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Just "DO IT"

By Michael Feldstein, Lisa Neal, Ken Korman / September 2006

TYPE: OPINION
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As eLearn Magazine marks its fifth year of publication, we can think of no better way to celebrate the past and ensure a bright future for e-learning than by urging the support and passage of the Digital Opportunity Investment Trust Act. If passed, the act would create a Digital Opportunity Investment Trust (DO IT), generating an estimated $1 billion annually from interest on money acquired from the impending sale of analog television spectrum. The roadmap for the trust's activities, developed by the Federation of American Scientists (FAS), offers a number of revolutionary possibilities:

  • Exponential growth of free, high-quality educational content: DO IT will fund the digitization of content in libraries and museums across the United States, as well as the creation of substantial new content. With the level of resources available under the trust, the dream of universally accessible materials for cradle-to-grave education can finally come true.
  • Solving of the hard problems: DO IT will provide the funds necessary to crack some of the critical but elusive goals of educational technology development, including authentic assessment tools, intelligent tutoring systems, and immersive simulation development environments. These developments could have a very substantial impact on the quality of education.
  • Fostering a coherent online educational experience: The DO IT roadmap includes further development of interoperability standards. With these standards, educational tools and content can be combined into a coherent experience for the learners rather than the disjointed jumble of separate tools and resources that it often is today.
  • Elimination of toll roads to education: Content and technologies funded by DO IT will be released into the public domain. Teachers and students all over the world will have access to them at no cost.

Educators DO IT Together

Although the Digital Promise Act is building momentum within Congress, its passage is not yet assured—you can do something about that. If you are a United States citizen, go to Digital Promise's Take Action page. There you will be able to contact your Congressional Representative and Senators in support of the legislation. If you are not a United States citizen, tell your American friends and urge them to write their legislators.

eLearn Magazine has grown to what it is today through your participation. As we look to our collective future, we remain as proud and confident as ever that you will continue to do your part in improving education.



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ADDITIONAL READING

    Michael Feldstein
  1. What's important in a learning content management system
  2. Ill-served
  3. Disaster and opportunity
  4. 'E-Moderating' by Gilly Salmon and 'In Good Company The Secrets to Successful Learning Communities' by Don Cohen and Laurence Prusak
  5. Back to the future: what's next after learning objects
  6. What is usable e-learning?
  7. Ignore usability at your peril
  8. Don't Just Teach to the Metrics
  9. E-learning basics: essay: developing your e-learning for your learners
  10. When Weblogs Can Be Harmful
  11. Desperately seeking software simulations
  12. There's no such thing as a learning object
  13. Do you really need reusability?
  14. How to design recyclable learning objects
  15. In defense of online learning (and veggie burgers)
  16. Informational cascades in online learning
  17. Want better courses?
  18. Designing usable, self-paced e-learning courses
  19. The digital promise
  20. Unbolting the chairs
  21. A call to arms
  22. Ken Korman
  23. Exploring the digital universe
  24. Lisa Neal
  25. Q&A
  26. Storytelling at a distance
  27. Talk to me
  28. Q&A with Diana Laurillard
  29. Online learning and fun
  30. Everything in moderation
  31. eLearning and fun
  32. The basics of e-learning
  33. Is it live or is it Memorex?
  34. 5 questions... for Richard E. Mayer
  35. My life as a Wikipedian
  36. Five questions...for Elliott Masie
  37. Five Questions... for John Seely Brown
  38. Five questions...for Lynn Johnston
  39. Five questions…for Matt DuPlessie
  40. Do it yourself
  41. Predictions for 2004
  42. When will e-learning reach a tipping point?
  43. Q&A with Saul Carliner
  44. "Deep" thoughts
  45. "Spot Learning"
  46. The stripper and the bogus online degree
  47. Five questions...for Tom Carey
  48. Learner on the Orient Express
  49. Five (or six) questions...for Irene McAra-McWilliam
  50. How to get students to show up and learn
  51. Blended conferences
  52. Predictions for 2002
  53. Learning from e-learning
  54. Q&A with Don Norman
  55. In search of simplicity
  56. Five Questions...for Christopher Dede
  57. Want better courses?
  58. Designing usable, self-paced e-learning courses
  59. Senior service
  60. Formative evaluation
  61. Blogging to learn and learning to blog
  62. Predictions for 2007
  63. Not all the world's a stage
  64. Five questions...for Seb Schmoller
  65. Do distance and location matter in e-learning?
  66. Why do our K-12 schools remain technology-free?
  67. Degrees by mail
  68. The Value of Voice
  69. Predictions for 2006
  70. Five questions...for Shigeru Miyagawi
  71. Five questions...
  72. Five questions...for Larry Prusack
  73. Five questions...for Karl M. Kapp
  74. Music lessons
  75. Learn to apologize for fun and profit
  76. Advertising or education?
  77. Of web hits and Britney Spears
  78. Predictions for 2008
  79. Serious games for serious topics
  80. Back to the future
  81. Predictions For 2003