I suspect the failure to deploy technology for learning in education that the following analysis identifies for the US is equally pertinent to New Zealand. Although some initiatives are ‘on the right track’, we run the risk of being run over by a faster, bigger ‘train’ of technology driven by new technology-sophisticated competitors, such as Korea and Singapore.
In September of this year, the White House launched the ‘Digital Promise’ initiative, a national center dedicated to improving the implementation of technology in schools all across the US. Though technology has advanced tremendously in the last 20 years, education has not kept pace with these innovations. The Digital Promise seeks to remedy this discrepancy, transforming the way we teach and learn in the process.
See also the following posting, that introduces detailed New Zealand research (Boven et al, 2011) demonstrating how learning technologies should be employed to overcome the serious lack of engagement and achievement by school pupils in education:
How can you turn an English department into a revenue center? How do you grade students if they are “customers” you must please? How do you keep industry from dictating a university’s research agenda? What happens when the life of the mind meets the bottom line? Wry and insightful, Shakespeare, Einstein, and the Bottom Line takes us on a cross-country tour of the most powerful trend in academic life today—the rise of business values and the belief that efficiency, immediate practical usefulness, and marketplace triumph are the best measures of a university’s success.
With a shrewd eye for the telling example, David Kirp relates stories of marketing incursions into places as diverse as New York University’s philosophy department and the University of Virginia’s business school, the high-minded University of Chicago and for-profit DeVry University. He describes how universities “brand” themselves for greater appeal in the competition for top students; how academic super-stars are wooed at outsized salaries to boost an institution’s visibility and prestige; how taxpayer-supported academic research gets turned into profitable patents and ideas get sold to the highest bidder; and how the liberal arts shrink under the pressure to be self-supporting.
Far from doctrinaire, Kirp believes there’s a place for the market—but the market must be kept in its place. While skewering Philistinism, he admires the entrepreneurial energy that has invigorated academe’s dreary precincts. And finally, he issues a challenge to those who decry the ascent of market values: given the plight of higher education, what is the alternative?
Kirp, D. L. (2003). Shakespeare, Einstein, and the Bottom Line: The Marketing of Higher Education. Harvard University Press.
Cover of William Shakespeare
I have spent two days scanning and uploading almost thirty-five years of writing to one place: Academia.edu. This site is like a ‘Facebook’ for academics. Over the brief period I uploaded my publications some 60 people have viewed articles that I have written. It’s most satisfying to see notification of who is reading what. And I have made two academic friends as we connect and share inquiries.
I have now uploaded over 80 articles. These mostly exclude the ravings and pontifications posted here on my pogus.tumblr. The accompanying graph (here) shows how traffic to view my writing gained a significant lift as I began uploading sixty articles that had not been automatically identified by the Academia system.
Another nice feature of Academia is that all the documents are immediately available to the viewer through Scribd. No need to download the documents! Furthermore, you can link to the document view in a URL from another site.
The visitor can view:
The profile of an academic: their institution, academic interest, recent publications and activities: http://unitec.academia.edu/PeterMellalieu
A list of all publications with abstracts, keywords, view and download capability: http://unitec.academia.edu/PeterMellalieu/Papers
My top ten visitors
These are the ‘top ten’ items that visitors have viewed so far. The figures show 30 day views, All time views