When will state exams be word processed?

8818524_3a9d27ff31_o.jpgIts ELA testing time – all of our 6th, 7th and 8th grade students are busy writing furiously in their test books.

In the era we are entering, where the web is our medium of choice, kids spend far more time keyboarding (correctly or incorrectly) than writing. In the work force the same is true – handwritten communication is far less common.

Are we reaching a point where students are being inhibited in performance because they are handwriting?

By no means am I saying throw out the ink and get the keyboards out – handwriting is important, of course, but is the zone of comfort moving from quill to QWERTY? As a technologist I’m on the keyboard constantly, so this is certainly the case for me. Any writing I do that is intended for an audience besides me gets typed. One main reason is that my handwriting is pretty bad – I have a hard time reading it myself.

There are huge logistical implicaitons for having students word process state exams. Equipment access is obviously the biggest one – if every student has to word process at the same time, there are not enough computers to do this. A one-to-one initiative would have to be in place to pull something like this off.

Just some food for thought – definitely file this one under Russo’s Ramblings…

Image citation:
“Pen and Ink.” by Trinity-of-One, via Flickr 18 January 2005.