Khan Academy – The Downside

Many of us know of The Khan Academy already; a place to view tutorial videos on secondary school mathematics. The Washington Post recently published an article citing many of the pitfalls to learning via videos such as the ones in Khan Academy.


I think the videos offered by The Khan Academy are typically of a pretty reliable quality, but it is healthy to keep in mind that technology alone is no substitute for quality face to face teaching. Technology such as this is a great accompaniment to teaching, not a replacement.


  1. Jeremy Hurst July 24, 2012 at 2:58 PM - Reply

    Sounds like a good discussion point for the upcoming Q&A Forum at Lumen Christi College!

  2. Joshua Genner April 24, 2013 at 8:34 AM - Reply

    The whole point of the Khan academy is to allow teachers more face to face time with students. With the heading ‘Khan Academy – The Downside’ I was expecting a critique – if anything it would seem you agree with the Khan approach?

  3. Michael Vivian April 24, 2013 at 12:36 PM - Reply

    Hi Joshua. Yes, I happen to quite like the Khan Academy approach. In fact, in many of the classes I work in, we try to make KA style videos for fellow students. I just thought the article was a timely reminder that it is difficult to replace quality face-to-face teaching. KA works fantastically well in the right situation, and may allow for a more economical use of face-to-face teacher time, but it would be dangerous for teachers to think of it as a resource that will automatically make their lives easier.
    Do you have any experience with using resources like this, or flipped classroom experience in general? We’d love to hear your perspective.

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