Disrupting Class: How Disruptive Innovation Will Change the Way the World Learns

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  • ISBN13: 9780071592062
  • Condition: NEW
  • Notes: Brand New from Publisher. No Remainder Mark.

Product Description
Selected as one of the “Best Books on Innovation, 2008” by BusinessWeek magazine Named the “Best Human-Capital Book of 2008” by Strategy + Business magazine A crash course in the business of learning-from the bestselling author of The Innovator’s Dilemma and The Innovator’s Solution… “Provocatively titled, Disrupting Class is just what America’s K-12 education system needs–a well thought-through proposal for using tech… More >>

Disrupting Class: How Disruptive Innovation Will Change the Way the World Learns

5 Comments For This Post

  1. Glenn Weinstein Says:

    I thought this book was an academic waste of time. Like sure when we use computers things are going to be disrutive, like in other industries. This book provides little in the way of what is being done well now, and the sub disruction. They use abstract examples from other industries where they sould be focused on education.
    Rating: 1 / 5

  2. Paul Daly Says:

    In a nutshell, here is the ‘Innovators Solution’ for education: since all people have different learning styles, we need to change the education model to ‘student-centric learning’, which here means individualized computer-based learning. This is the core of the argument, which he fleshes out with his favorite case studies of Intel, Toyota, Dell, Apple, etc.

    What they don’t do is play this scenario out to its logical conclusion. If students go through 12 years of school learning alone, how do they come together to live and work in a society? He mentions in passing skills employers want out of high school graduates, but ignores a key one: ability to work together in teams. Individual learning may be helpful in certain subjects at certain levels, but there is another body of research about learning from peers, in class discussions and projects, that he is missing here.

    Some of the examples and backing are just naive. There are examples of this style of education in other countries that support his claim, but none are offered here. There is plenty of opportunity for disruption in education, of which this idea is potentially one, but this book is a disappointment.

    Rating: 3 / 5

  3. Loyd E. Eskildson Says:

    Clayton Christensen previously has provided excellent insights on disruptive technologies within the business world. Unfortunately, he does not succeed with “Disrupting Class.”

    Christensen begins noting that typical “solutions” do not up to scrutiny. Inflation-adjusted per-pupil expenditures have be doubled, with little result; further, Kentucky state accountability index performance between two districts varies inversely with expenditures – despite the lower-spending district also being more disadvantaged in pupil characteristics. (Christensen, however, offers no explanation of that the state accountability index is comprised. Other sources indicate it is vulnerable to distortion through low standards.) He also points out that U.S. education spending is about twice that of other developed nations.

    Others contend that new technology is key to improving pupil performance. Christensen, however, notes that computer availability has roughly doubled, again, with little impact.

    Perhaps pupil motivation is the key. Christensen “refutes” this explanation by reporting area scores in Montgomery County, Md. that meet or exceed minimums now match those of white pupils in non-poverty areas. (Christensen, however, fails to recognize that this is meaningless if the “minimum” standards are low.)

    Christensen then notes that the proportion of pupils taking science and engineering courses falls as a nation’s prosperity increases – somehow failing to recognize that this supports a pupil motivation is key hypothesis. He also is oblivious to the decades-old trend for Asian and Jewish pupils to substantially outperform their peers.

    Later on in “Disrupting Class,” Christensen reports favorable NAEP trends at the lower age levels as indicative of successes, failing to also notice that the 17-year-old scores have remained unchanged for decades – therefore, undermining his conclusion.

    The essence of “Disrupting Class” is that computers can make learning more effective and attractive by individualizing instruction. Unfortunately, this is directly contrary to his early observation that high-scoring nations primarily use rote instruction, while the lower-scoring U.S. uses pupil-centered, more individualized instruction.

    Bottom-Line: A well-intentioned, but seriously flawed book.
    Rating: 1 / 5

  4. David Anderson Says:

    Clayton Christensen et al bring their strengths as experts in business evolution to the field of education reform- particularly at the K-12 levels. Their analysis of how online education will gain market share to approximately one-half within the next ten years is quite convincing. Christensen’s models of Disruptive Innovation seem particularly relevant to the development of new education enterprises and systems.

    But then they go beyond this expertise to make sweeping statements about the conduct of research in education, the lack of success of charter schools, and theories of multiple intelligence.

    Their presentation on categories and stages of research is something I never heard of in my 20 years of research as a physicist and for good reason: They don’t seem relevant to real research issues. In their discussions about education research on what makes a school perform well they ignore the seminal work of Chubb & Moe in their important book, “Politics, Markets & America’s Schools (1990),” which specifically addressed that question.

    Judging by what they include and what they omit, one gets the impression of a leftward political slant. Very little mention is made of the harm done by teachers’ unions, school administrators, education professors, and politicians in protecting their respective turfs against reform.

    Nothing is said about vouchers and other forms of competition.

    Lastly, Moe & Chubb recently collaborated (again) on a book about the major role online instruction will play in the future, “Liberating Learning.” Their book also refers to this book by Christensen et al but they only cite it for its specific discussions about Disruptive Innovation and thus not inconsistent with my comments in this review that only a portion of the book has significant merit.
    Rating: 3 / 5

  5. Larry Shulman Says:

    It’s been awhile since I read it but needed to update my previous review. This book is a more relevant read today than it was 2 years ago. The use of technology as a “tool” to facilitate better education must be distinguished from using it as a total replacement for old style teaching. Just like you could not readily hand out a power saw or a jack hammer to each person in the US and hope we become a better society, nobody is suggesting that the outright replacement of our old system should be considered. Having raised 8 children and been lucky enough to have my daughter go to HBS and been a student of Clayton, I know first hand what a great teacher can do for us. This book is a strong introduction of what the future will look like, regardless of the pressure from teacher’s unions and government politics. Clayton has seen the future, his “flashforward” gives him the unique ability to report what it looks like and helps us prepare for it. READ this book.

    Rating: 5 / 5

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