Big data has been the story of the past year. Nearly every industry sector has been hit by the urge to quantify, measure, and analyze, and they are using that information to improve their products and services, which in turn is improving our lives on both the micro and macro scales. (Can you even remember what shopping was like before personalized product recommendations?)
NATALIE SHOEMAKER, Big ThinkMarch 31, 2015 8:46 am
Online learning sites, like Khan Academy, Duolingo, Udemy, and Coursera, have helped provide anyone with access to an internet connection to a college-level education. Anything that you would ever want to achieve or learn is at your fingertips — regardless of your race, gender, or socio-economic status.
In computer-science classes, homework assignments consist of writing programs. It’s easy to create automated tests that determine whether a given program yields the right outputs to a series of inputs. But those tests say nothing about whether the program code is clear or confusing, whether it includes unnecessary computation, and whether it meets the terms of the assignment.
Marc Sollinger, Public Radio InternationalMarch 30, 2015 8:59 am
It’s easy to be hopeful about online learning; a world where anyone — regardless of income, race, or gender — is able to access the same high-quality instruction. Some have imagined that it could truly democratize education. Perhaps even reduce inequality, break down barriers, and give kids from poorer neighborhoods a shot at on-demand lessons.
Teacher, education writer, and fellow SUNY alum Robert Pondiscio has written a generous critique of my book, The End of College. Of my arguments that modern colleges and universities are “operating on a deeply flawed and increasingly unsupportable model,” he grants that “I’m sure this is true, and worse.”