South Korea switches to digital textbooks in the classroom. PAU 2013

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South Korea switches to digital textbooks in the classroom
Image by Lee Jin-man/AP
South Korea is planning to change from paper to digital textbooks in the next few years. The content of South Korea’s school subjects will be available on PC’s, iPads and mobile phones by 2015. The education department has announced that South Korea is preparing for a new digital revolution that will change schools of the future.
The project was started last summer. Classrooms throughout the Asian country will be equipped with wireless LANs so that students can access learning materials whenever and wherever they want. Pupils will no longer have to carry heavy schoolbags.
Compared to South Korea, western nations lag behind. American president Barack Obama has announced that the United States is installing a national learning centre to improve teaching standards and develop new teaching methods.
Educational experts are currently discussing whether digital technology in the classroom makes a great difference. Some argue that bad pupils will stay bad even if they have a computer in front of them. They agree, however, that going digital could motivate children and help schools save money. The biggest problem is how to get teachers to integrate new technologies into their lessons.
Other experts focus on a social problem. Introducing digital learning materials to the classroom could create two groups of children; those who have access to these new technologies and are able to use them and those who do not. The first group will have advantages in getting a good job, the others will stay behind.
Critics also fear that digitizing all learning materials will result in lack of trust. People have more confidence in textbooks simply because content is written in print, whereas material published on the Internet is subject to scepticism.
Adapted from an Article by Liz Dwyer from Good Education July 2011.



Question 1: [2 POINTS] Indicate whether the following statements are true or false and write down which part of the text justifies your answer.
b) Some experts argue that although bad students have access to a computer this will not improve them.
c) Students that are able to use new technologies will have difficulty in getting a good job.
d) Critics are afraid that the digitized material cannot be relied on.

Question 2: [2 POINTS] Answer the following questions in your own words according to the text.
a) What improvements will the project started last summer bring to schools in South Korea?

Question 4: [1,5 POINTS] Complete the following sentences without changing the meaning.
a) Experts say that this sculpture dates from the 12th century.
b) “We are not going on holiday this year. We can’t afford it”, she told her children.
c) The committee is going to appoint new members.


Question 5: [3 POINTS] Write a short essay (about 120-150 words) on the following topic:
– Do you think digital technology will improve Education? Why?/Why not? Give reasons.


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