The Civil Classroom In The Age Of Net, By Dr. P.M. Forni

1081 words - 5 pages

Wise choices require effective thinking and effective thinking requires some previous knowledge. In the article “The Civil Classroom in the Age of the Net,” Dr. P.M. Forni states that over the past three generations, there has been a decrease of civility in the classrooms, from grade school through college. A synonym for “civility” is courtesy. Teachers and professors have lost respect from their students and have noticed unruly student behavior. This is the result of the new developing digital technology. Because the Net is available at anytime and at any place, Forni believes that students feel that learning or paying attention in class is no longer crucial to their education. To what ...view middle of the document...

The “foundation,” stated above, has been deteriorating for three generations now. The cause of it? Forni believes that “the new digital technology has virtually razed it,” a claim of fact that any teacher may concur with (15). As a whole, the introductory paragraph sets an informing, moderate tone and establishes the present-day situation. So far, Forni has used an abundant number of factual claims, which support his assertion that the Net is mainly responsible for the incivility developed in the classrooms that teachers deal with daily. Claim of facts are effective because they are not opinions.
Now, why is the author’s case convincing? Forni structures his article by clearly stating a problem and then proposing a possible solution. His choice of words and repetition of words lucidly describe what students are like nowadays. Most importantly, his personal stories easily resonate on my own experiences. After the introductory paragraph, Forni goes into further detail about what student behavior is like within the four walls of a classroom. He describes the Net-affected population as “disengaged, disrespectful, and unruly” (15). These are only a small fraction of the words used in the article that have a negative ring to them. Since the article is primarily directed towards teachers and professors, he wants to elaborate on how uncivil students have become because of the Net. These words are effective because many teachers may describe their own students the same way, amongst themselves. For example, if a teacher politely asks his or her student to put away the laptop, the student will refuse and quarrel instead of obeying. I have seen this act of behavior when I was in high school except it dealt with not being able to wear hats during school hours. The author asks, “How did we get to this?” (16). He claims that students are just “not prepared to engage in serious academic work” (16). Although the Net has surely “play[ed] a major role in the shaping of the young,” the dilemma is not entirely the students’ fault; professors are part of the blame, too (16). If teachers are not up-to-date with technology but the students are, it is unlikely that teachers will have control over the students.

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