Open books in education

This week's must-read stories

By Karina Fuerte

Open books: a powerful though little-used educational tool
One of the main issues affecting the educational experience is access to books. In many educational institutions, access to libraries is restricted or, in the worst of circumstances, non-existent. What can teachers do to face up to this challenge? One alternative is open books: an excellent tool that few teachers appreciate and hardly any students ever use.

MIT and Harvard team up for childhood literacy
MIT, Harvard and Florida State University team up to ensure that all children read well enough by the end of the third grade. Reach Every Reader is the name of this collaboration that aims to provide schools, teachers, parents and students with the necessary tools to solve this critical learning challenge

The challenges facing Latin American universities
Melchor Sánchez, Coordinator of Educational Development and Curriculum Innovation at UNAM, spoke with the Observatory about the main factors that curb innovation at universities, the challenges facing Latin American universities and the future of education

Workplace top priorities: soft skills training and career support
LinkedIn released the results of a survey conducted on the social network that asked 4,000 professionals for their insights in the trends of education in the labor market. The study reveals that the areas that talent developers are focusing on are soft skills, identifying trends to prevent skills gap, and understanding the impact of technology. 

Coursera launches 6 new degrees and a MasterTrack certificate
Jeff Maggioncalda, CEO of Coursera, announced the launch of six new courses developed by some of the world's leading universities and a certificate called Mastertrack, that aim to prepare students for the jobs of the future

Google launches free resources on AI
Experts from Google developed resources destined to teach essential concepts of machine learning and courses to master and develop skills related to artificial intelligence applied to real life. Tutorials are aimed at curious people without previous knowledge of the subject and some complex courses are pointed to programmers, researchers and data scientists. 

Windows ML, a new AI update for Windows 10
The next Windows 10 update promises to integrate a new machine learning platform designed for Windows developers. Its objective is to promote machine learning applications on PC for better performance and generate engaging user experiences. 

What we are reading

  • Harvard’s President on Leading During a Time of Change
    Drew Gilpin Faust discusses the surprising ways her study of U.S. Civil War history prepared her for the top job and what it’s like to be the first female president in the University’s four-century history. (HBR)

  • 8 Ways College Students Views on Free Speech are Evolving
    A new survey of 3,014 U.S. college students found that a small majority of college students say inclusivity is more important than free speech. (Informed and Engaged)

  • How Lies Spread Online
    Studiyng the spread of misinformation on social media, researchers found that human behavior contributed more to the differential spread of truth and falsity than bots did. (The New York Times)

  • How We Can ‘Robot-Proof’ Education to Better Adapt to Automation
    Northeastern University president Joseph Aoun proposes educating students in a way that will allow them to do the things that machines can’t. (SingularityHub)

  • In Britain’s Playgrounds, ‘Bringing in Risk’ to Build Resilience
    Limited risks are increasingly cast by experts as an experience essential to childhood development. (The New York Times)

  • One reason students aren’t prepared for STEM careers? No physics in high school
    Physics is widely considered to be a building block for STEM disciplines. Yet high schools, while encouraging students to go into STEM fields, are not fully preparing them to do so. (The Hechinger Report)

  • Fiction That Gets AI Right
    Brian Bergstein proposes a list of what to watch and read before the robots take over. (MIT Technology Review)