Look at for the
enormously-interesting "No Significant Difference Phenomenon."  According
to this study of studies, in the long run the method of delivery doesn't
seem to matter. We educators will, of course, deny it, since it doesn't
fit our preconceptions or self-interest.

When fluoride was added to toothpaste, dentists had to learn to do things
besides filling teeth. They did, and they and we are the better for it.
When the electronic watch was developed, Swiss watchmakers refused to
sully their hands with the new "toys." They lost their business to Japan.
What will we educators do?

John M. Flanigan <[log in to unmask]>     The equation is the final arbiter.
Math Resource Instructor                            --Werner Heisenberg
Kapi'olani Community College            The scoreboard is the final arbiter.
Honolulu, Hawaii                                    --Bill Walton

On Wed, 11 Jun 1997, MARTHA MAXWELL wrote:

> Here are a few quotes and a few questions.
> Several years ago I did some reading on administrators and technology and
> summarized it thus:
> " Administrators ,  in purchasing new technology,  often overlook some key
> elements of academic life such as institutional and individual resistance to
> change and fail to realistically assess how the new technology will  improve
> teaching and learning ..."".Technology is just another way of teaching or
> learning and its effects are no more certain nor easily measured than
> traditional lecturing/discussion, methods.."    "Additionally, administrators
> usually ignore important costs such as providing security for the equipment,
> maintainance, depreciation, and replacement, much less the costs involved in
> training users and assisting them when problems arise. To be cost-effective,
> special programs must be offered to the faculty and staff so they will make full
> use of the equipment in their daily activities."
> "Unfortunately administrators accept certain myths about technology:  a) that it
> saves times and money (This is usually not true although it does some things
> faster like contacting students on e-mail , or doing research but rarely do
> these things save time and money).   b)) They believe that investing in
> technology is a one-time event and that any continuing needs can be filled by
> grants. In truth, budgeting for technology upkeep and replacement must be part
> of every annual budget. Nothing gets obsolete faster than today's technology.."
> (For refs. and more see p. 98 in M. Maxwell's "Evaluating Academic Skills
> Programs", 1997, H&H Publisher Phone 1-800-366-4079 o(813)442-7760)
> My questions:
>         Does anyone know of a study that shows that using  technology (or
> computers, etc.) improves student learning (or teaching)  over traditional
> methods?
>         Or a study that shows that computers provide cost-effective ways of
> teaching and learning?
> Martha Maxwell