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Thursday, January 5, 2012

Educational Innovation: stuck in the mud!

Two quite opposite qualities equally bias our minds - habits and novelty. -- Jean de la Bruyere
Who was it that said, "Build a better mousetrap and the world will beat a path to your door"? It doesn't matter who said it, because there is abundant evidence that it is not true.

Technical innovation presumably pursues efficiency. But efficiency is only one small aspect of total cost reduction. The strength of the competition, the availability of the product, its replaceability, compatibility, and familiarity will beat out novelty, even efficiency, any day.

This is not to deny that the educational potential of much technology is substantial. But whether or not the technology gets incorporated in the curriculum depends on circumstances normally overlooked by, if not beyond reach of, most educators. It is not merely a matter of whether it enhances learning.

To examine these issues further, see Beyond the Textbook? 
Unlikely Changes in the Curriculum 

-- EGR