Select Readings on Teaching and Learning in the Digital Age
Here are three curated articles about education, technology, and evolutions in teaching.
The 2016 Election Exposes the Very, Very Dark Side of Tech – Wired – Issie Lapowsky (12 minute read)
Given all of the drama of the last week or so and the political result that shook the world, it seemed impossible not to include something about the election. Written on the precipice of the election itself, Lapowsky looks at some of the major negative technological themes that have long existed but seemed to come into much clearer focus during this cycle. This is a good primer on the topic of how the very tools and technologies that have given rise to exceptional progress and innovation can be used just as easily to serve destructive impulses too. The election and its coverage seemed to bring more into the light of day.
Must a classroom be high-tech to make personalized learning work? – The Hechinger Report – Jamie Martines (12 minute read)
I think this article falls into the trap of test scores as being the justification for what is successful or not It also may define personalized learning far too narrowly. However, it does advance a critical understanding that data is nearly useless without human understanding, inference, and even intuition. Technology might make data collection easier but it does not necessarily make it any more usable or helpful. People do. The one thing missing in so much of the educational technology media is how much all this data collection looks increasingly like students under constant surveillance.
Learning In The Age Of Digital Distraction – NPREd – Eric Westervelt (7 minute read)
This is a short interview with Dr. Adam Gazzaley a neurologist and a professor at the University of California, San Francisco. Part of this piece is definitely promotion for his new book, The Distracted Mind, but more interesting is Gazzaley’s brief discussion of what kinds of challenges are in play in a classroom. What’s more, his research shows a link to far more than issues related to performance outcomes but anxiety, stress, and mood can be negatively impacted too. Still, there is a nice balance here, as he explains technology is not evil but we need to reimagine how we use it and use it for good.