[PLUG] Self Analysis

Sriram Narayanan sriramnrn at gmail.com
Sun Feb 24 21:12:04 PST 2008


On Mon, Feb 25, 2008 at 9:55 AM, Sriram Narayanan <sriramnrn at gmail.com> wrote:
> On Sun, Feb 24, 2008 at 7:42 PM, Nishit Dave <stargazer.dave at gmail.com> wrote:
>  > On Sat, Feb 23, 2008 at 4:40 PM, Sriram Narayanan <sriramnrn at gmail.com> wrote:
>  >  >  of free time and of how shy they are about meeting other tech
>  >  >  enthusiasts.
>  >
>  >  I sometimes think LUGs take the tech enthusiasts thing too far -
>  >  scaring away lay users like me who are not interested in programming
>  >  languages or database administration, but in solving day-to-day
>  >  computing issues.  Usually happens when you have a large number of
>  >  students participating in the group.
>  >

Lest some students mis-understand what Nishit is saying here:

Students are exposed to technology and are students of technology.
Consequentially, their focus remains technology. If they were to see
how technology could be applied, suddenly they'd start to even study
in a different way.

While working in Nashik, I once taught a COM/DCOM programming course.
Most students had never written much code beyond basic assignments. I
was used to having to deal with that having been a mentor for B.E.
projects. So when I decided to teach the course, I chose to change the
rules a bit. One, every  session that we had together comprised of me
telling folks how the topic of the day was applied to solve real world
problems.

Another different thing was with the assignments : I encouraged
everyone to copy from each other, and to tell me just what they had to
copy and why. It was just fine if the class as a whole sent me a
solution, but individuals could send me separate solutions too.

This led to a higher degree of collaboration and learning (in my
observation), prompted people to speak up and to ask questions, and to
set out finding parallels in the real world.

People focus on that which they see in front of them.

Perhaps it's time for PLUG to try additional things at PLUG meets -
what we take for granted (real world problems), may be new stuff for
students (apply technology to solve real world problems) :)

-- Sriram



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