Over at First Things I argue that the lecture is still the best way to educate a large group of learners.
The Atlantic ran an interview with David Thornburg, entitled “Lectures Didn’t Work in 1350—and They Still Don’t Work Today.” It’s full of the typical technology-will-save-education balderdash. I’ll skip any comments on that topic.
Let’s talk about this assertion that lectures don’t work. The interviewer asks why we keep using this lecture-based model that doesn’t suit every student’s needs. Thornburg answers:
“It’s a fascinating question. There’s a painting of a classroom by Laurentius de Voltolina from 1350 that shows it’s not working. Students are talking to each other or falling asleep while the teacher drones on. Why has this perpetuated? I don’t know.”
I can tell you why. It’s perpetuated because it works.
You can read the rest here.