The Benchmark Study 2014: Best Practices for Implementing Online and Blended Learning in K–12 School Districts
This report examines results from Market Data Retrieval's EdNet Insight Services' 2014 Benchmark survey, an annual survey of experienced educators that looks at best practices when implementing online and blended education programs in K–12 schools.
edX joins ConnectED efforts with PD courses for teachers
Answering President Obama's call to help schools embrace technology and digital learning in U.S. classrooms, edX will offer professional development courses for teachers.
As part of ConnectEd, edX partner universities and colleges will offer teacher professional development courses, along with courses to prepare students for AP exams.
“EdX and our university partners are pleased to stand with President Obama to offer U.S. teachers and school districts free, innovative resources to improve teaching and learning outcomes,” said Anant Agarwal, edX CEO. “These courses will empower teachers to use technology in the classroom in creative and personalized ways.”
Free verified certificates for U.S. teachers
edX and its partner institutions have committed to offering free verified certificates for teacher training courses to all U.S. teachers for one year. Following the first year, teachers in high-need schools will be eligible for free verified certificates for an additional four years. These courses will include training on using technology in the classroom, learning theory and leadership, along with teaching in a blended format. These courses, developed by the nation’s best colleges and universities, will focus on blended learning and integrating technology in the classroom. U.S. teachers will be able to earn free verified certificates upon successful course completion.
Free verified certificates for students in high-need schools
Students in Title I and high-need schools interested in courses to prepare for AP exams, will also be able to earn a free verified certificate from edX.
Courses will be available on edx.org over the next 12 months.
EdX partners participating in the ConnectED initiative include:
Teacher professional development:
Teachers College, Columbia University
University of Texas Arlington
University of Texas Austin
University of Texas System
Courses to prepare for AP exams:
Tennessee Board of Regents
Universidad Carlos III de Madrid
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Study demonstrates math program’s impact on students
Just one year of education technology in classrooms can move a school that was performing at the 50th percentile in the state up to the 66th percentile in the state, according to a study released by the independent education research firm WestEd and the nonprofit MIND Research Institute.
WestEd measured the impact of MIND’s ST Math program in 209 second through fifth grades – including more than 19,980 students at 129 California schools across California – that fully implemented the program in a blended learning environment.
The report used several models to measure ST Math’s impact. Those grades using ST Math for one year exhibited 6.3 percent more students scoring proficient or better on the CST, compared to those at similar schools without the program. Getting students to score proficient on the state test meets the No Child Left Behind requirements.
(Next page: Breaking down the ST Math program's impact)
The study found that almost all of the improvement was reflected in increases in students scoring advanced, not merely proficient, on the tests. Students in those classes using ST Math exhibited advanced CST math scores at a rate that was, on average, 5.6 percentage points higher than others.
“It’s now a given in education that we will somehow put digital devices into the hands of every K-12 student in every classroom in America, yet people still wonder if technology can actually improve student learning at scale, and there is a dearth of research in this area,” said Andrew R. Coulson, chief strategist at MIND Research Institute. “This report provides compelling evidence that technology indeed helps students learn and, importantly, show results on high stakes assessments – at least if you have a pedagogically effective approach, properly designed software, and teacher support for faithful implementation.”
Preparing for Success with online assessments
With the move to state-mandated online assessments, decisions about hardware, network infrastructure, professional development, and community outreach have never been more important. Please see how ACER, through GovConnection, is helping schools laying the foundation for success.