Wednesday, 19 May 2010

No surprises in our research reports

Teachers are important - they compensate for static or negative results from computer assisted learning: a reaction from John Branfield, former Principal Inspector with Essex Education Authority (UK) and senior member of staff at a Specialist College for Mathematics and Computing.

From: John Branfield, by e-mail May 2010

Nothing beats a well qualified teacher

On the subject of the research reports you identified recently, none of this surprises me. Having taught IT for over 10 years it's clear that the follow-up use of computer-based material for drill and practice or open-ended research followed up by teacher intervention is far better than using IT as some sort of teacher substitute. My experience of observing many secondary school lessons is that nothing beats a well qualified teacher (subject expert) with a clear lesson plan and the ability to engage with his or her students directly, understanding their prior learning achievements and being clear about the next steps needed. Learning through the medium of computer screen is a very poor second; high level classroom interaction beats a Google search every time.
To close the digital divide systematically, see:

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