Thursday, May 3, 2018

Khan Revisited

A while ago, I wrote The Wrath of Khan (one of my favorite blog post titles).

What's changed since then? Quite a bit. First of all, Khan Academy (KA) is now the 400-lb gorilla of the free online instructional video space. Everyone knows them. I have spoken to several educators who have built courses that rely on heavy, daily doses of KA, but I also know others who seem to use Khan as an epithet. At times, it seems that KA is a bit of a pedagogical Rorschach test: How you view KA can say quite a bit about who you are as an educator.

My earlier post went into some of my concerns about KA, so what about some of the positives?
  1. KA's integrated assessments help students see their progress. 
  2. All of their content is free, pretty comprehensive, and generally fairly solid. 
  3. One really interesting thing Khan has done is partnering with the folks at The College Board to provide customized SAT practice. They even have solid data that indicate the practice helps students raise their scores. Free SAT prep that actually shows improvement! Every HS student should be using this.
Khan isn't perfect, and can be over relied upon, but they are providing valuable services for free, and that's pretty great.

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