"Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young.
The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young." - Henry Ford

More Top Universities to Offer Free Online Courses

More Top Universities to Offer Free Online Courses - ABC News: "More top universities outside the United States are joining the rush to offer "massive open online courses" that are broadening access to higher education. Coursera and edX, two leading providers of so-called MOOCs, on Thursday announced major expansions that will roughly double the number of university partners offering free online classes through their websites. Mountain View, Calif.-based Coursera said it will add 29 institutions, including 16 outside the U.S. Over the next several months, they will offer about 90 new courses, including some taught in French, Spanish, Italian and Chinese. . . Coursera currently offers 220 courses from 33 institutions and has nearly 2.8 million registered users who have signed up for nearly 10 million courses, Ng said. The new partners include Chinese University of Hong Kong, Technical University of Denmark, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico as well as the universities of Copenhagen, Geneva and Toyko. Cambridge, Mass.-based edX said it's adding six new institutions, including five outside the U.S., which will provide at least 25 courses. EdX, which was launched in May by Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, currently offers 25 courses from six universities and has 700,000 registered students. The new partners are Australian National University, Delft University of Technology, Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne, McGill University, Rice University and the University of Toronto. Delft University in the Netherlands will be the first edX partner to provide courses as "open content," which means other universities are free to incorporate the materials into their classes, said edX President Anant Agarwal. . . ."

New Guide to Starting Online Schools | Pioneer Institute: " . . . “The mission and student body will determine the appropriate academic content, teachers and technology,” said Pioneer Institute Executive Director Jim Stergios. “On the practical side, they also help founders create cost estimates.” For “Online Learning 101,” author Bill Donovan interviewed researchers, academics and educators to develop a guide for those seeking to start a school in which students access instructional materials and interact with teachers via the Internet. The paper features a preface, “The Lessons We Learned,” by Julie Young, co-founder of Florida Virtual School, which is the largest and among the highest-quality virtual schools in the country. According to one estimate, 1.5 million students had an online learning experience in 2010, up 50 percent from 2007. There were about 275,000 full-time students in online schools during the 2011-12 school year. Thirty-one states and the District of Columbia now have at least one full-time online school operating statewide. Taking at least one online course is now a high school graduation requirement in four states. . . . "

World class: a superschool for the global age - Telegraph: " . . . All 5,000 digital devices in the school are controlled from a room on the top floor nicknamed 'the laptop garage’. Children can take their iPads and laptops there to be mended (pupils are allowed to take their appliances home from the age of nine, and every device will be upgraded by Apple after two years). The school can also locate lost equipment from a GPS tracking system on the wall. 'All the children’s devices are tracked,’ Whittle beams. 'This screen will tell you where a laptop is, whether it’s in the Starbucks on 14th Street or anywhere else in the US. And because the school is run in the “cloud”, the systems didn’t even go down during Hurricane Sandy.’ This all sounds eerily efficient, but how does the school protect its pupils from the dangers of the internet? 'Oh, we can see what’s going on on every iPad,’ Whittle tells me. 'It might sound Big Brother-like,’ he laughingly pre-empts, 'but this is a school. And what we didn’t want to do is turn off the internet, because if you do that you’re turning off this enormous resource.’. . . "

Proposed charter school would offer 'blended learning' | charter, proposed, school - Colorado Springs Gazette, CO: "James Irwin Charter STEM Academy would be a “blended learning” school, where students attend classes two days a week and work online, either at home or in the school’s library, the rest of the time. Courses would be “flipped” so students would learn new content online, then come to class for experiments, dialogue and collaboration."

The Cavalier Daily :: Coursera founder discusses online learning ...
Coursera co-founder Daphne Koller, a Stanford computer science professor, spoke Wednesday at the Education School about the future of online learning and ...

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Residential Education and Online Education

Print Media: Residential Education / Digital Media : Online Education | Inside Higher Ed:
  • Online programs will succeed to the extent that they are specialized and targeted at a particular community of practice. I will pay for an online course or an online degree if I am working with the best faculty in my specific field or discipline of interest. The other students in my class are at least as important as the professor, as the online class will help me form my professional networks. 
  • The success of residential campus based programs or degrees will largely hinge on the brand quality of the institution. The non-academic experience of campus life, the amenities and physical structures, will also be extremely important. 
  • Residential institutions that do not have strong brands or high levels of amenities (the campus experience) will face significant challenges in the coming years. Since branding is somewhat a zero sum game, we will see much more investments in campus amenities (dorms, student unions, residence halls, athletic facilities) in the years to come. 
  • Online education that is not specialized and does not appeal to a cohesive community will have a very hard time attracting the tuition dollars necessary to support the costs of running these programs. 
Read more: http://www.insidehighered.com/blogs/technology-and-learning/print-media-residential-education-digital-media-online-education#ixzz2IvVbJNuy
Inside Higher Ed

In The News | WEU World Education University: "“MOOC 2.0″ Offers Free, For-Credit Education On Demand; World Education University is the First and Only Free, Degree-Granting, Online College by PR News Wire | February 5th, 2013 Distance Learning Has Been Around Since 1892, You Big MOOC by Forbes | November 14, 2012 Dr. Nelson Heller Joins World Education University Advisory Board by The World Education University | September 26, 2012 Ed tech industry thought leader on board with new online higher education institution that touts message Education Should Be Free. Interview | Curtis Pickering Shares His World View by EdCetera | September 13, 2012"

Education to employment | McKinsey & Company: VIDEO - "Young people today are three times as likely as their parents to be out of work. Yet many employers can’t find people with the right entry-level skills to fill their jobs. How to close the gap? In this video, McKinsey directors Diana Farrell and Mona Mourshed share insights from our research with 8,000 stakeholders. We also profile two innovative organizations—one in India and one in the United States—that are pioneering new approaches to successfully transition greater numbers of students from education into employment."

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Charter schools, homeschooling, and online learning improve student performance

Charter schools, homeschooling and online learning all key to better student ...
The Hill (blog)
more than 2 million students attending approximately 5,600 charter schools around the country today. A recent Department of Education study found that parents of charter school students are more satisfied with their children's schools and rate them ...How Online Learning is Saving and Improving Rural High Schools ...
Digital Idaho. “We have many rural schools that are now actively using online learning,” said Idaho chief Tom Luna. Online opportunities have expanded for ...

Jonah Goldberg: Education spending that isn't smart - latimes.com
Think about it this way: Growing economies spend a lot on education, but that doesn't necessarily mean that spending makes them grow.

Jindal, McDonnell tout education reforms | Fox News
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal says education reforms that have produced results in his state can also work in Virginia. Jindal helped promote Virginia Gov.

Disruptive Innovation Needed in Higher Education
Huffington Post (blog)
"Disruptive Innovation" is a buzz phrase that is running wild through the world of entrepreneurship these days. There are Disruptive Innovators discussion groups on LinkedIn and Facebook. Though president of Southwestern College, Santa Fe, I am a ...

EU seals deal with HP, Nokia, others to fill 700,000 tech jobs | ZDNet: "The digital skills gap is growing, like our unemployment queues. We need joint action between governments and companies to bridge that gap. The ICT sector is the new backbone of Europe's economy, and together we can prevent a lost generation and an uncompetitive Europe. So I am expecting concrete pledges by companies, everyone I meet will be getting the same request. The Commission will do its bit but we can't do it alone — companies, social partners and education players — including at national and regional level - have to stand with us.
Other elements to the Coalition—a bit of a tough word to swallow in Europe at the moment—will include mobility assistance, such as English language learning support to helping to standardize certifications of skills."

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Revolution Hits the Universities

How to Save College | The Awl: Your Massively Open Offline College Is Broken " . . . If you want to see what’s driving the imperative to learn without paying for a traditional education, take a look at this chart, originally from a Citi report.


 . . . For all our good will, college in the U.S. has gotten worse for nearly everyone who relies on us. For some students—millions of them—the institutions in which they enroll are more reliable producers of debt than education. This has happened on our watch.The competition from upstart organizations will make things worse for many of us. (I like the experiments we’ve got going at NYU, but I don’t fantasize that we'll be unscathed.) After two decades of watching, though, I also know that that’s how these changes go. No industry has ever organized an orderly sharing of power with newcomers, no matter how interesting or valuable their ideas are, unless under mortal threat. . . . "

Revolution Hits the Universities - NYTimes.com: " . . . there is one big thing happening that leaves me incredibly hopeful about the future, and that is the budding revolution in global online higher education. Nothing has more potential to lift more people out of poverty — by providing them an affordable education to get a job or improve in the job they have. Nothing has more potential to unlock a billion more brains to solve the world’s biggest problems. And nothing has more potential to enable us to reimagine higher education than the massive open online course, or MOOC, platforms that are being developed by the likes of Stanford and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and companies like Coursera and Udacity.Last May I wrote about Coursera — co-founded by the Stanford computer scientists Daphne Koller and Andrew Ng — just after it opened. Two weeks ago, I went back out to Palo Alto to check in on them. When I visited last May, about 300,000 people were taking 38 courses taught by Stanford professors and a few other elite universities. Today, they have 2.4 million students, taking 214 courses from 33 universities, including eight international ones. . . . "

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Learning to Code

Mitch Resnick: Let's teach kids to code | Video on TED.com: "Coding isn’t just for computer whizzes, says Mitch Resnick of MIT Media Lab -- it’s for everyone. In a fun, demo-filled talk Resnick outlines the benefits of teaching kids to code, so they can do more than just “read” new technologies -- but also create them."

10 places where anyone can learn to code: "Fluency, Resnick proposes in today’s talk, comes not through interacting with new technologies, but through creating them. The former is like reading, while the latter is like writing. He means this figuratively — that creating new technologies, like writing a book, requires creative expression — but also literally: to make new computer programs, you actually must write the code.

The point isn’t to create a generation of programmers, Resnick argues. Rather, it’s that coding is a gateway to broader learning. “When you learn to read, you can then read to learn. And it’s the same thing with coding: If you learn to code, you can code to learn,” he says. Learning to code means learning how to think creatively, reason systematically and work collaboratively. And these skills are applicable to any profession — as well as to expressing yourself in your personal life, too."

10 places where anyone can learn to code: ". . . In his talk, Resnick describes Scratch, the programming software that he and a research group at MIT Media Lab developed to allow people to easily create and share their own interactive games and animations. Below, find 10 more places you can learn to code, incorporating Resnick’s suggestions and our own. At Codecademy, you can take lessons on writing simple commands in JavaScript, HTML and CSS, Python and Ruby. (See this New York Times piece from last March, on Codecademy and other code-teaching sites, for a sense of the landscape.) One of many programs geared toward females who want to code, Girl Develop It is an international nonprofit that provides mentorship and instruction. . . . Stanford University’s Udacity is one of many sites that make college courses—includingIntroduction to Computer Science—available online for free. (See our post on free online courses for more ideas.) If college courses seem a little slow, consider Code Racer, a “multi-player live coding game.” Newbies can learn to build a website using HTML and CSS, while the more experienced can test their adeptness at coding. . . . Code School offers online courses in a wide range of programming languages, design and web tools. . . ."

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Five Coursera courses get approved by the American Council on Education

Online learning goes official as five Coursera courses get approved by the American Council on Education - The Next Web: "In other words, students who complete select courses on Coursera’s online platform will be able to potentially apply their credit toward a college degree. The word “potentially” is in there because the company can’t guarantee that each college will approve the credit. That being said, more than 2,000 colleges and universities consider ACE CREDIT recommendations in determining the applicability to their course and degree programs, according to Coursera."

For the Internet-Deprived, McDonald's Is Study Hall - WSJ.com: " The Federal Communications Commission assesses a fee averaging $2.50 per household a month on phone bills to pay $4.5 billion a year for building broadband in rural areas and more than $2 billion a year to pay for better connectivity in schools and libraries. The commission says it can make broadband available to all Americans by spending $45 billion over 10 years. Some are wary of deeper government intervention, arguing that many telecommunications companies are already fast expanding broadband access on their own. "Subsidies should really be targeted narrowly to those that need them," said Randolph May, president of the Free State Foundation, a think tank that advocates for lighter telecom regulation. "That's historically not the way we've done it in communications.""

Competence, Excellence, and Innovation in Higher Education | Rightly Understood | Big Think: " . . . So I’ve gotten several emails this morning asking me what I think about this article by Paul J. LeBlanc, the president of Southern New Hampshire University. It’s a plea for accrediting agencies to take seriously competency-based, as opposed to credit-based, higher education. Southern New Hampshire and its offshoot—the College for America—claim to be riding on “the new wave of innovation” that allows college degrees to be offered at very low prices. This “new innovation” will often be delivered by for-profit institutions, which will have the right incentive to get you the product you want most efficiently. The president claims that historians “will likely point to online learning as the disruptive technology platform that radically changed higher education, which had remained largely unchanged since the cathedral schools of medieval Europe -- football, beer pong and food courts notwithstanding.” Anyone who could take that claim seriously knows nearly nothing about what historians have said about higher education so far. . . . "

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MOOCs - How should state universities respond?

MOOCs are here. How should state universities respond? | Education Recoded | Big Think: " . . . a short essay on MOOCs that Drs. Steve Vardeman and Max Morris, Statistics faculty at Iowa State University, gave me permission to share. Their essential premises? That MOOCs are going to rock state (and other) universities' worlds, that most institutions should immediately institute moratoriums on hiring new faculty and building new facilities, and that universities need to focus on clarifying their value proposition in a world of 'commodity [higher] education.'. . ."

Google In Education: Chromebooks Now Embraced By More Than 2000 Schools - Forbes: "Catholic prep school St. Thomas Aquinas in Florida is one of more than 2000 schools to adopt Chromebooks for education according to Jaime Casap, Google‘s Global Education Evangelist. That number represents a healthy 100% growth spurt during the past 3 months. In January 2012 Florida was among the first school districts to move their curriculum to the web, and in turn adopt Chromebooks as a teaching tool. Last week during FETC 2013 — Florida’s annual Technology in Education Conference — educators explained that this shift had a positive impact with three important advantages: “enabling tech support internships, allowing homebound students to collaborate remotely, and teaching students to become digital leaders.”"

Official Google Enterprise Blog: A Look Back at 2012: The Expansion of Learning on the Web: "2012 was a year of opening doors to learning on the web for more and more students each day. With the web, students and teachers are using new technology and devices to collaborate with each other in class, from home, and around the world. We want Google in Education to help open more doors and we’re pleased to announce there are now 2,000 schools using Chromebooks for Education–twice as many as 3 months ago. And with several Chrome devices available today, there is a device for any school, any student, anywhere. . . . "

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Digital Learning Fuels K-12 Market Trends

Education Week: Digital Learning Fuels K-12 Market Trends
For example, online learning providers like K12 Inc. and free tutoring websites like Khan Academycontinued to attract interest from the education community in ...

Rocketship Education founder John Danner leaves charter school to start online ...
San Jose Mercury News
Learning won't be concentrated in institutions, he said, and will spread to mobile devices. Fourteen years ago, Danner sold his online ad-surfing company, Net Gravity, then went back to school to get a master's in education. He taught second grade in ...

NM ed chief OKs online school despite opposition
San Francisco Chronicle
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico education chief Hanna Skandera overruled the state PublicEducation Commission this week, and will allow a new all-online charter school to open in the fall. The Albuquerque Journal reports (http://bit.ly/WC8Oev ) that ...

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Khan Academy, Coursera, edX, and MOOCs Are Changing Education

Salman Khan, Founder of the Khan Academy | MIT Technology Review: "In his new book, The One World School House: Education Reimagined, Salman Khan recalls how, eight years ago, he uploaded his first mathematics tutorial to YouTube. “I had no preconceived notions about how people learned; I was constrained by no orthodoxy regarding the ‘right’ way to do things,” he writes. . . . The rest of the book is an erudite and accessible call to reorganize education. In much of the developed world, Khan writes, schools use a top-down teaching model first developed in Prussia, a Germanic kingdom known for “stiff whiskers, stiff hats, and stiff way of marching in lockstep.” Students must march ahead even if they haven’t understood what came before. Eventually, some stumble and tune out. Khan’s big idea is that using online technology for lessons, quizzes, and constant assessment will create an affordable way to implement a different teaching ideal known as “mastery learning.” Everyone advances at his or her own pace. Don’t try algebra until you know your arithmetic. Spend less time in lectures and more in hands-on problem solving."

Coursera, edX, and MOOCs Are Changing the Online Education Business | MIT Technology Review: "Khan’s simple videos aren’t without their critics, who wonder whether his tutorials really teach math so well. “We agree 100 percent we aren’t going to solve education’s problems,” Khan responds. But he says the point to keep in mind is that technology-wise, “we’re in the top of the first inning.” He’ll be pouring about $10 million a year into making his videos better—already there are embedded exercises and analytics that let teachers track 50 or 100 students at once. Pretty soon, Khan told me, his free stuff “will be as good or better than anything anyone is charging money for.” Digital instruction faces limits. Online, you will never smell a burning resistor or get your hands wet in a biology lab. Yet the economics of distributing instruction over the Web are so favorable that they seem to threaten anyone building a campus or hiring teachers. At edX, Agarwal says, the same three-person team of a professor plus assistants that used to teach analog circuit design to 400 students at MIT now handles 10,000 online and could take a hundred times more."

Daphne Koller, the AI Researcher Who Founded Coursera | MIT Technology Review: "So far, tearing down the paywalls around higher education has been the simple part. What’s more challenging is making online classes like “A History of the World Since 1300” and “Algorithms I” match the quality of their in-person equivalents. That means racing to set up live forums for class discussions, keeping the site from crashing amidst the crush of students, and urgently seeking ways to make classes more interactive and to automate grading as much as possible. Given such technical challenges, it’s not an accident that many of the people behind recent efforts to put college courses online come from computer science labs. Another Stanford researcher, Sebastian Thrun, resigned to create the startup Udacity. At MIT, the former head of the AI department, Anant Agarwal, now runs edX, another of the organizations offering “massive online open courses,” or MOOCs (see “The Crisis in Higher Education”)."

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Hidden Revolution in Online Learning

Lewis M. Andrews: The Hidden Revolution in Online Learning - WSJ.com: " . . . The development of cost-effective instructional technology, combined with the growing pressure on states and localities to cap the cost of teacher benefits and pensions, has already begun to change the incentive structure of K-12 education. In 2011, Utah's legislature passed a digital-learning policy that ties funding for Internet courses in public school to student outcomes. Online providers receive half the per-pupil payment for a course up front and the other half only after the student has mastered the material. In November, Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder unveiled an education-reform plan that would allow high-school students to get credit for online courses from multiple sources, including neighboring districts, online academies, community colleges and state universities. Udacity, one of the three largest providers of online college courses, picks its instructors not on the basis of their degrees or research interests but according to how well they actually communicate."We reject 98 percent of faculty who want to teach with us," Udacity co-founder David Stavens recently told the New York Times. He sees a day when faculty are selected and promoted very differently, with the best "compensated like a TV actor or movie actor." As performance-based incentive structures spread, course designers and school-based curriculum directors will have to be more flexible, competitive and accountable. If history is any guide, the elevation of such workplace values will even make their way into the subjects being taught, emphasizing such conservative values as personal responsibility and entrepreneurship."

The reckoning for Chicago Public Schools - chicagotribune.com: "Chicago Public Schools officials won a four-month reprieve from state lawmakers recently so they won't have to produce a list of proposed school closings until March 31. That brings to mind boxer Joe Louis' famous taunt aimed at challenger Billy Conn: He can run, but he can't hide. The day of reckoning for CPS is approaching. As many as 80 to 120 half-empty schools could be slated for closing. CPS has never shut that many schools in a single year. Not even close. All reasons why CPS has to level with parents, students and taxpayers. CPS begged the Legislature to push back a Dec. 1 deadline to release a school closing list, saying it didn't have such a list and needed to hear from parents. The Tribune report this week that CPS in September prepared a detailed plan — targeting 95 schools to be closed or consolidated, eight to be turned around and 17 to face eventual closing — gives new reason to question the credibility of school officials."

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Education Disintermediation

Education is being "disintermediated"--

10 types of startup that had a breakthrough 2012 - The Next Web: ". . . Education startups in general have had a good 2012, but one segment of the market that has particularly stood out has been services aimed at helping people learn to code. Codecademy took on $10 million in additional funding this summer to expand beyond its home market in the states, in the same year that it teamed up with the White House to train low-income young people to build apps. Meanwhile, in July we looked atProgramr, as service that lets you learn to code by actually building apps. More broadly, peer-to-peer education has had a good year, with P2PUexpanding its offering, expert masterclass learning platformUdemy launching an iPad app and raising $12 million to expand its offerings across new platforms. The non-profit Khan Academy had a big year, most recently updating its iOS app to support the iPhone. Coursera, which brings courses from top universities online for free, announced in September that it had signed up a total of 33 academic institutions, offering more than 200 courses to 1.3 million students around the world. Even a certain startup called The Next Web launched its own Academy. We’ve only just scratched the surface of a huge topic here, too. Expect the Internet-enabled transformation of technology to continue apace in 2012. . . ."

Important numbers that help tell technology’s top news stories of 2012. | MIT Technology Review: "The rise of the MOOCs - This year will be remembered for lots of talk about the promise of massive open online courses, or MOOCs. Six colleges—MIT, Harvard, University of California-Berkeley, Georgetown, Wellesley, and the University of Texas—have teamed up to form the most high-profile example, called edX. A physics MOOC offered at MIT this spring drew 155,000 people from around the world, although only 7,000 finished the class. Startup companies are getting into the mix as well. Coursera, founded by artificial-intelligence researchers, offers 210 college courses and boasts over two million “Courserians.” And Udacity, started by a team of roboticists including Google fellow Sebastian Thrun, offers 19 courses and so far has drawn 460,000 students."

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Big changes on the Web last year in online education

In 2012, the biggest changes on the Web were in online education, social networks, and the increasing use of smartphones and tablets. | MIT Technology Review: "For all the attention lavished on the Web’s growth on mobile devices this year, one of the most interesting Internet trends is still best experienced on a desktop computer: online education. The rising cost of higher education (the average bachelor’s degree now costsmore than $100,000), combined with increasing access to high-speed Internet service and a desire for more efficient and flexible learning methods, brought new prominence to websites offering free or low-priced courses in everything from programming to literature. Free online code-learning startup Codecademy’seffort to teach novices to code snagged more than 400,000 participants for its weekly lessons in JavaScript, HTML, and CSS. Harvard and MIT joined forces to create edX, a $60 million nonprofit company that streams free college courses online, while nearly three dozen schools—including Stanford and Princeton—formed their own free online course site, Coursera, which has more than 1.5 million users so far. Udacity, cofounded by Sebastian Thrun, a Google Fellow and former Stanford researcher, started out by offering a single Stanford artificial intelligence class online for free. It has since grown and now offers 19 different free courses, mostly geared toward computer science and math. And Duolingo, a free crowdsourced language-learning startup cocreated by Carnegie Mellon University professor Luis von Ahn, has about 300,000 users per week learning French, Spanish, English, Italian, German, and Portuguese. Perhaps the most ambitious (and highly funded) online education offering unveiled in the last year was the Minerva Project, which raised $25 million from Benchmark Capital for its plan to offer a completely online college education for about $25,000 a year. We’ll have to wait to gauge the Minerva Project’s impact, though: it’s not starting classes until 2015. Despite the initial wave of enthusiasm, it’s not yet clear whether many of these startups or universities will be able to form sustainable business models, or if online classes can really work well on a large scale (many of the students that sign up for classes don’t actually complete them). Fortunately, because they operate on the Web, these education efforts are able to gather lots of data about how their students are learning—potentially useful for tweaking lessons and improving performance. . . ."

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