Role of Technology in Education

As most of us know, literacy is not just about reading any more. The printed book was a giant leap forward in our ability to distribute information, but we are now in the fairly early stages of another information revolution – one that requires the definition of literacy to be expanded. In today’s world, we are dealing with orders of magnitude more information, coming from orders of magnitude more sources, with orders of magnitude (you get the idea) more avenues to distribute and publish – so the problem isn’t simply how to read the information any more: in this new world of information surpluss, it is about directing the flow of information inward and outward, evaluating it and processing it, collaborating with others to do more with it than we can alone – ulitmately making it serve our goals, interests, and needs.
These are skills we take very seriously at Stevenson, and to help further these ends, our job in the technology department is to:
1) manage an evolving infrastructure that can support the practice and use of these skills
2) to support the faculty as they endeavor to weave the development of these skills into their curricula
3) to help identify how the ever-evolving techno-sphere can further learning in all areas

How does technology relate to education, and what role does a technology department play in a school? Read on for some musings…

As most of us know, literacy is not just about reading any more. The printed book was a giant leap forward in our ability to distribute information, but we are now in the fairly early stages of another information revolution – one that requires the definition of literacy to be expanded. In today’s world, we are dealing with orders of magnitude more information, coming from orders of magnitude more sources, with orders of magnitude (you get the idea) more avenues to distribute and publish – so the problem isn’t simply how to read the information any more; In this new world of information surpluss, it is about directing the flow of information inward and outward, evaluating it and processing it, collaborating with others to do more with it than we can alone – ulitmately making it serve our goals, interests, and needs.

These are skills every school should take very seriously, and to help further these ends, the job of a technology department should be to:

1) manage an evolving infrastructure that can support the practice and use of these skills

2) support the faculty as they endeavor to weave the development of these skills into their curricula

3) help identify how the ever-evolving techno-sphere can further learning in all areas

Thoughts, comments?

Kennedy School Takeaways – Information and Education

http://www.flickr.com/photos/wallyg/150876458/

I had a fantastic conversation recently with Don Oppenheimer, Associate Dean and Chief Information Officer at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.

Interestingly, his main background and experience is less in education and technology than in knowledge management (KM), and management consulting. Part of his current focus at the Kennedy School is to help with:
•    Internal knowledge management from a research and faculty perspective
•     Providing easy and open access to the intellectual capital created internally at Harvard
•     Educating the faculty and student body on tools and best practices for accessing information to support their studies, work, and research

I approached Don based on his job title which I found very interesting (and based on the fact that we are related, albeit in a labyrinthine way), because I intuited correctly that we shared similar interests and challenges in our work. In both cases, albeit in different levels of education, we are facing myriad challenges at all organizational and cultural levels to bring about organizational change in a way that integrates a forward-looking approach to education and information / knowledge management.

Here are some of the takeaways from our conversation: Continue reading