The Year in Review: Our 10 Most Popular Education Articles of 2017
From assessment and accessibility to student data and scaling, here’s a round-up of our most popular stories of 2017.
In 2017 we published more stories, interviews, opinions, and insights than ever before. So since the new year is a time for looking back as well as looking ahead, here’s a round-up of our 10 favorite pieces from the past year.
As leaders in assessment software development, it’s important we try to understand how assessment works, what makes it effective, and how it can be used to help advance learning.
By treating tests as part of an overall learning strategy, formative assessment helps students engage with information, organize it more effectively and receive regular feedback that helps them reflect on and analyze what they have learned. It is not about identifying deficiency; it is about identifying pathways that advance learners’ development.
For many, education technology is viewed as a high-potential investment opportunity. And it is – but only for those with a laser-like focus on making products that solve real problems for real users. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case with many edtech products, which essentially turns choice into confusion.
2017 was something of a year of landmarks for Learnosity. Running our first-ever developer’s conference in New York was certainly up there, but so too was celebrating our tenth birthday during the summer. To mark the occasion, we decided to publish an article that examined what we’ve learned over the last decade, how we’ve developed, and what we’ve come to value most.
Institutes of higher education are no longer just competing with one another for students. They are now competing with the very companies that are determining market trends as they look to bypass the need for college by developing top-quality training programs of their own.
The majority of the Learnosity team is comprised of engineers. So when a team Slack conversation arose that touched on the issue of whether good programmers were inherently lazy, it stirred some lively debate and prompted one software engineer to finally put the record straight.
Alan Garfield is a busy man. Not only does he need to figure out how to keep Learnosity’s performance both speedy and secure, he has to do so while the system delivers 46 million tests and responds to 200 million API requests – per month.
And things are only gathering steam. The company’s Director of Infrastructure needs to prepare for more users and even greater test load. To find out how he keeps the system ahead of the curve, we asked him about the many spinning plates he maintains, along with the benefits of adopting an “infrastructure as code” approach on the job.
In the last hundred or so years, students have changed, teachers have changed, and society has changed. Yet the multiple choice question has, broadly speaking, remained the same.
Whether offline or online, MCQ tests that follow the tried-and-tested path of a century ago are neglecting the needs – and overlooking the realities – of today’s learners. But what will it take to bring testing in line with technology?
Despite the fact that 79 percent of Americans believe that children learn in different ways, well over a third (37 percent) feel that their child’s school doesn’t effectively test for learning disabilities. As a result, many feel that education is trying to fit square pegs into round holes.
In part one of an extensive two-part series, User Experience Designer James Santilli traces the team’s journey toward color testing the product for greater accessibility.
The English poet John Donne once wrote that no man is an island. As the world becomes ever more interconnected, the same could be said for technology.
Some of the world’s largest and most successful companies would surely agree since leveraging other technologies allows them to provide further value for users while freeing up resources to improve their core offering.
No one is immune to data breaches because the best hackers are evolving their techniques to keep pace with technology to better expose and exploit existing vulnerabilities.
As education becomes increasingly quantified and technology becomes a more embedded part of learning at all levels, many in the sector may well wonder whether student data security is actually possible.
“Security is about keeping things tight, says Denis Hoctor, Director of Product and Business Intelligence at Learnosity. “Reducing the surface area of exposure is more about consolidation. It’s easier to secure 1 thing than 50. So as a general rule, we isolate everything and keep critical networks separate.”
Feature image courtesy of Baim Hanif | Unsplash.