The Smartphone Generation Needs Computer Help
Young people may be expert social-media and smartphone users, but many lack the digital skills they need for today’s jobs. How can we set them up for success?
Kenneth Cole’s classroom at the Boys & Girls Club of Dane County, located on a quiet residential street in Madison, Wisconsin.
The classes Cole teaches use Grow with Google’s Applied Digital Skills online curriculum.
One day he may lead Club members in a lesson on building digital resumes that can be customized quickly and make job-seeking easier when applying online. Another day they may create a blog. On this particular day, they drew up a budget for an upcoming event using a spreadsheet. For kids who are often glued to their smartphones, these types of digital tasks, surprisingly, can be new experiences.
The vast majority of young Americans have access to a smartphone, and nearly half say they are online “almost constantly.”
But although smartphones can be powerful learning tools when applied productively, these reports of hyperconnectivity and technological proficiency mask a deeper paucity of digital skills. This often-overlooked phenomenon is limiting some young people’s ability—particularly those in rural and low-income communities—to succeed in school and the workplace, where digital skills are increasingly required to collaborate effectively and complete everyday tasks.
According to a survey by Pew Research Center, only 17 percent of Americans are “digitally ready”—that is, confident using digital tools for learning. Meanwhile, in a separate study, American millennials ranked last among a group of their international peers when it came to “problem-solving in technology-rich environments,” such as sending and saving digital information
teach his sophomore pupils the technology skills they need in the workplace, as well as soft skills like teamwork.
more on digitally native in this IMS blog
more on millennials in this IMS blog
A Toolkit for an Immersive VR/AR Experience: The Verb Collective
The Verb Collective is an open set of VR/AR assets built on Unity and designed to help nonprogrammers (arts and humanities students) that quickly transform ideas into 3D experiences. Learn how the Verb Collective is used in the classroom and explore templates to create your own action assets.
Outcomes: Help new VR/AR users quickly create their own 3D experiences using the Verb Collective framework * Access and install the framework * Add to the framework by using a simple verb-based template to outline new actions
Michael Porter, a professor at the Harvard Business School. The scholar who in some respects became his successor, Clayton M. Christensen, entered a doctoral program at the Harvard Business School in 1989 and joined the faculty in 1992. Christensen was interested in why companies fail. In his 1997 book, “The Innovator’s Dilemma,” he argued that, very often, it isn’t because their executives made bad decisions but because they made good good decisions, the same kind of good decisions that had made those companies successful for decades. (The “innovator’s dilemma” is that “doing the right thing is the wrong thing.”)
Christensen called “disruptive innovation”: the selling of a cheaper, poorer-quality product that initially reaches less profitable customers but eventually takes over and devours an entire industry.
Christensen has co-written books urging disruptive innovation in higher education (“The Innovative University”), public schools (“Disrupting Class”), and health care (“The Innovator’s Prescription”).
Startups are ruthless and leaderless and unrestrained, and they seem so tiny and powerless, until you realize, but only after it’s too late, that they’re devastatingly dangerous: Bang! Ka-boom! Think of it this way: the Times is a nation-state; BuzzFeed is stateless. Disruptive innovation is competitive strategy for an age seized by terror.
Replacing “progress” with “innovation” skirts the question of whether a novelty is an improvement: the world may not be getting better and better but our devices are getting newer and newer.
The word “innovate”—to make new—used to have chiefly negative connotations: it signified excessive novelty, without purpose or end.
Joseph Schumpeter, in his landmark study of business cycles, used the word to mean bringing new products to market, a usage that spread slowly, and only in the specialized literatures of economics and business.
Disruptive innovation can reliably be seen only after the fact.
Christensen has compared the theory of disruptive innovation to a theory of nature: the theory of evolution. But among the many differences between disruption and evolution is that the advocates of disruption have an affinity for circular arguments.
Like the bursting of the dot-com bubble, the meltdown didn’t dim the fervor for disruption; instead, it fuelled it, because these products of disruption contributed to the panic on which the theory of disruption thrives.
People aren’t disk drives. Public schools, colleges and universities, churches, museums, and many hospitals, all of which have been subjected to disruptive innovation, have revenues and expenses and infrastructures, but they aren’t industries in the same way that manufacturers of hard-disk drives or truck engines or drygoods are industries. Journalism isn’t an industry in that sense, either.
Historically, institutions like museums, hospitals, schools, and universities have been supported by patronage, donations made by individuals or funding from church or state. The press has generally supported itself by charging subscribers and selling advertising. (Underwriting by corporations and foundations is a funding source of more recent vintage.) Charging for admission, membership, subscriptions and, for some, earning profits are similarities these institutions have with businesses. Still, that doesn’t make them industries, which turn things into commodities and sell them for gain.
Christensen and Eyring’s recommendations for the disruption of the modern university include a “mix of face-to-face and online learning.” The publication of “The Innovative University,” in 2011, contributed to a frenzy for Massive Open Online Courses, or moocs, at colleges and universities across the country, including a collaboration between Harvard and M.I.T., which was announced in May of 2012. Shortly afterward, the University of Virginia’s panicked board of trustees attempted to fire the president, charging her with jeopardizing the institution’s future by failing to disruptively innovate with sufficient speed;
more on Clayton Christensen in this IMS blog
5 Reasons Why Lecture Capture Never Goes Out of Style
October 8, 10AM Central Time
Bill Cherne, VP Customer Success & Support, Sonic Foundry, has 20 years experience in both the AV and digital media industry and in managing and deploying enterprise applications and infrastructure. He has worked with Fortune 500 enterprises including American Family Insurance, Ford Motor Company, Ford Treasury and Ernst & Young, administering server infrastructures and providing consultation and design services for major software applications. In 2006, Bill joined Sonic Foundry and today leads the sales engineering team responsible for providing consultation and implementation services for Mediasite deployments and delivering customer-focused training solutions
Tammy Jackson is the Vice President of Marketing & Communications at Sonic Foundry. Tammy oversees the efforts of the company’s marketing team, developing the marketing, communication and community strategies to drive lead generation, build brand awareness and foster customer loyalty. Prior to Sonic Foundry, Tammy worked as a broadcast and print journalist for more than a decade, where she honed her passion for sharing the stories of others. She’s parlayed that passion into sharing customer successes as they creatively integrate academic and enterprise multi-media into their daily lives.
more on Lecture Capture in this IMS blog