As I was scrolling through the New York Times this morning, this article caught my eye. It talks about a program called CourseSmart, which I have used here at Rutgers and at one of my previous schools. CourseSmart is a testing technology that is used to track students’ progress throughout the semester in using their textbook and other resources. The technology can show the teacher which students are skipping pages, not bothering to take notes or even in some cases not even opening the book at all. It measures your “engagement index” which allows the teacher monitor your progress.
Its the complete opposite from the old days, and some of my other classes where we simply have a quiz the day after there was some reading for homework. Although it’s kind of scary how advanced the digital age is getting, in my opinion I don’t find a problem with this. It’s just like in our class and several others where our activity is monitored. If I know someone is looking at my work, or tracking my progress it kind of motivates me to do better. Even for students who aren’t doing well, it could catch you ahead of time so that you can boost your grade and avoid a failure. I know some students would have the opposite opinion and think it’s an invasion of their privacy and that they should be able to do their work on their own, but for some of my psych classes it’s actually helpful.