Transliteracy/Horizon/Google Blog- Cara

1. The first article on transliteracy basically defines what the author believes to be a correct definition of the term. The author “re-re-defines” transliteracy as, “Transliteracy is the ability to encode and decode information between or across languages.” The second reading, NMC Horizon Project Short List, describes future abilities and uses for cloud technology and demonstrates how they are currently being used and how they can be used more appropriately and effectively in the future.  The third reading is a statement from the Google CEO basically outlining and explaining changes, goals and objectives for the company.

2/3/7. Whenever there is discussion of technology in the classroom, I am firm that technology should never be used in place of the classroom, but more in conjunction with it.  This might just be my style of learning, but even in online classes I feel that there is a lack of involvement, understanding and connection between the participants and the idea of schools using technology to teach intro level courses makes me uncomfortable.  I understand that some people like to learn at 3 a.m. from the comfort of their own home, but I feel relying too heavily on technology, like in any situation that is typically in-person, the lack of interaction is detrimental to students.

This isn’t to say that some aspects of education are suited for technology, as I thought that the article brought up some really useful tools.  The first tool that I found to be very cool, which I actually have a hard time admitting to since I am avidly against e-books, is the practice in social reading for the reader to be able to directly tweet the author (p. 3).  This connection to the source is so cool in the fact that ideas and motivations of the author can be clarified, whereas previously they could only be assumed by the reader.

Another tool that I think is incredibly useful, which really isn’t new at all, but technology can make it much more advanced, is the use of games for learning.  I think when people are having fun they absorb and remember more of what they are doing.  As a toddler and young child, most of my learning was done through games.  Games disguise the work involved in learning by making it fun and enjoyable. There is no way I would have ever wanted to read about the Oregon Trail as a fifth grader or remember anything I read about, but 15 years later I remember trying to ford that river with my damn oxen. The article says it will take 2-3 years for game based learning to be adopted on the cloud, but I think that will be easily accepted among all educators (p. 7.)

Just for nostalgia’s sake

I also think the augmented reality is pretty useful, especially in the example they give about students being able to see what a historical site looked like hundreds of years ago (p. 6).  Being able to use that visual learning tool which wasn’t previously available is a great way to keep students interested and appeal to students who learning styles are more visual and were left out in the past because of the lack of technology.

I love Google and I admit that I use it daily. I am totally dependent upon it and I really would be sad if it were gone.  That being said, I think they need to focus on some of their more basic applications before moving onto these more grand ones that are not going to be widely available.  I am not saying that they shouldn’t be doing any work on them, but there needs to be more attention paid to the basic applications that everyone uses.  For instance, Google Maps.  Google Maps are useful, but I have gotten lost the two times I decided to use them as my GPS. Why? Because the directions were wrong. In one trip alone, the map declined to tell me twice which way to go on the next road I needed (I chose left the first time but it should have been right, then I chose right the second time when it should have been left).

This is just a basic example of little things that are being overlooked, most likely because they are focusing on the big things that aren’t reaching people.  I think the real future of technology should lie in accessibility.  I’ve said this numerous times, but technology for the sake of technology isn’t beneficial, but technology that helps people is.

4. As I said before, I find any idea that the classroom should be digitized difficult. I just don’t understand how losing the interaction of a classroom and that discussion is beneficial to students.  Again, I hated my online courses and really felt that I was not given the advantage to utilize my peers and professors that I do when I am in a classroom.  I suppose the only argument that I could understand is using Skype, but even then interaction is limited.  When everyone is in a classroom, there are no technical difficulties that prevent discussion.

5. Is Google making libraries irrelevant? What is the future role of libraries?

Is Google + as popular and useful as Google thinks it is?

6.  I am not sure what the final project, but I am positive I will Google something while working on it or use Google in some capacity.

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2 Responses to Transliteracy/Horizon/Google Blog- Cara

  1. pascuccic says:

    Hello Cara! I liked what you had to say about using technology within education and how to use it in conjunction with the classroom as opposed to instead. Technology can be used to create more interaction between students and between students and teachers and that could create some real benefit. I guess I feel the way I do from my own experience with an online course as well. I felt like I learned a decent amount in the course, but I could have seen myself getting a lot more from it had there been more interaction (even if from distances in time and space) and perhaps some of the new technology out there could have created ways for that interaction to happen. And it was an Ethics course in undergrad, so it would have been an awesome topic to have more interaction, as opposed to just posting our responses to the topics for the week and then completing a paper at the end.

  2. One thing I really enjoy about the posts from the different classmates are the different perspectives people have and the different ideas that pop into their heads when reading an idea. I loved that you put in the Oregon Trail picture. A great example.

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