The classroom is the system

Pr. Pierre Dillenbourg / École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne

Abstract: Entering a modern car is like entering a computer with wheels, seats and windows. Similarly, entering a classroom is like entering a large digital system with chairs, windows and a board. The input devices of this system are not a keyboard and mouse, but an entire classroom and its various sensors. The output device of this system is not a screen but a set of digital elements distributed in the class. The output is not a simple reflection of the input but input data are processed by multiple operators that aggregate, compare and visualize data. The resulting dashboards are used for monitoring the learners’ progress in order to decide when and to whom to intervene. They are also used to compile data from the constructivist activities for supporting the debriefing phase, as well as to predict the completion time of an activity. Monitoring, debriefing and timing are central processes in classroom orchestration.