Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Logins for 25 Kids

Chris and I were discussing single sign-on support as a priority for SchoolTool development, in particular, explaining to my developer that it is more crucial than he imagined. I just remembered a concrete example of why.

Back when I was teaching 7th grade English, I set up a Slashcode server in my classroom. Believe it or not, this seemed like the best classroom blogging option circa 2000. Anyhow, I quickly discovered that a whole 47 minute period was eaten up just getting the accounts set up for all the kids in a class, with, I think, 8 workstations in the room. Obviously, better classroom management would make that quicker, but probably not as much as you'd think. If kids are doing this over and over again for different systems in every class, it is a non-trivial waste of time, particularly when they forget their passwords, give the password to their friends who abuse them, etc.

Good IT integration increases learning time.

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