Audrey Watters

Audrey Watters is a journalist specializing in education technology news and analysis. She has worked in the education field for the past 15 years: as a graduate student, college instructor, program manager for an ed-tech non-profit. Although she was two chapters into a dissertation in comparative literature, she decided to eschew the professor track for a different path, and she now happily fulfills the one job recommended to her by a junior high aptitude test: freelance writer. She has written for Edutopia, MindShift, O'Reilly Radar, ReadWriteWeb, and The Huffington Post, in addition to her own blog Hack Education.

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Most Recent Articles

February 28, 2012
Bookrenter is spilling out a separate company today called Rafter, aiming to help offer universities better deliver course materials. This isn't just about finding cheaper textbooks (although that's part of it), but rather providing a technology infrastructure to help campuses better purchase, manage and distribute educational content.
February 22, 2012
Textyard has open sourced the tool it build for harvesting course and textbook data from college textbooks.  Textyard used this to build its textbook price comparison site, and now that the startup's founders are moving on to a new project, they're releasing the technology in the hopes that other students and programmers can build projects with it.  
February 21, 2012
Next week, InternMatch is offering what it's calling "the largest ever internship hangout" on Google+.  The startup, as its name suggests, helps match students with internship opportunities, challenging what it argues is a broken process on many campuses.  
February 18, 2012
A look at the 2012 Horizon Report and some thoughts about how the metaphor of "the horizon" -- always moving beyond reach -- works so well for ed-tech.
February 16, 2012
Inspired in part by a recent talk by Stephen Downes on "E-Learning Generations" and by the work I'm doing in thinking about how technologies enhance (or not) the way we learn, I've decided to start chronicling some of my own experiences -- two decades ago now -- getting my Bachelor's Degree by piecing together a series of distance learning, face-to-face, and correspondence courses.
February 8, 2012
Blackboard unveiled a new UI today, something that certainly seems a response to not just user complaints but to the flood of new learning management systems entering the market.  But is a UI change sufficient? A look at the Berlin-based iVersity shows a very different approach to thinking about what an online learning platform can be.
February 7, 2012
It's fairly clear that Silicon Valley has decided that education is a space ripe for "disruption."  But there's a lot of talk that "suddenly" technology and education are coming together.  This is a grossly a-historical way to think about ed-tech, one that ignores years of research, development, successes and failures.
February 2, 2012
Plenty of folks see the move to digital textbooks as "inevitable."  After all, more and more people are buying e-books and e-readers.  Yet college students in particular continue to turn up their noses to digital textbooks.  What assumptions are we making that lead us to think that digital textbooks are what students want, let alone need?
February 1, 2012
Tech bloggers were awake and ready in the wee hours of the morning to "live blog" the highly anticipated Facebook IPO today.  While the filing didn't come until later this afternoon, there's still going to be plenty of ink spilled over the numbers that it reveals. What's interesting to me as part of the S-1 filing is a letter from CEO and founder Mark Zuckerberg. In it, he speaks of "The Hacker Way" as part of the Facebook culture. When we think about how technology can and will change education, what's to be learned from this sort of philosophy?
January 25, 2012
Last week, I described the new iTunes U app as a "pseudo-LMS."  I've been thinking more about what that means -- about the implications of Apple's decision to re-present its educational content this way and how it contrasts to some of the education startups that are challenging what a LMS should look like.

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