Zijn technologische (computer)vaardigheden wel zo enorm belangrijk?
Passage uit Fixing Humpty-Dumpty: Putting Higher-Order Skills and Knowledge Together AgainCarl Bereiter and Marlene Scardamalia University of Toronto
Every 21st century skill list gives a prominent place to computer and digital media skills. During the 1980s and early 90s, knowing how to use a computer denoted a fairly limited and coherent body of know-how, which even many university students lacked but which increasing numbers of jobs required. Today, however, it is making less and less sense to identify skill in the use of computers and other digital technology as an educational goal in its own right.
Aside from a few basics, what you need to learn that involves technology is inseparable from what you learn through using it in any up-to-date school course. This is one place where infusion makes good sense. Nothing so much signals the backwardness of a school as its continued use of activities designed for the purpose of teaching computer skills.
The same applies to another favorite of 21st century skill lists, information search skills. Knowledge, like automobile parts, say search skill enthusiasts, should not be stored against uncertain future needs but should be obtained just at the time it is needed. Ready access to the Web makes this possible. Part of the argument for just in time knowledge acquisition is that knowledge goes out of date very rapidly, so that what is stored is likely to prove useless by the time it is needed. But are there teachable generic information search skills that will empower one regardless of the kind of information being sought or the reason for which it is being sought? There is some strategic knowledge involved in Web searches, enough to occupy a few hours of instructional time. Beyond that, successful information search depends on knowledge of the domain you are searching. If you are venturing into a domain about which you know little, your first searches ought to be aimed at acquiring the terms that will enable you to make a more pointed search. Developing students sophistication in information search needs to start by reshaping classroom inquiry. The traditional school project or research paper, which requires gathering information limited only by a particular topic, provides virtually no experience in problem-driven search.
Web search technology is advancing to the point where solving a problem of explanation is not so much a matter of finding the right information as understanding it once you get it. In pre-Worldwide Web days some elementary school students in a Community of Learners classroom brought up the question of whether mosquitoes could transmit AIDS (Brown & Campione, 1994). They were unable to find an answer in books, and even a call to an AIDS hotline failed to yield a satisfactory answer.
Ten years later researchers on the CSILE/Knowledge Building project posed the same question to grade 6 students who were experienced in using the Web to build explanatory theories. Within 20 minutes each of them had found a Web page that dealt with the question, but it took some crafty searchingadding the word malaria or needle to the search string, for instance. Now if you simply type into Google the question, Can mosquitoes transmit AIDS? you will immediately get a page full of links to documents directly addressing that question. Prominent in the search results are sites that provide authoritative answers readily comprehensible to middle school students.
But another question, raised by elementary students in a different setting, was not so readily answered: Why are the colors in a rainbow always in the same order? Entering that question into Google also yields pages addressing the question. The problems start with trying to make heads or tails of the information. Most of the information provided is either insufficient or too mathematical to be understood by young students, and some of it is just wrong. Yet we have seen grade 4 students wrestle with this imperfect information and put together an explanation that was better than many of the supposedly authoritative web sites provided (Bereiter & Scardamalia 2010). Skill in using technology was only marginally relevant here. What did count was skill in constructing a coherent explanation out of bits and piecesa vital and learnable skill that gets no attention from 21st century skills enthusiasts.
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Sometime in the second
half of the 20th century, teach them to think became teach them
thinking skills. Correspondingly,
knowledge became no longer an inseparable part of ability to think but only
material for thinking skills to work upon. Empirical claims for the existence
and teachability of higher-order skills are weak and confuse skills with
abilities. These weaknesses persist in current movements to teach 21st
century skills. With a richer conception of knowledge, much of what pass for
higher-order skills may be seen as constituting deeper knowledge of a subject.
This paper argues that the complex of 21st century educational needs is better
treated as a problem of socializing students into a knowledge-creating society
than as an itemizable list of learning objectives.