Education Technology News

The latest education technology news and trends for college and university ed tech professionals. Looking for more in-depth coverage of important topics? Visit our feature article pages!


Bundles and Access Codes Destroy Efforts to Cut Textbook Pricing

The practice of faculty relying on bundled textbooks and, specifically, access-code materials to provide course problem sets, quizzes, tests and case studies, has wreaked havoc with student efforts to find cheaper textbook alternatives. According to a new report from the Student PIRGs, among a sample group of schools, 45 percent of these supplemental resources were unavailable from any source other than the campus bookstore. As the report's authors noted, the use of those bundles, which exist behind paywalls, eliminates the ability of students to "shop around," which means they're "forced to pay full price for these materials." They also can't resell their textbooks because the access codes typically have expiration dates.

UC San Diego Opens Outdoor Drone Test Facility

The University of California San Diego has opened a new aerodrome for research into unmanned aerial vehicles. The 2,500-square-foot outdoor facility is designed "to create a living laboratory for unmanned aerial vehicles by bringing together researchers from across campus, including computer scientists, structural, mechanical, aerospace, electrical and computer engineers and scientists at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography," according to a UCSD news release.

PC Market Sees First Holiday Quarter Growth in 6 Years

Global shipments of PCs showed a slight year-on-year improvement in the fourth quarter of 2017, up 0.7 percent to 70.6 million sales, according to a new report.

Knewton Releases $44 Adaptive Digital Textbooks

Ed tech company Knewton has launched a collection of digital courseware that integrates its adaptive technology with open education resources, with the intention of selling directly to instructors and students. Previously, the company licensed its adaptive functionality to textbook publishers for integration with their course content. Under the new strategy, the company noted, it could own "all aspects of the user experience" and "make a greater impact on outcomes and affordability." Each title in the new line costs $44 for two years of digital access.



Azusa Pacific U Streamlines Financial Aid and Communication with Students

Students at Azusa Pacific University have a new tool to help them complete financial aid forms on time and communicate with administrators and counselors in the financial aid office. The school is using CampusLogic, a student financial services platform, to make it easier for students and families to complete the financial aid process, according to a news announcement.

Educators, Policymakers Say Problem Solving is Important, Not Emphasized in School

Nearly all educators and policymakers say that it's important for students to learn creative problem-solving skills in school, but approximately two-thirds say that current curricula do not emphasize creative problem solving enough, according to a new report out this week.

Report: Feds and States Need to Improve Data Efforts

Invest a penny of every federal dollar in evaluation. Appoint a chief evaluation officer. Fund programs based on post-graduation goals and publish employment outcomes by major. Create accurate graduation rates. Those are some of the recommendations proposed in two new reports from Results for America, a bipartisan nonprofit with a mission of persuading decision-makers in government to use data and evidence to address the biggest challenges. The reports urge government at all levels to improve measures of student success, to build and use evidence of what works and help colleges act on that information, and to put resources behind student success.

Chalk & Wire Launches Digital Credentialing Network

E-portfolio and assessment company Chalk and Wire today announced the launch of MyMantl, a learning recognition network that allows users to showcase their skills and credentials with verified digital badging.

Training Cuts Phishing Success

A new study by a security training company has found that even a few months of security awareness instruction can have a big impact on how well recipients respond to phishing attempts. In the education segment, specifically, KnowBe4 found that 27.16 percent of staff were "phishing-prone" — likely to open e-mails or click on files containing malware. After three months of training, the same people were 30 percent less likely to open such e-mail; and after a year, they were 88 percent less likely to do so.

Google Adds Security Features to G Suite for Education, Launches Enterprise EDU Edition

Google today took the wraps off new security features for its education productivity suite, G Suite for Education, which includes Google Classroom, Docs, Sheets, Slides and a range of other tools.

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