The Attic (a name which commemorates our first physical location) is, first and foremost, a site for the research students of the School of Museum Studies at the University of Leicester: a virtual community which aims to include all students, be they campus-based and full-time, or distance-learning and overseas. But we welcome contributions from students of museum studies - and allied subject areas - from outside the School and from around the world. Here you will find a lot of serious stuff, like exhibition and research seminar reviews, conference alerts and calls for papers, but there's also some 'fluff'; the things that inspire, distract and keep us going. After all, while we may be dead serious academic types, we're human too.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Random Thing on the Internet Today

It is things like this that fill me with giddy glee and make me love my thesis topic.

"We are looking to implement iPads as part of an interactive simulation experience we offer to 25,000 students per year here at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Museum. Specifically we aim to increase student retention of the material covered in the simulation through uses of the iPad that allow us to effectively appeal to an increased number of learning modalities (Linguistic, Logical, Spatial, Kinesthetic, Interpersonal, and Intrapersonal) as well as appeal to some of those important 21st Century Skills that are so important to today’s students (Collaboration, Critical Thinking, Communication, and Creativity). "

-Anthony Pennay
Director of the Walter and Leonore Annenberg Presidential Learning Center
The Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation
 
Mostly it's because I come across quotes like this A LOT in my research. It's not just for the iPad, you can substitute any mainstream technology you like. The point is usually the same. The idea that technology + children = learning! That somehow, reading it on an iPad is more likely to lead to retention.
 
Then, of course, you go trolling the Internet and find a whole list of articles, none of which have anything to do with museums, but everything to do with education that says the computer is not the fix to learning and that, actually, using the computer will not increase knowledge retention (will, in many cases, decrease it). How is it that after more than two decades with the Internet, museums and scientific theory still aren't crossing?
 
Of course, if they are going to cross, can they wait a few more years until I've published my thesis please?
 
[Please note that I found this quote on a post on an online network that I belong to, which sends me email updates to the email account linked to this blog - only slight hypocrisy using emailed research to say that children don't learn better on a computer!]

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