Thursday, August 20, 2009

Web-Mediated Learning Found More Effective Than the Classroom

A comprehensive new report asserts that web-mediated learning has been found to be more effective than face-to-face learning.
New York Times: Over the 12-year span, the report found 99 studies in which there were quantitative comparisons of online and classroom performance for the same courses. The analysis for the Department of Education found that, on average, students doing some or all of the course online would rank in the 59th percentile in tested performance, compared with the average classroom student scoring in the 50th percentile.
My initial reaction is that both learning settings are critical and that students empowered with laptops in a classroom setting, such as in Maine, would probably outperform both groups. That said, it certainly does open the doors wider to distance learning and, hopefully, sweeping educational reform.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Holograms You Can Touch

Shinoda Lab presents "touchable holography" that measures where your hand is in relation to an object, then uses ultrasonic transducers to create pressure at the appropriate points. The result is the simulated sense of tactile interaction with a virtual object.