Vision: Looking at the future

A very interesting online magazine, which is free to download, and which looks at a variety of Technologies integrated within an educational context.
I do suggest that people go through some of its interesting articles.


8 thoughts on “Vision: Looking at the future

  1. >This online magazine truly contains a number of very interesting and relevant articles. One particular article which struck my attention focuses on the utilisation of technology in assessment. Throughout the article, a number of advantages of utilising technology in assessment are presented, amongst which one finds the ease with which assessments may be made and the possibility of allocating different tasks to different students according to ability. Yet another advantage is the ease with which students can evaluate their own progress. One may easily underestimate such a point. However its significance becomes all the more salient when one considers the alternative without online assessment (including presentation of grades). Just to cite a case in point, today, students who are following a course at IBAC have started their work-placement. Nonetheless, the results of the exams which have been sat for over the preceding weeks will be issued on the notice-board over the next fortnight. Since students might have a referral, most of them visit our institute at Paola regularly after work over the next fortnight, in order to see whether any results are out, since referrals out of necessity will have to be held within a very limited notice period (since these too have to be corrected and internally verified before the start of the summer recess). A simple tool such as an online announcements/availability of results would save students so much hassle as well as provide them with immediate notifications. Imagine all the further advantages which may be gained from technology-supported assessments as soon as one starts exploring all possibilities further!

  2. >I do not seek to undermine the content of such a magazine. In this case, technology has allowed us for a quicker, cheaper and more widespread and environmental friendly delivery of the product. But, will students be exactly ecstatic in reading the bunch of text? I am saying this because for a first glance at an interactive, educational experience, "e-products" have to be also entertaining and more interactive. Can you imagine presenting some educational topics as such? See this link of this interatctive magazine: believe that the advantage that e-learning has by far is immediacy and interactivity. How can we make it more interesting for the students to visit and remember?Can we start talking about EDUTAINMENT, a form of entertainment that is both educational and entertaining?

  3. >I am always in favour of something new such as the concepts presented in the magazine. Referring to the article "Child's Play" regarding the use of consoles for learning. I believe the article starts in the best way it should have started:"Educational needs of young people in the UK!" I want to be specific: in the UK. From my friend's experience, who used to teach in the UK, teachers face a huge problem from children: behaviour. My friend says that behaviour between Maltese young people and English young ones is drastic. In the UK, it's much more difficult to control a classroom: could it be that such initiatives have been launched in UK to try and have more classroom control over students?So those children who cannot afford a console such as a DS or PSP (a reality in the Maltese context), do not have the right for education? Are we going back to Platonian times when education was available only to those people who afforded it?

  4. >This magazine is extremely interesting… I particularly liked the article on PHOTOGRAPHIC EVIDENCE which I also found to be quite helpful, since such a tool is perfectly adaptable to the units I teach, especially to building construction. It would be interesting to ask the students to take photos of the buildings around so that instead of being fed the information from my end, they are made to build up a database through powerpoint and photostory. As suggested by the article, this could be turned into a massive digital notice board, in a cheap and effective way! The students could then read each others’ photos and interpret the different types of construction which their colleagues would have made available, as part of their assessment. Actually we already carry out a similar activity in a class where I prepare the material and they have to analyse it. This could also be done online in the form of a blog, where pupils post their comments and ideas and it could get even more interesting than in class since this would be done interactively through a collective effort.

  5. >I strongly agree with A. Conti in arguing that involving students in the creation of such magazines would motivate them further to look into it for information and further reading. Imagine producing notes in such a format! It can be given as a group activity and included as an assessment strategy. Different desktop publishing software is readily available on the net, some of which are also offer basic downloads free of charge and upgrades at a fee.I especially like page 24 of Vision magazine where it includes brief paragraphs with pictures. Learners may skim through such information easily and read information that they require for assignment or class discussion purposes or even information that might interests them.

  6. >I feel that this is a very good publication. IT is seamlessly blended into learning. That way students appreciate that IT is part of their life and can make good use of it.One particular article impressed me mainly because of the topic, i.e. that of debating. The pre-electoral campaigns have apparently stimulated people to revive the art and topic of debate. Something which the Americans have never missed out on in their schools. Creative debating and searching for solutions collectively is a skill that can be taught and learnt. This sadly is missing in our culture and we do not take care to cultivate it. Reminiscent of our popular TV talk shows where the other's idea is not respected and screaming and shouting are the order of the day. Our schools do very little in the way of helping our students, future citizens, to face an audience and state their ideas.In class, when made to give a presentation, many shy away. This is unfortunate because as adults we must face the real world and ask questions to challenge it.I think that this was a good suggestion Vanessa, it set me thinking and reflecting again.

  7. >Really interesting magazine, I found interesting Photography Evidence. Since one of my hobbies is photography I like to use photography as part of my teaching aids on the smart board. Photography is an incredibly accessible art form and, if a student is ever going to create a brilliant piece of animation or video, they have to understand the art of still photography. This is also true for art students where photography can be used to support the study of history of art through to modern-day photography techniques. Since I teach Technical Drawing, most of the students find photography very helpful to understand line drawings turned into 3D visual effect.

  8. >@Eleonora:"Can we start talking about EDUTAINMENT, a form of entertainment that is both educational and entertaining?"I think this is an extremely interesting concept which has been subject to debate in education for a very long time. The debate of emotionally engaging students (and entertainment is a fantastic way of doing it) is very much alive and its promoters often face criticism from teachers who believe that we should be stricter and more forceful with students. Last year I had the opportunity to attend a number of seminars during the York St John International week and learnt much from this experience. During this week I followed a lecture entitled ‘Hardwired for Wholeness: Learning for the 21st century.' This was delivered by Professor Jane Fried from the School of Education and Professional Studies, Central Connecticut State University. Fried’s lecture was one of the most instructive experiences from the whole trip. She put an emphasis on the emotional role in the acquisition of knowledge and how engaging students (and other subjects) on an emotional level helps them to think and store the information better. Her delivery focused on the idea of ‘action learning’ (indeed this became the buzz word throughout the other lectures which ensued in the week’s programme).Professor Fried’s accounts from personal experience working with multi-ethnic groups also helped to illustrate her theory on teaching. During the same week I also befriended Roland Vrolijk author of the ground breaking ‘Nieuw Geluid’ (New Sound) which propagates a new system of imparting musical knowledge through a playful involvement of students. His approach was based on four main points: (i) Setting targets for the class and oneself (ii) Observation (iii) How to express/perform and finally (iv) What I’d like to do. These four parts were stringed together by an underlying interdisciplinary approach which eventually helps learners to discover meaning by themselves (students conducting their own education hence the educator’s need to connect to the students’ wishes). The fun element is certainly very important in Roland’s approach. By doing simple exercises as group singing or playing musical chairs students learn how to cooperate, interact and also achieve a sense of autonomy within a group of peers, hence the social aspect of music.

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