Democratic Group’s Proposal: Give Every Student a Kindle

An influential group of democrats is calling for every college student in the United States to learn from a Kindle. Certainly, costs could be saved in textbook outlays, but a key question remains about the way this technology might need to evolve to be effective for all kinds of learners—not just the verbal-linguistic, reading-inclined student. Here are some things to consider:

1) If students learn from an electronic device than a physical book, how would their study methods need to change and what might that technology need to do to enable student motivation and successful study habits?

2) How much would in-class learning need to change to engage students by providing a more rich learning experience based on human interaction?

3) What provision would need to be made for students who still want a tactile book? What would a transition over time look like where eventually these tools are used in high school?

4) How can learning experts and producers of Kindle-type devices come together for the best, student-centered outcomes?

5) How much will companies listen to students –all kinds—as they develop these devices?

6) How will teaching change in the digital world where providing an “experience” simulated and in person will be at the heart of learning?

7) What do we imagine effective learning to look like a decade from now—through self-paced methods and in-class experiences—and what measurements will we use to gauge progress? How will we se this technology to help the rising tide of developmental students in our country?

New York Times
by Brad Stone
Some influential members of the Democratic Party want to give electronic reading devices to every student in the country. should like the name of their proposal: “A Kindle in Every Backpack: A Proposal for eTextbooks in American Schools,” by the Democratic Leadership Council, a left-leaning think tank, was published on the group’s Web site Tuesday.

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