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September 11, 2012

Hello, I am Quresh Savliwala and I am a freshman in LS&A. I am currently undecided about my major, but I am planning on taking the pre-medical route. My academic interests consist of science classes, specifically biology. In my free time I enjoy playing video games and spending a lot of time on the internet. My main goal for this semester is to learn how to manage my time efficiently so I can be prepared for my future years at University of Michigan.


In Mark Bauerlein’s “Online Literacy is a Lesser Kind”, Bauerlein claims that students would emit “pushback” in response to having to learn in new and different ways. Bauerlein claims that in order for a style of learning to be effective, students would have to reveal a negative response representing the challenge that students are going through. Seeing that no negative response, or “pushback”, has been emitted, Bauerlein concludes that online literacy is not effective. I disagree with Bauerlein’s claims that a negative response must be emitted to prove that a teaching style is effective. In our generation, almost everything is done online, so adapting technology to classrooms is not a new style to many students, which is why little “pushback” is shown. Since students are able to learn in a medium that many are accustomed to, negative response is not shown. Bauerlein does have a point in that online literacy leads to fast reading, but that is not necessarily a bad thing. Students are able to become more efficient readers with the aid of online literacy, so although many students skim through articles, most of the information is retained.


Barbara Jones-Kavalier’s and Suzanne Flannigan’s “Connecting the Digital Dots” contrasts with Bauerlein. Bauerlein places most of the blame of the lack of education onto the students, as they are not emitting any negative response. Jones-Kavalier and Flannigan place the blame onto the teachers and educational staff for the lack of a challenging curriculum for the students. Since students are more technologically capable, it is not necessary for them to show any negative response by integrating a more digital learning environment. Both articles also have a different definition of literacy. Bauerlein sees literacy in the more traditional sense, as the ability to read and write proficiently while Jones-Kavalier and Flannigan see literacy as the ability to understand a concept and apply that knowledge.



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