beyond2008 – panel discussion
Philip Bray – Politics, English and Physics
Maths, Engl Lit, Latin Hist
Sophie – Medical Undergrad
Dan – Chemistry Year 3
Sixth formers use gmail and chat a lot. They don’t know what RSS.
Sophie – mostly books and talking. Next year will need to use online journals.
Yuen – Google search, ERIC for study. Social life – gmail. Blogging and facebook. MSN for chatting with friends.
Dan needs textbooks because there is not enough specific chemistry stuff online. Agrees with the social / education split. He uses webmail to keep it all in one place. Another student advised him to sent it through to gmail. Homepage is BBC, nobody using RSS.
Dan: a lot of our tutors are postgrads. We drink with them.
Sixth formers: students and teachers don’t mix. “It seems a little odd to facebook teachers at this stage”.
Philip says his syllabuses are “really wide and narrow” depending on the subject.
Other sixth former notes that the textbooks are very clearly exam-based
Other observations – there’s a lot of ageism around today.
Dan: science and maths does not have to be restricted. Good teachers will understand that what you have to know is quite limited.
Yuen notes that there needs to be a balance of teaching facts (making sure people understand) and then exploring with them
Librarian mentioned quality of information
- dan and philip talk about taking a range of sources
Most memorable experience
- when something striking happens and you understand the principles behind it (Dan)
- having the chance to express yourself (Yuen)
- Sophie – buzzing teachers
- x – debates about Hamlet
- philip – year 7 & 8 history making a model of a motte and bailey castle. Knows intricacies of the defense features.
- Stuart – reward for teachers is “seeing students change”
the reliability of wikipedia
- general defence
Interesting reluctance to interrupt the lecture with questions, even text ones?
What about technology in schools?
- x – better than my old school in Germany
- Philip – worse than my school in Kingston which had whiteboards and computer in every room
- Dan – the college insisted that we buy a laptop – you have to pay for it yourself
- Sophie doesn’t have a laptop
- Yuen – it’s easy to find a desktop to check your email
- Stuart – it’s mixed across disciplines – some depts are pretty woeful
If computers were removed could you still do well in your exams?
- if you’re really into a subj you don’t need exams to keep you going (Philip). But I’m weak at physics and if I didn’t have the exam to keep me going then I probably wouldn’t do as weel.
- Yuen – exams as benchmarking, students understand their own progress
- Dan – something to work towards
- Stuart: “Great, lectures are good and they want exams”.
- “unwritten rule that you don’t quote from Wikipedia”
- Dan nobody is using laptops because you can’t draw diagrams
- Stuart (fantastic – lectures, exams, pen&paper)
Warwick bloke – trend catching on record lecture in advance and then go and discuss
- Students are turning up
- Sophie – you might be tempted not to go
- Dan – excellent idea. You can skive and still learn what the lecturer is coming
Training or warning – what do the schools do?
- Philip – they block the sites. It’s really frustrating – it’s just common sense. It’s that simple.
- Dan – when I was in the 6th form nobody really mentioned web safety.
Online study group, Ryerson, nearly expelled
- Dan: never been in an online group
- students don’t perceive difference between online and offline study group
What should be anticipating next?