I struggled with a good title for this post; “Heuristics”, “The purpose of Education, part 4”, “Is this what Education is going to become?”
As stated in several previous posts (ie, 1, 2, 3), I have observed an emphasis on “data-based student metrics”. And now we are seeing more of this being applied to teachers as well (hence the CPS strikes). I just recently read a couple articles about how Xerox uses very similar techniques for their call-center:
And frankly, these articles scare me. But I have to take a step back and acknowledge that some folks really dig the ability to track, measure and data-mine people as they matriculate through a system. The tin foil hat says “machine”.
And I realize that one’s view on how to measure learning really is dependent on the purpose of education in the first place. I am a big believer in that education prepares folks to participate in a democratic society, and thus I have a hard time fitting all this data-centric mentality into my framework. But for those that see education playing the role of preparing our children to be future
gerbils wage-earners in the great American Machine industrious workforce, this system of tracking and measuring and analyzing is probably quite attractive.
What about the middle ground? I am having a hard time seeing that, so if you have a different perspective, I would love to hear it. (And I know several of you do!)