Sunday, August 16, 2009
That got your attention didn't it. Do not picture your colleagues in this role. Not attractive. Nope.
The pedagogy debate rages on. Those of you paying attention to the Comments section will notice that the previous "lecture" versus Web 2.0 discussion (that award winning one) has become re-activated. Thanks to Informalethnographer (I don't know how he wants me to link him up and I will edit this if/when he lets me know). We have this piece from the July 20th Chronicle of Higher Education, When Computers Leave Classrooms, So Does Boredom: Teaching Naked Effort Strips Computers from the Classroom The idea is that we should use our classrooms for engaging discussions. Well, duh.
The piece starts with an indictment of Power point lectures, arguing that studies show students find it "dull". But then I notice the piece goes a bit wobbly about half way through; changing up its arguments and the conclusions it draws from what students are saying, arguing for hiving off the boring lectures into podcasts to be viewed by students before coming to class. Oh...they are so doing that. Not. And, hey, logic-wise, I have a question: will podcasting make these boring lectures less boring?
How about if the whole class is a combination of lecture and interactive discussions. This isn't new.
Bottom line: students want human engagement. Small classes and caring profs give them that. How hard is that? I have been doing for over 20 years.
Why make them watch these ghastly boring podcasts from hell with no interaction and maybe not quite current. How about if we just be real old-fashioned and have them do the assigned readings before class? After all, reading is FUNdamental. Remember? Then we can lecture, discuss, lecture, discuss. Imagine that.
Power Point. Its a crutch for faculty, as well. World's Most Beautiful Sociology Prof and I laughed our butts off (Damn, *whips head around* sorry still there) when new faculty couldn't do lecture because "computer in class was down". Class dismissed for her. Me and WMBSP would, simply, carry on. But....we know our stuff. Cue: smug.
Student Laptops: A have had several students tell me that they purposely leave them at home because the temptation to Facebook is simply too strong and they know they need to focus. Many do support a ban.
Hey, let's all skip and go naked. And could you pedagogy people stop acting like you have some new and innovative technique that is going to transform the world? The ridiculous "aren't I cool" self-promotion is wearing thin.