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Hanson Bros. Scale 04.06.09 [96]

I’ve been thinking a lot this week about two seemingly unrelated news items. The first, the research by David Shermis and Ben Hamner that found that automated essay grading software performs comparably to human graders. (See the Inside Higher Ed story.) The second, the official unveiling of Coursera, the latest online learning startup to spin out of Stanford, that promises to offer a full course catalog, including many classes in the humanities. (Here’s my write-up of the news). The connection: scaling how we assess student writing.

The tech industry talks a lot about “scaling,” and much of the ed-tech industry now seems to follow in its wake. When the tech industry speaks of “scaling,” it typically means “more tech.” Adding servers. Beefing up the processing power. Distributing computing across multiple servers. Automating as much as possible.

Read the rest of the story on Inside Higher Ed...

Photo credits:  Flickr user timlewisnm

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Audrey Watters


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