« The Truthiness of MOOC Completion Rates | Main | Ed-Tech Sentences: Students and Teachers as Subjects, Devices as Direct Objects »

Are Freshmen Ready for College Research?

| No comments

"We identified a disparity between the Google-centric search skills that many first-term freshmen brought with them from high school and the competencies they needed to meet the far higher research expectations in college. Moreover, we found freshmen we studied had gaping holes in their understanding of how libraries--and the vast array of digital resources academic libraries provided--could best meet their needs, especially when it came to sifting out the trusted information they wanted."

That's the conclusion from the most recent report from Project Information Literacy, headed by Alison Head of the Berkman Center and the University of Washington. 

Alison studies students information literacy skills and readiness for college. In a sense, she provides a crucial barometer of important skills that are difficult to measure in standardized tests. And as her reports show, high schools are not adequately preparing student for the rigors of college. 

When I work with educators in schools, one of the things that I often hear is "Well, we'd love to give our students more challenging, engaging learning environments, but we can't because in college they just sit in lecture halls." That may be sort of true. But students are also, as Alison's work makes clear, expected to solve complicated research problems: navigating sources, weighing evidence, reading new genres, iterating through research and writing multiple times, and so forth. There is much more we can be doing in the K-12 system to prepare students for those challenges, and this study of the struggles freshman face in starting college helps to point the way.

 For regular updates, follow me on Twitter at @bjfr and for my publications, C.V., and online portfolio, visit EdTechResearcher.

Notice: We recently upgraded our comments. (Learn more here.) If you are logged in as a subscriber or registered user and already have a Display Name on edweek.org, you can post comments. If you do not already have a Display Name, please create one here.
Ground Rules for Posting
We encourage lively debate, but please be respectful of others. Profanity and personal attacks are prohibited. By commenting, you are agreeing to abide by our user agreement.
All comments are public.

The opinions expressed in EdTech Researcher are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.

Follow This Blog

Advertisement

Most Viewed on Education Week

Categories

Archives

Recent Comments