teaching from the Kindle

teaching from the Kindle by Alan Jacobs

And let me tell you, friends, teaching a book from a Kindle stinks. Big time.

That is the money quote. Read the comments as well because they are quite good and extend on the article quite ably and usefully.

There is the need to adjust teaching methods to make the most of the tools available, where that is appropriate. However, this is an issue I ran into when working through grad school: so much of the technology and applications available today are really quite bad for educational purposes. It isn’t that the technology is bad itself, but that within the educational context, they are not as useful as they could be if time was spent working on what the needs are within education (and at this point, higher education).

Trying to work out a workflow for digital discovery and note-taking for my capstone was painful. I ended up having to switch between three or four different applications to make it all fit together, and even then it was less than ideal.

There is a lot of low-hanging fruit to make scholarship and writing better utilizing digital tools. Kindle is just an example.

yet another post about making distinctions

yet another post about making distinctions by Alan Jacobs

I have to move slowly with some of these things, because by and large my students mistrust and are deeply uncomfortable with such technologies. But all of them are, at least in potentia, pedagogically fruitful.

I know there is always talk about the new digital natives within the realm of higher education, but I think this paragraph hits on a good point. There is also a tendency to view things as inauthentic if they are not done well or there is no understandable benefit. Mistrust is a good word.

Bringing technology into pedagogy for the sake of technology can have limited or negative benefit. Intentionality, mastery, sound technology is important.

resistance is futile, part zillion

resistance is futile, part zillion by Alan Jacobs

That’s where we are now with the true-believing digerati: there is no time at which it is legitimate to unplug. There are no good pedagogical reasons for focusing, for less than three hours per week, on learning to use codexes better. Everyone must conform to the all-digital-all-the-time regime!

I recommend reading the above article and remembering, it doesn’t need to be this way. It almost never has to be an “either-or” sort of question, but a question of the right tool for the right job, even within educational pedagogy.

Alan Jacobs puts it so well.

OER Materials Drive Student Engagement and Savings, Study Finds

OER Materials Drive Student Engagement and Savings, Study Finds by Meghan Bogardus Cortez

There is much work to be done in researching both the benefits and the downsides to OER, but I feel like the largest hurdle will continue to be convincing faculty that it does not necessarily need to be more work to utilize OER than traditional textbooks.

However, that requires work from the community to collect and review materials already available.