Instant Answers

Students can easily find ready-made term papers for the most popular research assignments all over the web.

It’s not at all difficult to find for sale at a variety of sites the teachers’ edition (with all the answers in the back) for any commonly used textbook.

And, as the New York Times points out, the web can also provide “step-by-step solutions to textbook problems, copies of previous exams, reams of lecture notes, summaries of literary classics, and real-time help with physics, math and computer science problems”.

Wolfram Alpha, while certainly not yet the tech miracle/”Google killer” being hailed by some in the media, is a good indication of where this is all heading: enter a query and get a detailed response within seconds.

So, why do we continue to ask questions of students that can be found with little or no effort?

Education in an age of ubiquitous connectivity should be more about using and creating knowledge rather than memorizing little bits of easily obtained data (and placing them in the right boxes on the test).