Teachers in colleges and universities seem to think that coping with all the technology being used by their students is a challenge.
Regardless of the quality of the material, three trends are converging to make a professor’s life ever more challenging: every student is carrying a growing collection of electronic devices, those devices are getting smaller and harder to spot, and they’re gaining the capacity to hold an ever-larger amount of academic material. Pretty much any student can now turn a quick bathroom trip into a mid-exam cram session. Professors seem likely to face the choice between implementing draconian security measures during exams or defaulting to an honor system in the face of this electronic onslaught.
I wonder how valid an exam really is if a student can take a bathroom break with their iPod and return with the ability to ace it.
And is there another option between “draconian” measures and surrendering all together. They could be looking for ways to use those same devices as part of the assessment, not to mention in their regular instruction.
Of course, we have many of the same problems in K12 education. Students have access to all kinds of powerful communications tools and we spend our time attempting to block their use.
So, when do we start facing the challenges – and opportunities – presented by the technology instead of hiding from them?