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Book Chat! The New Education by Cathy Davidson

Session 1
Lee Finkelstein — Regional Program Manager for CAE (Council for Aid to Education)

The purpose of this conversation is to understand more deeply the historical and cultural roadblocks to change. Then with that understanding construct, define, identify strategies to pursue solutions of greatest importance to participants.
Cathy draws a line in 1993, when MOSAIC 1.0 was released. MOSAIC was the 1st commercially viable web browser with a color interface that began the internet as we know it today. Throughout the book she goes back and forth from the late 1800’s when Charles Eliot set about changing education by creating what we now know as the modern research university, to today. The system of ranking, sorting, and credentialing was created at a time of great change. Centuries of long standing traditions had to change for the modern research university and K-12 public education systems to emerge.
Recognizing that the focus of colleges in the 19th century, turning out ministers and clergy, no longer served an emerging industrial society, Davidson and many progressive educators recognize that the focus of today’s colleges, turning out credentialed professionals, no longer serves our algorithm driven, big data, postindustrial society. Using Cathy’s writing and examples as jumping off points, we’ll look to contextualize how strategies of change buck up against cultural norms, and then look for tactics to ease barriers.

Conversational Practice

Even though this is a book talk, the Focus/Framing protocol will be used in a modified fashion. Each participant and group will frame their questions based on the context of the big ideas in the book.

Once questions have been created, small and whole group discussion will work towards tactics to follow. Ideally, pre and post EduCon conversations will take place among participants and co-moderators.There is an outside chance we may be able to have the author herself join the conversation via webcast.

Conversation Links

Presenter Profiles

Lee Finkelstein
Lee Finkelstein


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