Monday, 27 July 2015

NSA hosts summer camp to attract young talent

The NSA is hosting summer camps to teach school students hacking techniques.

“The goal of GenCyber, as the summer camp program is called, is to catch the attention of potential cybersecurity recruits and seed interest in an exploding field as more and more of the nation’s critical transactions, from warfare to banking, move into the realm of cyberspace.”

“It’s a fine balance for me as a teacher, because you have to teach them some of the hacking techniques, and layer that in with an ethical discussion,” said Diane Murphy, a professor of information at Marymount University, home to one of the NSA camps this summer.

Interesting development....

Monday, 6 July 2015

Review of Quality Assessment

On the 29th June  HEFCE announced a Review of Quality Assessment. A Steering Group seeks views on future approaches to assessing the quality of education. The deadline for responding is 18 September 2015 (and 31 August 2015 for Wales).

An interesting THE article, 'Quality assurance to face overhaul' captures some of the proposals:

  • Instead of the “process-driven” review process, universities will instead be monitored via analysis of student academic outcomes, which may include data about student satisfaction, dropout rates and graduate employment rates.
  • Under the new plans outlined by Hefce in a consultation document, there will also be an enhanced role for universities’ and colleges’ own assurance systems, with governing bodies asked to confirm that their senates or academic boards were reviewing the quality of their students’ academic experience and academic standards.
  • External examining is also to be strengthened, with the creation of a national register of external examiners and the development of training schemes.

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

Protecting Data in Education 2015

An iGov Survey titled 'Protecting data in Education 2015'  has just been published, in partnership with Acronis.

The participating organisations are mainly schools, but also with colleges and universities.

The biggest perceived threat to the organistion's data is 'data loss'.

44% are planning to considering moving to the cloud to store data.

82% placed a 'very high priority' on data security.

Monday, 22 June 2015

MOOCs and pedagogy: where are we heading?

Yves Epelboin provided an excellent overview at Future EdTech.   Worth looking at this presentation.


Friday, 19 June 2015

Developing digital literacies

What are digital literacies?    Digital literacies are those capabilities which fit an individual for living, learning and working in a digital society.

If you were asked to list seven elements of digital literacies would you be able to do so?

The following chart offers a good framework:

This is taken from an excellent Jisc guide.   A particularly interesting part of the guide discusses 'Students as change agents'.  There is also a section on Curriculum Change.    Well worth a look....

Thursday, 11 June 2015

Surveillance powers: New law needed

A report has been published, commissioned by the Prime Minister, titled 'A Question of Trust'. The strong conclusion is that, "Clear new laws are needed to cover security services' powers to monitor online activity".

The 300 page report recommends (taken from BBC news item):
  • Security and intelligence agencies should be allowed to continue practising "bulk collection" of intercepted material but that "strict additional safeguards" should be introduced.
  • Judges should authorise requests to intercept communications, greatly limiting the home secretary's current role in deciding which suspect is closely monitored.
  • Proposed "snooper's charter" powers must be subjected to "rigorous assessment" of whether they would be legal or effective.
  • The definition of communications data should be "reviewed, clarified and brought up to date" and supervision of its use should be improved.

The Chief Privacy Officer in Higher Education?

An interesting EDUCAUSE Review article states that, "the CPO role is expanding beyond the realm of preventing data breaches to represent a fundamental institutional value and priority."

Mike Carr, CISO and director of Enterprise Architecture at the University of Kentucky, notes that "the biggest opportunities lie in the discussions about data collection, data ownership, the right to be forgotten, and the academy's belief that helping students succeed via big data analytics is not only permissible, it is desirable and the administration's responsibility."

Which UK university will be first to appoint a CPO?