All posts by Hannah Winston


QuickWire: Digital Tools for College Prep Still Miss Many Students

As more and more aspects of higher education become digitized or enhanced by technology, the process of applying to college and planning a successful career there has followed suit. The problem? Students still fall through the cracks.

A new report looks at the plethora of digital tools marketed to students to help them get into and make the most of college. It tackles individual websites and mobile apps, like College Confidential and Find Tuition, and provides a comprehensive look at what each o…


Emergency App Puts a Panic Button in Smartphone Users’ Hands

When Chad Salahshour’s daughter was accepted into the law program at Cleveland State University three years ago, he wanted a way to know she was safe on the campus. Having worked as a technology officer in a local police department for more than 20 years, and having created security apps for law enforcement as well, he knew about measures that could help prevent crime. So he decided to take matters into his own hands and make a campus-specific emergency app for smartphones that students could …


Vermont Tech Nanosatellite Is Among 11 Rocketed Into Space

Before Tuesday evening, Carl Brandon had never seen a rocket launch. But at about 8:15, when a U.S. Air Force Minotaur I rocket took off from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility, in Virginia, he not only saw a launch, but the rocket carried a satellite he helped build.

Mr. Brandon, director of the CubeSat Lab at Vermont Technical College, spent the past two years with a few of his students building what’s sometimes referred to as a nanosatellite—or, specifically, a CubeSat, after a set of specifica…


International Reach of MOOCs Is Limited by Users’ Preferences

Washington — Do massive open online courses offer countries around the world an affordable way to democratize higher education? Maybe, speakers said at an event on Monday here at the Embassy of Norway, but at best such a possibility is a long way off.

The discussion was part of Transatlantic Science Week, an event sponsored by the Norwegian Ministry of Education and Research that looks for solutions to problems shared by Norway, Canada, and the United States.

Torbjorn Roe Isaksen, Norway’s minis…


Universities Foster Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Federal Report Says

A study by the U.S. Department of Commerce has found that universities around the country promote entrepreneurship, innovation, and collaboration among students, faculty members, and industries across multiple sectors.

On Tuesday the department released a report on its findings, “The Innovative and Entrepreneurial University: Higher Education, Innovation & Entrepreneurship in Focus.” Based on interviews with more than 130 officials in higher education, it examines how universities are influencin…


QuickWire: ‘Flipping’ Classrooms May Not Make Much Difference

In preliminary research, professors at Harvey Mudd College haven’t found that students learn more or more easily in so-called flipped courses than in traditional classes, USA Today reports. In flipped courses, students watch professors’ lectures online before coming to class, then spend the class period in discussions or activities that reinforce and advance the lecture material.

Earlier this year, the National Science Foundation gave four professors at the college in Claremont, Calif., a three-…


Educause 2013, in Tweets and Pictures

So far, mobile devices and using video games to engage students have topped the talk on Twitter by campus-technology administrators attending the big Educause conference, in Anaheim, Calif.

To catch up on the best tweets, photos, and links from the conference, follow our Storify post. We will continue to update it until the end of the conference.


QuickWire: Einstein Papers Go Digital

Albert Einstein’s mind might soon be a little easier to navigate.

The Collected Papers of Albert Einstein will be made available in digital form by the digital-publishing-platform company Tizra, according to a news release. The digitization of The Collected Papers, published by Princeton University Press, will contain searchable text, in German and in English translation, for the thousands of pages of Einstein’s work throughout his lifetime. The papers include lectures, research notebooks, inter…


Wiki ‘Edit-a-Thon’ at Brown U. Will Add Entries for Women in Science

When she was growing up, Maia Weinstock’s role model was the astronaut Sally Ride. But she really didn’t have any other female role models in science.

Ms. Weinstock, a news director at an educational Web site for children called BrainPOP, says that wasn’t because there weren’t other worthy women. She just didn’t know who they were until she began looking for them. Once she did, she realized—among other things—that women’s contributions to science were severely underrepresented in Wikipedia’s pag…


Desire2Learn Enters MOOC Market as It Updates Its Platform

The course-management company Desire2Learn unveiled a MOOC-enabled version of its online-learning platform on Tuesday, joining two competitors, Blackboard and Instructure, in entering the market for massive open online courses.

John Baker, Desire2Learn’s president and chief executive, said the company’s online-learning suite was now an all-encompassing platform that integrated online assets commonly used for classroom instruction as well as the new MOOC platform, called Desire2Learn Open Course…