Developing A Philosophy of Computers in Education David Moursund University of Oregon NCCE 2006
Goal To share some of my personal philosophy of ICT in education. (I have been working in ICT in education for a long time. To encourage you to further develop your own personal philosophy of ICT in education.
Four of my beliefs Many of our worlds problems can be addressed through better education. All children deserve the opportunity to gain a high quality education. Educational systems can be much better. ICT will prove to be fundamental to achieving better educational systems.
Being loaded down with the worlds problems I have been interest in problem solving throughout my professional career.
Problem Solving Recognizing, posing, clarifying, doing questions problems tasks decisions Using higher-order, critical, creative, and wise thinking. Produce, performance, presentation.
Words of wisdom Every teacher should have a philosophy of education. (Message from my graduate students.) Every teacher should have a philosophy of ICT in education. (Message from Dave to his students.)
Computers are here to stay In my opinion, this is about as trite as saying: Math is here to stay. History is here to stay. Reading is here to stay. Surely we educators can do better than that. (My tolerance for dumb statements has decreased as I have grown older.
Information and Communication Technology ICT includes Computers (both large and small) Internet and Web Cell phones Digital still & motion cameras. iPods and the equivalent Robots Etc.
ICT is a powerful change agent Perhaps comparable to the development of agriculture? Perhaps comparable to the three Rs? Perhaps comparable to the industrial revolution? ICT is driving the information age. A change agent -------->>>>
My personal professional work environment
Open paper and pencil tests How about: Open notes test? Open book test? Open computer with word processor and spell checker test? Open computer and Web test? (And, without severe time pressures.) What is your authenticity philosophy?
Its a Small World It's a small world after all It's a small, small world http://www.niehs.nih.gov/kids/lyrics/smworld.htm http://www.gofox.com/vacations/dlexplore.php?explore=Clips Marshall McLuhan: Global Village.
I read a lot
Thomas Friedman: The World is Flat Increasing smallness through improved transportation. Increasing flatness through improved telecommunication. Increasing worldwide knowledge about how green the grass is on the other side of the fence. Worldwide competition for resources, and jobs.
I think a lot I try to make complex things simple. Example: We do problem solving all of the timewhats the big deal about that? I tend to make simple things complex. Example: In school, students study many different disciplines. But, what is a discipline?
Academic disciplines are defined by: Problems, tasks, activities addressed. Tools, methodologies, evidence, recording and sharing results. Accumulated results. History, culture, language; methods of teaching and learning. Sense of beauty and wonder.
ICT affects each discipline some more than others Level of learning required on part of the user. Accumulated knowledge about the uses of ICT to do a significant part or the work needed to solve some of the problems within the discipline. Procedural thinking, where ICT systems can carry out the procedures.
Expertise in solving problems and accomplishing tasks
Expertise in a discipline
Three key questions: Within a discipline, what things can Educated people do a lot better than ICT systems? ICT systems do a lot better than educated people? The combination of educated people and ICT systems do a lot better than either alone?
Five eras 1. Hunter-gatherer 2. Agriculture 3. Industrial 4. Information 5. Knowledge: Contained within people Contained within machines
Computer and: Data processing Information processing Knowledge processing Wisdom processing What might it mean to say an ICT system has knowledge or wisdom, or that it processes knowledge or wisdom?
Key philosophical issue I assume you believe a human can gain knowledge and wisdom. Do you believe that an ICT system can have some sort of knowledge and wisdom? What is your philosophy about educating students for a world in which ICT systems are growing in machine-like knowledge and wisdom?
Six languages (Robert Logan) 1. Natural language 2. Written language 3. Mathematics 4. Science 5. Computing & computer languages 6. Internet and Web We can also talk about the language of various disciplines such as music, football, etc.
Fluency philosophy Fluency in a language is one measure of expertise in the language. What is your philosophy on the level of fluency students should be helped to achieve in various types of languages? For example, is it OK for a child to grow up with very little of no fluency in art and music?
Human intelligence Learn Pose problems Solve problems. This includes solving problems, accomplishing tasks, and fashioning products. It includes critical thinking and making effective use of ones overall knowledge and skills.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) This has long been one of my favorite topics. What intelligent-like things can machines do, and what are their limitations? How should AI affect: Curriculum? Instruction? Assessment?
Creativity and Intelligence Humans are very good at creativity. While creativity requires intelligence, high levels of intelligence (high IQ) does not imply high creativity. My philosophy: foster creativity (in contrast, for example, with just tell me exactly what I need to do, and Ill do it).
What really bugs me I think that in recent years our educational system has moved strongly in the direction of producing students who want and expect to be told exactly what do do and who are lost without a high level of detailed, explicit instructions.
My philosophy With appropriate education, people get more intelligence. ICT systems are getting more intelligent. Human intelligence and machine intelligence overlap, but are quite different. Students should learn about both, as well a about themselves.
CAI example A machine can have the intelligence to provide drill and practice, provide immediate feedback, adjust the questions presented in an appropriate response to errors being made, switch into tutorial mode if it (the machine) decides this is needed, keep detailed records, prepare reports,and etc. A machine may well have more intelligence than a human in this limited area.
Increasing human productivity Agriculture Industrial production Information Age: Data processing productivity Information processing productivity Knowledge processing productivity What about the productivity of students and teachers?
Robert Bransons Upper Limit Theory
Education is at an upper limit Based on national test results, our schools have improved very little over the past 40 years. Branson argues (and I agree) that with current methods and levels of expenditures, we are close to an upper limit.
Work harder and longer, versus work smarter We can increase: Length of school day, counting homework Length of school weak and school year Number of years of education Testing, requirements, and so on. However, these changes are modest relative to a doubling of totality of human knowledge every five or ten years.
We need a paradigm shift
Individualizing by Increasing effort to have students learn to learn and to take more responsibility for their own learning. Use of HIICAL Use of asynchronous distance learning Providing strong support for lifelong learningespecially learning in contexts and situations deemed relevant by learners.
Learn faster and better From work of Benjamin Bloom and others: Mastery learning Individual tutoring ICT version of this: Highly interactive intelligent computer-assisted learning, perhaps delivered in an asynchronous distance learning mode.
Some students learn faster & better than others Students with IQs of 75-80 tend to learn half as fast as average. Students with IQs of 130 and above tend to learn twice as fast as average. In my opinion, we are not doing nearly enough t