Saturday, June 2, 2012

A Journey to Understanding Web 2.0 & It's Influence on Education

            Upon starting my puruit of my doctorate degree in the field of education, one of my first assignments was to understand the meaning and uses of WEB 2.0. 
The link to the video represents a journey from one level of education to another.  Initially, my thought process was that college students would know less about web 2.0 than younger students who are basically raised on computers.  Most people would initially think that a college student would know more since they had been in school longer, however my interview process proved just the opposite.  I actually interviewed about six students in the college of technology and while they all use computers each day in their pursuit of education, none of them understood the meaning of Web 2.0.  I also interviewed two professors in the same college and asked similar questions.  They didn’t definitively know the answer however; they were able to reason their way to an effective answer.
Equally important was obtaining the perspective of the younger students as to how they perceived the usage of Web 2.0 tools.  I chose Spring Branch I.S.D. because they were one of the early adopters of Web 2.0 and began their implementation through their 11 Tools Program;   I contacted the librarian who led the effort on behalf of the Library Director at SBISD and asked if I could come and interview the kids using their programs.  Their Accelerated Reading program allows students to have additional library time for use of computers during the lunch period so I was able to spend about an hour and a half with the students.  I was able to interview about thirty students and watched numerous others in action.  The library was an incredible model of learning.  Children were eager to learn and almost every student had an iPad or laptop.  It was an amazing environment. 
Lastly, I wanted to summarize the experience of Web 2.0 at SBISD from the perspective of the librarian who was responsible for implementing the program.  The interview evolved into understanding some of the initial obstacles, the impact on the learning environment and a sample of current education software.  This interview was priceless.  The wealth of perspective and experience created a new dimension of understanding on the topic.
I hope you find the video informative and fun!

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