The Potential Perils of Google


You have heard before, and will doubtless hear again, that students don’t need to memorize facts because everything we know is available on the interwebs.

Mirjam Neelen and Paul A. Kirschner explain all the ways in which this claim is not just wrong, not just foolishly wrong, but dangerously wrong.

(The danger, of course, is that if we believe it, we’ll fail to teach our students all sorts of things they need to know.)

Students can do critical thinking if and only if they already know lots (and lots) of factual material. We don’t stifle creativity or deep thinking by teaching facts: we make creativity and deep thinking possible.


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