by Stephen Downes
Aug 27, 2015
Beginning the Fourth Decade of the "IT Revolution" in Higher Education: Plus Ça Change
Kenneth C. Green,
For many reasons which are off topic to this newsletter, I don't think productivity is the measure we should use to assess the impact of computer technology. Productivity is the measure of the old economy. And I'm not sure I agree with these priorities as reported in EDUCAUSE Review, but I feel duty-bound to report them (quoted):
- User Support. Colleges and universities across all sectors must commit to major improvements in user training and support.
- Assessment. Opinion and epiphany cannot be allowed to dominate the conversations about institutional IT policy and planning.
- Productivity. It is now time for academic leaders, including higher education's IT leadership, to have frank, candid, and public conversations about productivity
- Online Education. Institutions must commit to significant and sustained efforts to evaluate their online efforts.
- Recognition and Reward. We must move to an expansive definition of scholarship in order to value the efforts of faculty.
- Data as a Resource. Higher education institutions must stop using data as a weapon against students, faculty, and programs.
- The Value of Information Technology. Institutional leaders must do a better job of conveying the value and impact of higher education's investments in information technology.
Honestly, none of this excites me. None of this has anything to do with making people's li8ves better or making society better. It's a list of priorities for accountants. Maybe if the author weren't so ambivalent about education and technology (and maybe if the presidents, provosts and CIOs surveyed had more of an investment in it) we'd see something more exciting. But this just leaves me empty.
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