Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Reading vs. Lectures vs. ....?

Are faculty members inept or irresponsible when they assign reading as part of a course?

Many people argue that lectures, especially lectures given to large audiences, are bad for learning - mostly because of the lack of opportunity for the learner to engage with the "material" actively and the lack of opportunity for interaction with the lecturer - for all but a few who may be able to take advantage of a brief question perior. Would these same people apply the same reasoning to reading?

“She had liked to read when she was a kid. But reading took so much time, all of it spent inside someone else’s head. Movies and TV, you could watch them with other people. That’s what it boiled down to: how much time you wanted to be all alone by yourself, with just a book for company.”

- Eileen Gunn, “Coming to Terms,” Nebula Awards Showcase 2006, p. 216, edited by Gardner Dozois, New American Library, 2006.

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