Friday, May 7, 2010
Monitoring of Reading - Reactions from Gordon
I believe we have at least two different sets of problems here.
First, if a student downloads a book from Amazon or Apple, it's their private property. As long as students are able to answer questions about the subject matter of a class, faculty will be happy. Consequently, in a significant majority of the time, I believe faculty will NOT want to monitor the amount of time that students spend reading specific books, chapters, articles, or even pages.
Second, when students read material that I've generated in the form of webpages, I can easily access how many hits my webpages receive; but I have no need to know whether every student in the class has accessed the page. Indeed, students are very social and, as a result, they often review material in groups in one student's room around their computer. iPads, of course, allow much more individualized content consumption; but, as others in this blog have noted, the iPad can also be a center of intense social interaction.
Finally, I can see how with some very specific content, we would want to know whether a student has opened a document and how long they've spent with that document open. For example, we want to know that they have read their contracts with the college. That's the one area where we would want to be sure that they have acknowledged their responsibilities and obligations to the community.