Cloud Computing and Distance Education

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Cloud computing for elearning

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  • 1. Cloud Computing & Distance Education How cloud computing can sustain the promise of Distance Education Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License Griff Richards, Rory McGreal, Brian Stewart EDEN June 2011 Dublin, Ireland

2. What is cloud computing and why is it important for Adult Literacy?

  • Cloud computing is a nebulous term
  • (Anon.)

3. CLOUD defined

  • Eric Schmidt, CEO of Google, 2006:
  • It starts with the premise that the data services and architecture should be on servers. We call it cloud computing they should be in a cloud somewhere.
  • The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) defines the term as follows:
  • Cloud computing is a model for enabling convenient, on-demand network access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (e.g., networks, servers, storage, applications, and services) that can be rapidly provisioned and released with minimal management effort or service provider interaction(Mell & Grance, 2009) .

4. CLOUD defined 5. Gartner Hype Cycle 2010 6. AU o 7. Canadian Provinces 8. Why the Cloud for Distance Education? Lori Herod 9. Distance Education Problems

  • faces endemic regionalization
  • programming challenges not computing
  • politics
  • funding
  • community leadership
  • professional collaboration

10. Cloud Computing

  • accessing and using ICT
  • housed on server farms -large industrial scale computing centres.
  • computing services at less cost
  • lower energy costs - data centres near power

11. Cloud Computing

  • Virtualization
  • Device independence
  • Elasticity

12. Cloud Computing

  • On demand
  • Pay for bandwidth used
  • Industrial scale
  • Reduces capital/energy costs
  • Reduces physical space, labour

13. Concerns over cloud computing

  • Security
  • Fast reliable internet
  • switching costs
  • hype

14. Why cloud computing?

  • Katz, Goldstein & Yanosky (2009) :
  • Driving down capital costs of IT
  • Facilitating transparent matching of IT demand, costs, and funding;
  • scaling IT;
  • fostering further IT standardization;
  • accelerating time to market by reducing IT supply bottlenecks;

15. Why cloud computing (2)?

  • Counteringconsumerization of IT services
  • Access to scarce IT talent
  • Supporting a five-9s & 24 x 7 x 365
  • Renewable energy
  • Interoperability internal/external

Katz, Goldstein & Yanosky (2009) 16. 17. Cloud service models

  • 3 technical/marketing categories:
  • Infrastructure as a Service(IaaS)where the expert user implements their own software to optimize use of the computing facility
  • Platform as a Service(PaaS)where the client customizes their application to run inside the cloud management software
  • Software as a Service(SaaS)like Gmail where the user simply uses the software provided
  • suit user independence, expertise, budget and technical needs

18. Cloud services

  • addressing content quality
  • learner support
  • compatibility of administrative systems
  • on-going IT management infrastructures, tools, broadband availability, support services (helpdesk)
  • evergreening of IT

19. Cloud services 20. Private Cloud Services 21. Distance Education: Approaches/Organizations

  • community groups
  • community colleges or partnerships of both
  • . Funding: federal employment & provincial education
  • Funding is usually short term
  • Difficult to sustain programs and staff

22. Target audiences foradult literacy

  • Rural and remote Canadians
  • Aboriginals
  • School dropouts (working poor)
  • New Canadians immigrants who are literate in their own language.

23. Needy populations

  • Aboriginals
  • working poor
  • Rural isolation
  • Urban
  • Access to IT

24. What is the current use of IT to support Distance Education?

  • Basic patterns:
  • CBTs on DVD or via web-sites.
  • Online course or workshops
  • Web searches, email, conferencing,
  • Writing, blogging & digital media
  • assistive technologies, e.g. e-text readers

25. Problems with uptake of the Cloud

  • No strong following among providers
  • Technology as a moving target
  • Accessibility
  • Few studies on efficacy
  • Trainers use technology personally but not for teaching
  • BUT accessibility in a cloud encourages localization and sharing across the wider community

26. Problems with uptake of the Cloud

  • Strangulation by big companies
  • Predatory pricing
  • UBB(Usage Based Billing)
  • Throttling

27. What might a cloud computing strategy for DE look like?

  • What are the challenges to realize such a vision?

THEN :email & collaboration software Now : variety of on-demand services that require tremendous processing power for short instances 28. The Cloud for DE

  • 1 .Provision of personal computing
  • 2. Shared Community Resources
  • 3. Persistent personal storage - augmenting cognition
  • 4. Analytics and personalization
  • 5. Policy issues
  • 6. Beyond text - Is literacy obsolete?

29. Conclusion Impact of Cloud Computing on DE

  • 1. Utility
  • use of free services
  • Elastic: power on demand
  • OER
  • Web services: text to speech; translation etc.
  • Mobile learning

21 stlearning is not possible without the skills for accessing and using the Internet