When are Digital Media and Tools Wrong for Teaching and Learning?

Hugh Beaulac, Emerging EdTech, Jan 03, 2017
Commentary by Stephen Downes

My answer to this is: almost never. But let's hear the other side. "Digital media changes the way students think. One study says that reading on digital platforms makes youngsters more focused on 'concrete details rather than the big picture.' ... it would seem better to use non-digital platforms for teaching subjects where abstract thinking is crucial." And "the price we pay for being constantly inundated with information is a loss of our ability to be contemplative and to engage in the kind of deep thinking that requires you to concentrate on one thing." There is also the concern about "screen addiction". I don't take any of these arguments to be conclusive; digitally literate students may think differently, but it does not follow that they are faring more poorly.

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