Allan Collins Speaks on Rethinking Education in the Age of Technology

Allan Collins giving his lecture at the University at AlbanyThe School of Education recently welcomed Allan Collins, Professor Emeritus of Education and Social Policy, Northwestern University, to speak on Rethinking Education in the Age of Technology.

This lecture, on November 4 in the UAlbany Performing Arts Center, was sponsored by the School of Education and its Department of Educational Theory and Practice.  It was followed by a reception and book signing in the Futterer Lounge and was well-attended by faculty, staff, students, and community members.

Dr. Collins’ 30-year career began with pioneering work in cognitive psychology and artificial intelligence in the late 1960s and 1970s.  This early work expanded to include seminal research in a variety of areas—natural language and literacy, human reasoning, inquiry approaches to instruction, cognitive apprenticeship, and uses of information technologies in the facilitation of learning.  Dr. Collins notes that learning with the aid of new technologies is commonplace: children are playing complex video games, workers are taking online courses to get an advanced degree, students are taking courses at commercial learning centers to prepare for tests, adults are consulting Wikipedia, etc.  People around the world are taking their education out of school into homes, libraries, Internet cafes, and workplaces, where they can decide what they want to learn, when they want to learn, and how they want to learn.  These developments are changing how people think about education, the nature of learning, motivation, and what is important to learn.

Dr. Collins addresses these highly relevant issues in his new book with Richard Halverson, Rethinking Education in the Age of Technology: The Digital Revolution and Schooling in America, and focused his talk on these and related matters.  The book is available at the University Bookstore.