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education's digital future

Evolution of digital curricula

Date: 
Tuesday, November 6, 2012, 6:00 pm to 7:30 pm
Location: 
101 CERAS Learning Hall
Evolution of Digital Curricula

Catherine Casserly

Tom Vander Ark

Prasad Ram

Steve Midgley

This forum brings together four experts to explore key questions concerning the evolution of digital curricula. Participant speakers will include Catherine Casserly (CEO, Creative Commons); Tom Vander Ark (former Executive Director of Education for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Managing Partner at Learn Capital and author of Getting Smart: How Digital Learning is Changing the World); Prasad Ram (Founder and CEO of Ednovo, a non-profit education company that develops Gooru, a search engine for learning) and Steve Midgley, Consulting Adviser to the US Department of Education and former Deputy Director of Education Technology, USDoE.

The conversation will address the changing character and even meaning of “curriculum”, as textbooks and associated learning resources go digital. Digital delivery raises large new intellectual-property questions. Curricular products have been fairly cleanly divided between published material, such as conventional textbooks, that are considered intellectual property, and syllabi, which are akin to culinary recipes—informally shared and changed by multiple users for free. Traditionally schools have purchased curricula and associated assessments from large publishing companies such as Pearson and Houghton-Mifflin. Three big trends are shaping developments in digital curricula: OER (Open Educational Resources), e-textbooks (Kno, Apple), and a new ecosystem of educational social media/curriculum companies such as EdModo, Gooru and GrockIt. New peer study and social media features in networked e-text platforms such as Kno and OpenStudy are also creating value for learning in ‘paradata’ (data about uses of digital curricula: see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paradata_(learning_resource_analytics)).