7 Skills Every Millennial Needs In 2018





Where do I start? A study by Change for Education recently revealed that 6 in 10 millennials lack basic tech skills. Mind-boggling, right?

It turns out that even though we spend about 35 hours per week on digital media, millennials tend to be unexpectedly illiterate when it comes to using technology to solve simple problems. The result, the nonprofit group says, is that about 13 million US millennials are oblivious to the impact their poor tech skills are having on their future success.

The research brought to light a paradox: that digital natives are not necessarily tech savvy.

The good news is that this is something we can, and should, fix.

I’ll only highlight one more thing from this particular research study, but it’s critically important.

You can boost your earnings by one-third with a small boost to your tech skills.

Yes, that’s all it takes to land a more profitable job – simply improve some easy tech skills.

So which skills are essential?

Vocabulary Improvement

Okay, okay, it’s not like your life always depends on the exact words you choose to use (although I could think of a couple of scenarios where specific words could put you in great danger). The thing is, words matter. Words create our reality and help us make sense of our experiences. But more importantly, words help us think better, think critically, and think more.

Improving your vocabulary means having more concepts to think about and speak with. A good vocabulary helps you make the best first impressions, whether that’s with a new acquaintance or a job interviewer.

Speed Reading

Going through your Facebook feed with lightning fast speed doesn’t qualify as speed reading. (What a pity, I know!)

Being a speed reader is fun. Scratch that. It is essential. Just consider the sheer amount of reading you need to go through every day right now. Now think about all of the text you could be absorbing if you could do that reading even faster. The knowledge you can potentially accumulate in just a few weeks is mind-blowing.

Touch Typing

Yes, we might be speaking in emojis these days rather than actual words, and retinal scanning may replace passwords for online banking at some point, but for now, written communication via conventional words is not going away.

So learn to touch type. And learn it the right way – not that awkward hunt and peck method that makes you look like you’re a Martian seeing a QWERTY keyboard for the first time.

Digital communication is here to stay. From catching up with your friends to taking online courses boosting your knowledge in multiple fields, you need touch typing efficiency more than ever.

Your soft skills and personality might impress a potential employer, but you also need hard skills like how to make a presentation and efficiently operate software. You need the ability to present data in a comprehensible visual way, using words as well as images, and your keyboarding speed has an impact on how well you do that.

IT Skills For Everyone

If you think that IT tech skills are only something designers, programmers, and other tech-related professionals need, think again.

Basic skills such as email etiquette, understanding and compiling spreadsheets, interpreting and reporting graphic and numeric illustrations, and of course doing sound online research are survival skills in the competitive marketplace – and if you don’t have those skills, you won’t be winning that competition.

To take your career into the next decade, even a millenial needs to focus on keeping up to speed on these essential tech tools.


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All The Keyboard Shortcuts You Can Use




Keyboard shortcuts has been very useful in our daily touch typing lives. It saves us time and energy when we are writing our essay, doing our assignments and tasks, or in our daily work. However, we have only learned the very common keyboard shortcuts – Copy (Ctrl + C) and Paste (Ctrl+V).

A lot of us have been wondering how many keyboard shortcuts are available for use. We have not realized that there are actually more keyboard shortcuts we could use aside from the Ctrl+C and Ctrl+V. However, keyboard shortcut keys would depend on what device you are using. Windows OS, Apple, Linux and Unix has different keyboard shortcuts, so users with this device might wonder why Windows shortcut keys is not applicable to Apple shortcut keys (and vice versa).

Here are the list of Shortcut Keys depending on what device you will be using:

  • Windows OS Keyboard Shortcut Keys (with Special Characters)
  • Mac OS Keyboard Shortcut Keys
  • Linux and/or Unix Shortcut Keys

Windows OS Keyboard Shortcut Keys (with Special Characters)

Keyboard shortcut keys for Windows Operating System consists of 36 shortcuts for the basic and 22 shortcuts for special characters.

The table below shows you the complete list of the Basic Keyboard Shortcut Keys for Windows Operating System:

Another list of keyboard shortcut keys for Special Characters is provided here:

Mac OS Keyboard Shortcut Keys

Mac Operating System has similar shortcuts with Windows Operating system. However, the keys used are different from the latter. For the list of keyboard shortcuts using Mac OS, see table below:

Linux and/or Unix OS Keyboard Shortcut Keys

For Linux and/or Unix users, there are only 16 keyboard shortcut available.


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It Happens Every Four Years – And It Happened 2 Years




2016 was a leap year, and that means we had an extra day in February. This only happens every four years, so it is customary for people to celebrate in different ways on February 29. But many people are unaware of how this curious custom started.

Why do we have a leap year every four years in the first place?

To answer this question we need to go a few hundred years back. For the sun to make a full circle around our planet it takes 365 days plus a little more – about five to six hours.

But as you already know, the Gregorian Calendar (the calendar used by most countries as a calendar system) only contains 365 days spread out over 12 months. So what happens to that one-third of an hour?

You’re already figuring it out, I can tell. It takes three years for this 0.24 of a day to make up a whole day. We add an extra day to February every fourth year to make up for this discrepancy.

Why does it matter?

Calendars have one goal: to ensure people can properly understand and predict the seasons and the weather. If we were to omit adding one day every four years, eventually the seasons would not be in sync with our calendars.

On paper it would say May, but in terms of seasonal temperatures, it might feel like August or December, depending on how out of synch it was that year. Imagine the chaos!

If you’re a bit of a history nerd you’ll love this. Back in the days of the Roman Empire the calendar had only 355 days. To account for those extra days that the sun needed to complete its orbit, the Romans use to add a whole month – yes, a whole month – to their calendars every two years.

But when Julius Caesar became emperor of Rome in the 1st century AD, he decided that he wanted a more straightforward system. That’s when Sosigenes, the astronomer Caesar employed, created the Julian calendar, with 365 days in normal years and 366 days every fourth year.

But wait – we don’t use the Julian calendar today!

That’s because for some people, even this Julian adjustment wasn’t enough. About five hundred years later, the Gregorian calendar was created to account for a much smaller (0.002%) discrepancy.

It was a change driven by the needs of the Roman Catholic Church, which decreed that the Easter celebrations were to be held on or close to the spring equinox (end of March).

After five centuries of observing the Julian Calendar, Easter was getting farther and farther from the spring equinox, something the Church was not happy with. That’s why Pope Gregory XIII introduced the Gregorian Calendar. It was first adopted by Catholic countries in Europe, and eventually by most countries around the world, as a way to make international trade and communication more convenient.

Why the extra day is added to February and not another month?

This is a question many people have. Today, every other month has 30 or 31 days – but this was not always the case.

When Julius Caesar was emperor, July – the month named after him – had 31 days and August had 29. When Caesar Augustus succeeded Julius Caesar, he too wanted the month named after him (August) to have more than just 29 days. So he borrowed two days from February.

It’s good to be king! (Or emperor, in this case.)

Teaching Touch Typing Still Important for our Children





There’s a worrying trend that’s being observed in schools around the globe. With the majority of children learning to touch type on smartphones and laptops before they get a chance to have a formal touch typing class, many schools have decided to take keyboarding classes out of the curriculum.

The argument is that many students are already aware of a touch typing techniques and using learning hours to teach an already mastered skill seems like a waste of time and resources. But is this really the case?

We think not.

While there are admittedly many other topics a student can also learn during a computer science or English class, touch typing shouldn’t be eliminated entirely.

As most self-taught touch typists would confirm, this strategy is not exactly mistake-proof or fast. Using two to four fingers to touch type while you could utilize all ten for a faster, less taxing touch typing method doesn’t make much sense.

The hunt-and-peck method can be really efficient, however, as one study has shown. Even using two or three fingers has allowed many users over time to learn how to touch type fast and with pretty impressive accuracy. However, none of the study participants showed astonishing typing speed, signifying that there’s indeed an optimal way to touch type. And that way involves a steady palm and all ten of your fingers.

QWERTY’s insanity and our refusal to adopt better layouts

The QWERTY keyboard was designed on a simple premise. To help the typist type faster, the letters needed to be in a sequence that would make the process of finding the next letter slow enough to not jam the typewriter’s mechanics. So, essentially, it made you touch type slowly to touch type faster.

The QWERTY layout became so popular that despite better, faster and more ergonomic keyboards coming to existence, we’re stubbornly sticking to the fancy, quirky QWERTY. Its ubiquity is loudly proven by the fact that most formal touch typing courses online and offline are on about the QWERTY keyboard layout.

Touch typing is an automatic skill: Optimizing it can only benefit students

By the time a student enters high school, 99% of assignments must be typed. And as students advance to higher grades, their typing assignments become longer and more numerous. This is a great cause of stress for students who are suddenly in a situation where the tools for their learning performance suddenly prove to be sub par. The hunt-and-peck method is irritatingly slow, typos eat up your study time, and you even start to feel that fingers become numb through excessive pecking on the keyboard.

Training our children to touch type

Teaching children to touch type the right way has many advantages for their school performance. Touch typing, just like riding your bike and tying your shoelaces, is an explicitly learnt and eventually automatic skill.

Once you’ve learnt how to do it your brain no longer wastes cognitive energy to perform it. When you’re touch typing the process is automatic, unconscious. You touch type without thinking where a key lies, your finger traces it without you having to hunt for it. This saves you time by eliminating the looking up and down at your keyboard, but also touch typing doesn’t mess up your focus. You’re touch typing your thoughts automatically so you’re able to focus on the thoughts, their accuracy and quality (rather than being consumed with worry and flustered because you keep hitting the “W” instead of the “Q”).

That’s one of the most important benefits that trained touch typists enjoy, in fact. By freeing up their brain, they are gaining an advantage because their cognitive energy can be focused on more important, high-order thinking tasks that ultimately improve academic performance.


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Does True Bilingualism Exist? (Guest Post)





Helen Birke


The extensive world history narrates us about individuals, who know and speak more than only one language. These people are known as polyglots. Although learning several languages was not their main activity, still, they did it pretty well (some of them did it perfectly). K. Luke, Steve Kaufmann, George Fernandes, Trevor Noah, Benny Lewis, Kostyantyn Tyschenko and more – they are known as one of the greatest polyglots in history.  However, did they perceive themselves as bilinguists? The ability to speak more than one language does not mean that you are a bilingual person.

There are as many definitions of what true bilingualism is, as there are bilingual people on Earth. It means the ability to speak two languages with the fluency of a native speaker; the frequent use by a community of two languages; the institutional recognition of two languages.

The bilingualism as a feature of progress

In the modern world, everything is developing rapidly – the economy, science, technologies and the need to speak several languages. Most people can speak a few languages these days (for example, English and Spanish), but there is nothing to wonder about. Bilingualism is a common phenomenon today. Therefore, its development is a supporting evidence of this fact. Perhaps, in a few decades, we will witness an expansion of languages used by the certain mediums.

Today, the appearance of new processes leads to the creation of new ways of communication. And a necessity in new words means the development of bilingual process and language complexity.

So what a modern bilingualism really is? Is that a single language with a set of terms for different spheres, or is it a possibility to speak two different languages at the same time? This is a controversial and complex question, which requires a little research. 

A modern world creates some perfect conditions for the bilingual language development. New York, Los Angeles, Seattle, London, Moscow, Berlin, Kiev, Beijing and some other big multicultural cities all over the world have already become the hearts of multilanguage development. The best examples of these “hearts” are:

  1. Brighton Beach, New York – a neighborhood of New York City, where you can hear more Russian words, than the English ones;

  2. Chinatown, Los Angeles – a Chinese-culture neighborhood near the downtown of LA, where most of the citizens have Chinese roots and near the half of them have Chinese origin;

  3. Ukraine – a country in the South-Eastern Europe, where more than 50 percent of people speak Russian (Ukrainian is a national language of Ukraine).

The globalization

The modern society and advanced technologies influence our young generation, bringing up the bilingual children. Our kids become a part of the global world and carriers of the global language. The globalization of compact devices and web technologies leads to their rapid spread. While in 2005 it was a dream to have a mobile phone with monochrome screen and buttons, ten years later the smartphones (which are the descendants of the cell phones) can compete even with PC’s and notebooks! So, as even the children start to use tablets, smartphones, and computers from the early age, there is a pressing need in a language, which can become global.

As the bilingual definition is standing for the knowledge and skills of two languages, English has already become a perfect variant to become a global one:

  1) simplicity – one of the easiest languages in the world to study;

  2) global extension – you can hear English in every continent of the planet;

  3) diversity – English has different dialects in different countries and diverse cultures;

  4) history – the history takes part from lingua Latina, but English that we know today is a pretty young language.

As a modern bilingual person, we can take a look at bloggers, musicians, actors, and writers. They might come from different countries (Russia, Germany, India, China, Nigeria or Mexico). However, they use English to share their knowledge and their emotions to the rest of the world.

The future forecast

Although English has already become a global language, there are also some other directions, which can develop globally. The reason for this phenomenon is a active development of the Eastern Asia and its influence for the rest of the world. Some countries of this region lead to the elaboration of the modern technologies and show rapid grow up in the economy.

The best ways to be bilingual

Speaking the different language is a skill, the same thing which is the driving, the singing or physical exercises – it will not hold on without practice. Different language carriers give several pieces of advice about how to keep the language level up and not to forget the vocabulary or grammar:

The mother practice

This is the most important activity in the process of language learning. In fact, the more time you devote to practice the language, the quicker you will gain more skills. The linguists have conducted the experiment – they placed people into the environment with the language these people studied. The results have shown the mode of incredibly effective skills. You can listen to the music, watch videos, and speak to the other people, who speak a particular language. This is the best practice.

The age matters

People who start learning the language in the early (4-8 years) experience fewer difficulties in this kind of activity (even it’s English, one of the most languages in the world). While the people who start learning the language much later experience a lot of stress. This is a feature of humans’ intellect, which responses to the knowledge better in the early age.

The stimulus is a big half

“You will make it if you want it!” You will learn the language much quicker if you want to learn it if you have a stimulus. When you have it your body function a little bit different than usually, and you have more energy for certain activity. In other words, y  ou will be glad to learn the language.

Although English has already become a global language, there are also some other directions, which can develop globally. The reason for this phenomenon is a active development of the Eastern Asia and its influence for the rest of the world. Some countries of this region lead to the elaboration of the modern technologies and show rapid grow up in the economy.

Dealing with Discrimination and Harassment in Universities (Guest Post)





Helen Birke


By the XX century, each country had a fixed law about the women’s subordination to men. The man had a dominant position in the family, property rights belonged to the husband, parents decided who would marry their daughter. The women had no right to financial independence, do not dispose of the property, did not have a passport without getting the husbands’ permission, did not choose a place for living. Discrimination consists of all these factors.

This is one of the most wide-spread forms of violence and human rights violation. Harassment is a lack of respect for the actions and convictions, which are not alike someone’s own. It also relates to the penalization of the people we apprehend as others, just like members of particular social or ethnic groups, or people with different political or sexual orientation. Harassment can occur in various actions, ranging from avoiding such members, rude speech, and ending bodily injury or even murder. Discrimination arose when one treated less favorably than another did in a similar situation just because he is, or is considered as belonging to a particular social category. Humanity is discriminated because of their, ethnicity, national origin, age, disability, political beliefs, race, religion, language, culture, gender orientation, and other reasons.

The concept of equity and anti-discrimination registered in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights:

“All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.” The state duty is to protect minorities and vulnerable groups of unequal treatment. Article 2 establishes a freedom from discrimination: “Everyone is allowed to get all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without any exceptions.”

Discrimination and harassment are usually based on or justified by prejudices and stereotypes about people and social groups, which are a practical expression of them. Some prejudices may turn into ideology. One of them is the ideology of racism. It includes an offensive behavior against youth because of their supposed “inferiority.” Unfortunately, this phenomenon is present in modern European society even today.

The discrimination policy against women based on gender factor (this form is also called sexism) includes discrimination against transgender and transsexual whose gender identity does not match, or the cultural identity is not connected with their defined gender.

LGBT suffer from diverse forms of violence that range from verbal harassment to murder. In many cities and countries, LGBT people are deprived of their rights, for example, the right to have a job when the employers fire them because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. The right to safety and security is one more that is often disrupted when the young people experience bullying at school or harassment in the workplace. Homosexual couples in many European countries are experiencing discrimination policies in areas such as the right to marriage, the right to a family and a foster child.

Education, both formal and informal, takes a central place in the reduction and elimination of prejudice against LGBT people. Just with the help of this phenomenon one can fight and destroy prejudice. Program of the European Youth Centers and the European Youth Foundation regularly conduct educational activities and sessions for human rights training and activists to fight homophobia.

There are a plenty of actions to combat discrimination and racism in the education sphere too, including: legal actions to enforce the anti-discrimination right; anti-discrimination and non-harassment policy that increase awareness of the principles of prejudice and intolerance and their impact on the discrimination and oppression of the people; and promote understanding of diversity and promote tolerance. Activities of civil society that condemns discrimination and prejudice, oppose disgraceful crimes and offensive speech, assists victims of discrimination or promote changes in legislation.

Teachers realize the necessity of developing a tolerant attitude in each person and creating a learning environment that recognizes the benefits of versatility and does not ignore it. As part of the development, those who work with children or young people should understand their own and others’ discriminatory behavior to get rid of it.

An intercultural learning is a process of studying diversity and is the central approach in European youth work. In the youth field of the Council of Europe Intercultural learning is presented as “the process of social education aimed at encouraging positive relationships between people and groups with different cultural traditions” that promotes mutual respect and solidarity.


About the author: Helen Birk

is a professional blogger and freelance short-story writer for the popular site EdubirdieAU. She strives to solve students’ career and university problems. Having an interest in law and justice, Helen spends her free time visiting various education courses. Her lifestyle credo is “Actions speak louder than words.”

Issues Graduate Students Are Facing (Guest Post)




Donna Moores


By the time they are nearing graduation, college students should be aware that the college years, for all the good they bring, are far from being easy and carefree. According to the data from the 2016 Annual Report by the Center for Collegiate Mental Health, exactly half of the students in the United State have attended counseling for mental health concerns. When compared to the data on the national level, which shows that roughly 18% of United States residents aged 18 and above have a mental health issue, it’s evident that students are an especially vulnerable part of the population.

According to the CCMH report, the main mental health concern students face are issues with anxiety, followed by depression, stress, family issues, and academic performance. And while it would be possible write off some of those issues as growing pains everyone faces on their road to adulthood, it would be hard to deny that students, especially those nearing their graduation, are facing some real hardships.

The Pressure of Students’ Finances

The amount of student loan debt in the United States is reaching a critical point, so much so that some, including Forbes, are calling it a crisis. As of 2017, there were forty-four millions of Americans with total student loan debt of $1.44 trillion, or almost $32,000 per person. More than one in ten people who have student loan debt has troubles keeping up with the loan payments.

What makes these numbers really troubling is the fact that, between the years 1990 and 2015, more than 70% of students have been working while in college, according to a Georgetown University research. Just in 2011, 72% of college students were working, as were 82% of grad school or professional school students.

Loans don’t have to be a student’s first choice for financing studies – in fact, students are advised to look for grants and scholarships before applying for a loan. If that doesn’t help, students might want to apply for loans with a fixed interest rate that’s tax-deductible. To reduce the financial pressure, students can also apply for loans that don’t require them to make payments while they’re in college. The most common student loans are the federal ones, which usually meet all of the criteria.

End-of-Study Struggles

While students facing graduation worry about their financial situation and try to reduce their reliance on student loans as much as possible, they also have to meet their academic requirements. Students nearing graduation also have very little time for anything besides preparing for exams and going to work. Those who want to continue their education need to think about taking the GRE, LSAT, GMAT, or MCAT. Those who are finishing a master’s degree program need to think about their thesis.

Blow off some steam is paramount for students nearing their graduation.  It’s important to fit in some relaxing, fun, enjoyable activities even though it might seem as they have very little time for anything apart from studying and working. Maintaining a good mindset, eating a healthy diet, getting enough of sleep are some of the things that can help students feel less stressed. They will also increase the students’ productivity, and as long as the students start organizing their time early enough, all of these things can become a habit well before the chaos of those final months sets in.

Joining the Workforce

Even though the majority of students work through their college, finding a job once they finish their studies is a major concern. The post-college employment statistics from 2015 show that almost 89% of 20- to 24-year-olds with a bachelor’s degree or higher are employed, as are almost 83% of 25- to 64-year-olds with the same level of education. No one wants to find themselves in the percentages that are not able to find a job after graduation, and getting a well-paying job can be paramount given the current state of student loan debt.

There are many strategies graduate students can use to make sure they are prepared for the moment they send out their first resume. The latest infographic from HandMadeWritings outlines some of the necessities and challenges of modern job hunting, and it can guide students through the whole process of finding a job – from identifying the skills employers are looking for, to writing a resume and preparing for an interview.


Author’s Bio


Donna Moores is a professional recruiter and a writer who aims to help people find a job of their dream. She has spent more than 5 years to gain an outstanding HR experience within biggest industries and businesses. Follow her on FB and check out her Professional Blog.

10 Ways Technology Is Improving Education




Without controversy, technology has improved human lives today than ever. People in the 21st century are completely powerless without science and technology. Consider cooking, reading, playing, communications and any other important human endeavor, technological progress is literally our lifeline.

We can, however, decide to use these helpful devices for our good or watch it take over our lives from us. It’s all our choice.


According to research from Pew Research Centre, over 95% of Americans now have a cell phone. Almost 80% of them also use smartphones, and the number keeps flying on other similar devices. The world is already, willingly and graciously, hooked to technology.

The impact of technology on education system is growing rapidly and daily. It’s practically impossible to soar in your academics, whether as a teacher or a learner, without deploying the powers of tech for education. From reading, organizing your resources, presenting your works in a most fascinating and convincing form to reaching details that are practically impossible for humans within the limited timeline we are constantly hooked today, tech in education is redefining the template and the rules of research and learning.

The question, therefore, is: how do we deploy advanced technology to boost education and learning?

The Power of Technology in 21st Century Education

The focus of this work is to explain how technology improved education globally. And, of course, how we can we yet get the best from it.

Today, there are a countless number of gadgets and apps that are in use to enhance the quality of teaching and learning globally. From Laptops, smart phones, Ipad, notepads, educational apps and many other online resources, education can be as efficient as it is effective. If properly applied, these resources can give a user the power of a battalion.

As graphically illustrated above, you can seamlessly get through the stress of countless books through the power of IT. Leading schools all over the world are now deploying quality and brilliant technology-enhanced educational resources to make complicated and hectic learning processes seamless and simple.

Let’s consider some of the benefits of these resources to educations

Excellent Communications

The hallmark of education itself is communications and learning. How successful the concept to be thought or learned is communicated will mostly drive the success of the whole purpose of education. Fortunately, good resources and presentations will ensure excellent communication.

The figure above showed what happened to a well-communicated lesson that deploys the use of technological resources and tools.

Accessibility

Learning and education have never been more accessible than now. Thanks to progress. It takes only a couple of buttons to access resources from anywhere around the world, no matter your distance.

A number of resources online and the ease at which they can be accessed are simply mind-blogging. Today, many schools offered complete degree programs online. Interestingly, the learners will receive all the resources needed to have the complete expertise required for the awards of their honors.

Clarity

The colourful nature of multimedia materials plus the clarity it brings to the subject cannot be ignored. Technology brings lessons and classes out so real that it will take learners extra efforts not to understand them.

There is no better way to bring a class alive than deploy the right IT tool.

Portability

One of the biggest advantages of technology on education is that it allows you own and use a large number of materials and resources without a thought for space and size. Millions of books and other multimedia resources can be kept on a gadget that is of the size a notebook.

Ease of use and portability has never been made so simpler.

Speed and Organization

There are many resources online that are designed to organize your work, give you leads and buy you quality time. With them, you save time, you learn better and have your works excellently organized.

Though some these come at a price, you will still find many free versions online.

Check up one of such resources at https://www.spreeder.com/

Research and Collaboration

There are also IT tools that give you access to a large number of materials and resources. In return, your research works receive a huge boost in term of quality and size of materials used. At the same time, you are allowed to network and collaborate with other learners and teachers working on similar ideas and concepts.

Without mincing words, technology and education are perfect recipes for teaching and learning.

Improved Teacher-learner Experience

The use of technology also allows the lesson or classes taken to come out in clearer and more tangible forms. The colorful, multimedia displays; the exactness and details of the pictures used and the motion pictures used in a lesson that deploys the use of multimedia materials are bound to improve learning and teaching experiences.

Here are a group of children using multimedia tools for learning.

Learning Beyond the Classroom

Learning hasn’t been more fun than it is now. The quality of IT-enhanced materials to the crystal details of the academic contents is excellent. Technology in schools has allowed learning sneaks seamlessly out of the classroom.

Technology has made learning beyond the walls of the classroom fun. It also makes discussion, submission of works and collaboration easy and smooth.

Technology Drives Learners’ Motivation

A teacher in the United States was quoted to have said: “Technology is the Ultimate Carrot!” There are exciting and practical impulses that drive learning and motivate both the learners and the teachers to get better.

An investigation conducted by PBS Learning Media says 74% of teachers agreed that using information technologies for teaching promotes learning among students.

Just as it has affected other aspects of lives, the place of IT in educations is unequivocally central and incontestable. More so, technology in schools will continue to affect and improve education in the coming years more than ever.


Author’s Full Biography


Robert Everett is a blogger and publisher for EduBirdie, a former associate professor at University of Southern California. Nowadays he is working on his new education materials for upper secondary school. His lifestyle credo is “Education is the ability to listen to almost anything without losing your temper or your self-confidence” ? Robert Frost.

What is Ergonomic Keyboard & How Is It Designed?





Ergonomic keyboards are keyboards designed for professionals, students, and anyone else who is required to touch type repetitively and for long amounts of time

An ergonomic keyboard has specific design features to ensure a pleasant and pain-free keyboarding experience, even if you touch type for the greater part of your eight-hour long work day.

Ergonomic Keyboards: A Definition

To understand what an ergonomic keyboard is, you must first understand why they were created in the first place.

Normal keyboards are not what you call optimal when it comes to how they’re designed. They often value form over function, or are just plain painful to use, hear, and work on.

Common keyboards, usually older versions, are not ideal for repetitive keyboarding because they haven’t been designed with user comfort in mind. They force you to place your wrists at uncomfortable flat positions and over time they damage or inflame your tendons, often resulting in carpal tunnel syndrome (among other health issues).

On the other hand, an ergonomic keyboard has been designed for optimum user comfort and performance. It keeps your wrists and hands at a position that feels more natural for your wrists, making it easy to touch type for hours on end without any issue.

An ergonomically designed keyboard offers the support you need to touch type without putting your hands’ health at risk.

Ergonomic Keyboards Recommended by Health Professionals

Ergonomic keyboards are designed for minimizing your risk for repetitive stress injury and carpal tunnel syndrome. As a result, by using such a keyboard you can touch type for more hours without worrying about wrist or finger inflammation. Of course, applying the whole spectrum of ergonomics at the office is what will ensure you stave off any office-related injuries. An ergonomic keyboard is not a cure-all.

Health professionals recommend the use of ergonomic keyboards in the workplace as they can help the user touch type faster and avoid muscle and tendon strain.

How are ergonomic keyboards designed?

There’s no standard layout for an ergonomic keyboard. However, you can probably identify a typical ergonomic keyboard by its curvy, modern, and well-designed structure.

A preferred layout is the split-keyboard ergonomic keyboard, in which the keys are separated into two distinct areas, one for the left and one for the right hand.

However, the majority of QWERTY keyboards nowadays are also ergonomic in the sense that they feature things like:

– A palm rest that’s often slightly elevated and with a soft cushion to offer comfort to your wrists and palms.

– A slanted position that feels more natural for your wrists. This is the optimal wrist position to avoid repetitive stress injury. Ergonomic keyboards give you the support you need to lay your wrists horizontally.

– Contours that have the advantage of reducing the amount of effort it takes to strike a key, and also enabling you to place your arm and wrists in a position that feels more natural to you. In other words, ergonomic keyboards are shaped based on the natural contour of your hand (rather than forcing your hands and wrists to assume an uncomfortable position that strains your muscles and ligaments).

Even if you don’t use an ergonomic keyboard or cannot afford one you can use ergonomic accessories like a palm support rest or a stand-alone numeric keyboard to make touch typing more comfortable.


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Studying for the GRE: Words in Context





One of the best features of the Vocab1 program is the opportunity it gives you to gain confidence in using new words by learning how to use them correctly in context. We provide numerous examples, as well as exercises that help you practice selecting the most appropriate word to complete a sentence. If you’re studying for the GRE, practicing sentence completion is an important part of your test preparation.

Here’s an example of a sentence-completion exercise:

The research assistant attempted to duplicate the professor’s laboratory tests, but the instructions he left for her to follow were so ____________ that her results never __________.

a) detailed … corresponded
b) outdated … differed
c) ambiguous … matched
d) precise … matched
e) illegible … finished

First, read the sentence to yourself and get a sense of its meaning. In this example, the sentence has a negative tone; you can see this by the use of the words attempted, but, and never. Keep this general idea in mind as you look at the pairs of words to choose from.

Let’s look at option (a): detailed and corresponded. If you fill these words in, the sentence says that the instructions were so detailed that the results never corresponded, or matched. This doesn’t make sense, because usually the more detailed the instructions are in a laboratory experiment, the more chance there is of getting the same result every time. The only way this would make sense is if the instructions were TOO complicated. Option (d) also uses a positive word in the first position, and another one in the second position. Using this pair of words, the sentence says that the instructions were so precise (accurate and easy to follow) that the results never matched. Again, this doesn’t make sense.

Filling in the blanks with the pair of words in option (b) gives us the statement that the instructions were so outdated that the results were the same every single time. Outdated generally means “no longer accurate” so it wouldn’t make sense that her tests, using bad data, would match his results. In addition, the assistant is trying to duplicate a set of results (and therefore “never differed” would be a good thing); however, the word but implies a negative outcome.

Option (e) looks like a good choice at first: the instructions were so illegible (hard to read) that the results never finished. Wait a minute, though – “results” don’t “finish.” If the sentence read “… that she could never finish the tests” then we could consider this pair, but as it is, the sentence would not be grammatically correct, so we can eliminate this option.

We’re left with option (c). Using these words turns the sentence into a statement that the results were so ambiguous, or unclear, that her results never matched his. The meaning of the sentence makes sense in context, and the sentence is grammatically correct. By first determining the overall intent of the sentence and then comparing all possible choices, we’ve come up with the right answer.

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