Techno-tracking in Boca Raton

| June 17, 2015 | 0 Comments

In Boca Raton, Florida, in the US, Lynn University intends to track students via their technology.

The university gives iPads to all new students and expects them to carry the iPads with them at all times. Now authorities have asked students to participate in the ‘beta phase’ of a project: their devices will be loaded with a new app called Class120, which emits a loud ‘pinging’ noise to mark the student present.

If the student is not in class, the campus network will cause the app to remind the errant individual – and their academic coach (and potentially their parents) – where they should be. Lynn has always been serious about student attendance. All instructors already use another app that throws up pictures of each student who should be in the room.

Staff are required to file weekly reports on student attendance.

A scandal erupted at Harvard in the spring of 2013 when it emerged that hi-tech secret cameras in 10 classroom were scanning seats and their occupants. Lynn officials say the incident has thrown up some key research: that students tend to skip classes unless they’re told their presence will count towards a passing grade. The institution’s weekly reports suggest that students who skip 25% or more of their classes over a term have a 68% chance of earning a grade-point average below a C.

Moreover, Lynn officials have defended their plan by saying that using Class120 will mean early intervention and assistance for students before their absence becomes a real problem.

Category: Winter 2015

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