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18 OCTOBER 2011

Pearson launches their OpenClass learning environment

"Pearson today made a major move to increase access and collaboration in higher education by launching OpenClass. A key component of Pearson's vision to increase access, achievement and affordability, OpenClass offers institutions and instructors the ability to engage and interact with their students using the collaborative technologies that students are embracing – at no cost.

OpenClass is a new kind of self–service learning management system (LMS) delivered from the Cloud. It is easy to use and completely free. There are no hardware, licensing or hosting costs, thus enabling widespread adoption of new learning approaches that encourage interaction within the classroom and around the world.

'Now, educators and students are able to communicate and collaborate in new ways across institutions and around the globe – providing a richer, more personal and more connected learning experience. At no cost,' said Matt Leavy, CEO of Pearson eCollege.

OpenClass integrates seamlessly with Google Apps for Education™ and will be available starting this week in the Google Apps Marketplace™, Google's online storefront for Google Apps™ products and services. With single sign–on and a unified navigation bar, instructors and students can launch OpenClass from within Google Apps or access their Google applications from OpenClass. Launching OpenClass in the Google Apps Marketplace™ provides institutions with the easiest path to adoption and an avenue to reach institutions already familiar with the benefits of cloud–based solutions.

'We're excited to have OpenClass in the Google Apps Marketplace,' said Obadiah Greenberg, Google's Business Development Manager for Education. 'OpenClass is tightly integrated with Google Apps for Education, our free suite of communication and collaboration applications. Through the Google Apps Marketplace, schools will have access to OpenClass. We are happy to offer this complementary learning management system to the millions of students, faculty and staff already using Google Apps.'

'OpenClass has huge potential for higher education,' said Adrian Sannier, Senior Vice President of Learning Technologies at Pearson. 'OpenClass accelerates what technology will do for learning with a free, open and innovative platform that easily scales and lets students work via social media, with an intense focus on learning that elevates achievement.'

Pearson, working closely with its design partners, will rapidly advance the capabilities of OpenClass to leverage the rich data and social foundations of the platform and the ability to release new functionality frequently. Design partners include Abilene Christian University, Arizona State University, Central Piedmont Community College, West Virginia University at Parkersburg, Monash University, Kentucky Community & Technical College System, Rice University, the University of Wisconsin Extension and Columbia University. Many of these institutions are already teaching courses on OpenClass this fall.

'We truly believe that OpenClass is a disruptive technology for education,' said Kevin Roberts, Chief Planning and Information Officer at Abilene Christian University. 'Pearson's commitment to providing an open and free platform is monumental. The days of 'business as usual' in higher education are gone. OpenClass is a powerful tool to help us move forward into the connected, mobile and open world that we live in.'"

(Susan Aspey, Pearson press release 13 October 2011)

TAGS

2011 • Abilene Christian University • across institutions • Adrian Sannier • Arizona State University • Central Piedmont Community College • classroom • classroom interaction • cloud computing • collaborative technologies • connectedconnected learningconnectivismdisruptive technologieseducatorGoogle Apps • Google Apps for Education • Google Apps Marketplace • Google Inchigher educationICT • Kentucky Community and Technical College System • Kevin Roberts • Learning Management Systemlearning platformlearning technologiesLMS • Matt Leavy • Monash University • new learning approaches • Obadiah Greenberg • online education provider • OpenClass • Pearson • Pearson eCollege • personalised learningRice University • self-service • social foundations • studentstechnology platform • University of Wisconsin Extension Columbia University • West Virginia University

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
14 NOVEMBER 2010

The library as a people place, providing the tools to support learning and scholarship and the environment for social interaction

"In a sense the [university] library has become the poster child for the impact of IT on higher education. Beyond the use of digital technology for organizing, cataloguing, and distributing library holdings, the increasing availability of digitally–created materials and the massive digitization of existing holdings is driving massive change in the library strategies of universities. Although most universities continue to build libraries, many are no longer planning them as repositories (since books are increasingly placed in off–campus retrievable high–density storage facilities) but rather as a knowledge commons where users access digital knowledge on remote servers. The most common characteristic of these new libraries is a coffee shop. They are being designed as a community center where students come to study and learn together, but where books are largely absent. The library is becoming a people place, providing the tools to support learning and scholarship and the environment for social interaction."

(James J. Duderstadt, Wm. A. Wulf & Robert Zemsky, 2005)

Duderstadt, J. J., W. A. Wulf, et al. (2005). "Envisioning a Transformed University." Issues in Science and Technology (Fall 2005).

Fig.1 Phase II development of the Management and Economics Library at Purdue University

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TAGS

accessavailabilitybookscampus • cataloguing • changecoffee shop • community centre • digital technology • digitally-created materials • digitisationdisruptive technologiesdistribution • environment for social interaction • high-density storage • higher educationholdings • impact of IT on higher education • knowledge commons • learning and scholarship • library • library holdings • organising • people place • repositorysocial interactiontraditiontransformationuniversity

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
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