Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Response to Jeff Utecht: It's about the Tools

I recently read and posted some comments about Jeff Utecht's piece regarding the why and how of teaching technology. I thought they were worth putting up here:

I heartily agree that we need both “why” and “how” and just in time. Two challenges I have found are that often people hear about something and then must do it. Dreamweaver is a great example. We have lots of folks who take the Dreamweaver courses my organization offers when what the really need is something like Google Page creator (Which I am still upset they have dropped by the way) They take Dreamweaver because they have heard of it not because they need that level of complexity. The other side is when people want too much 'how'. They want step by step detailed instructions for an essentially immersive experience. Some want us to hold their hand through every step of subscribing to every blog they choose to put in their reader, when they would do better ‘just signing up and trying it out’ There really needs to be a balance between the two and especially the ‘just in time’ help. Because we need both a reason to do something new, skills to accomplish our goals, and support along the way.

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