Some interesting feedback re: the Bar Exam

Introduction

The National Conference of Bar Examiners’ (NCBE’s) Testing Task Force (TTF) is undertaking a comprehensive,future-focused study to ensure that the bar examination continues to test the knowledge, skills, and abilities required for competent entry-level legal practice in a changing legal profession. The collaborative study involves input from stakeholders at multiple phases and considers the content, format, timing, and delivery method for NCBE’s current tests, which make up all or part of the bar examination in most U.S. jurisdictions: the Multistate Bar Examination (MBE), the Multistate Essay Examination (MEE), and the Multistate Performance Test (MPT). The study also includes the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination (MPRE), which is administered by NCBE and required for admission in most U.S. jurisdictions.

This Executive Summary provides a synthesis of the stakeholder listening sessions conducted during Phase 1 of the study between November 2018 and June 2019. The purpose of these sessions was to solicit input from various stakeholder groups about characteristics and considerations for the next generation of the bar examination. The sessions were facilitated by ACS Ventures LLC (ACS), an independent psychometric consulting firm. Summaries of the stakeholder input from the sessions are appended to this Executive Summary.

 

From DSC:
Hmmm…I wonder what some design thinking experts might say about the complexities involved here:

  • The Multistate Bar Examination (MBE)
  • The Multistate Essay Examination (MEE)
  • The Multistate Performance Test (MPT)
  • The Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination (MPRE)

 

 

Research Posters Are a Staple of Academic Conferences. Could a New Design Speed Discovery? — from edsurge.com by Jeff Young

Excerpts:

Scholars around the world share their latest research findings with a decidedly low-tech ritual: printing a 48-inch by 36-inch poster densely packed with charts, graphs and blocks of text describing their research hypothesis, methods and findings. Then they stand with the poster in an exhibit hall for an hour, surrounded by rows of other researchers presenting similar posters, while hundreds of colleagues from around the world walk by trying to skim the displays.

Not only does the exercise deflate the morale of the scholars sharing posters, the ritual is incredibly inefficient at communicating science, Morrison argues.

Morrison says he has a solution: A better design for those posters, plus a dash of tech.

 

 

To make up for all the nuance and detail lost in this approach, the template includes a QR code that viewers can scan to get to the full research paper.

 

From DSC:
Wouldn’t this be great if more journal articles would do the same thing?  That is, give us the key findings, conclusions (with some backbone to them), and recommendations right away! Abstracts don’t go far enough, and often scholars/specialists are talking amongst themselves…not to the world. They could have a far greater reach/impact with this kind of approach.

(The QR code doesn’t make as much sense if one is already reading the full journal article…but the other items make a great deal of sense!)

 

 

Resources from Bluescape Brings Creatives Together to Ideate and Collaborate in New Ways at Cannes Lions 2019

  • Design with Greater Ease Using Bluescape on Wacom video <– From DSC: Very sharp!
  • Bluescape for Creatives – War Rooms video
  • Bluescape for Creatives – Review and Approve video
  • Bluescape for Creatives – Presentations and Storytelling video
  • Bluescape for Adobe Creative Cloud and Adobe XD page
  • Bluescape Speeds up UX/UI Design Cycle with XD Plugin video
 

15 of the best tools & resources for web designers in 2019 — from webdesignledger.com

Excerpt:

Digital design technology waits on no one. It’s forever changing, and web designers are forever having to seek ways to keep up with it. If there are any “evergreen” tools and resources that keep pace with the latest trends they are few. Except for upgrades and updates, of course.

The latest tools, apps, and resources can cope with the latest design trends. They are not difficult to come by. There is, in fact, an embarrassment of riches. So many that finding the right ones can actually be a challenge in itself.

Not all of them are top-of-the-line of course, and the best of the bunch is what you want and deserve. To help you out, we’ve put in place this nice little collection of top tools, apps, and resources. They’ll individually or collectively make your job easier. They help you keep up with the times and maintain a competitive edge.

 

 

40 of the Best Classic Fonts Picked by Professional Designers — from webdesignledger.com

classic fonts

 

 

40 of the Best Free Retro Fonts Picked by Professional Designers — from webdesignledger.com

 

retro fonts

 

 

 

Logo Design Guide: 7 Tips Moving into 2019 — from customlogocases.com with thanks to Anna Carter for this item

 

Excerpt:

A logo communicates a brand’s personality and identity in a visual format.

Often, first impressions about businesses and products are based upon logo artwork alone.

For that reason, it’s crucial that you get your design right first time.

Expert logo design requires a mixture of creative design skills, sound knowledge of theory and scrupulous application.

True mastery of can take years of time and patience.

So how can you make your brand stand out amongst a sea of skillfully designed logos? Read on to find out.

 

 

FDA approves HoloLens powered medical augmented reality system — from by Richard Devine
HoloLens might be about to make surgical procedures a whole lot different.

Excerpt:

From Healthimaging.com

OpenSight specifically utilizes the Microsoft HoloLens headset that allows simultaneous visualization of the 3D patient images in AR and the actual patient and their real-world surroundings. The technique may decrease operative times and improve surgical planning and the understanding of anatomic relationships.

 

 

Can virtual reality revolutionize education? — from cnn.com by Emma Kennedy

 

“Kids love to engage with [VR] lessons,” said Guido Kovalskys, chief executive and co-founder of US-based edtech company Nearpod. “One minute, they are learning about Roman history, and the next, they are transported to ancient Rome and are exploring the Colosseum.”

 

From DSC:
Ok, so the title is on the overhyped side, but I do think XR will positively impact learning, understanding.

 

 

University of Washington Researchers Demo Ability to Generate 3D Augmented Reality Content from 2D Images — from next.reality.news by Tommy Palladino

 

 

 

Age of Sail: Setting the course for virtual reality narratives in the future — from by Jose Antunes
The most ambitious project from Google Spotlight Stories is also the one that pushes the boundaries in terms of the creation of narratives in Virtual Reality: embark on Age of Sail.

Augmented Reality Remote Collaboration with Dense Reconstruction

 

Addendum:

  • VR & AR 2018: A year in review — from vrscout.com by Kyle Melnick
    Excerpt:
    If 2016 was the birth of modern VR/AR technology, than 2018 was its elementary school graduation. While this past year may have seemed like a quiet one when compared to the more exciting releases featured in 2017 and 2016, these past 12 months have been crucial in the development of the immersive entertainment sector.

    Major hardware releases, vast improvements to software, and various other integral advancements have quietly solidified VR & AR as viable, long-term technological platforms for years to come. So while there may not have been any bombshell announcements or jaw-dropping reveals per sey, 2018 will still go down as a key, if not climactic, year for VR & AR technology regardless.

    With a new year full of exciting possibilities ahead of us, let’s hang back a second and take a look back at 2018’s most pivotal moments.

 

 

 

From DSC:
Thanks to Mike Matthews for his item on LinkedIn for this.

 

 

 

Dezeen’s top 10 architecture and interiors trends of 2018 — from dezeen.com by Tom Ravenscroft

Excerpt:

For our review of 2018, deputy editor Tom Ravenscroft looks at the year’s biggest trends in architecture and interior design, including action to address gender imbalance, the rise of hyperloop and the move towards off-grid living.

 

 

 

Top Graphic Design Trends 2019: Fresh Hot & Bold — from graphicmama.com

  • Open compositions
  • 3D: Depth of a new generation
  • Anti-gravity: Flying & floating elements
  • Vivid colors & Dreamy color combos
  • Metallic effect: Golden, silver, iridescent
  • Fluid & liquid effect
  • Maxi typography
    Outline typography
  • Text with background
  • Alternative art
  • Realism + Flat mix
  • The color of the year 2019

 

Top 9 Logo Design Trends for 2019: The Brands’ New Looks — from graphicmama.com
9 trends that will dictate the rules of branding and logo design in 2019: bright & vibrant colors, gradients, minimalism and more!

 

 

30 of The Best Animated Explainer Videos in 2018 — from graphicmama.com

 

Also, you may want to check out their blog.

 

The Biggest Graphic Design Trends of 2019 [Infographic] — from socialmediatoday.com

Excerpt:

So what are the design trends set to dominate in 2019? The team from Venngage have put together this infographic which outlines their data-backed predictions for what’s coming, and where you should be looking in your process.

Definitely, these trends look like standing out – you can read Venngage’s full report here or check out the graphic below.

 

 

 

 
 

These 50 awesome book covers will inspire you – and teach you how to design your own — from canva.com

Excerpt:

The takeaway: White space doesn’t mean that the whole cover must be completely minimal. It can used as a device to focus the reader.

 

 

The Takeaway: I love lots of colors, but not every book needs a rainbow. In fact, only a few books should tackle more than two or three colors. If your book works with less colors, definitely go with less.

 

 

A Space for Learning: A review of research on active learning spaces — from by Robert Talbert and Anat Mor-Avi

Abstract:
Active Learning Classrooms (ALCs) are learning spaces specially designed to optimize the practice of active learning and amplify its positive effects in learners from young children through university-level learners. As interest in and adoption of ALCs has increased rapidly over the last decade, the need for grounded research in their effects on learners and schools has grown proportionately. In this paper, we review the peer-reviewed published research on ALCs, dating back to the introduction of “studio” classrooms and the SCALE-UP program up to the present day. We investigate the literature and summarize findings on the effects of ALCs on learning outcomes, student engagement, and the behaviors and practices of instructors as well as the specific elements of ALC design that seem to contribute the most to these effects. We also look at the emerging cultural impact of ALCs on institutions of learning, and we examine the drawbacks of the published research as well as avenues for potential future research in this area.

 

1: Introduction
1.1: What is active learning, and what is an active learning classroom?
Active learning is defined broadly to include any pedagogical method that involves students actively working on learning tasks and reflecting on their work, apart from watching, listening, and taking notes (Bonwell & Eison, 1991). Active learning has taken hold as a normative instructional practice in K12 and higher education institutions worldwide. Recent studies, such as the 2014 meta-analysis linking active learning pedagogies with dramatically reduced failure rates in university-level STEM courses (Freeman et al., 2014) have established that active learning drives increased student learning and engagement across disciplines, grade levels, and demographics.

As schools, colleges, and universities increasingly seek to implement active learning, concerns about the learning spaces used for active learning have naturally arisen. Attempts to implement active learning pedagogies in spaces that are not attuned to the particular needs of active learning — for example, large lecture halls with fixed seating — have resulted in suboptimal results and often frustration among instructors and students alike. In an effort to link architectural design to best practices in active learning pedagogy, numerous instructors, school leaders, and architects have explored how learning spaces can be differently designed to support active learning and amplify its positive effects on student learning. The result is a category of learning spaces known as Active Learning Classrooms (ALCs).

While there is no universally accepted definition of an ALC, the spaces often described by this term have several common characteristics:

  • ALCs are classrooms, that is, formal spaces in which learners convene for educational activities. We do not include less-formal learning spaces such as faculty offices, library study spaces, or “in-between” spaces located in hallways or foyers.
  • ALCs include deliberate architectural and design attributes that are specifically intended to promote active learning. These typically include moveable furniture that can be reconfigured into a variety of different setups with ease, seating that places students in small groups, plentiful horizontal and/or vertical writing surfaces such as whiteboards, and easy access to learning
    technologies (including technological infrastructure such as power outlets).
  • In particular, most ALCs have a “polycentric” or “acentric” design in which there is no clearly-defined front of the room by default. Rather, the instructor has a station which is either
    movable or located in an inconspicuous location so as not to attract attention; or perhaps there is no specific location for the instructor.
  • Finally, ALCs typically provide easy access to digital and analog tools for learning , such as multiple digital projectors, tablet or laptop computers, wall-mounted and personal whiteboards, or classroom response systems.

2.1: Research questions
The main question that this study intends to investigate is: What are the effects of the use of ALCs on student learning, faculty teaching, and institutional cultures? Within this broad overall question, we will focus on four research questions:

  1. What effects do ALCs have on measurable metrics of student academic achievement? Included in such metrics are measures such as exam scores, course grades, and learning gains on pre/post-test measures, along with data on the acquisition of “21st Century Skills”, which we will define using a framework (OCDE, 2009) which groups “21st Century Skills” into skills pertaining to information, communication, and ethical/social impact.
  2. What effects do ALCs have on student engagement? Specifically, we examine results pertaining to affective, behavioral, and cognitive elements of the idea of “engagement” as well as results that cut across these categories.
  3. What effect do ALCs have on the pedagogical practices and behaviors of instructors? In addition to their effects on students, we are also interested the effects of ALCs on the instructors who use them. Specifically, we are interested in how ALCs affect instructor attitudes toward and implementations of active learning, how ALCs influence faculty adoption of active learning pedagogies, and how the use of ALCs affects instructors’ general and environmental behavior.
  4. What specific design elements of ALCs contribute significantly to the above effects? Finally, we seek to identify the critical elements of ALCs that contribute the most to their effects on student learning and instructor performance, including affordances and elements of design, architecture, and technology integration.

 

Active Learning Classrooms (ALCs)

 

 

The common denominator in the larger cultural effects of ALCs and active learning on students and instructors is the notion of connectedness, a concept we have already introduced in discussions of specific ALC design elements. By being freer to move and have physical and visual contact with each other in a class meeting, students feel more connected to each other and more connected to their instructor. By having an architectural design that facilitates not only movement but choice and agency — for example, through the use of polycentric layouts and reconfigurable furniture — the line between instructor and students is erased, turning the ALC into a vessel in which an authentic community of learners can take form.

 

 

 

 

New Virtual 3D Microscope Lab Program Offered for Online Students by Oregon State University — from virtuallyinspired.org
OSU solves degree completion issue for online biology students

Excerpt:

“We had to create an alternative that gives students the foundational experience of being in a lab where they can maneuver a microscope’s settings and adjust the images just as they would in a face-to-face environment,” said Shannon Riggs, the Ecampus director of course development and training.

Multimedia developers mounted a camera on top of an actual microscope and took pictures of what was on the slides. Using 3D modeling software, the photos were interweaved to create 3D animation. Using game development software enabled students to adjust lighting, zoom and manipulate the images, just like in a traditional laboratory. The images were programmed to create a virtual simulation.

The final product is “an interactive web application that utilizes a custom 3D microscope and incorporates animation and real-life slide photos,” according to Victor Yee, an Ecampus assistant director of course development and training.

 

Also see:

  • YouTube to Invest $20 Million in Educational Content — from campustechnology.com by Dian Schaffhauser
    Excerpt:
    YouTube, a Google company, has announced plans to invest $20 million in YouTube Learning, an initiative hinted at during the summer. The goal: “to support education-focused creators and expert organizations that create and curate high-quality learning content on the video site.” Funding will be spent on supporting video creators who want to produce education series and wooing other education video providers to the site.

 

 

Reflections on “Are ‘smart’ classrooms the future?” [Johnston]

Are ‘smart’ classrooms the future? — from campustechnology.com by Julie Johnston
Indiana University explores that question by bringing together tech partners and university leaders to share ideas on how to design classrooms that make better use of faculty and student time.

Excerpt:

To achieve these goals, we are investigating smart solutions that will:

  • Untether instructors from the room’s podium, allowing them control from anywhere in the room;
  • Streamline the start of class, including biometric login to the room’s technology, behind-the-scenes routing of course content to room displays, control of lights and automatic attendance taking;
  • Offer whiteboards that can be captured, routed to different displays in the room and saved for future viewing and editing;
  • Provide small-group collaboration displays and the ability to easily route content to and from these displays; and
  • Deliver these features through a simple, user-friendly and reliable room/technology interface.

Activities included collaborative brainstorming focusing on these questions:

  • What else can we do to create the classroom of the future?
  • What current technology exists to solve these problems?
  • What could be developed that doesn’t yet exist?
  • What’s next?

 

 

 

From DSC:
Though many peoples’ — including faculty members’ — eyes gloss over when we start talking about learning spaces and smart classrooms, it’s still an important topic. Personally, I’d rather be learning in an engaging, exciting learning environment that’s outfitted with a variety of tools (physically as well as digitally and virtually-based) that make sense for that community of learners. Also, faculty members have very limited time to get across campus and into the classroom and get things setup…the more things that can be automated in those setup situations the better!

I’ve long posted items re: machine-to-machine communications, voice recognition/voice-enabled interfaces, artificial intelligence, bots, algorithms, a variety of vendors and their products including Amazon’s Alexa / Apple’s Siri / Microsoft’s Cortana / and Google’s Home or Google Assistant, learning spaces, and smart classrooms, as I do think those things are components of our future learning ecosystems.

 

 

 

New game lets players train AI to spot legal issues — from abajournal.com by Jason Tashea

Excerpt:

Got a free minute? There’s a new game that will help train an artificial intelligence model to spot legal issues and help close the access-to-justice gap.

Called Learned Hands—yes, it’s a pun—the game takes 75,000 legal questions posted on Reddit dealing with family, consumer, criminal and other legal issues and asks the user to determine what the issue is.

While conjuring up nightmares of the first-year in law school for many lawyers, David Colarusso says it’s for a good cause.

“It’s an opportunity for attorneys to take their downtime to train machine learning algorithms to help access-to-justice issues,” says Colarusso, director of Suffolk University Law School’s Legal Innovation and Technology (LIT) Lab and partner on this project with the Stanford Legal Design Lab.

 

From learnedhands.law.stanford.edu/legalIssues

When you play the game, you’ll be spotting if different legal issues are present in people’s stories. Some of these issues will be high level categories, and others will be more specific issues.

Here are the high level categories:

 

 

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