Richard Miller describes a paradigm shift as a fundamental shift in human communication and this is what we are living in. It is a shift in perspective; a new way of organizing information. He also goes on to use the event in which everyone believed that the sun and planets revolved around Earth and humans were the center. On the contrary, Galileo disproved this theory and confirmed that the sun is the center and the other planets revolved around the sun. So of course naturally there were people who disagreed and agreed but it doesn’t change the fact that things were changing. All that matters is how do we adjust to this change. So this same concept applies to our movement towards technology. It’s clear that we have become more and more dependent on technology but some people believe it is becoming a setback for our youth.
Many of us in our young adult stage and youth are owners of Facebook and YouTube accounts. We unknowingly spend hours on it until something brings us back to consciousness and we realize we haven’t done our homework yet. Vishal is a perfect example of someone who experiences this. Many believe this to be a distraction but as Megan Garber puts it that is what grabs our attention. It is not a distraction, obviously we engage in activities that interest us so surfing the web is more interesting to us than doing homework. Schools fail to grab students’ interests and this is why we see many children today performing below average. Schools would fall into the category of individuals who are resisting change. Clearly, 21st century students are different from students from past two centuries ago. Schools cannot use the same traditional ways of teaching like before. We have so much more comfort and many things that interest us unlike before. We are technology savvy multi-taskers that can listen to music, watch TV, text, and update our facebook status without breaking a sweat. It is up to school systems to conform to our new trend and create a way that’ll keep our interest while providing us with the education we need to move on.
Although, we are embraced with this new technology trend, I believe it is hurting us. Two centuries ago students who didn’t like a particular subject was still capable of passing that class with a grade of C or even A but today the chances are highly unlikely. This may be one of the major differences between 21st century students and students two centuries ago. Today we now have an excuse or an escape route to not passing a subject; it’s almost as if today we are too comfortable. Back then even calculators weren’t common so students had to master performing math calculations on paper or in their heads. Today we are ranked number 6 based on math and science and reading test scores while Russia and China are ranked numbers 5 and 2. Also, it is safe to say children in Russia and China have less accessibility to technology like we do. There are so many factors that we can take into account. For example, it is common in Russia and China there is more discipline involved while in the U.S we are pretty lenient. In addition, there are different governments. The U.S is more of a capitalist country out of the three so that weighs in to companies wanting to make money off of others. They don’t take into account what might be the disadvantages of selling a product or service; all that matters is making their profit. For example, facebook is targeted mainly to youth because they know that is where they will gain the most. However, it’s safe to say the makers of Facebook know what the possible issues that could arise like children posting inappropriate pictures and statuses or internet bullying but all that matters is profit. In addition we all know these kinds of things are common today and will haunt these children when applying for a job or even going to college. So going back to some school systems unwilling to change their curriculum it just might be “what’s best to main stability.” This meaning if students are unable to cope or failing miserably they will drop out which leaves them unable to fend for themselves. Then this leads them to depend on organizations that help people who are unable to provide for themselves or performing jobs that let us just say that an individual with a degree would not want to do. Without these dropouts, the existence of these organizations won’t be needed as well as less wanted jobs won’t be filled. However, today jobs are so scarce due to economic meltdown and part of it is technology. We have many jobs eliminated due to technology, for example nutritionists are less needed due to programs that have been created to act as a human nutritionist. In fact through our generation we can possibly use technology to create jobs. So in conclusion, as students we have to know the limits of these services that technology provides while schools have to embrace technology in order for students to become engaged and perform well. Everything has its advantages and disadvantages. Unlike before we have technology that can help us become agile learners and apply it to become greater than people before us.