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