Student Choice

An interesting TED talk by Sheena Iyengar on The Art of Choosing:

After talking with some pre-service teachers today about what ‘choice and voice’ means in the classroom, I thought it was very timely to record these points made by Sheena:

It is a mistake to assume that everyone thrives under the pressure of choosing alone.

In reality, many choices are between things that are not that much different. The value of choicedepends on our ability to perceive differencesbetween the options.

When someone can’t see how one choice is unlike another, or when there are too many choices to compare and contrast, the process of choosing can beconfusing and frustrating. Instead of making better choices, webecome overwhelmed by choice,sometimes even afraid of it. Choice no longer offers opportunities, but imposes constraints. It’s not a marker of liberation, but of suffocation by meaningless minutiae. In other words, choice can develop into the very opposite of everything it represents in America when it is thrust upon thosewho are insufficiently prepared for it.

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