Yet as a new school year begins, the time may have come to reconsider how large a role technology can play in changing education. There are promising examples, both in the United States and abroad, and they share some characteristics. The ratio of computers to pupils is one to one. Technology isn’t off in a computer lab. Computing is an integral tool in all disciplines, always at the ready.
The educational bottom line, it seems, is that while computer technology has matured and become more affordable, the most significant development has been a deeper understanding of how to use the technology.
מאמרון חדש של שילה וובר, ב-Information Literacy Weblog, מצביע על הצד הפחות אופטימי הזה. וובר מתייחסת לדוח חדש של ה-National Science Foundation האמריקאי על הלמידה באמצעות הרשת: Fostering Learning in the Networked World: The Cyberlearning Opportunity and Challenge. וובר היא בריטית, והיא מודה שקשה לה להצניע לגמרי את הציניות הבריטית שלה כלפי תוכניות אמריקאיות כמו זאת של ה-NSF. היא כותבת שהדוח מתמקד כמעט באופן בלעדי בתקשוב, ואין בו התייחסות לספרות הענפה על למידה ופדגוגיה:
This is a definite weakness, in my view, as it feeds the delusion that it is technology itself that "transforms" education, rather than the creative practice of good pedagogy in whatever medium is appropriate.
It (הדוח) says that "At school, she [the high-schooler of 2015] and her classmates engage in creative problem-solving activities by manipulating simulations in a virtual laboratory or by downloading and analyzing visualizations of realtime data from remote sensors." hmmmmm – an alternative scenario is:
Learning facilitator (brightly): "and now we are going to create a wonderful collaborative 3D collage of the environmental impact of YOUR neighbourhood by downloading and analysing these really funky visualisations and statistics and mashing them all together in a really cool way! And you'll get credit! Won't that be fun!"
High school student 1: rolls eyes
High school student 2: does mime of putting fingers down throat and being sick
High school student 3 (looks up from texting her friend): "We were supposed to have listened to that really dull podcast about this, weren't we"
High school student 4: "How MANY credits was that?"