Ramblings, citations and "brainwaves" of a college librarian in Toronto. 475 square feet refers to the size of my home, not the size of my office or library.

Google is White Bread For the Mind

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Seems lots of folks are in an uproar over how today's powerful yet dull search and discovery tools are doing to young people's minds. They use anything they find and don't discriminate between findings. But is technology really to blame? I say no, I blame the eduction system. Performance standards have been lowered at every grade to engineeer failure out of the system. Kids show up in university using Wikipedia, spending little time on learning tasks, focused heavily on leisure channels (twitter, facebook, IM, Youtube, videogames, etc)not because they are a new breed of learner in our tech society, but because failure is not possible politically today. If a high school teacher held the line on research quality (and took the time to teach the topic), most would fail the assignment or worse. If the line was held, and this behaviour was repeated everywhere, in time people would figure it out, on how to pass. We would see entering students knowing the game they had to play to succeed. It would be all about performance and less about experience. For this to happen, funding models have to change. As long as retention rates are tied to funding, the bar can only be lowered and each previous level in the system lowers the bar too. Look at the disease not the symptom.

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