Tag Archive for computing

Catlin Gabel 1:1 Laptop Program Report

The third Upper School laptop program survey in eight years attempts to discover the uses of laptop computers in the instructional program, the effects of laptop computing on study, communication, and school culture, and levels of satisfaction with the program.

Key Findings

Laptop computers are associated with positive effects on organization, writing skills, and learning environment design.

Laptop computers are associated with negative effects on attention.

Students use computers more often for homework than during class.

Students use computers most in English, science, history, modern languages, digital arts, and computer science classes.

Teachers expressed concern more often than students about negative effects on face-to-face communication.

Teachers and students varied in opinion on the effects on school culture.

Parents are generally satisfied with the school’s laptop program.

Academic Computing in Africa

A former student recently asked whether I could point him in the direction of resources on the effects of computing on schools in Africa. As the academic computing activities of an entire continent are far too diverse to capture in a single response, I collected a few links to identify some activities that might help provide some insight.

AfriGadget While not specifically about academic computing, AfriGadget uses grassroots reporting to collect stories of technical ingenuity under conditions of extreme resource limitation. AfriGadget best captures everyday Africa.

Konrad Glogowski: South Africa, A Reflection Konrad visits Cape Town to help teachers learn to integrate Web 2.0 tools into their instruction. He grapples with the relative modernity of South Africa and the huge differences in access to resources within the country.

dvGarage in Zimbabwe: Alex Lindsay teaches Zimbabweans professional 3D animation and compositing techniques. He seeks to create a PixelCorps of media developers worldwide for the new economy.

One Laptop Per Child Africa: the heavily scrutinized ubiquitous computing project has several test sites listed on this page. (Go to the parent page to find the link to South Africa.)

Ndiyo: a different approach to ubiquitous computing, developing a new thin-client, Linux desktop for community technology centers and schools.

In the mid 90’s, I was involved in academic computing initiatives in Botswana secondary schools. This Google search result suggests that some academic papers exist on this topic, though most require membership to access.