Infosys Foundation USA | August 18, 2021
Infosys Foundation USA, a nonprofit dedicated to increasing access to computer science (CS) and maker education across the U.S., announced today that it is adding four additional computer science modules for K-12 teachers to its digital learning platform, the Pathfinders Online Institute. Educators can now choose from over 30 unique courses and trainings geared to meet different skill-levels, grades and programming interests. The new offerings are meant to help ease teachers back into the classroom and STEM computer science learning loss after a year of remote and hybrid instruction.
According to the 2020 State of CS Report, 28 states recently passed new laws to promote computer science education but not all mandated funding for professional development for teachers. Additionally, a recent study by the Kapor Center that surveyed over 3,500 PreK-12 CS teachers found that over a quarter of respondents felt limited by their own subject matter expertise and expressed a need for low-cost computer science professional development. The Pathfinders Online Institute addresses these challenges by providing educators with access to computer science curricula, innovative professional development and first-of-its-kind streamable K-5 lessons for educators with no computer science background at no cost.
"Teachers have overcome insurmountable instructional challenges over this past pandemic year," said Kate Maloney, Executive Director, Infosys Foundation USA. "As they return to the classroom and seek to capture their students' imaginations, the Foundation is providing creative resources. This will help them bring leading edge computer science and making curricula to their classroom, so their students are equipped with the fundamental digital literacy required to succeed in a tech-driven world."
Infosys Foundation USA is partnering with CS is Elementary, Raspberry Pi and BirdBrain Technologies to offer these innovative learning modules that will help educators enhance their computational fluency. The modules include:
Kode5 with CS is Elementary (Grades K-5): Kode5 consists of a baseline computer science program for any school: a set of five on-demand courses that provide 20+ hours per grade of computer science education. Virtual co-teachers provide the instruction, while classroom teachersmeven those without experience, training, budget or special facilities manage and support students' experience.
Programming Essentials in Scratch in partnership with Raspberry Pi (Grades 4-8): In this six-part course, educators will receive an introduction to block-based programming within the Scratch environment.
Python and Robotics with the Finch Robot in partnership with BirdBrain Technologies (Grades 6-12): In this course, educators will be introduced to physical computing and learn how to use the Finch Robot across a variety of computer science concepts. The first 100 U.S. public and charter school teachers to apply will also receive one free Finch Robot 2.0.
Design, Build and Code a Rover with Raspberry Pi (Grades 8-12): In this six-part course, educators will learn to build a physical project using the Raspberry Pi Pico microcontroller. The first 1,000 U.S. public and charter school teachers to apply will also receive a free Raspberry Pi Pico hardware kit.
"The Covid education crisis showed that we can teach K-5 computer science via distance learning if we keep students continuously engaged and provide expert virtual co-teachers," said John Pearce, Executive Director, CS is Elementary. "Kode5 courses are built upon this concept, enabling scalable baseline K-5 CS instruction for any child in any school, grade, classroom, or family."
"Robots are powerfully motivating CS learning tools that bring computer code to life, but they are most effectively used by teachers who are well-supported," said Tom Lauwers, Founder and CEO, BirdBrain Technologies LLC. "That is why we are so excited by this opportunity to offer educators a free course and robot with Infosys Foundation USA, to help teachers spark deep and joyful CS learning in their classrooms."
"Supporting computer science and maker educators is a critical part of our work," said Matt Richardson, Executive Director, Raspberry Pi Foundation North America. "We're delighted to collaborate with Infosys Foundation USA on these free courses and to help students use newly-acquired skills in order to solve problems that matter to them."
About Infosys Foundation USA
Infosys Foundation USA was established in 2015 with the mission of expanding computer science and maker education to K-12 students and teachers across the United States, with a specific focus on increasing access to underrepresented communities. The Foundation achieves impact through delivering professional development programs for teachers, partnering with leading nonprofits, and delivering innovative media campaigns that inspire everyone to be creators, not just consumers, of technology.
Thought | August 08, 2021
Thought Industries, the world's #1 platform for customer learning management (CLM), today announced interactive video assessments from Bongo are now available through the Thought Industries CLM platform. The video assessments build on the platform's scalable education tools, offering experiential learning and soft skill development training within a real-world context to increase confidence and enhance learning outcomes for customers, partners and professionals.
The native Bongo integration reflects the growing demand for customer-centric learning technology to help businesses drive loyalty and revenue growth, and the need to assess skills and progress along the way. Users of the Thought Industries CLM platform can now practice, self-assess, or record and demonstrate competency to an accrediting body or community of peers for feedback and coaching using three modes of video learning:
Individual Assignment: Learners record or upload a video of themselves presenting on a topic or specific skill. Prior to submission, learners incorporate automated machine-driven feedback and insights into the delivery and content of their videos, providing an opportunity for self-assessment, improvement and continuous learning.
Innovate. Coach. Consult (ICC), a technology based, leadership development and outplacement solution firm with 225 offices in 28 countries, is a Thought Industries client taking advantage of the Bongo video assessment integration. The firm, which trains leadership in industries ranging from financial services and manufacturing to healthcare and oil and gas, is using the assessments for role-play scenarios and practice, as well as interview simulations.
"We're constantly searching for the best modalities to keep the learner engaged. The ability to have interactive videos and evaluated videos will be a true selling point for us," said Susan Ruhl, President and CFO of ICC. "Bongo will improve the learner experience through AI features such as filler words and grading against a transcription. The ability for the learner to quickly review their submission with feedback sets our solution apart from those who simply have the ability to record and submit."
"Customer learning can take many shapes and forms, but in the end, it's all about meeting customers where they are so they can get more out of their learning efforts. Increasingly, that means video, and Bongo's video assessments are yet another way for us to provide vital multimodal capabilities for exceptional learning experiences," said Todd Boes, chief product officer, Thought Industries. "Whether they're selecting blended, synchronous and asynchronous options, or employing interactive video assignments and assessments, customers now have another way to measure competency and subject matter understanding."
"Video assessments are a powerful way to measure learning outcomes, but they're only effective if organizations properly incorporate them into their customer learning efforts. Thought Industries provides the scalable learning platform that makes this possible," said Josh Kamrath, chief executive officer, Bongo. "From professional training companies to product companies, organizations of all kinds stand to benefit from enhanced learning experiences. Bongo's interactive video assessments, coupled with the Thought Industries customer learning platform, empower organizations to turn knowledge into action—and to track learner progress at every step."
Bongo is an embedded solution that drives meaningful assessment, experiential learning and skill development at scale through video-based engagement and personalized feedback. Organizations use our video workflows to create opportunities for practice, demonstration, analysis, and collaboration. When individuals show what they can do within a real-world learning environment, evaluators get an authentic representation of their competency.
About Thought Industries
Thought Industries provides the world's #1 software platform for customer learning management (CLM). CLM empowers businesses to create compelling learning experiences for customers, partners and professionals. These experiences help businesses grow revenue, increase customer loyalty, and ensure customer success across technology, manufacturing, healthcare and other industries with complex products and training requirements. Thought Industries was founded in 2014 around the core belief that online learning experiences should be modern, intuitive, engaging, and scalable. Headquartered in Boston, Thought Industries has offices across North America and Europe.
CORPORATE LEARNING SYSTEMS
USRA | March 22, 2022
On March 21st, the Universities Space Research Association (USRA) announced that it has joined forces with the U.S. Space Force and the Air Force Research Laboratory to support scientific and technical research at seven selected universities. The partnership is called the University Consortium Research Opportunity (UCRO) and illustrates the significant partnership that connects academic research and government organization.
"UCRO represents an incredibly unique opportunity for USRA to support the research efforts of an array of institutions, that will effectively advance the scientific and technical prowess of both USSF and AFRL. Importantly, these established partnerships will also engage a diverse group of students and postdoctoral fellows in research that contributes to an increased understanding and appreciation for STEM workforce opportunities within both agencies."
-Bernard Seery, Senior Vice President, USRA Technology Research and Development,
This workforce development program will leverage USRA’s proven record in STEM academics and administration.
"USRA's role administering UCRO will enable institutions to generate pertinent research critical to both USSF and AFRL. The research yielded will unquestionably support the mission of both agencies and will encourage interest in USSF and AFRL among the next generation of STEM professionals."
-Dr. Amanda Smith Hackler, USRA Director of Education
The principal investigators, their institutions, and proposals selected for this program include:
Dr.Michael Kinzel,University of Florida"Industrial-Aero Optimization for Agile Rocket Cargo Delivery"
Dr.Anthony Torres,Texas State University"Understanding the Effect of Vibration on the Crystallization of ZBLAN"
Dr.Anouck Girard,University of Michigan"Safe Learning in Space for Proximity and Rendezvous Operations"
Dr.Siamak Farhad, TheUniversity of Akron"On-Orbit and In-Situ Inspection and Repair of Spacecraft"
Dr. Marek Osiński,University of New Mexico"Designer Nanoparticles for Quantum Sensing of Location and Electric Field"
Dr.Brandon Jones, TheUniversity of Texas at Austin"Information Theoretic Detection and Tracking for Rapid IOD"
Dr.Miguel Velez-Reyes, TheUniversity of Texas at El Paso"Innovative Analysis of Spectra-Temporal Signatures Using Machine Learning for Ground-Based Remote Sensing of Unresolved Resident Space Objects"