Posted by: drbrucepk | October 30, 2008

Sugata Mitra and the Hole-in-the Wall Experiment

Back to some TED videos today.

Photo from Ted website

Photo from Ted website

Sugata Mitra, Professor of Educational Technology, is well known for his work in Cognitive Science, Information Science and Educational Technology. This talk is about his work with the Hole-in-the-wall experiment.

The Hole-in-the-wall experiment started in 1999. Mitra and his colleagues traveled around India placing a computer and a touch pad in a hole in a wall. The computer either had high-speed internet access or stacks of CDs that could be inserted into the computer. Mitra left the computer alone and just let things happen.

The areas that picked for the experiment were either remote physically, i.e. rural areas, or remote socially and economically, i.e. slums. One of the things that that the experiment want to discover was the effect that educational technology has on children.

Mitra argues that educational technology has more impact on students that are performing at the bottom of the scale than for students who are at the top of the scale. That is, the top students show only small gains whereas the students at the bottom of the scale show much greater gains. Mitra said he was looking for an idea of what an alternative primary education might look like.

What happened was that children came up to what many of them saw as a television and began to play with it. The kids taught each other how to use the computer and how to surf. As most of the content on the internet is in English, the children began learning English so that they could use the computer. This language learning was a communal activity and extended beyond the immediate venue of the hole-in-the-wall to the use of English in other situations as well.

So what are some implications of the hole-in-the-wall experiment?
•    Education does not have to be a teacher-centered activity.
•    Children can and will teach and learn from each other.
•    If children are allowed  to express their innate curiosity, they can organize themselves into learning groups.

What do you think about the implications of this research?

Advertisements

Responses

  1. It’s a shame you don’t have a donate button! I’d certainly donate to this brilliant blog! I guess for now i’ll settle for bookmarking and
    adding your RSS feed to my Google account. I look forward to fresh updates
    and will talk about this site with my Facebook group. Chat soon!

  2. Following all, not each and every psychic out there is genuine and several folks have had
    the unpleasant experience of paying up front and obtaining fraudulent readings.
    Perhaps you are a “booty call” or a back up plan for the person that you are interested in.
    If you are able to tune into pure spirit energy you will find it easier
    to manifest and to get what you want in life.

  3. Hello! I simply wish to offer you a big thumbs up for your excellent
    information you’ve got here on this post. I’ll be coming back to your blog for more soon.
    streetdirectory

  4. Way cool! Some extremely valid points! I appreciate you penning this article and also the
    rest of the website is really good.

  5. Heya i’m for the primary time here. I came across this board and I find It truly helpful & it helped me out much. I hope to offer one thing again and aid others such as you aided me.

  6. Hi! Do you know if they make any plugins to help with SEO?
    I’m trying to get my blog to rank for some targeted keywords but I’m not
    seeing very good gains. If you know of any please share.
    Kudos!

  7. Very good information. Lucky me I found your blog by accident
    (stumbleupon). I have book-marked it for later!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Categories

%d bloggers like this: