Speaking at Iowa State University this week, Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty (R) said that one of the best ways to deal with the ever-escalating costs of a higher education might be found in video games and technology. Pawlenty is on the stump because – many believe – he will take a run at becoming president in 2012. Pawlenty mentioned remote learning during a brief question & answer session with ISU Republicans. His answer was in response to a question about how he reconciles his goal of improving education with spending cuts.
"Let’s say you can scale the best Econ 101 lecture and not a lecture, not some guy standing in a room lecturing but let’s say it has all the sights and sounds and video and visual components of Call of Duty 3, but now it’s Econ 101. Or instead of learning about WW II, you’re fighting in WW II."
He argued that students could access curriculum available from any university in the world online, for a fraction of the cost of attending a traditional university course. He added that Minnesota spent billions of dollars on university buildings, paid salaries, pensions and more to support the state’s educational system. Pawlenty also suggested that the private sector might do a better job of providing a digital curriculum without the cost of public infrastructure and staff.
It’s an interesting concept, but the devil is usually in the details.
Pawlenty added that technology would not replace traditional universities, because students need socialization and sports teams.
Source: Des Moines Register