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Down with OTT? 3 ways this technology is a new must for education


Over-The-Top (OTT) technologies have the potential to support some of education’s most innovative curriculum delivery initiatives.

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2. Online and blended Learning are big investors in OTT

Internet-based apps that can stream online learning content from myriad sources for a low cost is a perfect fit for blended and online learning initiatives taking hold in schools and institutions across the country.

Though K-12 may have to worry about filtering content, and both K-12 and higher education will have to monitor content quality, formal OTT online platform technologies include learning management systems (LMS), which often aid in filtering and monitoring; some popular examples include Blackboard, Desire 2 Learn and Canvas.

Less formal, but no less informative, OTT online learning examples include TEDEd, EdCast, and edX.

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3. OTT can support OER

Thanks to the White House K-12 initiative, GoOpen, more districts are being urged to get involved with Open Education Resources, and whole states have joined the movement. In higher education, faculty predict that OER use could triple in the next five years. The Virginia Community College System (VCCS) reports that 16 of their colleges are participating in the development of 70 OER courses, and the colleges’ use of OER in courses has saved students’ money and generated new revenue for the colleges by drawing more students to OER courses. Students were also more successful in OER pilot courses than in the equivalent textbook-based courses. California legislation has now been passed incentivizing the use of high-quality OER. The College Textbook Affordability Act of 2015 (AB-798) adds legislative force to the OER movement.

“Publishers, technology companies, educational institutions and software developers are working to figure out how to leverage these new access pathways,” writes Luskin. “Intelecom Learning, Inc., is an example of a not-for-profit educational resources company serving community colleges by providing OER resources integrated into Over-the-Top Technologies for use in online learning courses and programs.”

Meris Stansbury

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