Saturday, July 31, 2010

Teaching Students to be ‘Tech-Skeptical’

Teaching Students to be ‘Tech-Skeptical’
Inside Higher Ed published an article this month titled Technologically Illiterate Students. Once upon a time the educational technology landscape used to consist of expectations for students to handle straightforward word processors which would navigate simple search engines and straightforward software. The technological divide used to be about hardware haves and have-nots. Today’s technology goes far beyond those simple times and technologically literate students need to be much more sophisticated. Today’s technology goes far beyond those simple times. Almost everyone has access to hardware and software. The 21st century focuses on access to information in a Web 2.0 sharing, collaborative environment. Students today are digitally savvy natives; students know how to handle hardware and software. What they need is to be taught is how to be ‘tech-skeptical’, that is “the critical capacity to glean the implications, and limitations, of technologies as they emerge and become woven into the students’ lives” (Kolowich, 2010). Even students in this digital age aren’t inherently equipped with the skills associated with tech literacy. Educators can help prepare students through K-12 and post-secondary education by:
• weaving digital literacy into existing curriculums
• encouraging students to draw on real-world examples
• leading discussions on the ethical use of technology
• teaching students how to scrutinize and filter information

The future should be information friendly.

Kolowich, S. (2010). Technologically Illiterate Students. Retrieved from