The modern classroom was designed in Prussia in the 1770s to immobilize learners so that they only paid attention to the teacher, who could scan the faces looking for those eyes that had wandered somewhere else. Monitorial education took educational surveillance even further with human monitors watching every body movement.
According to the press release from Mindflash, if a trainee “get(s) distracted while training, we don’t have to worry that valuable training material is being missed.”
I think that this is an oppressive use of technology. It would only take one more step to give a person a shock or other punishment it orders to get their eyes back in line. This is technology going down the wrong road.
Judy Katz Unrein immediately wrote a scathing review of this technology on her blog, which is well worth reading, along with many negative comments by a number of learning industry professionals that reinforce her points. Here is a quote:
Since when does staring at a screen increase effectiveness of the training experience and understanding of the content — both claims that are made in this press release? C’mon, folks. We know better than that. We know that measuring the time people spend in training is about as meaningful as weighing them, and this is just a high-tech way to make sure they’re “in training” every second that they’re supposed to be.
What do you think of this technology? Tell us whose side you’re on by leaving a comment.
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