"But paper and pencil are technologies, just as computers and phones are. They are just a bit older," he said. "And just as paper allows us to offload some of the cognitive load involved in challenging problems onto a medium--[when was the last time you] tried to solve a calculus problem in your head alone?--so do computers and communication technologies; they allow us to offload even more cognitive tasks onto our physical and social environment. Arguably, that's the only way mankind is able to achieve the highly complex tasks we need to achieve today."
He added: "The fact is, we are increasingly making technology part of the teaching and learning situation--but we are not keeping up in aligning assessment sufficiently."
That results in two negative outcomes, Reimann said. First, students notice the discrepancy and don't see the point of the technology, the assessment, or both; and second, educators are underestimating what students know and can do, because students are being assessed in a manner that does not take into account the nature of 21st-century learning--they're being cut off from the resources and tools they are familiar with."
I think this is a fantastic idea! The 21st Century professional world does not ask workers to create, innovate, collaborate, or produce without the assistance of the Internet and mobile devices. So why can't we design assessment that can engage students in using these tools AND evaluate their content understanding??? Why must we say, "put everything away" when taking a test? Why can't we say, "take out all your tools"? Isn't that what we do in the real world? Provide the necessary technical tools to help develop the best outcome or solution?
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