Is This True?

Fri, 20 Jan 1995 18:40:00 PST

Hanson writes:
I came across the following recently and was astounded at the figures.
Is this due to lack of training on how to design courses around computers
or to the more fundamental problem of lack of funds for appropriate
equipment? Are some disciplines affected more than others?"

Probably there is a lot of variation behind the averages, both across
subdisciplines and across colleges and universities. In your question there
is the implicit assumption that there OUGHT to be more use of computers in
classes, and one respondent to your post questioned that assumption. A
better question would be to ask if those who do see a value and utility in
introducing computers into their classes are getting support for so doing.
The answer, will again, probably be highly variable. My experience here at
UCLA with attempting to integrate computer based resources in my teaching is
mixed. There is support, but it is not very well focused support and tends
to occur in fits and starts. Using computers in classes has several
components and different issues arise depending upon whether the intent is to
integrate computer resources with lecturing or to have students do exercises
outside of class in a computer laboratory. When the support is haphazard, or
not well intergrated with what is needed from a pedagogical viewpoint, then
obviously there are barriers to effectively using computers in classrooms,
and without good examples of how, in what manner, and for what purpose,
computers can be used in classes (via well supported pilot projects) then
other faculty lack an informed basis to determine if their pedagogical goals
can be better reached through resources provided by computers.

D. Read