Faustian Rants

Google Map Example

Posted in Uncategorized by Jim on October 21, 2009
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The Digital Facelift

Posted in Uncategorized by Jim on September 1, 2009

At the 2006 SUNY CIT Conference there was a session by a group of faculty from the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT). It was entitled, “Does Technology Imperil the Academy?”. At this session, Steven Zucker, Beth Harris and Eric Feinblatt first introduced me to the idea that the “cloud” (Web 2.0, social networking tools, or whatever you want to call it) was going to change education is a way that was different from what previous technologies had done. That a dark cloud was gathering in the distance and the storm it was bringing to higher education could be more than a gentle breeze.
Ever since then, I’ve read, watched and listened to everything I could find about the new “cloud” of software services and what people thought their impact on higher education would be. It has been a long and winding road (or a long strange trip if you like the Dead better.) Hardest along the way has been trying to articulate this gathering cloud. Today, I feel its cool breeze coming. I can see its clouds growing larger and darker, but I can’t find the right words so others at my campus see it. Sure there are a few sympathetic ears, but for the most part no one is paying attention. As we start another strategic planning process for the campus, I struggle with how to get this issue on the radar of the strategic planning committees. (I hear your laughing.)

Hope springs eternal and my failures at being able to articulate this issue received an incredible spark from Gardner Campbell at Baylor University. Gardner, IMHO, masterfully articulates the issue first introduced to me years ago in this talk. I am so impressed with this talk that I am using it as the “text book” for my course on “Communicating Using Social Media” here at SUNY Oneonta. Watch this, it is well worth it.

I am not someone to jump at the next techno marvel that will “fix” education. I have studied the history of education and know from experience that “we have heard this before.” This only makes me worry more deeply. I fear our experiences with failed promises that technology has too often produced will make us so skeptical as to ignore these clouds. We so do at our own peril.

Why is Constructivisim Doing So Poorly?

Posted in Uncategorized by Jim on July 29, 2009

Why is the constructivist approach to education doing so poorly over the last 20 years or so?

Read Upon what does the turtle stand? rethinking education for the digital age by Aviram, Roni and others.