A couple of weeks ago I was completing an assessment for a potential job. One of the sections measured my proficiency in English by asking me to correct sentences if necessary. In one question I was given a sentence containing the word sometime and asked to correct the sentence if it was used incorrectly.
It's unfortunate that it wasn't until then that I really wanted to investigate the difference between sometime and some time. It's also unfortunate that I couldn't just Google it because the exam was proctored via the internet by a company that had control of my computer and webcam.
As students growing up in a world where we can search the internet for almost any fact or information that we're looking for, our approach to education is certainly going to have to change. This isn't a novel idea, people have been talking about it for a long time. Check out this short video about that.
But, here's why this is so relevant. As learners and future productive members of society, we have to figure out how we're going to adapt. We have to figure out what it means if we're not sure how to use sometime and some time. Today in the clinic I volunteer at another volunteer was translating for a patient. The volunteer knew Spanish well, but there were a few words that were difficult. I had Google translate on call, ready for the moments when I was asked to look up a word. And it worked. The communication was much faster and easier than looking up the words in the Spanish medical dictionary sitting right next to us.
Thinking about how we (as students) should respond is kind of frightening. Not only do we have to think about how we will adapt to these changes, but we will have to think about how to teach our kids. In biochemistry it's imperative to know the amino acids structure, pKas, and properties without having to look them up. It's part of the language. It's not possible to effectively interpret biological/ chemical information without "knowing" these things. In this case, knowing definitely implies knowledge that require no consultation of external resources. But, using this definition, I didn't "know" the difference between the uses of sometime and some time when I was taking my assessment, and I kind of felt ashamed.
I offer no answer or solution. I'm just beginning to think about what all of this means. This fascinating issue is becoming increasingly relevant to us as students. We need to figure out how to find, process, interpret, and store the information that we come across. It's our job as students to figure out how we'll use the technology we have to enhance our education. We'll have to adapt to learn new skills applicable to the jobs we'll be performing.
You must be wondering, if you haven't Googled it yet. Here's the difference between sometime and some time: