Sunday, April 28, 2013

Blog Post #14


David Streitfeld writes about an upcoming trend in the classroom in his article Teacher Knows if You Have Done the E-Reading. CourseSmart is software which allows for teachers to receive feedback on how students are reading. The program lets teachers see students’ engagement with the reading through digital textbooks. When the book is opened, what chapters are being read, and if students are taking notes as they read are all being measured. Millions of students and teachers are using CourseSmart textbooks generating all sorts of data. While this is a wonderful system, there are a few problems. For one, it is possible for students to take notes other than what is recorded, which can affect their scores. Also, there is always the possibility of technical difficulties. A few students reported concerns about their privacy, and constantly being “watched.” Students could also simply leave the book open to receive better scores. This is only the beginning for CourseSmart. The type of data that they collect is set to improve in the future. To retrieve data on more of what the student does. In any way, this program has allowed for teachers to use this data to adjust their courses to meet the students’ needs.

As a future teacher, I find this system incredible! Being able to see how students interact with the book. I think that there is a lot of work for CourseSmart in order to make their program the best, as with all technology at the start. I would love to use something like this in my classroom. I think that it will be very useful to help all students, especially the ones who are struggling. I would love to see CourseSmart in action!

As a current student, I think this system is awesome, however I have some reservations. Honestly, I am one of those students who crams the night before the test. I have fallen victim to the burp back education system. For most of my classes, I hardly look at the material outside of class. For some classes (most of my online classes), I haven’t even opened the book once which angers me greatly. Sometimes that book isn’t used or necessary because all of the material is given outside of the book. I am working on my study habits and trying to actually learn and retain the information. And perhaps CourseSmart could help some teachers understand that the book isn’t necessary or maybe it isn’t working. CourseSmart could change education forever.

If I could talk to a teacher who has/is using CourseSmart textbooks in their classroom, I would want to ask a few questions. How do you like the system? Has it changed the way you teach/use the textbook? Has the program been able to help your students? What sort of data do you receive? How easy is the program to use?

If I could talk to students who have/is using CourseSmart textbooks for their classes, I would want to ask a few questions. How do you like the system? Have you changed the way you study based on knowing your reading is being watched? Would you rather have this system in your classes or not? How have your grades been affected? Do you ever cheat the system?

If I were commenting on the article, I would say something like: Personally, I think this system is an incredible advancement. I feel as though there could be problems however, mainly with technological difficulties. Although, this is something that I would love to explore further and maybe even use something like this one day. As a student, I know that I would be busted for not doing my reading. As a future teacher, I would love to have this in one of my classrooms someday.

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