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!


Calculus Game Born out of Texas A&M Lab Boosts Student Outcomes

When Giulia Bini introduced the use of a video game in her high school calculus class, she saw a 100 percent pass rate on testing about limits compared to 80 percent in the previous year; plus, grades rose by 10 percent. The game she used, Variant: Limits by Triseum, places players on an imaginary planet. To rescue the planet from "imminent doom," they help "Equa," the main character, solve a series of increasingly tough calculus problems.

Cengage Expands Subscription Service

Cengage is making its Cengage Unlimited digital course materials subscription service available to more students through a partnership with Follett. Beginning this fall, the service will be available at Follett's 1,200-plus campus store locations as well as online. 

MIT Hackathon Tackles Accessibility Challenges

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology recently hosted its annual Assistive Technology Hackathon (ATHack), an event that brings together people with disabilities and students from the graduate to Ph.D. level to work on prototypes for assistive tools. During this year's multidisciplinary event, teams built "an accessible beanbag-toss game, a personalized blood pressure cuff, a portable and collapsible shower chair, battery and structural optimizations for power soccer league wheelchairs and more," according to information released by MIT.

2U Announces New Scholarships and Apprenticeships for WeWork Students

Online learning company 2U is extending its partnership with WeWork by offering $390,000 in additional scholarships and apprenticeships for WeWork students. Twenty students in WeWork's Access Labs Initiative will be able reduce their tuition payment by half with 2U's new "No Back Row" Future Devs Scholarship. And 10 graduates of the program will receive paid internships at 2U.



Tufts Uses Mapping Tool to Gather Student Input on Social, Physical Campus Needs

A recent initiative at Tufts University reached out to students to gather ideas for campus improvements. The Tufts Community Union Senate's "Brown & Blueprint" program asked undergraduates for comments and feedback on the physical aspects of the campus as well as how students build community (or not) within those spaces.

UPCEA Intros Digital Badges for Excellence in Online Learning

The University Professional and Continuing Education Association has launched a program to recognize excellence in online higher education: the Hallmarks of Excellence in Online Leadership Review. The program evaluates online education programs based on seven key elements, such as internal advocacy, entrepreneurial initiative and faculty support, and then issues Credly digital badges to qualifying colleges and universities.

MERLOT Updated for Mobile OER Hunting

MERLOT, the granddaddy of open educational resources developed by the California State University system, has entered its third decade of operation with a new facelift. The project, as always, provides a gateway to OER. But with its newest release, search functionality has been expanded and coding has been done using responsive web design to make it mobile device-friendly.

Recorded Books Adds All-You-Can-Watch Streaming Video Library Service

Binge-viewing could be coming to a library near you. RBmedia, which owns Recorded Books, has released an unlimited streaming video service for libraries, as well as a new version of its app to allow patrons to access multiple content services, including the streaming shows. RBdigital, the specialized streaming video service, will give library users the chance to view videos from RBmedia's licensed content in the same way they watch shows on Netflix. They'll be able to watch as many shows as they like in a seven-day period while the library pays for a single checkout.

New College Promise Programs Heading Astray

A new Century Foundation analysis of existing and proposed College Promise programs has warned that the kinds of "policy design choices" made by policymakers will affect how well their Promise programs meet the goals they've set. In some states policymakers have begun to include requirements in their programs "to pursue objectives less directly related to the core goals of financial aid or college affordability measures." As a result, those states may not reach the people who most need the Promise help and their states may fail in closing gaps in enrollment and attainment rates for specific subgroups of students.

DePauw U Guarantees Every Graduate Will Find a Job

DePauw University is so confident of the value of its liberal arts education that it has guaranteed a successful outcome — employment or graduate school acceptance within six months of graduation — for 100 percent of its students. That pledge, dubbed the DePauw Gold Commitment, will begin in fall of 2018 with the class of 2022; already, about 95 percent of DePauw's graduates find success after college, according to the university.

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