College of Veterinary Medicine

From the Dean

The Accelerating Speed of Information Travel

by Bryan 19. March 2009 08:16

I commented at the end of my post about the triplet bull calves the other day about how quickly this story went from birth to picked up by MSNBC -- about 5 hours.  Within a few more hours this story was picked up by media in Washington DC, Chicago, Minneapolis, St. Louis, Greenville, Monterey, Pasco, Eugene, the UK, and a blog in Asia, among many others.

Even though I have always thought that I was up on the latest technologies, I still remain amazed at the acceleration of the pace at which we now are able to communicate absolutely anything and everything around the globe.  This video on YouTube drives home the point of the pace of change more generally, and the role of technology in that change.

Last year, for example, it was estimated that there were 1 billion internet devices in the world, compared to a mere 1 million only 15 years earlier.  So how does this affect how we communicate?  There are generational differences because of this rapid change, so it is hard to generalize.  However, for example, it is becoming increasingly common for health professionals to use text messaging to provide frequent, periodic updates to their patients and clients.  Are you?  Should you?  Probably... expectations for communication are very different now than they were only a few years ago.  And within short order, they will change again.

I also wonder about the social and societal implications of almost instant global communications.  But, I'll let someone smarter than me comment on that.

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Comments (27) -

3/21/2009 11:15:32 AM #

John

Another question is what does this information revolution mean for curriculum and its delivery, both for the providers and for the recipients?

From Digital Ethnography
http://mediatedcultures.net/ksudigg/

A vision of students today (short)
www.youtube.com/watch?v=dGCJ46vyR9o&NR=1

Presentation: From Knowledgeable to Knowledge-able (long)
hosted.mediasite.com/.../

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3/23/2009 4:35:48 PM #

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... and to that, where is the value of education when you can just google everything?

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4/3/2009 7:38:05 AM #

Software-won't-let-me-enter-Bryan

The simple answer to the question by "free cursors" is that education is far more than information transmission.  It includes learning how to be a thinker, learning to self-learn, learning to communicate, and in our context learning what it means to be a professional and medical skills training that transcend simple information transmission.

A good answer is much more complicated.  Note, however, that even though there is incredible value to a face to face educational experience, I think we must innovate in ways the sites John pointed us to outline, or we will not be doing the best we can do as educators.  To the extent we can innovate with the way information is transmitted, we can do a better job focusing on the face-to-face aspects that are critically important.

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4/9/2009 4:17:41 AM #

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