The panic over how institutions and practitioners cannot possibly meet the needs of these transformed young people, immersed in digital technologies has been a source of frustration for me for some time partly because it is so patently not the reality in the classroom, and partly because it makes the job of arguing for change based on actually making better provision, improving learner experience, far harder because is winds people up with cod-science.
The process of reading research, looking at common threads and arguing against something has been an interesting and enjoyable one. However, inevitably arguing against things and taking a conservative position on them doesn't reflect the fact that actually I am really passionate about both the need to change education and to make use of new technologies to improve it (because we want to, because it will make things better, not because we are doomed by some made up generational shift).
So having got to the point that I'm trying to crunch the word-count to fit the assignment brief, which is perhaps not the most creative thing, it's a real pleasure to discover this video of a talk by Donald Clark at TEDx that reminds me of the positives of technology for learning and more importantly, the inevitability of change.
Donald promises to highlight "more pedagogical change in the last 10 years than the previous 1000" and perhaps doesn't deliver on that entirely, but he captures brilliantly the idiocy of repeating flawed models that were of a time where printing and broadcasting technology made sitting in a room talking to people, and then setting hard questions for them to resolve alone, the most viable solution. We live now in a world where even bad lectures can be improved simply by recording them and allowing the student to select sections, repeat them and review them, and skip the wasted bits.
His arguments, that change is inevitable, that not changing is ridiculous, does not contradict the assignment I'm trying to hone, but for a few moments I worried it might.
In the assignment I find myself arguing that a good strategy is based on establishing strong core provision and allowing people to then innovate around it, that change should be because we want to improve pedagogy and make the experience of being a student better, not the 'barbarians at the gates' narrative from Prensky and Tapscott.
In the first couple of weeks of the course we were asked to find and share two video clips that we felt really summed up the Learning Technology story so far. I wish I'd seen this clip earlier so I could have put forward this one (I do however disagree with Donald's comments about Brighton and Glasgow).