Traditional assessment rewards the wrong behaviors-here’s why

Alan November, eSchool News, Jun 16, 2017
Commentary by Stephen Downes

"Students as young as first grade can learn to solve complex linear equations—an algebraic concept that generally isn’t taught until the seventh or eighth grade." How's that for a lede? This article (and accompanying podcast) are the result of marketing from Enlern, "a next-generation personalized learning platform built on the understanding that all learning is contextual and shaped by complex interactions between a student, teachers, curricula, peers, and other interdependent variables in the learning ecosystem." It would be good to see a more sceptical stance from this (and other) articles, but that would require analyzing the research, which would require a rather more in-depth analysis than these authors (or me, for that matter) to complete. But we can approximate. This paper, for example, reduces the problem of solving linear equations to a set of rule-selection patterns (I've seen this approach in logic as well). Compare with Kirschener, who would say the process of 'discovering' the correct rule to apply is unnecessary overhead. This paper likens rule selection to matrix problem-solving (it reminds me of my categroical converter). So is that what this is? Does that approach really generalize?  Does the author talk with anyone else about this approach to learning? Sadly, no. 

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