The Wired Campus had a very interesting blog today. The article “Randy Bass and Bret Eynon: We Need R&D for Teaching With Technology” addresses the fact that higher education is always one of the last groups to react or adapt new technologies. The blog opens with:
- When it comes to innovations in teaching and learning, higher education seems like the last to know and the slowest to respond. In every other way, we push at the frontiers of knowledge, ask critical questions, take risks. In all other realms of research, practices of peer review, dialogue, accountability, and replication engender innovation. Why is it the opposite for teaching and learning?
The article goes on to suggest that 4 shifts in thinking are needed:
- Tthrow out old assumptions about diffusion of innovation, early adopters, and mainstream faculty.
- We need to recognize that learning has expanded far beyond what higher education can handle at the moment.
- We must create communities within institutions that truly engage experimentation in the context of inquiry and systematic improvement.
- We need to engage new social tools to develop a culture of knowledge building around teaching and learning.
They promise to expand on these four thoughts in future blogs. This promises to be a very interesting series of posts and one that I will follow closely.