Medieval methods15 Nov 2011
Psychologist Alison Gopnik, in MacLeans “In conversation: Alison Gopnik”.
Q: Whats the traditional approach to learning at a university, and how does it square with what experts know about how people learn?
A: The traditional way of thinking about learning at a university is: theres somebody whos a teacher, who actually has some amount of knowledge, and their job is figuring out a way of communicating that knowledge. Thats literally a medieval model; it comes from the days when there werent a lot of printed books around, so someone read the book and explained it to everybody else. Thats our model for what university education, and for that matter high school education, ought to be like. Its not a model that anybodys ever found any independent evidence for.
See also my post, “A reason for practical genomic education”.