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Using Technology and Evidence to Promote Cultures of Educational Innovation: The Example of Science and Mathematics Education

Abstract

"To increase the opportunities for students to learn the knowledge and skills that are valued in the 21st century, education must become more innovative. As numerous publications attest, societies value students who are skilled in solving open-ended problems, collaborating with others, and participating in innovation. Increasingly, students must be able to persevere in tackling complex, non-routine and longterm challenges. Societies also feel a pressing need for students to exercise these skills in combination with a deeper understanding of the STEM disciplines of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Our existing educational system, which was designed largely to address the learning needs of the industrial age, is not well-suited to these emerging needs. New approaches to education for the knowledge and innovation ages must be invented. As we contemplate what these new approaches should be, technology has obvious appeal as an agent of transformation. People find different words to name this appeal. Some assert that technology can make education more "personalized" or deliver "anytime, anywhere" accessibility or make learning more "connected. Although the rhetoric varies, the essential appeal is consistent: a capability as flexible and powerful as today's information and communications technology (ICT) must be an important tool for inventing the future of learning (U.S. Department of Education, 2010)."

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