Immersive Learning Environment or Time Machine?

It happens often that student’s cell phones, blackberries, smart cell phones, will go off in the middle of a class, and the immediate reaction of professors is to glare at them as if they have done something extremely wrong. Rather than building on the opportunity to incorporate these so-called rude devices into the classrooms, professors are frustrated with technology that is being used by all 21st century workplaces.

What we do in the classroom should reflect both the kinds of learning that students like and are good at and the types that are important in the 21st century. The use of immersive learning will simply prepare students that much more for the real world. There is a huge gap between the use of technology on campus and off. We still allow teachers to work in a 1950s classroom setting, while the world off-campus is growing into a tech savvy society. What Chris Dede, from Harvard University, suggests is that CIOs of higher learning institutions look very carefully at how high-tech businesses are using mobile wireless devices and groupware applications that involve virtual space. CIOs have it easier since businesses already made the jump, so all institutions need to do is copy the off-campus world.

Another suggestion that Dede has is to talk with some of the more knowledgeable students in regards to technology, have them teach and educate the CIOs.

For more information please visit: Harvard Graduate School of Education: Chris Dede and Faculty.

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Categories: technology

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