Gee’s Anti-Education Era

This week in my CEP 812 course we have been tasked with reading several chapters from James Paul Gee’s The Anti-Education Era: Creating Smarter Students through Digital Learning. In his work Gee includes a very insightful attack on human intelligence and the way that we go about problem solving.



Gee cynically addresses the way the manner in which we apply rationality to things through our own past personal experiences and argues that we have caused many problems in the world because of the manner in which we approach problems and view the world around us.

Here is a link to my essay response to Gee’s work.


  1. I enjoyed reading your essay this week Ryan. The chapters we went over last week were very engaging, and provided an interesting perspective into the frailty of the human mind.

    I also found the chapter on The Limits of Human Memory interesting. In particular the theory that when memories are recalled, it reactivates memories associate with the situation, and updates those memories as well. I guess I look at us as humans, and assume that we have an accurate sense of what has happened in our past. It’s a little neat, and also discouraging to know that these memories our modified. When Gee uses words such as continual interpretation, editing, and rewriting, it sounds as if our memories our breathing documents. It makes me think of our memories as being a google document, in which there are numerous contributors and writers to our thoughts. It’s scary.

    I immediately draw the connection back to education, especially when Gee mentions how human memory regarding information is linked together with related ideas. Gee mentions that when there is meaning associated with that information (memories), it helps us to store this information. We tend to provide students with a wide range of information, but it typically lacks any connectivity to real life applications. This lack of connectivity and purpose doesn’t spark true excitement, nor any type of emotional investment in the learning process. It really makes you wonder if the way our brains are programed to work,, will always be in constant battle with how we teach. I’ve always recognized the importance of connecting what’s taught in school to the student’s lives, in order to create that deep meaning, and to hopefully aide in the later recall of that information. Lord knows we’re assessing them to make sure they are.

    Good post! Looking forward to working with you more!



  2. Hi Ryan, thank you for sharing.

    Chapter 3 is the one I am most interested in. I did not realize our brain automatically edit our memory according to the variables until I read Gee’s book. Though our brain cannot storage information as exactly as it is, parts of the memory is still true. From my understanding, we build our memory based on a network of different events. Though it is hard to remember all pieces of information, people are able to recognize the connection between isolated information. So I wonder if we can take use of the connections effectively for learning instead of remembering information? I agree with you that once we realize our memory is not accurate, we can be more open minded and make better decision. People may be more willing to accept new concepts and information and being more flexible about their cognition. 🙂


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