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This is a context page for an article considering how all the energy that undergraduate and graduate students expend writing and researching can more directly serve the advance of knowledge and understanding through astute intellectual use of information and communication technologies in education (ICTE). Please contribute your ideas and suggestions to its development.
The ideal reference community for this article comprises faculty members throughout higher education, and reflective students, who want to share and cull experience in making their instructional activities more effective means of advancing their intellectual activities.
- How do existing instructional patterns serve to advance knowledge and understanding?
- They stock young minds with information and ideas and provide them with disciplines of inquiry.
- They impart the know-how and standards of one or more academic and professional fields.
- Where in the process is energy and talent expended with little tangible result?
- Apprentice activities (paper writing, exam taking) consume much student and faculty energy primarily with intangible results in the form of a sound preparation for the future.
- Can social software lead to an instructional process in which the energy expended in apprentice activities will culminate in tangible results of substantial value to the intellectual community?
- The need to accumulate experience in trying to make this happen.
See sub-points under the generative questions above.
Scope and norms
There is a burgeoning literature on ICT in higher education. It would be helpful to identify the small part of it that deals with the challenge of introducing ICT into the instructional process in ways that make that process more effective in advancing the state of knowledge and understanding. Most of it is directed at making the achievement of current instructional goals more efficient in the sense either of meeting them with less expenditure of time and energy or in the sense of raising them while holding the expenditure of time and energy constant. What is the literature on how information technologies deployed in the instructional mission of the university can significantly improve its research mission?
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