Reflection two of two concerns Sherry's observation that universities (a) once made a move to provide wifi in their lecture halls, (b) found that students used the facility to shop, and (c) are now rethinking (a).
I myself am in the educational technology field (note the disclaimer). Her remarks reminded me of the many conversations that I've had with students and teachers about this issue. These conversations usually fall into one of three categories.
1. "Technology is a distraction in the classroom. We need to keep it out so that students can concentrate on the teacher." (Voiced most often by professors and their students.)
2. "Technology is part of the furniture. We've grown up with it and have made it part of our lives. Leaving it behind as we enter the classroom is like asking us to check our brains at the door." (Voiced most often by high-school students)
3. "Technology is the most exciting thing to come to education in many a decade. Give me the right tools, and I will transform the classroom." (Voiced most often by K-12 teachers.)
So, what occurred to me is that perhaps instead of rethinking the move to put wifi in the lecture hall, what needs rethinking is the lecture hall itself.
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