Month: February 2019

Making Online Education Attractive

I am not saying that all adults who were not fully educated are not playing important roles in society. There are very prominent individuals in society who dropped out of school at some level. Bill Gate, Mark Zuckerberg, Oprah Winfrey, for example, at some point dropped out of school. Though this list is not exhaustive, the number of people who dropped out of school or decided not to gain higher education and yet became successful are relatively few. For the majority who dropped out or discontinued education, and could not become successful in their careers, it was because they lacked the knowledge they needed to develop their potential. If you check the history of those who in spite of dropping out or discontinuing schooling have become successful, you would find that appeared to have found their life’s purpose and so pursued those goals and, more importantly, they received some kind of education later.

Education as we all know is a life-long activity. At any point in time, whether you dropped out of school or got honors at your graduation, you would need education. The school dropout who has found himself a vocation or gained employment needs education so he/she can be more productive, the dropout who has realized the need to school but has ‘grown past school going age’ and desires to school obviously needs education, managers as well as employees need further education in order to keep pace with today’s rapidly changing world and gain increased wages and status respectively. Somehow, the traditional education dependent society we have created for ourselves and considers the ‘best’, limits our quest for continuing education. For many people, formal education ended the day they dropped out or graduated from High School, College or University, even though, technology makes it possible for us to sit in our houses and still get quality education.

When technology – computers and internet connectivity – replaced physical classrooms and made it possible to study by distance in real time, it appeared the issue of continuous education for everyone, including the dropout and the working class have been solved. It appeared, and still does, that now the teacher need not leave his students, apply for study-leave or leave of absence to pursue further education. It appeared the fifty-year-old woman who dropped out of school several years ago could now school from home and it appeared the father could learn what his daughter is learning at College using the same device he uses to call her. That is what it appeared. Those who dropped out of school due to issues of finance and have not since had a breakthrough would not benefit, and those who have the money would not want to put their money into a certificate employers and academicians alike would frown upon. So little appear to have changed for these two groups of people, though online Colleges and Universities abound.

Two prime issues are to blame. First, online education is too expensive for the target group of learners and second, there is the perception that online Colleges and Universities do not provide holistic education like the traditional Colleges and Universities. As indicated by Ed Vosganian – founder and CEO of College Funding 123, the cost of on-campus University for undergraduate is estimated at 42,000 dollars while for the same group it cost around 21,000 dollars for online universities. By comparison we would say that it cost far less to study via online. But we need not lose sight of those who mostly enroll in online University. It is those in the middle and lower classes who opt for online universities. They include; the employee who has sacrificed pleasure for higher qualification in return for better wages, the unemployed who wants to gain employable skills, the dropout who wants to get back to school in the hope that there will be a brighter future, and the people living in the remote part of the world, especially in the developing world, who don’t even have the money to pay fees and so would have to learn and work simultaneously. To these 21,000 dollars is money so huge, it is very difficult to raise. There are people of the higher income class who enroll in online universities, but online learning is not popular among these due to low prestige and the myths associated with online education. The online institutions will tell you, they would not put anything on your certificate to show that you received a non-traditional education. This kind of advert speaks of how society values online education. Online education is considered a cheap way of getting ‘watered down’ education. Online Colleges and Universities were until recently considered diploma mills. This perception still exists, though empirical evidence tells us there is no disparity in quality of students from traditional Colleges and Universities on one hand and online Colleges and Universities on the other. The online Universities and Colleges are doing their best to make online learning prestigious and bring down study cost, but they cannot do it alone. With government intervention online learning can become prestigious and lower and middle class friendly.

Government should provide a national framework for online education, subsidize accreditation, and grant scholarships and student loans for students in online Colleges and Universities. A national framework to guide the operations of all online colleges and universities should be instituted by the state, through the Department of Education or the relevant government agency. This framework, which would be descriptive and not prescriptive in nature would describe, for example, the minimum courses to be taken at a given level, and the general mode of operation of online universities and colleges without prescribing specific courses or mode of operation. Accreditation is not just laborious for online Colleges and Universities; it is also expensive. This cost is passed to students, souring up program fees. If the government decides to absorb half the cost of accreditation, though there is no guarantee the program fees will be halved, the program fee would be reduced somehow. Lastly, most of the students who opt for online colleges and universities do not receive scholarships and student loans from the state. Those who receive something do not get huge scholarships and student loans like their counterparts in traditional Colleges and Universities. Government should make scholarships and students loans available to students of online Colleges and Universities just as it does for students in traditional Colleges and Universities.

The ramifications of these interventions would definitely be awesome. Providing a national framework for online education would take away the false negative perception people have about online learning. Many think online learning is easy and also the number of credits taken are far less than those taken in traditional learning settings. This thinking exists because there are some poorly designed online courses in which certificate are awarded after just a couple of assignments have been submitted. Such practices can be stopped, when a national framework is developed and operationalized. A national framework will give credibility to online learning, because a national standard for online would have to be adhered to and so no online college or university can just sell certificate. Subsidizing Accreditation will yield three results. The most obvious is that, it would reduce program fees because amount to pass to the students would be less. Subsidizing accreditation fees would encourage online Colleges and Universities to seek accreditation from accrediting bodies recognize by the Department of Education or the appropriate state agency. Even though accreditation is not compulsory in some parts of the world, like the united states, some occupation that require state licensing would not accept degree from non-accredited Colleges and University. Prospective online learners are, usually, worried about whether the can easily work with their certificates. Government intervention would remove this worry and remove the negative perception people have about online education as well. Government interventions in the form of scholarship and loans would ease the financial burden and make it possible for those who hitherto would not be able to school to do so. In sum, government intervention would go a long way to produce an enlightened society by permitting many people to receive higher education.

There are many people wanting to get higher education through online Colleges and Universities so they gain knowledge and skills, or enhance their knowledge and skills but cannot do because of either the cost or the uncertainty of the acceptability of the certificate. Government intervention in the form of national framework for online universities and colleges, subsidizing accreditation cost and providing scholarships and student loans would open the door for those who want to study from home. Government intervention can give the assurance that online learning is as good as traditional college or university learning, and that their certificate would be accepted jobs that require state licensing. It would ease the pressure on facilities in traditional Colleges and Universities, produce the well-educated citizenry needed for national development and convert the current pyramidal shape into a ‘near’ cylinder.

Show Compassion to Online Students

  1. In the beginning weeks of class, respond to each student individually. I find that students need the special attention as they are feeling their way in a new learning environment; moreover, I have seen clear evidence that these personal responses lay the foundation for healthy student-teacher relationships.
  2. Use appropriate “feelings” phrases when students are experiencing personal issues such as death of family members, personal illness, or financial crises. Students appreciate hearing phrases like “I’m sorry for your loss”, “I’m hoping for a positive change in your situation”, or “I care about your situation”. Upon using these kinds of phrases, students always express how much the words mean to them.
  3. Reach out to students you haven’t heard from with words suggesting that they are missed. Often students go “MIA” without telling their professors. Once they return, I’ve been known to say things like “we’ve missed seeing you in class”, “so happy you’re back with us”, or “it hasn’t been the same without you”. Invariably, I will get a note back expressing their appreciation.
  4. When students appear to be stressed or anxious, allow yourself to become transparent. I’ve discovered that the revelation of my own stressful situations serves as a source of encouragement to students. For example, on several occasions, single mothers have shared their difficulties in balancing responsibilities related to schoolwork, children, and parents. In each case, once I reveal my story of working on my dissertation as a single parent and taking care of my mother, I notice a remarkable difference in the students’ overall willingness to move forward.
  5. Mix in humor with challenging concepts and assignments. Very often, higher education students carry an overarching expectation that everything associated with learning must always be rigid and serious; however, I often take the liberty of inserting humor to soften the intensity of some of the more challenging assignments. For example, when introducing students to concepts about APA rules, I post a silly song called the APA Blues. The students find themselves singing along laughing at the lyrics, and as a result, the humor works to dismantle some of the uneasiness that may exist around the topic.

Books For Teachers

Clegg starts his writing with reasons why science can be a little scary. Journal articles and academic writing in general is stuffy and uses inflated words instead of simple-to-understand, everyday language. Science articles weren’t always written that way, and they certainly don’t need to be written that way, but it is custom and tradition now. It takes a bit of effort to sift through that language, but luckily, you don’t need to. You can be an effective and fun science teacher without the stuffy journals. Learn from reading popular books and science shows instead.

Clegg also talks about what science is and should be. Science is an adventure. It should be fun. It should fill you with wonder. Science tries to figure out how the universe works. That doesn’t sound so scary, right?

His first chapter talks about how to engage the kids in the lesson. People like people, so he suggests putting the science in context and finding it in real life. What was the scientist who made the discovery like? How did that scientist grow up? What in his or her life led him to think and experiment the way he did in order to make the discovery? In addition to involving the people and a little history, find the science in real life. If you’re talking about cell division, you could mention making bread and perhaps bring yeast into the classroom. He suggests sprinkling the discussion with amazing, and gross, facts. Kids like gross. He emphasizes that the kids should do stuff with their hands. Watching a demonstration is better than just hearing about it, but the best bet is to have the kids do the experiment or demonstration themselves. We learn by doing. And mostly, make it fun.

If nothing else, teachers should read the first chapter of the book.

The second chapter talks about why we have labs. People aren’t good observers. Many people don’t know the difference between causality and correlation. Anecdotes are not data. Disproving is much easier than proving. All of these people facts lead to why we have laboratories. Fortunately, labs are no longer just filled with middle-aged white men in lab coats, and personalities of all different types can be found in scientific laboratories.

Clegg talks about different scientific eras in his third chapter. 500BC to 1500AD is the classical period. During this time, the prevailing “theory” prevailed because it was argued successfully. There really wasn’t much science involved. Some of this classical thinking is still around today in the form of astrology and the four elements. The clockwork era of science was from 1500AD (the end of the middle ages) to around 1900AD. This era was filled with scientific discoveries and theories that make sense. Newton said force equals mass times acceleration. That makes sense. Spontaneous generation theories disappeared because people figured out flies deposited eggs on raw meat. Clegg calls the current era counter-intuitive. That is, this era of science doesn’t seem to make sense. Just think of the phrases quantum theory, relativity, and light is light but it can act like a wave or a particle.

Chapters 4, 5, and 6 talk about cool things in science and Clegg gives suggestions for learning and teaching the topics. What is life? Why don’t humans have fur? How does cloning work what are the five states of matter (Yes, five. It’s not just solid, liquid, and gas). How do mirrors work? What’s the difference between mass and weight? What are black holes? What are wormholes? His explanations are pretty easy to follow.

Chapter 7 makes a case for making science hands on. Chapter 8 talks about finding and seeing science in the real world and how to make experiments come alive, but not in a Weird Science like way. Chapter 9 talks about science on the web. Which web sites are trustworthy, and how can you tell if a site is trust worthy. He also gives hints on how to search the web. Chapter 10 gives ideas on how to keep up to date in science and Chapter 11 tells you to go inspire the world.

Benefits of Blended Learning

  • It augments the benefits of training: It is well known that learning is enhanced when the same concept is presented in different ways. This is the principle behind ‘Blended Learning’. After presenting the concepts in an instructor led face to face training session, the knowledge retention is significantly improved with the addition of a new method in the learning process, through elearning or gamification. It delivers a much richer training experience and helps employees to retain the new information better by applying on different platforms like elearning and gamification.
  • It reduces and simplifies logistics: Each method of training has its pros and cons. Face to face training when led by an accomplished trainer can achieve profound results; however, managing the logistics of all the participants can be a nightmare. But when the live programs are reduced and the training is supported by video conferences and elearning, then the impact is not compromised. The last two training methods reduces the need for logistics and is also eco-friendly; e-copies of the training materials can be share thereby reducing the need for printing.
  • It allows employees greater control over their training: Microlearning is shared through mobile phones and elearning is shared through Learning Management Systems. Both these methods allow employees to study the material on their own time from their phones or laptops. So long hours of travel has contributed to enhanced productivity as this time is used efficiently. Each person has a varied ability to learn. In face to face sessions, people who take longer to absorb new information have a hard time keeping abreast with the rest of the group. But when employees are given control over their learning, by being able to combine their face to face training sessions with online self study, unique learning needs and behaviors are met; this contributes dramatically to enhanced productivity and career growth.

 

Pros and Cons of Distance Education

The most prominent benefit of distance education is the convenience it offers. The busy individual, as well as the one who prefers comfort, is well catered for here. Classes can be attended anywhere and at any time. This aspect effectively eliminates much of the stuff that makes education unsustainably costly.

Closely related to convenience is the flexibility that distance education offers. Conventional education has specific location and time demands. Distance learning eliminates these requirements and allows a student to set a pace that suits them. Slow learners and the linguistically challenged (for instance ESL speakers) can, therefore, move at their pace and grasp as much as they can.

The cost factor also comes in quite strongly as a benefit of distance education. Many students miss study abroad chances because they cannot afford travel and accommodation costs. Thanks to distance learning, such costs are no longer an impediment. It also cuts tuition costs by a sizeable margin, making it affordable.

On the cons side, the most prominent factor is the lack of direct contact with instructors and peers. Even with online forums, this problem remains unsolved. The lack of direct contact eliminates question and answer sessions, which are sometimes highly insightful. This aspect makes it suitable only for those who are self-driven.

Another con is that since students conduct their studies wherever they choose, they miss the ambiance provided by the campus atmosphere. Campuses are typically designed to maximize learning and as such, those who study off campus miss out on this benefit.

On top of these challenges, distance education still suffers stigmatization despite its growing popularity. Employers often question the integrity of distance learning. Consequently, those who go through these programs may find the job market quite hostile towards them.

In conclusion, a close look at both the pros and cons of distance education as discussed shows that they are genuine. As such, to draw the full benefits of this approach to education, adjustments need to be made to address the concerns that surround it.

Designing E-Learning

  • In the absence of an instructor, custom e-learning courses cannot just have one word ‘pointers’ with no explanations. Even if there are space constraints, e-learning designers have to make sure that each point is well explained to aid novice learners. An impactful way of doing this is to utilize audio to describe concepts in detail without taking up too much screen space. While the visual impact of the screen remains intact with minimalistic text, audio provides suitable descriptors to help learners understand better.
  • To further aid the individual needs of the learners, the option of turning off the audio can be provided for expert learner who do not need explanations of the introductory concepts. To provide learner re-enforcements and a chance to revise the topics taught through the e-course, the audio script can also be provided as a downloadable resource. The learners can later refer to it to re-enforce learning as per their needs.
  • Images are a powerful way of communication in an e-course. But here too, keep in mind that only appropriate images should be utilized and enough space should be provided in each screen to create visual ‘relief’.
  • Diagrams and Tables are also useful in reducing the text in an e-course – and can be liberally added to e-learning just like a PowerPoint presentation. But the difference is that diagrams and tables have to suitably labeled or explained to create the intended impact on the learner. Complicated diagrams or detailed graphs can share a lot of information. But this information can also confuse or startle the learners – especially if they are new to the subject.
  • In addition, detailed documents can be provided along with all e-courses that can be used as a job-aid as well as easy reference from time to time. This provides the learners the opportunity to study the subject in detail – as per their own need and pace.
  • E-courses should also be accompanied by a detailed ‘Help’ file -that aids the learner go through the course without any hitch. At any point if they are stuck or want to take a detour in the course, the help document should give them the required information then and there. Many learners are not accustomed to the technology-aided platform and e-learning developers should keep that in mind and create provisions for them.

 

Mobile Apps Streamline the eLearning Industry

  1. Classical teaching – the provision of educational material, designed to study by individual listeners at a convenient time for them. It can be a text document, presentation, and webinar record.
  2. Group training – simultaneous work of several listeners on-line. It can be joint preparation of the project, brainstorming, discussion of key problems of the organization. An important stimulating part of group work is competition: after all, when several people are doing the same thing, someone inevitably comes forward.
  3. Dynamic learning – working within interactive web applications. Tests, games, abstract simulators or real simulators simulating real situations – all this increases the degree of involvement of the participants.

mLearning as a new word in technology

With the widespread use of devices such as smartphones and tablets, a new content delivery tool has emerged. mLearning allows transferring educational process from the desktop to a mobile device using WAP or GPRS technology, Wi-Fi and 3G. As a carrier, any portable device meets system requirements can be used.

Mobile applications in mLearning

A mobile application is a program installed on a particular platform, having a certain functionality that allows performing various actions. The importance of mobile applications for education grows not only because of their accessibility and attractiveness in terms of new technologies, but also because of the opportunities they provide: students work together on assignments, taking the teaching outside the school, everyone has the opportunity to speak out, participate (unlike from the system with a show of hands). The use of mobile applications for mLearning allows to:

  • Implement a unified control over the level of knowledge of students;
  • Simplify the conduct of tests and tests;
  • Speed up the exchange of information between all participants of the educational process, to simplify the process of interaction between teachers and students;
  • Intensify and modernize the educational process;
  • Organize a distributed educational resource;
  • Ensure the joint activities of students without reference to the location of participants in the educational process.

Applicable areas

Currently, the specialists from all over the world are developing mobile apps that can complement the basic training program. Suppose a person has been trained in the skills of providing feedback, has received the relevant knowledge, has fulfilled the acquired skills. Next, person is provided with post-training support, “wired up” into the mobile application. It has a hint, an instruction for effective feedback, which can be used at any time. By the way, after passing the full-time training, the participant is sent a short version of the course – in text format or as a video tutorial.

Another area of application of mLearning is acquaintance with new products. In 30-40 minutes a person gets knowledge about new products, understands how to work with them, how to sell, and then immediately in an interactive mode passes the test and gets an estimate. In addition, the mobile application will send a push notification on the timetable.

The third promising area of application is technological training, when it is necessary to teach employees to work with a new computer program.

Generally speaking, mobile apps can perform training programs to transfer a lot of knowledge without using extra resources. With the help of a tablet computer or smartphone, operative access to databases, exchange of various materials, the ability to download the latest information at any time can be performed.

Who is recommended to use Mobile Apps for mLearning

  1. Beginners in the period of adaptation. For example, cashiers and operators in the bank will be able to quickly learn the typical working technologies, the teaching of which in full-time education is spent months.
  2. Employees whose work is related to the frequent renewal of the range of goods or services: sellers, waiters of network restaurants, mobile service providers, etc.
  3. Experienced employees who need to improve their skills for a long time, for example cooks. Short presentations of new products and dishes, instructions, tips, pop-up tips will allow a person to constantly improve their skills.

Anatomy Study Guides

The classic idea of a study partner is still used by many students. However, it can have some major drawbacks. You are reliant on that other person to learn, which means you need to work together to find a schedule that works for the two of you, and maybe it’s not the most convenient. If they go out of town, get sick or just don’t show up for a session, then you’re left in the dark without anybody to study with and no other tools at your disposal.

Additionally, when you are working with a study partner or group you may want to learn at different paces. You may be a quick learner and they may need to backtrack a few times, or vice versa. Not only that, but they might want to focus on entirely different subject matter. Maybe you want to focus on memorizing different body parts and some of their functions but your partner is really struggling with some of the other processes of the body and needs to focus on that.

All of this is where the beauty of human anatomy study guides come into play. Now you don’t have to rely on anybody else to help you learn. You get all of the material, techniques and interactivity that you would get out of a study partner or group, but without any of the drawbacks. You can study wherever you like, at any time of the day or night. You can focus on the material that you need to focus on the most, and you can progress at any speed that’s appropriate for you.

Not to mention today that increasingly more, students are now taking online courses, which means they are separated from the traditional classroom setting and other students in the same courses. This makes having a study partner all but impossible. Therefore you really need to utilize something like an anatomy and physiology study guide if you are looking for that kind of strategy for learning and studying. In an increasingly separated and in some cases isolated learning environment, you need to learn to draw upon additional resources outside of what you would otherwise use.

Additionally you will likely be impressed with feature rich, powerful and dynamic the right human anatomy study guides can be. This isn’t like seeing a bunch of index cards with definitions on them for you to memorize. They deploy creative and interactive learning and studying strategies, activities and materials for you to work with, to make your studying as easy and enjoyable as possible.

Clearly there are many different advantages to using human anatomy study guides. The classic study partner or study group is a system that’s flawed and can be inconvenient and unreliable. This is particularly true in today’s online learning environment. However, when you use powerful software programs, online guides, blogs and resources and more, you will be able to make the most out of what’s available to you and really learn the material as quickly and easily as possible.

Manage Freelance Work the Right Way

General Description

  1. There are three online platforms where you can find freelance jobs that include Guru, Freelancer, and Upworks.
  2. All the three websites have hourly and fixed-priced jobs. So, the pay varies accordingly. A fee is deducted with every project.
  3. You will find various categories or niches where hundreds of jobs get posted regularly.
  4. The payment methods vary for each of the websites. You can choose which suits you best and is easy for you to transact your money. Mostly, PayPal and Payoneer are chosen as they are global money transaction providers and used by many with convenience. Charges vary with each of them.
  5. Best possible support is provided to the people whether the employer or the employee working on these platforms. You can reach support team through email and get help shortly or within a day.
  6. Dispute resolution system is also present which resolves issues between the client and the employee working for a specific project. It depends on the nature of the complaint as well.

Specific Description

Since I remained associated with Freelancer, I am in a better position to provide as much information as I can.

  1. Account: It is free to make an account at the website. But different plans are also present with certain features that are priced differently. You can choose and cancel any of them at any time. Select the currency like the US. Dollars or Indian Rupees, etc.
  2. Profile: You will be required to make a profile where you need to add some details about yourself. They include summary (objective), picture, education, skills, publications, certifications, experience and samples of work,
  3. Account Settings: Add your home address, payment method, identity verification, and email verification.
  4. Bid Proposal: Before you apply for a job, you need to add a proposal for it. Now, the proposal is divided into four or five parts. You should add information accordingly. Then, click finish.

Benefits of eLearning for Students

Online Learning Accommodates Everyone’s Needs

This digital revolution has led to remarkable changes in how the content is accessed, consumed, discussed, and shared. Online educational courses can be taken up by office goers and housewives too, at the time that suits them. Depending on their availability and comfort, many people choose to learn at weekends or evenings. The online method of learning is best suited for everyone.

Lectures Can Be Taken Many Times

One can access the study program an unlimited number of times, unlike classroom teaching, with online learning. This can be very helpful at the time of revision while preparing for an exam.

Offers Updated Content

One of the prime benefits of online learning is that it assures you that your content are up to date and based on the latest industry trends.

Quick Delivery Of Lessons

eLearning is an approach to provide quick delivery of lessons. In comparison with traditional classroom teaching techniques, this mode has generally snappy conveyance cycles. This shows the time required to learn is decreased to 25%-60% of what is required in conventional learning.

There are some of the reasons why the learning time is reduced by eLearning:

  • Lessons begin rapidly and furthermore wrapped up in a solitary learning session. This empowers preparing projects to effortlessly take off inside half a month, or at some point even days.
  • Learners can characterize their own particular speed of learning as opposed to following the speed of the entire group.
  • Saves time as a student does not need to travel to the training venue. You can learn at the solace of your own place.
  • Students can contemplate particular and significant areas of the learning material without concentrating on every single topic. For instance, they can skirt certain topics they would prefer not to learn.

Scalability

eLearning helps in making and imparting new concepts, ideas, and thoughts. Regardless of whether it is for formal education or entertainment, eLearning is a speedy method for learning!

Consistency

eLearning empowers instructors to get a higher level of scope to impart the message reliably for their intended target group. This guarantees all students get a similar kind of preparing with this learning mode.

Reduced Costs

eLearning is cost effective when compared to traditional types of learning. The purpose behind this cost reduction is on account of learning through this mode happens rapidly and effortlessly. A considerable measure of training time is minimized concerning instructors, travel, course materials, and settlement.

This cost adequacy likewise helps in improving the benefit of an association or a business. Additionally, when you are learning at your own place, you are eased from paying for movement costs (e.g. Convenience) when training occurs in another city/state as well as outside learning materials.

Less Impact On Environment

As eLearning is a paperless method for learning, it ensures the earth to a ton of degree. According to an examination done on eLearning courses, it has been discovered that distance learning programs devoured around 90% less power and produced 85% less measure of CO2 outflows when compared with traditional campus based instructive courses. With eLearning, there is no compelling reason to cut trees for acquiring paper. Hence, eLearning is a profoundly eco-accommodating method for learning.