Monday, 24 March 2008

The Google generation - not enough critical thinking skills

A new report, commissioned by JISC and the British Library portrays the ‘Google Generation’ – people born or brought up in the Internet age – in a way that might be surprising to many. Basically, it claims that, although these people exhibit an ease and fluency with computers, they rely on the most basic search tools and do not possess the critical and analytical skills to asses the information that they find on the web. Now, consider that in Brazil, those with easy access to high speed Internet are most frequently those coming from better educated families and with access to the best schooling opportunities. These people lack critical thinking skills, and, as we have been told by recent studies about Brazilian reality (the latest ISEP), cannot read or write in the fullest sense of these terms… What then can be expected from the vast majority of the Brazilian population? I see the “teaching” of literacy skills—basic, digital and media literacy—the only way to promote their empowerment. However, what does this ‘teaching’ encompass? Hopefully not the throwing of the “right” content, but the cultivation of thinking habits, the promotion of meaningful networked discussion towards real independence and not reliance on the same old experts.

Thursday, 6 March 2008

Very informative writing on Steve Hargadon's blog about the ways the Web2.0 will impact the future of Education. He pictures bright horizons, and I can't hardly disagree with him. My only question is to what extent this future will come to developing nations. What can we do to broaden the roads for this future in remote places? Do we really have to wait for physical roads to be built before these ways are cleared? Is it not possible to leapfrog our way to a more prosperous future?

Sunday, 2 March 2008

2008 is election year in Brazil. We'll have the chance to choose new mayors, but unfortunately prospects are not very bright: the same people who never get tired… Let me tell you I’m really tired of them. Just in case your hopes are not completely dead, I’m sharing here this fantastic post I found in Harold Jarche’s blog. It's called Remixing Cities and it's absolutely amazing. I just wish our dear candidates had similar ideas. Well, at least we should know what to demand.