Barbara Means: Technology and Education Reform

Rajeev Talwani
Barbara Means: Technology and Education Reform
SED 618 Multimedia and Instruction
Dr. Kenneth Berry
1. In what ways are Means’ and Mayer’s philosophies alike?
They both are interested in understanding how multimedia can be used to improve the
learning environment. They are also interested in using our understanding of cognitive
processes to achieve this end.
2. What are some of the points of the Reform movement in Education?
Students should practice advanced skills with authentic and complex tasks that are
meaningful and challenging. Also, students should take an active part in defining their
learning goals and regulating their learning. Collaborative work is particularly helpful to
students. The teacher should be a facilitator and coach rather than a dispenser of
knowledge or a director.
3. Describe how using technology helps the Reform movement. Give at least one specific
example that was used in the text.
Technology can be used to help students explore things they are interested in. The DVI
project at Bank Street College allows students to take a simulated journey through a
Mayan archeological site.
4. How is this going to be incorporated into the classroom? Discuss what Means describes
as “Points of Light.”
“Points of Light” are superhero teachers who donate their time and resources to create
new curriculum materials. This represents a bottom-up approach to bringing technology
and reform to schools – the teachers do all the work. Like the top-down model (imposing
change on teachers and students from administration), it is unlikely to be successful.
Teachers need to experiment and develop uses for technology and approaches to reform
but they need to be supported.