Why you can’t just Google it

03 Maj 2017
14.15 - 15.00
SAL M2

Why you can’t just Google it

There’s little agreement on what education is actually for, but whatever your opinion, everyone agrees that it’s vital to prepare students to flourish in an uncertain future. Typically this has been interpreted as a pressing need to teach so-called ‘21st century skills’ such as creativity, collaboration and problem solving instead of filling children’s heads with rote-learned knowledge. The internet, we’re told, has changed everything and students can look up whatever they need to know. The problem is, although we all want students to be creative problem solvers, you can’t teach these things as generic skills. Further, it would seem that evolution has adapted us to finding it easy to solve some problems and collaborate in straightforward social interactions, the difficulty comes with being creative about something of value, solving problems that matter and collaborating on challenging projects. These things require knowledge. The answer is to make these desirable outcomes rooted in domain-specific instruction. This lecture will address the following:
 
– How evolution has shaped our ability to learn
– Why you can’t just Google it
– The links between knowledge and memory
– Designing instruction that makes students cleverer
– The role of technology in an uncertain world