Global Tech Learning

Emerging Market Medical Education Goes Digital

HIV specialists in Vietnam use video conferencing to train local health workers. Photo courtesy of HAIVN.

A shortage of skilled health workers is an acute and ongoing problem in many emerging markets. Weak medical education systems bear a major part of the blame. But a big opportunity for rapid progress has emerged as online medical education becomes increasingly common. Doctors and nurses in even the poorest countries can now get better training.   More

Davos 2015 Learning

Davos 2015: Going to School’s Lisa Heydlauff on Empowering Young Entrepreneurs in India

Going to School CEO Lisa Heydlauff joins Hub Culture at the World Economic Forum Davos 2015. Heydlauff discusses her organization's mission to empower poor children in India with entrepreneurial skills.   More

Davos 2015 Learning

Davos 2015: Codecademy’s Zach Sims on Creating New Jobs

Codecademy's Zach Sims visits Hub Culture at the World Economic Forum Davos 2015. Sims discusses the power of technology to create new jobs and new job categories, and to educate workers for those jobs.   More

Davos 2015 Learning

Davos 2015: Berkeley Psychologist Alison Gopnik on Computer Learning

UC Berkeley Professor of Psychology Alison Gopnik visits Hub Culture at the World Economic Forum Davos 2015. Gopnik explores the idea of computer learning and designing computers to "think" like a child.   More

Davos 2015 Learning

Davos 2015: MIT’s Susan Hockfield on Interactive Open Courseware

MIT President Emerita Susan Hockfield joins Hub Culture at the World Economic Forum Davos 2015. Hockfield shares her thoughts on MIT's interactive open courseware and its partnership with the World Economic Forum.   More

Learning

The Markle Foundation’s Philip Zelikow on Reconfiguring Education for the Digital Age

“Imagine an education system that’s built around unleashing the power of the individual,” says Philip Zelikow, professor of history at the University of Virginia and visiting managing director at the Markle Foundation. Zelikow envisions a new paradigm where someone can get the training and education they need even if it means starting classes in the middle of a traditional semester. Does that mean students will just pop online to get the credits they need? Not necessarily. “The future may be more likely a mixture of online plus people,” says Zelikow, with “navigators” helping to guide students through online options and pair them with real-world tutors.   More

Global Tech Learning

Computer Science in Vietnam: Counting Down to the Hour of Code

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Events surrounding this week's Hour of Code coincide with Computer Science Education week. Vietnam will have 26 different hosts, ranging from universities and high schools to private corporations. However, only two of the participating high schools are local schools under the Department of Education. The remaining are international or private schools. But don’t be too concerned about the lack of participation from public secondary schools. In fact, the rest of the world is really only catching up to Vietnam, whose public schools are known for introducing computer science into the curriculum at a very early age.   More

Jobs Learning Techonomy Events

Can We Train America to Train its Workers?

By 2022 the U.S. is projected to need 1.4 million new programmers, but at the current rate only 400,000 IT grads will emerge to fill them. How America tackles this disparity will help determine its ongoing global competitiveness and the economic success of all Americans. Codecademy has developed innovative training tools, and the White House is turning to this issue with great urgency. In this session from our Sept. 16 Techonomy Detroit conference, Techonomy's David Kirkpatrick talks to Brian Forde of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and Codecademy CEO Zach Sims about how to close the looming skills gap.   More

Learning Mobile

Siri Co-founder: Speech Recognition Ready for Leap Forward

Speech recognition has been around a lot longer than Siri, but Apple’s dulcet-toned digital assistant helped bring the technology to a mass audience, and inspire futuristic visions like the one voiced by Scarlett Johanssen in “Her.” Adam Cheyer, one of the co-founders of Siri (acquired by Apple in 2010), says speech recognition is poised to become more widely used and more sophisticated.   More

Learning Mobile

Siri Co-founder Cheyer on How Change.org Amplifies Voices

Voice-recognition technology helps users interact with their computing devices. But Siri co-founder Adam Cheyer believes that if you recognize people's voices in another sense—when they advocate for change in society—you can help them do something even more important. Cheyer is a software engineer, artificial intelligence expert, and entrepreneur. He’s also a founding member of the social campaign platform Change.org.   More

Learning Manufacturing

Inventing Outside of the Box

Steven Norris, an editor at Gearburn—a Cape Town, South Africa website chronicling "the latest gadget news from around the world"—admits to being endlessly amused by "staggeringly cool technology videos" that reveal how designers transform ugly tech devices into "eye-pleasing shapes." As a favor to those who share his fascination, yesterday Norris shared 13 videos "of incredible inventions that show off their makers' insane intelligence." His picks? We agree they're all staggeringly cool, but suggest that their inventors are likely quite sane geniuses.   More

Learning

A Class Discovery Platform: By Students, for Students

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Today, you can use an app to hail a cab or to have groceries delivered within an hour, but college students still use outdated academic services for even simple tasks like signing up for classes, arranging college housing, and paying tuition. Frustrated with such outmoded tools, three UC Berkeley undergrads created an intuitive application to solve a central academic challenge for students there (and at most schools): finding the classes that best suit them.   More

E-Commerce Learning

Audible Founder Katz on Discovering the Music in Language

Even the head of an audiobook juggernaut has to admit that certain books were meant to be read on the page rather than listened to on headphones. For Audible founder and CEO Donald Katz, that book is “The Sound and the Fury,” which he describes as “one of the most complex and beautifully constructed pieces of literature” and a primer on the “music in language.”   More

E-Commerce Learning

Got Audiobook? Audible CEO Katz on the Rewards of Listening to Literature

Since introducing one of the first digital audio players in 1997, Audible (now owned by Amazon) has become the biggest name in audiobooks. “It really is seen as a service now,” says Audible founder and CEO Donald Katz of the surging audiobook phenomenon. We spoke to Katz at the recent Venture for America Summer Celebration in NYC. He ticked off some of the benefits enjoyed by the growing legions of audiobook consumers: “They get to work smarter than the guy in the next cube; they have storytelling in their lives on a consistent basis.” Most importantly, he said, they’ve found a valuable way to spend the millions of hour per week Americans spend in traffic.   More

Learning

Audible CEO Katz on Why Audiobooks Boost Literacy

Donald Katz, founder and CEO of audiobook pioneer Audible, can go on at length about why listening to books is a virtue for readers and society. That's not surprising, since his company (now owned by Amazon) effectively created the mass listening phenomenon, and dominates it in the U.S. Katz says that by listening to literature, “a lot of people who just don’t have enough time to read now effectively read and ingest beautifully-arranged words.” We spoke with him at the recent Venture for America Summer Celebration in NYC. He argues that audiobooks aren’t just a supplement for adults who are short on time. “A lot of kids are turned on to reading itself or the concept of long, immersive experiences” through audiobooks, he said.   More

Learning

Techno-skeptic Andrew Keen on the Failures of American Universities

“Universities are two or three hundred years behind the curve,” said writer and entrepreneur Andrew Keen (without any evident irony) when we spoke with him at the recent DLDnyc conference. Despite a technologized economy “rushing at about a million miles an hour,” Keen believes our institutions of higher education still “move with glacial speed.” But he doesn’t think that keeping up with technology will necessarily solve this problem. While the “Digital Vertigo” author is a confirmed techno-skeptic, he recognizes that the failures of higher education in America are not necessarily caused by the misuse of technology. Rather, he believes universities are suffering from a deeper cultural and intellectual malaise.   More

Learning Mobile

Mobile Panel Looks at How to Engage Students Through Their Devices

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When it comes to user engagement, the biggest competitor to any online education platform isn’t a rival one, said Dan Friedman of Thinkful on stage at this week's M1 ("Mobile First") Summit. It's Netflix. So how can Web-based schools keep the attention of students who'd rather be watching Breaking Bad? The answer might come from mobile.   More

Learning

Education Needs to Change as Fast as Technology

Illustration by Oliver Munday

More Americans go to college than ever. But how many think about the return they will get from tuition payments that can easily reach $200,000? Up to half are unemployed or underemployed a year after graduation. And two-thirds say they need further training and instruction to enter the workforce. As student debt balloons, it's time for society to re-evaluate postsecondary education—and our entire system. We need to create new and innovative systems that help individuals achieve their potential. The Web is changing many important functions of modern society—how we transfer money, communicate, purchase products, and more—but has been slow to transform the critical task of educating the next generation of citizens and leaders.   More

Business Learning

Educating Executives to Disrupt, Not Be Disrupted

The Drugs Dilemma: Consequences for Society, Politics and Business: Overview

Much has been written about how technology is transforming education. Still more has been written about how technology is driving disruption in business. Less explored is a question posed by the intersection of those ideas: how can technology help business leaders to educate themselves about potentially disruptive opportunities and threats? The MOOC model is ripe for adaptation to deliver structured courses to business leaders, helping them to think about potentially transformational combinations of ideas at the periphery of their industries. The Forum Academy, launching this month with a course on global technology leadership, is a foray into this space. The World Economic Forum is partnering with edX to use its education delivery platform for expanding access to the kind of conversations that happen at Davos.   More

Learning

Will Bringing Big Data into the Classroom Help Students Learn Better?

(Image via Shutterstock)

Brad McIlquham was tutoring at-risk youth in Durham, N.C., when a former co-worker gave him the educator’s equivalent of the Social Network pitch. What if, instead of teaching at most 50 kids a year, you could help bring personalized tutoring to 100,000, or a million kids? McIlquham’s co-worker, Jose Ferreira—who had taught SAT and GMAT prep with McIlquham at Kaplan—was proposing an upending of the traditional “teach to the middle” classroom model. When teachers instruct students of varying ability in the same class, some students get bored, while others struggle. And often, teachers don’t discover which students have failed to understand key concepts until their tests get graded. But by then, they’ve already fallen behind.   More