What’s the matter with kids today?*

Why can't they be like we were? Perfect in every way?
What's the matter with kids today?*
BYE BYE BIRDIE (The Musical) (Music by Charles Strouse / Lyrics by Lee Adams)

Technology Literacy and the MySpace Generation

That’s the title of an article by Susan Mclester in Technology and Education (March 15, 2007)

It includes the following:

Listening to the Students
Observing students and making decisions about what they should and should not do and know is one thing. Listening to them speak directly is another. At this year’s Sun Worldwide Education and Research Conference in San Francisco, whose theme was Education 2.0, Santa Clara University’s Lorrie Ma and Darian Shirazi of the University of California at Berkeley addressed an international audience of K-12 and college education professionals.

During an hour-long Q&A session with these students, three clear messages emerged:

Students want free and open access to information. (more)

Social networking hubs are here to stay and should not be constrained by schools.


The face of education and the idea of the “campus” are changing. (more)


His (Shirazi’s) advice for students entering the 21st-century workplace? “This is a cliché, but think outside the box, not about what it takes to get an ‘A,'” he says.

This list comes toward the end comes this list:

Characteristics of 21st-century Learners

Following is a compilation of gleaned from a variety of sources, including an American Association of School Librarians blog, high school and university student interviews, and Kim Jones, vice president of global education for Sun Microsystems.

  • Multimedia oriented
  • Web-based
  • Less fear of failure
  • Instant gratification
  • Impatient
  • Nonlinear
  • Multitasker
  • Less textual, more modalities
  • Active involvement
  • Very creative
  • Less structured
  • Expressive
  • Extremely social
  • Need a sense of security that they are defining for and by themselves
  • Egocentric
  • Preference for electronic environments
  • Have electronic friends
  • Thrive with redefined structure
  • Surface-oriented
  • Information overload
  • Widening gap to information access
  • Share a common language
  • Risk takers
  • Technology is a need
  • Aren’t looking for the right answer
  • Feel a sense of entitlement
  • Constant engagement
  • All information is equal
  • No cultural distinctions (global)
  • Striving to be independent

—with acknowledgment to Diane Beaman

* Not a lot in my experience


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