Three Education Trends to Watch

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Technology is rapidly evolving, and subsequently, it has the power to transform different industries as well. Though schools and academia have not traditionally been the quickest to pick up on digital trends, that doesn’t mean that change isn’t happening. Today we’re exploring three education trends to watch. 

Artificial Intelligence

Businesses have been harnessing the power of artificial intelligence for its ability to rapidly process vast quantities of data and generate insights. Soon, the education sector can also be transformed with the adoption of this technology. Artificial intelligence is capable of performing tasks such as speech recognition, language translation, and decision-making. The best application for it so far is as a teaching tool, although supporters say that it may help to alleviate teacher shortages in the future. In the classroom, artificial intelligence is being used for personalized learning

Virtual Reality

According to education researcher Melissa Pelletier, “creative learning spaces play an important role in student engagement.” Virtual reality can do just that by creating immersive learning environments for students and help them to experience things like history, travel, and even STEM programs. Imagine virtual field trips through time and space that allow students a deeper and more personal understanding of the material. Products like Google Expeditions and various phone apps aim to make virtual reality affordable and accessible for all.  

Blockchain

Blockchain is a technology used to connect, house, and encrypt digital data. Through blockchain, the stored data is not centralized in any one location, making it publicly accessible, easily tracked, and very difficult to corrupt. As such, this has the potential to revolutionize the way that student and faculty records are stored, among a myriad of other possible applications.

Artificial intelligence, virtual reality, and blockchain the three digital trends at the top of our list for the 2019-2020 school year. What are some other trends in education that you think we should watch for in the coming year?  

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3 Ways That Education is Changing

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Our world is rapidly changing, and, as a result, our education system is quickly transforming as well. Here are three of the ways that American education is changing:

1. Personalization

Schools in 2019 are making moves towards personalization. Whereas once students were all taught the same way, today we recognize that some people learn differently than others. We also know that, although learning differences exist, they are not necessarily a reflection of intelligence or potential. These realizations have resulted in a collective effort to ensure that all students are being taught in a way that gives them the best chance of success.

Large-scale education is difficult to personalize, but schools are making efforts nonetheless. Private and public schools often address personalization differently. In general, though, teachers can personalize learning by incorporating several learning styles into their lessons. For example, a Kindergarten teacher may be teaching about the life-cycle of a butterfly. He or she could read about it to their students, show them pictures or videos, or bring in caterpillars and allow the students to witness the life cycle for themselves. The teacher will know what learning styles they need to incorporate for their unique body of students, but using methods that like this covers multiple learning styles— allowing each student to learn in their own individual way.

2. Technology

Technology is rapidly changing and infiltrating our education systems. It’s not unusual to see students as young as elementary-age with IPads or other tablets. Video has become commonplace in the classroom and will likely be seen even more in the future.

Online and blended classrooms, which are a mix of online and face-to-face meetings, are also becoming popular in schools throughout the US. The inclusion of technology in education has made it more accessible. Knowledge is easier to obtain than ever. Technology has also “breaks down the walls” of traditional education by allowing students to “travel” anywhere in the world with the help of video.

3. Standards

In the early 2000s, each US state had its own educational standards. These standards, however, were not consistent across the country. In one state, high schoolers could be required to know certain things or demonstrate specific skills to graduate. Meanwhile,  the high school students in a neighboring state may have been able to graduate without the same knowledge or skills. These discrepancies led us to the system of education we now know as “Common Core.”

Forty-one states have adopted the Common Core state standards. CoreStandards.org defines the Common Core as “a set of high-quality academic standards in mathematics and English language arts/literacy (ELA).” These standards were put into effect in 2009 after state leaders pulled together to create high and consistent goals for all students in American classrooms.

Although personalization and standardization seem to be opposite in some ways, both are being pushed in today’s education. We want all of our students to have the same opportunities to learn and succeed, but we also understand that’s it is necessary to ensure that standards are met in our schools. Personalization and standardization can work together if they are appropriately balanced.

We can expect to see our education system continue to change with new technology breakthroughs, new learning discoveries, and as standards are proven to be effective (or ineffective). Who knows what education will look like 20 years from now? Only time will tell.

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Is Law School for Everyone?

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Law school is one of those life-altering decisions that many people face, whether it’s a decision in their early years or later on, as a second career choice. In either case, it’s a major commitment that must not be entered into lightly.

The Cost

Unless you are independently wealthy, be prepared to pay a lot of money to get your law degree. After paying for four years of undergraduate school, there are still another four years of law school to pay for, in addition to exam fees ranging upwards of $200. The honest truth is the better the law school, the higher the likelihood of a decent clerkship and job offer upon graduation.

The Time

Getting a law degree takes time. Although any type of undergraduate degree is accepted in order to apply for a law school degree, there are some that provide a better backdrop than others. Degrees in history, philosophy, criminal justice, and political science are the areas of focus that will give you the best head start in pursuing a law degree. In addition to requiring an undergraduate degree and real-world law experience, a law degree demands a passing Law School Admission Test (LSAT) grade before getting into grad school. This is a test that measures analytical thinking, critical reading, and verbal reasoning in order to determine whether you are eligible to attend law school. Once accepted, plan on at least another four years of schooling. If you are working at the same time, you should budget accordingly. In many cases, it takes longer than eight years to achieve combined undergrad and postgraduate studies.

The Actual Job

Unhappiness is so common in the law industry there are blogs, books, and counselors solely devoted to soothing the souls of former attorneys. The main areas of contention are stress and discourteousness among colleagues as well as clients. Some people ended up choosing the quickest job opportunity after graduation, not prioritizing the type of industry they are truly seeking. Some are stunned to learn they aren’t hired by their dream job immediately after graduation. Some only wanted to make money but lacked any passion at all for this industry. There is an element of empathy and compassion for the human race that must be in place in order to pursue the field of law. Otherwise, a growing resentment will cause nonstop stress and hatred towards not only coworkers but the clientele you are supposed to advocate for.

By definition, the nature of the judicial system is going to be adversarial. Having a tough outer shell is paramount if one is to succeed as an attorney, regardless of which side of the opposing counsel fence they base their career choices on.  

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Law Schools Near Milton, Massachusetts

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Some of the finest law schools in the nation can be found in the northeast, namely in the state of Massachusetts. For those pursuing a legal education, the Milton area (a suburb of Boston) offers a variety of law schools, each with unique assets and specific criteria.

One of the most prestigious includes Harvard University whose law program has been accredited since 1923. Nearly 600 students graduate per year, and the acceptance rate is at 18-percent. Harvard Law School boasts the biggest academic law library around the globe. The estimated tuition and fees round out to about $59,000 per year.

Boston University offers an excellent number of programs including American law, banking and financial law, intellectual property law, tax law, and others under its JD and LLM departments. BU’s law program has been accredited since 1925, and about 210 law students receive their diplomas yearly.

Northeastern School of Law is another leading institution for those interested in legal education. The School of Law is highly regarded for its public interest law and cooperative legal education programs. Northeastern doesn’t have grades; instead, a narrative evaluation from professors replaces the traditional student rankings and letter and number grades.

Boston College Law School has an acceptance rate of 25-percent and has had an accredited law program since 1932. Estimated tuition and fees total about $50,000 per year. BC Law takes pride in ranking among the top 25 for graduates who pass the bar and secure full-time/long-term positions. Approximately 250 law students receive diplomas yearly.

Suffolk University Law School features a law program that has been accredited since 1953. Suffolk Law counts 23,000 graduates engaged in every area of legal practice globally, including all 50 states and 22 countries. Estimated tuition and fees run about $47,000 per year.

New England Law Boston graduates about 340 students per year, and the institution offers students an expert faculty, practical experience, and flexible programs. Students can participate in clinics featuring public interest law, criminal law, family law, immigration law and more.

Massachusetts School of Law offers a JD law degree program and has a 65-percent acceptance rate. It takes pride in being one of the most affordable and diverse law schools around. Estimated tuition and fees round out to about $1,000 per year.

from Marilyn Gardner Milton and Education http://bit.ly/2UOAhv8

Inspirational Commencement Speeches: Ellen DeGeneres

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Marilyn Gardner Milton - Inspirational Commencement Speeches - Elle DeGeneres

A few weeks ago, I came across a list of the greatest graduation speeches of all time. They were inspiring and made me reflect. Last month, I wrote about Joyce DiDonato’s speech at Juilliard’s 2014 commencement ceremony. This month, I’m writing about Tulane’s 2009 commencement speech by Ellen DeGeneres.

When Ellen DeGeneres graduated high school, she didn’t attend college like many of her other classmates. Instead, she began working odd jobs such as shucking oysters, bartending, painting houses, and selling vacuum cleaners. She didn’t know what she wanted to do and didn’t have a clear plan.

When she was 19, a tragedy struck her life. She was living in a poor, basement apartment with barely any belongings to call her own. Her mattress laid on the floor and the place was flea-infested. One day she was driving down the road, she passed a horrific car accident. Later that night she found out it was her partner that was in the crash and she had passed away.

She didn’t understand why this was happening to her, so she began to do some soul-searching. She thought, wouldn’t it be nice if she could just pick up the phone and ask God why? Instead, she decided to start writing. She wrote what her phone call with God would be like if she was able to give him a ring. Little did she know, this is what would become her big break. A few years later, she was on the Johnny Carson’s Tonight Show performing this one-sided phone call.

After a few years in the industry, she came out to the public, not for any political reasons but to free herself from the heaviness of living in shame and hiding her secret in fear of displeasing others. Through this, she experienced another incredibly difficult hardship. She lost her career, became isolated from friends and family, and wasn’t able to secure any job offers. During this challenging time, she was receiving letters from people, kids, who were ready to commit suicide because of who they loved, and it was Ellen’s bravery that had stopped them. One of the hardest times in her life showed her that she had a purpose on this earth.

In hindsight, Ellen wouldn’t change a thing that happened to her. She had to lose everything to make her realize what was truly the most important thing in life: being true to yourself. She no longer lives in fear and doesn’t carry any burdens of hiding secrets.

When she was young, she thought success meant becoming rich and famous, but she realized that the image of success changes as your grow. She sees success now as living your life with integrity, being an honest and compassionate human being, and finding a way to contribute to the world around you.

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Millennials are Impacting Higher Education

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Millennials are Impacting Higher Education - Marilyn Gardner Milton1Millennials, also known as Generation Y, have grown up in the era of technology. With the internet always at their fingertips, it’s no wonder they have adapted to learning differently than the generation that came before them. Educational institutions are beginning to take note of this however they are not adjusting quickly enough. Generation Z is only just around the corner from entering into higher education, and they will be even more plugged-in than the Millennials. So what are the Millennials doing to change higher education and what do these educational institutions need to do to adjust for the future?

Increase in the Popularity of Master’s Degrees

Millennials are not satisfied with just an Associate’s or a Bachelor’s degree anymore. With limited job opportunities awaiting these [people] when they finish their undergrad, many are opting to stay in school to complete a Master’s program before entering the real world.

According to Pew Research Center, professionals with a Master’s degree are earning 23% more today than their counterparts back in 1984. In comparison, those who only hold a Bachelor’s degree have seen an increase of just less than 13%. Bottom line: if a Millennial has their goals set on earning more money in their career, they are going to be looking for a Master’s program.

A Comfort in Online Learning

Some may argue that today’s youngsters know more about the internet than we do. With that, there is no surprise that they find learning online to be comfortable and natural. Roughly 6.7 million students are taking at least one online class during their time in college. And that doesn’t account for all the classes they’re taking that use online portals such as Blackboard to submit work, collaborate with classmates, and even complete quizzes or exams. Millennials have helped build this switch from learning in the traditional classroom setting to online, and Generation Z will demand it.

Flipped Classroom

Getting Millennials to participate in the traditional classroom setting can be difficult. The flipped classroom allows the student to become the teacher, encouraging high involvement and collaboration with their classmates. According to a study performed by NYU, the retention rate of students soared to 90% when they were put in a teaching role. The flipped classroom puts students in control of their educational journey and provides a more hands-on learning perspective.

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