Accession Number:

ADA209126

Title:

Computer Literacy Education

Descriptive Note:

Doctoral thesis

Corporate Author:

MASSACHUSETTS INST OF TECH CAMBRIDGE LAB FOR COMPUTER SCIENCE

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

1989-01-01

Pagination or Media Count:

164.0

Abstract:

This thesis presents a study of computer literacy in schools, informed by the perspectives of education professionals and computer professionals. The study examines the traditional arguments of computer enthusiasts for computer education and analyzes their underlying justifications, giving counterarguments where appropriate. Examples are taken from classroom observation, interviews, and the literature. Many well intentioned schools and dedicated teachers are striving to overcome the serious flaws that characterize computer-literacy education vague goals, inadequate hardware, bad software, and poor training. But while computers can be useful tools, mandatory computer education is unjustified. Computer literacy as a fundamental skill like reading and writing is over-sold, misapplied, basically trivial in many applications, and not demonstrably up to its claims for education. In many cases, enthusiasm for computers and education has less to do with the educational value of computers than with a complex web of social pressures on educators. Moreover, the euphoria about computers in schools can be a smokescreen, diverting attention from fundamental educational problems, such as the demoralizing environments in which many primary- and secondary-school teachers work, or the lack of real literacy among many graduates. Such problems do not have technological solutions. Thesis.

Subject Categories:

  • Humanities and History

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE