Events Newsflash June 2010 #2
Learning Forum London — ePortfolio 2010, Internet of Subjects Forum, SE@M 2010 Call for proposals, ASPECT Webinars
Events Newsflash June 2010 #2
ePortfolio vs Personal Learning Space
Learning Forum London 5-7 July 2010 programme
Internet of Subjects: the 7 rules of IoS
ASPECT Webinars 22 June 2010: Conformance Testing (Making Sense of Learning Technology Standards)
AAEEBL Boston (USA) 19 – 22 July 2010
World of Learning, Birmingham (UK) 28-29 September 2010
SE@M 2010, Barcelona (Spain) 27-28 September, call for papers deadline extended
ePortfolio vs Personal Learning Space
In an Interview with Rob Arntsen (see below), the CEO of MyKnowledgeMap suggests that we should move away from the ePortfolio, a term that "is perhaps too general" and "has been driven by institutions to primarily address institutional interest. [...] We need to see the concept that allows the “bridge” between an individual in control of their own learning space and the institution’s valid need for some form of consistent method of interlocking with their students learning processes."
Rob Arntsen certainly has a valid point on which we should reflect further: despite the vision of people like Helen Barrett promoting the idea of the ePortfolio as the learner's authentic voice, it is not uncommon to have it filtered through institutional interests. Occasionaly, this can make learners' voices sound more like those of an institution's ventriloquist than their own...
So, how could we interlock institution's legitimate needs with those, just as legitimate, of learners? How can we create a system where both parties can be fully empowered?
We would like to suggest a possible solution:
This sounds a bit technical, but translated into applications and services this would mean that:
In doing so, we could create a learning architecture that would be at the same time: learner-centric, teacher-centric and institution-centric, or more exactly, learning-centric. Different learners at the same institution could choose different ePortfolio services, while teachers and the institution would have their own-defined views to interact with their learners, peers and other institutions. This could also contribute to the foundations of an architecture for learning organisations, something schools and universities might want to become...
Is it possible? Is it difficult? How can we make it happen?
It is possible and we can make it happen now!
Relevant technical standards and technologies already exist. A number of initiatives, like Kantara working group on user access control, Higgins, TrustFabric and more recently Diaspora* demonstrate that there is a need and that many believe that it can be satisfied now. The TAS3 partnership, a large scale European research project, has defined a new reference architecture than can serve as a foundation to create the technologies and services that will satisfy the needs for a more person-centric and more trustworthy Internet. This reference architecture will contribute to the emergence of the Internet of Subjects where people and organisations will be able interact on a more equal footing.
A new generation of learning technologies will emerge, and the personal learning space called for by Rob Arntsen should play a key role in establishing the Internet of (learning) Subjects.
We look forward to exploring these issues, and many more, with you at the Savoy Place, London 5-7 July 2010.
The EIfEL Team
* In a few weeks, Diaspora secured nearly $200,000 in pledges to create a distributed open-source social network, cutting out intermediaries like Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter to share directly personal data, retaining personal ownership and control of personal data. TrustFabric pretends that they have already developed the technology Diaspora wants to create and TAS3 claims, with reason, to have the required architecture reference model.
Interview with Rob Arntsen, keynote speaker at Learning Forum London, 5-7 July 2010
Rob formed MyKnowledgeMap in March 2000 after working at IBM for 22 years. During his time at IBM he held a number of senior management positions, including UK Manager of New Markets, Northern Region Manager for General Business Division, and Learning Technologies Solutions Manager for Europe, Middle East and Africa. Rob was appointed as a member of the government's National Advisory Council for Continuous Education and Lifelong Learning, Technology Working Group and served as a member of the Working Group on Widening Participation by the Council for Industry and Higher Education. He was a member of the original IPPR group that produced the proposal for the University for Industry.
EIfEL: Rob, could you describe MyKnowledgeMap's vision of ePortfolios?
We believe that the term is perhaps too general and becoming overtaken by events as the learning technology market evolves. On one hand I prefer the concept of a person’s individual learning space, such that the individual is in control of what they identify as their tailored learning space, which embraces their social networking space and which allows them to showcase and to grant access selectively.
On the other hand, for obvious reasons, the historic trend behind e-portfolio development has been driven by institutions to primarily address institutional interest in delivering a solution in this area. That requirement is still valid, and so we need to see the concept that allows the “bridge” between an individual in control of their own learning space and the institution’s valid need for some form of consistent method of interlocking with their students learning processes. This is why we are developing Learning Slate, which is an open source development, initially with Hull University and JISC.
EIfEL: Did you notice any interesting change in the ePortfolio market over the last year?
The changes we have seen in the e-portfolio market are many and varied. There has been the growth in use of significant open source solutions such as Mahara, the merging of reflective style portfolios with competency orientated assessment, and the linkage with assessment. I also am starting to get the feel that this space is becoming more important than the traditional LMS/VLE product and may perhaps take centre stage at some point. Generally we are seeing more interest in video content and e-book content alongside other content, and indeed the close integration of video and e-books within e-learning and assessment objects.
Perhaps the most dramatic and rapid change has been the very strong interest in mobile phones, especially smart phones and related technology. I suspect this will continue to evolve quickly with the advent of the i-pad and similar devices. This is why we are developing significant new solutions in this area that will offer open APIs to support any e-portfolio system, and support multiple smartphone operating systems. We will launch this product at the Handheld Learning event 9-11 January 2011, and hopefully preview the product at ALT-C in September. Our initial implementation will be in the higher education health area, to support student doctors.
EIfEL: While ePortfolios are digital presentations of evidence (of learning and competencies), still very few provide the opportunity to link collected evidence to any kind of competency model, like occupational standards. Why is that so, especially now that education aims at being 'outcome based' and 'competency based'.
This is an interesting question. On one hand I think that the method of matching evidence to competencies has been achieved for some years by specialist e-portfolio systems that focus on either CPD or formal competency based qualifications like NVQs. I think part of this market will see a decline in terms of changes in UK government focus around NVQs, but the CPD demand continues to increase, and the NVQ demand will probably take a new form over time. More generally I think the interest in linking evidence to competencies is growing in all sorts of new areas and we are now involved in a wide range of activities that offer cross over. Our work on national skill passport system for the Nuclear and Process industry academies is one example, and our work with some of the major professional institutes such as CIPD and CMI is another.
If HE is pushed to develop closer links with employers over the next few years, and if work based delivery of qualifications generally starts to become more important to institutions, then I believe that we will see much more demand (driven by employers and employer’s national trade bodies) to match competencies with evidence. This is what we achieved with the ALPS project for health and social care students when out on practice.
EIfEL: What are the main threats and opportunities for ePortfolios.
The main threat is that they will metamorphose into wider concepts. In terms of opportunities there is the scope for much richer function and interconnectivity between personal and individual systems, and the normal evolutionary process of adapting to new technologies and they come on stream. They specifically need to be able to blend into other infrastructures (eg. for content distribution) so that people are not presented with an overwhelming variety of different systems for learning and everyday use. And the individual must increasingly be in control of personalizing their own space.
EIfEL: Thank you Rob, and we all look forward to hearing your keynote address at Learning Forum London.
For a complete view of the actual programme: www.epforum.eu/programme
If you would like to submit a contribution, this is still possible. All information for submitting is accessible at: http://www.epforum.eu/conference/call/. There is also space available for exhibiting.
London 5 July 2010
Recently, IoS partners have decided to define the IoS framework by a limited set of principles that are precise enough to have an impact when being implemented, but large enough to leave space for multiple technical solutions and architectures to be designed.
In their current state the 7 IoS principles are.
These rules do not make any explicit reference to interoperability, as it is the inherent property of a user-centric architecture to be interoperable: it is the individual that acts as the interoperability agent for the whole system. Individuals define the policies regarding their personal data and the trust infrastructure insures that those policies are being enforced. One important challenge will be the ability to provide and maintain a unified user experience whilst the number of heterogeneous actors joining IoS grows.
If you are willing to discuss, challenge or improve those rules you are welcome to join us at IoS Forum London, or join IoS.
More on IoS Forum London: www.conftool.net/lfl2010/
The conference is sponsored by the TAS3 partnership
ASPECT Webinars: making sense of learning technology standards
A series of webinars is proposed by the ASPECT partnership to promote the adoption of learning technology standards by publishers, authors, educational institutions. Although technical, these workshops are accessible to non-technical people as the objective is to understand the benefits of standards.
All webinars run at 12 am CET (11 am GMT), on the second and 4th Tuesday of each month. Duration is 1 hour, and participants can join 30 minutes in advance on the Elluminate Live! platform.
NB1: links are active 30 minutes before the start of the webinar.
NB2: webinars are recorded, and the links to the recordings are accessible in the programme.
The complete programme of future and past webinars is accessible at:
AAEEBL, Boston July 19 – 22, 2010
The worldwide Association for Authentic, Experiential and EvidenceBased Learning (www.aaeebl.org) is holding the first major international conference focused on electronic portfolios (ePortfolios) to be held in the United States. The conference is in Boston on July 19 – 22, 2010, at the Seaport Hotel and Seaport World Trade Center, a world‐class conference venue. All major ePortfolio projects and initiatives around the world will be represented at the conference. EIfEL and IoS will be present.
Deadline for early‐bird discount is June 18; register at https://center.uoregon.edu/conferences/1105events/AAEEBL/2010/registration/ Home site for the conference: http://www.aaeebl.org/page/AAEEBL+Annual+Conference (link to hotel reservations is at this site as well).
World of Learning, Birmingham (UK) 28-29 September 2010
Now in its 18th year, the World of Learning Conference & Exhibition will once again attract thousands of learning and development professionals to the NEC in Birmingham on Tuesday 28 and Wednesday 29 September 2010.
The premier event for business learning, the World of Learning will feature an exhibition with more than 100 local and international exhibitors, and a major conference that boasts first-class speakers from all over the world.
The exhibition will include companies from all sectors of the learning and development industry, from e-learning and HR and learning management solutions, to social media and instructor-led training. Major organisations exhibiting include Blue Beetle, e2train, Thales Training & Consultancy, Centre for High Performance Development, Kaplan IT Learning, Impact International, Huthwaite International, etc.venues, Results Driven Group, LearningGuide Solutions and Assima (DACG).
To exhibit or to pre-register visit www.learnevents.com or call +44 (0)20 8394 5171
SE@M'10 27-28 September, Barcelona
Fourth International Workshop on Search and Exchange of e-le@rning Materials
2nd CALL FOR PAPERS - Submission Deadline: 30 JUNE 2010 (extended)
CONTEXT AND MOTIVATION
Over the last fifteen years, considerable effort has been spent on the development of standards and specifications in order to improve the interoperability of e-learning systems, repositories, and content. These efforts have led to significant improvements in the arena of technical interoperability enabling the emergence and expansion of successful federations and alliances of learning object repositories such as the LRE, ARIADNE, GLOBE, etc. Building blocks for this success have been the creation, evolution and adoption of standards such as the IEEE Learning Object Metadata (LOM), the Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting (OAI-PMH), and the Simple Query Interface (SQI). More recent developments in this field include the definition of a Simple Publishing Interface (SPI) and the ongoing work within the IMS Global Learning Consortium on the Learning Object Discovery & Exchange (LODE) specification to facilitate the discovery and retrieval of learning objects stored across more than one collection. The development of best practices (for example by projects like ASPECT and ICOPER), enabling more efficient use of these standards and specifications, has also proven instrumental in the successes of current learning content retrieval infrastructures.
Given the significant improvements in the technical infrastructures allowing for the exchange of learning objects and metadata, attention of domain experts is now increasingly turning to the development and implementation of solutions to enhance semantic interoperability. There is also a need to better optimize techniques for the management of controlled vocabularies and to guarantee interoperability between different application profiles. A series of other issues are yet to be resolved including best-practices and tools for access control to learning resources and issues of privacy and data protection in the context of e-learning.
To further developments in this field, the main goal of this international workshop is to offer a forum where researchers and practitioners can discuss theoretical aspects, open issues, and innovative approaches and share the latest advances in the state of the art and practices for exchanging and describing learning content. This year's workshop will include presentations of both long and short refereed papers as well as panel discussions, keynotes and demonstrations.
TOPICS OF INTEREST (include, but are not limited to)
* Infrastructures for learning resource discovery and exchange
* Metadata Management
* Discovering content
* Access Control vs. Open
* Exchanging content
Authors are invited to submit original unpublished research as full papers (max. 10 pages) or work-in-progress as short papers (max. 5 pages). All submitted papers will be peer-reviewed by three members of the program committee for originality, significance, clarity and quality. Accepted papers will be published online as part of the CEUR Workshop proceedings series. CEUR-WS.org is a recognized ISSN publication series, ISSN 1613-0073.
Authors should use the Springer LNCS format (http://www.springer.com/lncs). For camera-ready format instructions, please see “For Authors” instructions at: http://www.springer.de/comp/lncs/authors.html.
* 30 June 2010: Paper Submission deadline
The workshop will take place at Hotel Catalonia Plaza, Barcelona, the same venue as EC-TEL 2010 (www.ectel2010.org).
Registration fee is 60 euros to cover for the costs of coffee breaks and lunch.
David Massart, European Schoolnet, Belgium