Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki visited President Obama at the White House on Monday to discuss regional security issues, as well as trade, energy, American investment in Iraq and education. Sadly, I was not invited, but I want to pose a question to PM Maliki about the last, and surely least, point of discussion: education.
First, a little background: As you may know, Saddam Hussein banned political and religious freedoms – and mobile phones. So my question, PM Maliki, is how you plan to use the relatively recent introduction of mobile technology to improve educational access, opportunity and outcomes.
At the end of the summer, I had the opportunity to join a research trip in Misiones, Argentina with a group from Stanford University
and Seeds of Empowerment
. We were field testing a mobile learning solution designed for the most remote parts of the developing world. The solution combines Blackboard Mobile Learn
software with specialized hardware designed to be portable, durable, and able to operate off a car battery where needed.
Over the course of the 10-day trip, we worked with more than 250 kids in 10 different middle and high schools. It was great to see the power of mobile devices in education first hand. At Blackboard, we talk about the importance of making the education experience interactive and collaborative, but seeing it in action is incredibly powerful.
In the run-up to the Online Educa Berlin, Blackboard is planning a symposium for 29 November 2011 from 10:30-17:00 titled «What students in the digital age demand: educational quality and innovative services». The symposium is a full-day pre-conference cross-solution event focused on the DACH region (Germany, Austria, Switzerland) with both client and Blackboard presentations. As a result of this focus, the great majority of the presentations will be in German.
What does openness and efficiency look like bundled into one?
Blackboard continues to find ways to innovate and make users more efficient in their daily tasks. There are various ways we can accomplish this. It may be through the core Blackboard Learn™ platform. Or, it may be through Blackboard Building Blocks™ where we augment the platform and provide clients with a greater choice of instructional tools. And, as we develop, we continue to consider how we can contribute back to not only the education community, but the developer community, as well. We’re excited to announce two important Building Blocks – Bboogle and the Paste from Word Mashup – are now available and certified for the Blackboard Learn platform.