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Re: [school-discuss] my puzzle about OSS in education

Quoting Greg Farrell <erac_greg@xxxxxxxxx>:

Does anyone who's switched to OSS applications, like
the ones Marilyn's listed here, have any available
statistics that evaluate student's performance before
and after the switch?  What were the metrics used?

I'm trying to get a sense of learning content value,
so anything along these lines would be a help

Greg Farrell

The big question would be whether or not learning with computers helps. I don't see that there would necessarily be much difference between OSS and proprietary software in this area (do you actually learn significantly more or less by using the Gimp vs Photoshop? OpenOffice vs MS Office? TuxType vs Mavis Beacon?)

Where OSS might help is in affordability and manageability of computing. If the choice is Gimp vs something we can't afford, OpenOffice vs something we can't afford TuxType vs something we can't afford the equation changes. Plus with OSS you can give the students the applications you are teaching with. What are the benefits in giving the students the software to use at home?

Try flipping the question: what are the real advantages of using proprietary software?

Rob Rittenhouse