Innovative contributions to education

This week's must-read stories

By Karina Fuerte

The most innovative educators of 2018
The Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Prize in Education recognizes three individuals for their innovative contributions to education. The prize awarded leading approaches in fields such as psychology, computer science, and linguistics; also, improvements in student achievement, and gender equality in programming.

The Education We Need to Face the Challenges of the Future
We are in a process of transformation of teaching and learning in which universities have to look for original approaches to transmit knowledge. In this new paradigm, the role of the university is to be an instrument for learning throughout life, promoting continuous training and the development of new skills. 

First blockchain university promises to be the Uber for Students and AirBnB for teachers
A group of University of Oxford academics just launched Woolf University, the first university to operate on the blockchain. Woolf University will not have lecture halls or studying facilities. Students and professors will meet through an app to arrange one-to-one or one-to-two tutorial sessions. The project’s creators hope this new model of higher education will reduce tuition fees and enable academics to take control of their employment.

Michelle R. Weise on education and the future of work
“We’re going to need other kinds of credentials or clusters of competencies or smaller micro-degrees and alternative credentials that help people come back into a learning experience in order to upskill or retool themselves for the jobs of the future.” Michelle R. Weise, Chief Innovation Officer at Strada Education Network, talks about universities and the future of the workforce, in an interview for the Observatory.

The top 10 AI graduate programs in the US
The media company U.S. News and Global Report just published its 2018 ranking of American graduate programs specialized in artificial intelligence. With disruptive technologies like machine learning changing the landscape of just about every important sector in the economy, graduates from this specialty’s top universities will be in high demand for the foreseeable future. 

AT&T bets $1 billion dollars in employee education
It is estimated that 90% of the maturing companies will experience a technological disruption in the near future; however, only 44% are preparing for it. After discovering that half of its 250,000 employees lack the skills needed to keep the company competitive the medium and long-term, AT&T is undergoing massive training initiative. 

MIT’s Connect Learning Initiative wins UNESCO prize for e-learning
In this edition, the UNESCO King Hamad Bin Isa Al-Khalifa Prize for Innovation in Education is awarded to the use of information and communication technologies (ICT) to increase access to quality education

Edu Trends | Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality
The concepts of Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality are becoming increasingly common in the field of education. Although the implementation of these trends is very recent within the education system, their positive effects on learning have been established. Download our latest Edu Trends report to know the implications, impact and challenges of AR and VR. 

What we are reading

  • In Sweden’s Preschools, Boys Learn to Dance and Girls Learn to Yell
    In a preschool of Stockholm, play is organized to prevent children from sorting themselves by gender. Exactly how this teaching method affects children is still unclear. (The New York Times)

  • Machine Behavior Needs to Be an Academic Discipline
    Studying AI behavior shouldn't be restricted to computer science and robotics experts, we need an interdisciplinary body of researchers to provide new perspectives on economic, social, and political AI phenomena. (Nautilus)

  • Learning from psychographic personality profiling
    Ben Williamson on how the science of personality testing is slowly entering into education as a form of behavioral governance. (Code Acts in Education)

  • England has become one of the world’s biggest education laboratories
    In 2011 the government provided grants to establish the Education Endowment Foundation (EEF), a laboratory for education research which would provide teachers with the information to make smart choices. (The Economist)

  • Lifelong learning is more relevant than ever before
    On the 10th anniversary of the European Universities’ Charter on Lifelong Learning, Hanne Smidt reflects on the importance to re-examine the relevance of lifelong learning. (University World News)

  • How Apple Lost Its Place in the Classroom
    Apple wanted to bring its devices into every school in America, and for a while, they did. Not anymore. (Wired)