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Re: [school-discuss] my puzzle about OSS in education
Doesn't openworkbench run under java?
Daniel Howard wrote:
Rob brings up a good point. The cost of Mavis Beacon and other
proprietary software on every PC and at home means that the application
is generally not available to all students neither in the home nor at
home for most students. Further, we have found that a lot of students
with new PCs at home have MS Office Basic Edition, which lacks
Powerpoint. By switching to OSS and OpenOffice, all students will have
the same software at home as at school, which means they can learn how
to *use* the program out of school, and focus on how to develop content
using the application in school. Instead of learning a skill in school
(how to use a particular program), we hope they'll transition to
learning how to organize, plan, and communicate effectively.
Unfortunately, there are few, if any, metrics for these elements.
Speaking of which, we also want to try out OpenWorkbench, and the cost
of MS Project certainly underscores Rob's point; we could never afford
to put Project on all school PCs and most parents probably couldn't
afford it either. Don't know how good this will be for elementary
students, so is anyone aware of an OSS project/planning application for
young people? Also, it doesn't seem to run in Linux (of all things!)
Does anyone know of a Linux Project OSS application that they like?
At 12:54 PM 6/2/2005, you wrote:
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
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
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Quadrock Communications, Inc