell in my mind — and here’s why: There’s a stay-with-it aspect to finishing a degree program. Plenty of people begin a bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree program and fail to finish it. So one thing you know about a person with a degree is that he or she completed something. Then there’s the brand of the school he or she attended: good or bad? Party school or academic powerhouse? Expensive? Elitist? Etc. No one much cares about your GPA unless you’re applying to a higher degree program. Your major counts more in some career fields and less in others.

But for the free, open, online course: Did you stick to it even though there was no grade? Even though there was no degree as an end goal? I think that’s what Carey is getting at — because, yes, pressure from many corners results in far too many students getting A’s or B’s that some years ago would have been C’s. And people who get C’s today would have outright failed in some cases in the past.

It may never come to pass that people receive the same kind of credit (official academic credit, provable with a transcript) from MOOCs that they get from completing a traditional college degree. But given the way traditional education is going — I’m talking about brutal budget cuts (especially in Florida) as well as grade inflation — maybe completion of a MOOC will mean you have in fact learned something thoroughly, while completion of a degree will mean only that you showed up and took the tests.

The standard of quality indicated by Udacity’s decision (last week) to cancel one of its courses is another thing that intrigues me about these new companies focused on MOOCs. The professor had spent 45 hours recording material for the course. Udacity had edited most of the video. But then, for reasons Udacity did not clarify, the organization decided not to offer the course, even though 20,000 students had signed up for it.

May 02 2012

19:58

April 26 2012

20:26

April 13 2012

13:27

January 19 2012

17:22

December 08 2011

20:41
05:00

Twitter and Campaign

A new PEJ study of the Twitter campaign conversation using computer technology reveals how the White House hopefuls fared, examines differences between the political discussions on Twitter and blogs, and updates the tone of the candidates’ news narratives.

read more

November 16 2011

21:07

July 27 2011

17:30

July 14 2011

14:57

July 07 2011

19:36

June 02 2011

18:33

May 25 2011

15:50

May 18 2011

15:01

May 12 2011

14:16

Meta research on online journalism

Usually I do not write about research here, but a new publication prompts me to note that now — almost 20 years after the first “online newspapers” made their debut — some research is beginning to appear about the research that has been done to date.

This is great news, because it lays a foundation for better and more focused research in the future.

The most recent article appeared in Journalism Studies 12(3): Online Journalism and the Promises of New Technology, by Steen Steensen (DOI: 10.1080/1461670X.2010.501151). He looked at how “technological assets,” including interactivity, multimedia and hypertext, have been discussed and examined in the scholarly literature about online journalism.

Steensen points out that definitions are murky and imprecise — what one study defines as “hypertext,” another study defines as “interactivity.” (This has annoyed me for many years!) This presents quite a challenge to anyone who tries to aggregate the findings of several studies.

What will be VERY useful for future scholars is the way Steensen has broken down his examination into sub-categories under interactivity, multimedia and hypertext: content analysis; surveys, interviews and experiments; reception studies; summary.

In the end, Steensen suggests that we need to figure out how research can do a better job at discovering “why online journalism develops as it does” (p. 321). He wants to know more about why journalism organizations don’t do a better job with all the technology tools at their disposal.

I think that’s the wrong question.

Newsrooms of all kinds are constrained in a multitude of ways, and looking at why people working in those newsrooms can’t engage an audience effectively probably is not going to be helpful. What will be more useful to the journalism field — and to journalism’s mission of serving the public and informing people of things they need to know — are studies of how and why people interact with news, or why they do not.

Add to that: Studies of engagement and attention.

In recent conversations with other college educators, I’ve found I’m not alone in thinking the current crop of university students is different. I mean really different. The way they learn is different. The way they process and retain information is different. They are engaged with Facebook and other media all day long — and yet many of them are shockingly uninformed (because they only know what their friends see fit to “share”).

What story formats and information styles will get through to these young people?

What will engage them? What will educate them? What will expand their horizons so that they are fit to run the world when they become the ones in charge?

Usually I do not write about research here, but a new publication prompts me to note that now — almost 20 years after the first “online newspapers” made their debut — some research is beginning to appear about the research that has been done to date.

This is great news, because it lays a foundation for better and more focused research in the future.

The most recent article appeared in Journalism Studies 12(3): Online Journalism and the Promises of New Technology, by Steen Steensen (DOI: 10.1080/1461670X.2010.501151). He looked at how “technological assets,” including interactivity, multimedia and hypertext, have been discussed and examined in the scholarly literature about online journalism.

Steensen points out that definitions are murky and imprecise — what one study defines as “hypertext,” another study defines as “interactivity.” (This has annoyed me for many years!) This presents quite a challenge to anyone who tries to aggregate the findings of several studies.

What will be VERY useful for future scholars is the way Steensen has broken down his examination into sub-categories under interactivity, multimedia and hypertext: content analysis; surveys, interviews and experiments; reception studies; summary.

In the end, Steensen suggests that we need to figure out how research can do a better job at discovering “why online journalism develops as it does” (p. 321). He wants to know more about why journalism organizations don’t do a better job with all the technology tools at their disposal.

I think that’s the wrong question.

Newsrooms of all kinds are constrained in a multitude of ways, and looking at why people working in those newsrooms can’t engage an audience effectively probably is not going to be helpful. What will be more useful to the journalism field — and to journalism’s mission of serving the public and informing people of things they need to know — are studies of how and why people interact with news, or why they do not.

Add to that: Studies of engagement and attention.

In recent conversations with other college educators, I’ve found I’m not alone in thinking the current crop of university students is different. I mean really different. The way they learn is different. The way they process and retain information is different. They are engaged with Facebook and other media all day long — and yet many of them are shockingly uninformed (because they only know what their friends see fit to “share”).

What story formats and information styles will get through to these young people?

What will engage them? What will educate them? What will expand their horizons so that they are fit to run the world when they become the ones in charge?

14:16

Meta research on online journalism

Usually I do not write about research here, but a new publication prompts me to note that now — almost 20 years after the first “online newspapers” made their debut — some research is beginning to appear about the research that has been done to date.

This is great news, because it lays a foundation for better and more focused research in the future.

The most recent article appeared in Journalism Studies 12(3): Online Journalism and the Promises of New Technology, by Steen Steensen (DOI: 10.1080/1461670X.2010.501151). He looked at how “technological assets,” including interactivity, multimedia and hypertext, have been discussed and examined in the scholarly literature about online journalism.

Steensen points out that definitions are murky and imprecise — what one study defines as “hypertext,” another study defines as “interactivity.” (This has annoyed me for many years!) This presents quite a challenge to anyone who tries to aggregate the findings of several studies.

What will be VERY useful for future scholars is the way Steensen has broken down his examination into sub-categories under interactivity, multimedia and hypertext: content analysis; surveys, interviews and experiments; reception studies; summary.

In the end, Steensen suggests that we need to figure out how research can do a better job at discovering “why online journalism develops as it does” (p. 321). He wants to know more about why journalism organizations don’t do a better job with all the technology tools at their disposal.

I think that’s the wrong question.

Newsrooms of all kinds are constrained in a multitude of ways, and looking at why people working in those newsrooms can’t engage an audience effectively probably is not going to be helpful. What will be more useful to the journalism field — and to journalism’s mission of serving the public and informing people of things they need to know — are studies of how and why people interact with news, or why they do not.

Add to that: Studies of engagement and attention.

In recent conversations with other college educators, I’ve found I’m not alone in thinking the current crop of university students is different. I mean really different. The way they learn is different. The way they process and retain information is different. They are engaged with Facebook and other media all day long — and yet many of them are shockingly uninformed (because they only know what their friends see fit to “share”).

What story formats and information styles will get through to these young people?

What will engage them? What will educate them? What will expand their horizons so that they are fit to run the world when they become the ones in charge?

Usually I do not write about research here, but a new publication prompts me to note that now — almost 20 years after the first “online newspapers” made their debut — some research is beginning to appear about the research that has been done to date.

This is great news, because it lays a foundation for better and more focused research in the future.

The most recent article appeared in Journalism Studies 12(3): Online Journalism and the Promises of New Technology, by Steen Steensen (DOI: 10.1080/1461670X.2010.501151). He looked at how “technological assets,” including interactivity, multimedia and hypertext, have been discussed and examined in the scholarly literature about online journalism.

Steensen points out that definitions are murky and imprecise — what one study defines as “hypertext,” another study defines as “interactivity.” (This has annoyed me for many years!) This presents quite a challenge to anyone who tries to aggregate the findings of several studies.

What will be VERY useful for future scholars is the way Steensen has broken down his examination into sub-categories under interactivity, multimedia and hypertext: content analysis; surveys, interviews and experiments; reception studies; summary.

In the end, Steensen suggests that we need to figure out how research can do a better job at discovering “why online journalism develops as it does” (p. 321). He wants to know more about why journalism organizations don’t do a better job with all the technology tools at their disposal.

I think that’s the wrong question.

Newsrooms of all kinds are constrained in a multitude of ways, and looking at why people working in those newsrooms can’t engage an audience effectively probably is not going to be helpful. What will be more useful to the journalism field — and to journalism’s mission of serving the public and informing people of things they need to know — are studies of how and why people interact with news, or why they do not.

Add to that: Studies of engagement and attention.

In recent conversations with other college educators, I’ve found I’m not alone in thinking the current crop of university students is different. I mean really different. The way they learn is different. The way they process and retain information is different. They are engaged with Facebook and other media all day long — and yet many of them are shockingly uninformed (because they only know what their friends see fit to “share”).

What story formats and information styles will get through to these young people?

What will engage them? What will educate them? What will expand their horizons so that they are fit to run the world when they become the ones in charge?

May 05 2011

12:49

April 13 2011

16:56
Older posts are this way If this message doesn't go away, click anywhere on the page to continue loading posts.
Could not load more posts
Maybe Soup is currently being updated? I'll try again automatically in a few seconds...
Just a second, loading more posts...
You've reached the end.

Don't be the product, buy the product!

Schweinderl