Techno-mobility: How technology-enabled distance education opened up the world by Mark Curcher (Regional Speaker)

by Jordie Ocenar (Guest Blogger)

Screen Shot 2015-03-23 at 13.19.07Mark Curcher is the Program Director of the 21st Century Educators Program at Tampere University of Applied Sciences in Finland. He began teaching in the United Kingdom and eventually had the opportunity to teach in United Arab Emerates where he witnessed the evolution of educational structure and technology! Additionally, he has an amazing story of how networking and educational technology got him to his current position at Tapere University.

One of the highlights from this talk is the discussion of the education system and educational technology in Finland.  Finland is well known for its free, high-quality education system.  This system is personalized and emphasizes equality to all students.  Despite their education’s reputation, Finland is not all that on it in the educational technology scene.  In Finland, there have only been 6 known MOOCs!  Low uptake of MOOCs is most likely due to:

  • No tuition feesScreen Shot 2015-03-23 at 13.20.27
  • Education is considered a human right
  • Everyone benefits from a well educated society
  • The focus is on equality and not excellence, collaboration not competition
  • Education is not a market
  • Education is not broken (Slide 50; ~38:36)

An investigation into ICT education and the use of educational technology in Finnish school demonstrates the focus on educational equality.  The investigator criticized schools for not providing equal education for all pupils.  An example cited by the investigator was the teaching of coding and iPads at some schools, but not others!

Screen Shot 2015-03-23 at 13.21.41 An investigation into ICT education and the use of educational technology in Finnish school demonstrates the focus on educational equality.  The investigator criticized schools for not providing equal education for all pupils.  An example cited by the investigator was the teaching of coding and iPads at some schools, but not others!

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