Another dot in the blogosphere?

Why is education slow to change?

Posted on: November 30, 2015

Tortoise are relics that have somehow endured despite being slow and seemingly unsuited to the broader ecosystem.

Tortoise by montuschi, on Flickr
Creative Commons Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 2.0 Generic License   by  montuschi 

They persist because environments like the Galapagos and zoos provide conditions where they are protected or otherwise not threatened.

The educational arena has players like schools and universities that are like tortoises. What conditions help them survive?

  • The results of schools and universities are not immediately obvious
  • Such results are measured largely by high-stakes but narrow-band tests
  • The teaching profession tends to attract the risk-averse

These conditions contribute to inertia that is hard to overcome.

While it is easy to justify the preservation of tortoises as part of of our biological heritage, old school practices that keep us mired in the past are puzzling.

Every time we prevent access to mobile learning, do not question a lecture, or say “if ain’t broke, don’t fix it”, we retreat into our collective shell. We create the conditions for such behaviours to persist. We do this despite the fact that we know better than to keep doing this.

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