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Three issues with the case for banning laptops - Casting Out Nines - The Chronicle of Higher Education

Three issues with the case for banning laptops - Casting Out Nines - The Chronicle of Higher Education | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it

This article, “The Case for Banning Laptops in the Classroom”, written by Dan Rockmore for The New Yorker, has been getting considerable airtime on social media this week. As a classroom instructor I can certainly attest to the power of technology to distract and interfere with student learning. But I had three issues with the “case” being made.

Sharrock's insight:

excerpt: "1. Because the headline focuses on banning laptops from the classroom, it’s easy to miss this very important point made in the article:

These examples [of how learning is negatively affected by the presence of technology] can be seen as the progeny of an ill-conceived union of twenty-first-century tools (computers, tablets, smartphones) with nineteenth-century modalities (lectures). I’m not discussing the “flipped classroom,” wherein lectures are accessed outside of class on digital devices and the classroom is used as a discussion and problem-solving forum. Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) and other forms of online learning can release learning from the restrictions of time, space, and, to some degree, money. Nor am I surveying the wide range of software and apps that are available, many of which have ably engaged new learners and engendered new and creative habits of mind. [Emphasis mine]

In other words: The real problem is not laptops per se but the unstable mixture of a certain kind of technology with a certain kind of pedagogy – namely, lecture. Indeed one of the studies quoted in the article is titled “The laptop and the lecture”. Rockmore is absolutely right to point out that there are other pedagogies for which technology is a natural fit and can serve to multiply, rather than divide, student learning.

So, question: If the problem isn’t laptops, why is it that laptops are the things to be banned? Shouldn’t there be a parallel case for banning, or at least significantly modifying, the lecture pedagogy with which laptops are clashing?"

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Nine Principles for Using Measures of Effective Teaching

The data set, reports, analysis, practical insights and tools that were developed throughout the course of the project has been shared to research and practitioner community as well as policy makers. The easy access to data and practical insights provided through this project are helping to support teachers and students in classrooms today.


Via Nik Peachey, Anna Hu
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Ivon Prefontaine's curator insight, September 30, 2013 12:24 PM

It will be interesting to see if these are picked up on and then how they are implemented.

María Dolores Díaz Noguera's curator insight, October 1, 2013 5:02 AM

amazing

Rose Garofano's curator insight, October 16, 2013 8:24 PM

a reflective teacher equals student improvement

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How to Trust Your Students

How to Trust Your Students | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it

When teachers trust their students, their pedagogy changes.

Progressive Instruction: Teachers are more willing to engage in constructivist practices, according to the dissertation research of Virginia Louise Durnford, because progressive practices require instructors to trust that "children are capable of creating their own knowledge" (Rainer, Guyton, & Bowen, 2000, p.10).Increased Differentiation: Classroom professionals are more likely to reshape old methods of instruction and try alternative strategies. They empower students who want to follow individual paths to content mastery.Democratization: They share more control of the class with students (Goddard, Tschannen-Moran, & Hoy, 2001).Improved Practice: Teachers seek out professional development (Tschannen-Moran, 2004) and grow their abilities.
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As Data Floods In, Massive Open Online Courses Evolve | MIT Technology Review

As Data Floods In, Massive Open Online Courses Evolve | MIT Technology Review | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it
As online education companies track students’ behavior and experiment with different delivery methods, assumptions about effectiveness are being challenged.
Sharrock's insight:

from the article: "Much of the performance research is motivated by a desire to increase course completion rates, which hover around 10 percent, according to most MOOC providers and figures from academics who have taught using the courses."

 

While reading the article, the last thing I expected to learn was that course completion was so low. The second to last thing was that many of the problems were based on issues with computer literacy. 

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