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Technology Challenge

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?

education, technology, college, cheating

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1 Comment

  1. Great post. I teach third graders and freely acknowledge I am not supporting their technology needs quickly or thoroughly enough. I’m trying to keep up with their skills and questions many days and this is with the support of a good tech resource teacher. Half of my students this year do not even have a computer at home and this is the case. Even though I have seen so many creative uses, I know I’m still giving my students technology as “I see it” not as “they want it.” I recently took an online course about blogging. Overwhelmingly, the discussion topics were about internet safety versus creative uses of blogging in the classroom (which was a goal of the course. ) I share your opinion we are a little over protective in “Safe Technology” http://blinkandbridge.blogspot.com/2007/12/safe-technology.html
    I guess in the Nike spirit, we should just “Do it!”

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