Full text of thought-leader Aaron Barth’s talk: Why e-Learning Is Killing Education at TEDxKitchenerED conference.
Listen to the MP3 Audio here:
Aaron Barth – President of Dialectic
When I started teaching as a university professor, I did what we all do when we start out as educators. I relied on my intuitions about what good education looks like.
And I’ll let everyone in on a little secret: my intuitions were really really bad. They were based on my experience in the lecture model of education. That’s where we talk at people for really long periods of time, gives them some text books to read, and then give them a test. That’s what I did.
I talked at people, kind of like right now. That was my original sin, but I didn’t stop there.
Years later when I was working as an education consultant, I was asked to design some e-learning, and I hadn’t done that before. And you’ll never guess how I went about it.
By injecting all the same terrible intuitions into it… and it looks something like this. Virtual instructor in front of a virtual whiteboard, delivering virtual bullet-points. I’m pretty sure when we thought of using virtual reality in education, this isn’t what we had in mind.
Unfortunately, this is what e-learning looks like today. And no one’s learning anything from it. Think about how absurd that is.
So how did we get here?