Sunday, February 18, 2007

Princeton Questions Ed tech in their Classrooms

An article on the Daily Princetonian Web site reveals concerns that Princeton has with the use of ed tech in class, in particular, the use of lap tops and Powerpoint.

Apparently there are experiencing distracting uses of lap tops in class (IMing/YouTubing etc.) and they are looking to regulate, and not ban, lap top use. Also, Powerpoint is being questioned as a meaningful method of instruction.

I commend the Princeton community for their ability to look into these issues in a reasonable way with the goal of improving the quality of the learning experience for their students.

Jim :-)


Mike Muir said...

Let's hope that they really are looking at these issues in a thoughtful way. I've been involved with too many schools that blame students for being distracted by technology without also looking at what classroom management strategies the instructors are using - or if the the instruction is boring, for that matter! And, just as there are too many folks wanting to jump on the PPT band wagon, there are too many foks that jump to the other end and want to ban it when it isn't used well. Smart schools are looking at how to use PPT well!

Distraction and the usefulness of technology are complex issues and require thought into the complexities of the issue, not simple answers.

Jim Forde said...

Here is aa article describing a study that shows that lap tops in the college classroom may lead to lower grades??? (This could be the world's worst study, I haven't seen it.)

Click here

Of course I am assuming that the professors are using "sage on the stage" techniques which are driving the kids to the slightly more interesting youtube/facebook experience, but.... if you know you have a course with a Cornell professor like this, with content that is complex maybe the lap top should be closed?

Let's face it, that is the typical college classroom experience, is it not?

Jim :-)