Thursday, January 3, 2008

Electronic bytes of random ink splotches

I read the Year end summary of the Education Project a couple of times today. One of the reasons could be that I was reading up this book as well and somewhere along the line I realized that it is really true about what is said about the education system in India (articles like these notwithstanding) - that students are taught how to answer questions and memorize facts not to "learn" the subject. That is an aspect which I think is reflected in the observations (of Peter Junge) in terms of why is a tough bit to slip into the curricula and thus encourage adoption.

I've observed that the reason is not adopted by teachers and adapted to their teaching pedagogy is that there is that resistance to (re)learning skills. And this is perhaps where the VBA bits and Macro Development work could come in handy. Those ideally allow credit based courses (3 credit based optional courses are becoming popular in India) to be created around these activities. A 3 credit course is (if I recall well) around 20 hours of study and practicals ie theory and hands-on. Surprisingly, Microsoft tends to not address this area and focus more on using IDEs and developer environments along with MSDN to be entrenched within the system.

The one aspect of the Education Project that would be required to be addressed with some amount of firmness would be the extent of co-operation the other Projects and sub-projects within would be willing to provide to this Project. Or, given that the Education Project during its formative years is going to be working with a larger number of projects by guiding potential contributors, there has to be acceptance of the significance of this effort. Additionally, there has to be a close cohesion between the effort of creating "Certification" modules (or syllabus) which can be adopted. Modules for certification would also allow creation of a subsystem of entrepreneurs around with a strong focus on learning services.