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The Daily Beast, August 17, 2011 | Cathy N. Davidson

Posted & filed under In The News

“As long as we focus on the object we know, we will miss the new one we need to see,” Davidson writes. “The process of unlearning in order to relearn demands a new concept of knowledge not as thing but as a process, not as a noun but as a verb.” The challenge of meeting our radically altered circumstances is huge—a “mismatch,” Davidson repeatedly states, between our digital lives and our daily lives…

In what is perhaps the strongest section of this book, Davidson argues that what we’ve come to think of as being the “natural” structure for our schools— specialization in discrete subject areas, one-size-fits all standardized testing, and rigid hierarchies based on official expertise—is anything but natural. That approach was put into place to prepare students to enter the industrialized 20th century economy, where division of labor, efficiency, and clear-cut structures were most important. Now, though, many of those jobs no longer exist—or if they do, they’re in Bangalore or Beijing. Yet American schools continue to reinforce 20th-century values that prepare children for a 20th-century work force—and fail to prepare them for the one they’re actually entering.”

Read the full article:
The Science of Attention Spans
by Casey Scwartz
The Daily Best

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Cathy N. Davidson

Cathy N. Davidson

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