NCTAF TLINC® Project Provides Support for edWeb.net Mobile App to Help Educators Be More Connected Through Online Communities


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PRINCETON, NJ — June 5, 2012: edWeb.net, a professional social and learning network for the education community, has announced the release of a mobile app that makes it easier for educators who are members of edWeb to keep up with their online community activity. The edWeb mobile app was developed with the support of the National Commission on Teaching & America's Future (NCTAF) and a grant from Qualcomm Incorporated's Wireless Reach™ initiative.

For the past year, the edWeb.net platform has been used to support NCTAF's Teachers Learning in Networked Communities (TLINC®) program. Building on TLINC 1.0, which connects nine university partners across the country to make educator development more collaborative and to give new teachers a stronger start in the profession, TLINC 2.0 empowers student teachers at five universities with mobile devices. Face-to-face and online professional learning communities encourage student teachers, mentor teachers, and faculty to reflect on their practice, share goals, progress, challenges, and lessons learned.

NCTAF provided funding for edWeb to develop a mobile app that would make it easier for cohorts of new teachers to stay connected to their faculty and advisors, and to each other, as they move into their teaching practice. The faculty and student teachers are using tablets and smartphones donated to the project by HTC and powered by 3G data plans from Kajeet for Education, to provide information on how mobile devices extend collaboration and how advanced wireless technologies can be used to conduct virtual observations and real-time on-the-spot coaching.

edWeb.net is a social networking and learning platform that makes it easy for educators to create online communities of practice to support improved communication and collaboration among all stakeholders in education. NCTAF began using edWeb.net as a platform to support the TLINC project, and also their STEM Learning Studios Project, just over a year ago.

Lisa Schmucki, founder and CEO of edWeb.net, commented, "We are so honored to have the opportunity to work with NCTAF and support the extraordinary work they are doing to help educators use online communities to improve teaching. Through NCTAF's support we have developed the edWeb mobile app and also advanced reporting to track progress and evaluate results. As the TLINC partners report on the results of the first year using edWeb, it is very rewarding to hear how online communities have been able to provide added support and connectedness for new teachers. The mobile app will support all of our edWeb members, and make it easier for educators to use online communities to move forward faster with any education initiative."

"NCTAF is proud to support and help test technologies that connect teachers across time and space," says NCTAF President, Tom Carroll. "We have seen, through our research and through our TLINC and Learning Studios programs, that when teachers work together collaboratively both face-to-face and online—and now with the mobile app, on-the-go—they can accomplish more for students than any of them could individually. We see the edWeb mobile app as a next step in providing teachers the tools they need to feel supported and satisfied in their work."

For more information on edWeb.net, contact Lisa Schmucki, Founder and CEO, at lisa@edweb.net or 908-407-2755.

For more information on NCTAF, contact Sofia Rivkin-Haas, Program Manager, at srivkin-haas@nctaf.org or 202-429-2570.

 

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