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  1. Fake news, the great training robbery and a bunch of other stuff
  2. Take part in an education research survey
  3. Review of FotoJet
  4. A rubric for assessment? What a joke!
  5. Computing Curriculum Conundrum: an analogy
  6. More Recent Articles

Fake news, the great training robbery and a bunch of other stuff

The next issue of Digital Education, my free (woohoo!) newsletter, includes articles on:

Fake News: where were the people from the Department for Education at a recent conference on this topic?

Digital Education, by Terry Freedman. 

Digital Education, by Terry Freedman. 

The great training robbery: 13 suggestions about how to avoid having your carefully prepared training materials used without your permission and without payment

What I'm reading: I discuss a forthcoming book on computational thinking by Karl Beecher, and a book that purports to tell you all you need to know about dealing with people.

Plus articles you might find interesting, and some of my news.



Take part in an education research survey

I'm very interested in the use of research in education. To put it another way, I believe that evidence-based education is better than relying (solely) on intuition about what works in the classroom.

Photo by TeroVesalainen CC0 licence

Photo by TeroVesalainen CC0 licence

Professor Sarah Younie and her colleagues are conducting some research in order to find out what teachers would find useful.

Sarah writes...

Please participate: International survey

We are writing on behalf of the MESH* international network of educators investigating your access to research evidence to support your practice.

The survey is designed for teachers/teacher educators/student teachers in any country, of any school phase, and any subject.

The goal is the open sharing of research knowledge relevant to teaching worldwide.

It should take no longer than 10 minutes to complete. To change the language, press the Google translate button on the survey.

Improving the quality of education in every country is a United Nations priority through the new Sustainable Development Goals. The data will inform the UNESCO Teacher Task Force meeting in September.

The more data we have the more chance there is of providing, free of charge, research-based knowledge to teachers regardless of their location. Please pass this on to colleagues.

Many thanks for your time and support.

Yours faithfully

Sarah Younie on behalf of MESH.

Dr Sarah Younie, Professor in Education Innovation l De Montfort University l Leicester l LE1 9BH. Twitter: @sarahyounie 

 *MESH = Mapping Educational Specialist knowhow (

Sign up in the orange band on the front page of the MESH website for updates:



Review of FotoJet

Screenshot of Fotojet

Screenshot of Fotojet

Fotojet is an online design application. It enables you to create banners, email headers and other types of graphic very easily. It is template-driven, so even if, like me, you're not confident about your graphic design skills, you can still produce something worthwhile.

The layout reminds me of Canva to some extent. It is very easy to use: select what you'd like to do, choose a template, drop your photo(s) into it, and edit away.

The editing options are quite impressive, as you can see from the screenshot (click the link at the bottom of this article for the screenshot).

I did find it to be slightly on the slow side despite using a very fast internet connection. Also, in the photo editing section it isn't obvious how you can upload one of your own pictures.

If you opt for the premium version, which will cost you around $35 a year, you gain access to a lot of templates and more photo editing features, I daresay you will also benefit from any enhancements made, as the program is online.

Being online, the program can be used from any kind of computer. From that point of view, if you do a lot of photo editing or design creation, FotoJet premium is a sensible option. If you're not sure whether it's for you, use the free version for a while.

This review first appeared in Digital Education, my free newsletter which I started in the year 2000. Please sign up here for more reviews, views and news: Sign me up now!



A rubric for assessment? What a joke!

Rubrics are deceptive. They seem like a good way to let all the teachers in your team know how to mark students' work. Unfortunately, although they appear to be objective, they usually leave much open to interpretation.

That means that the team will still have to meet and discuss what the criteria apply to actual work, and generate a shared understanding of what the boxes mean. They will also need to generate examples of work that meet the various criteria, for themselves, future colleagues and, of course, the students themselves.

See The Trouble With Rubrics for a fuller discussion of rubrics.

The purpose of this post, however, is simply to raise a smile. I came across the rubric below around 30 years ago. Unfortunately, there is no name on it, so I can't attribute it. If you know who created it, please let me know.

Not to be taken too seriously! Author: unknown.

Not to be taken too seriously! Author: unknown.



Computing Curriculum Conundrum: an analogy

I've had thiscartoon for around 30 years*. I wonder if it captures the essence of what has happened with ICT and Computing in England over the last few years.

Even if it doesn't, at least it proves two things: that attempts to devise curricula that satisfy disparate interests have been going on for a long, long time; and that no such attempts manage to satisfy everybody.

And if it does encapsulate the Computing curriculum issues it proves yet another thing: that those who don't know their history are condemned to repeat it (to paraphrase either Edmund Burke or George Santayana).

Whatever the case, I hope it gives you casue to smile.

The curriculum. Authorship: unknown.

The curriculum. Authorship: unknown.

Related articles about the Computing curriculum

It wasn’t me wot done it, Sir! The depressing state of Computing as a subject

The Computing curriculum in England: A timeline of hopes and experience

There is an extended version of that first article, with copius references for further reading, in the 3rd July 2017 issue of my newsletter, Digital Education: Subscribe to Digital Education.

* Unfortunately, I don't know who created this. If you do, please let me know.



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