Textbooks, Emoticons, Assessment, Technology

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Universities seek alternatives to expensive textbooks by Leslie Corbly in Deseret News National 4/25/15
With the increasing cost of textbooks, schools are adopting policies to allow open source textbooks that can be offered free online to students. Research shows that interactive digital texts not only cut costs but improve student engagement.

Some bilinguals use emoticons more when chatting in non-native language in Science Daily 2/17/15
The use of the emoticon (which many people love to hate) by language learners was studied by a research team and compared to the use of nonverbal communication and found a correlation ;-)

New Tablet-Based Interactive ELL Test in Language Magazine 2/20/15
This new tablet-based assessment, which can provide data about ELLs, raises the question about how much information we want a private company to have about our students and whether and how it should be disseminated. These issues are not addressed in the article.

Teachers Mixed on Common Core, Support Blended Learning by Dian Schaffhauser in The Journal 2/9/15
A poll conducted by the Association of American Educators showed that more than 90% of teachers in the US report that they use technology in the classroom and that 67% of them are in favor of blended learning and that students should be required to take at least one online course before graduation. I assume they are talking about high school.

Technology changing teacher’s role in Science Daily 2/16/15
In what should come as no surprise to anyone, a recent Finnish-Swiss-Belgian study showed that “the use of technology changes the role of the teacher from a traditional knowledge provider rather into a facilitator guiding the students’ learning processes and engaging in joint problem-solving with the students. In addition, technology offers a range of new types of learning possibilities.”

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