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Mr. Brown. Thank you very much, Dr. Bloom.
Dr. Bloom and Mr. Rhodes, you both indicated you are getting some support in museums and in television. Mr. Rhodes, could you give us some indication of how much money we are talking about and whether the NOVA program is one of many that NSF is supporting in television, or is this one of the few?
Mr. RHODES. I can't really speak for the other programs that NSF is funding although I know some of them. Our support is $200,000 a year, which is about the equivalent of the cost of one original program. There is also corporate funding that goes into NOVA, but the vast majority of it comes through the station contributions. The biggest NSF grant, I believe, is to "Three, Two, One, Contact,” which is a very important recent development. There is NSF money that goes to a regional project run from San Diego, and I am sure there are many others.
Mr. Brown. We will get that from NSF.
You have mentioned that the station managers would like an expansion of the NOVA program. What is coming out now?
Mr. RHODES. We show 20 new programs a year, of which roughly half are totally originated in this country and the other half are bought or aquired from all sorts of sources. Ten of each, making 20. Repeat 6, making 26. And you turn the whole thing over in ideal circumstances to make 52. In fact, because some programs date we cannot do that. We normally run those 20 programs with various reports for 3quarters of the year rather than the 4 quarters, which is what the station managers would like.
Mr. Brown. Dr. Hammond, what is the mode of financing for Science 1980 ? Is that strictly self-supporting, or do you hope it will be self-supporting?
Dr. HAMMOND. We hope it will be self-supporting; yes. At this point it is funded essentially and entirely by the reserve funds of the association, investments, if you would like. But our belief is that it will be self-supporting. It has now roughly some 350,000 subscribers.
Mr. Brown. How does that compare with Science! You are familiar with that?
Dr. HAMMOND. Yes; Science is, of course, a magazine directed not toward a general audience but toward a specialty audience, and that has about 160,000 circulation, which is enormous for a technical journal
Mr. Brown. Mr. Rhodes, the evidence seems to indicate there is a growing market for science education programs in your medium; at least we don't seem to compare with Great Britain. And Dr. Hammond, you indicated that this is true in the country here, and Dr. Bloom reports the situation on museums.
Dr. Bloom. Museum attendance is growing rapidly. Science museum attendance is a little less than half of the museum attendance in the United States.
Mr. Brown. What, in your opinion, would be the proper way to utilize or to enhance the utility of these various media? I think it is probably unrealistic to expect the National Science Foundation just to put more money into areas of this sort. Are there other ways we can help to focus on the importance of science and education to the public as an important part of the education in this country! I am soliciting suggestions that might make it easier to get increased dollars out of a very tight budget.
Dr. Bloom. One of the things we can do to help ourselves is to work together more. There is opportunity for symbiotic relationships between broadcast, publications, and museums; we haven't done enough in this area. It is possible to coordinate a TV program and a science exhibit at a museum at the same time, for example.
Mr. RHODES. The way that NSF money is so important to television production is as seed money to start the thing going in the first place, and then as you go along it is the seal of Good Housekeeping, which then allows you to bring in other money from corporate interests or whatever; it is an enormously important badge to carry.
I think that my advice to anybody trying to stretch these funds most productively would be to look for those projects which will continue in the sense that series like “Three, Two, One, Contact” or “NOVA" can go on year in and year out, slowly increasing their corporate funding and diminishing their reliance on Foundation support. There is a very difficult period in the life of a scientific program, and that is when it is born and we have a very tough time getting through that bit.
Dr. HAMMOND. I would like to answer that. I think that it is important, and can be also in the publication field, for the National Science Foundation or any other group to see their role as a source of initial support, when things are still at quite an embryonic stage. That is still the most difficult stage, provided those projects are looked at as ways of starting those things which can be self-supporting. That would be very useful. But it also might be possible, again without spending the money on it, for the Foundation, if it was consistent with congressional intent, to view its education charge as slightly broader than it does at the moment and for example, to facilitate some of the kinds of interactions among different media and among different programs.
Now, I should say that I am recommending this not out of soliciting any funds myself but because we ourselves are trying to promote some of these networks. In fact, the issue you have in front of you has an article in which is a collaborative venture with a public television program, “Odyssey,” which is NSF funded, and there is a strong interaction there. Mr. Rhodes and I are working on some joint editorial projects where we can have enhancement and we have begun discussions with the museum network precisely for the reason of trying to build some enhancing kinds of activities between museums and publications such as this one, but I think that independent of what an organization like my own can do in that regard, that the Foundation might also be a very important stimulator of these kinds of activities.
Mr. Brown. This strikes a responsive cord since one of the problems that we seem to have even within the Federal Government is enhancing what you might call the networking of the scientific base; that is, the interaction between producers of knowledge within the Federal Government. And it seems to me that if I recall one of the landmark developments in television was the point where thev were able to develop a national network via communications satellite to allow us time to gather public television stations throughout the country.
I think this is an indication of the importance of networks in the modes in sharing in the development and use of resources. Am I correct in that?
Mr: RHODES. Yes; that satellite went functional sometime last year, 1979, and that is one of the reasons why the PBS network can now run what is called the core schedule, which means, give or take a little bit, that the whole of the country is able to see the same programs at least four nights a week, although they are not necessarily in the same order. This is increasing the audience.
Mr. Brown. I understand a similar breakthrough might occur with regard to cable television with the development of a network capability through satellite.
Mr. RHODES. I think if we could understand that we would be very happy. One of the great points of conversation is the effect of the various forms of cable and satellite on the PBS network.
Mr. Brown. You wish you knew what the result would be.
Mr. Brown. You wish Congress would help define the roles a little bit.
Mr. RHODES. You can say that. It gives a whole new meaning to the word "broadcast.” It is easier to broadcast than it was.
Mr. Brown. To what degree? Let me make this comment first. The Foundation itself publishes a very fine publication; other agencies of the Federal Government engage in the same kind of activity in disseminating the results of the progress of science. The Smithsonian puts out a very excellent publication. To what degree are they utilizing them as a common resource? Is there any sharing in the development of the materials and programs with these agencies of the Government?
Mr. RHODES. Let me answer obliquely. The problem of television is not a shortage of ideas for programs. It is which of these ideas to take and then how to do them well. It really isn't a case of, as I say, shortage of programs.
Mr. Brown. Dr. Bloom?
Dr. Bloom. One of the very good things NSF has done of this kind is that they have encouraged a number of programs which lead to techniques for replicating exhibits or doing the research for an exhibit in one place and making duplicates of it in other places. This can be, of course, very cost effective, but once again, the budgetary constraints on NSF's public understanding programs have been so tight that there hasn't been room to make much progress even through experimentation.
Mr. Brown. Would museums benefit from a capability of interconnecting their high-powered exhibit ideas through some sort of a television network! I am trying to foresee down the road a few years as satellite communication becomes more feasible, more economical, and the number of channels perhaps increases ? Is there some way in which the best museum exhibit, say, in Philadelphia can be viewed in Los Angeles or some other area in this same fashion or at least be used as a model for the duplication?
Dr. BLOOM. It could be used as a model for duplication. One nice thing about a museum is that it allows one to touch and experience real objects and you lose this through the printed media and television. However, cooperative programs between museums and television are in progress right now and are supported by the NSF.
Mr. Brown. Gentlemen, you have presented some fascinating possibilities here and ones that we are very much interested in. The problems that we face in the modern world is that science and technology produce both agony and ecstacy, and I am not sure where the emphasis is coming from, the agony or ecstacy at this point but it is obvious there is this increasing demand for greater comprehension of what science and technology are doing in modern society. It is important that we seek the best possible ways to satisfy this growing public need. I think we would be highly unwise to look at it through narrower channels.
Thank you very much, gentlemen, for your contribution.
Now, the last thing this morning, here for a short presentation, is Dr. Dustin Heuston, of the World Institute for Computer Assisted Teaching. Dr. Heuston, we welcome you.
STATEMENT OF DR. DUSTIN HEUSTON, CHAIRMAN, WORLD
INSTITUTE FOR COMPUTER ASSISTED TEACHING
Dr. HEUSTON. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman. I would like to make one brief comment on Dr. Rutherford's testimony. I happened to run a school for almost a decade specializing in education for young women, from kindergarten through high school, and the one thing that we learned as we attempted to operate a science curriculum was that we had to go younger and younger in order to have an impact. As a matter of fact, we ended up pulling in many of the programs the National Science Foundation sponsored, and that made the difference to us in terms of whether or not we had science graduates. When I took the school over, we had almost no science graduates, but within 4 or 5 years we had many women science graduates. We had to push the girls into laboratories as early as the third grade to have that impact.
Mr. Brown. Did you say you were assisted by NSF programs?
Dr. Heuston. We took the programs of Dr. Zacharias and others and the mathematics programs we took from Sanford University. We took the work that had gone out for about 10 years and implemented that into our programs. Without that we would have been unable to substantially have that impact.
The second comment I would like to make about the testimony was the one thing that didn't come up today but became clear as we produced our students. It isn't just science we are producing, and it isn't just a knowledgeable public, but we have to produce the necessary scaffolding for the students to get jobs if we are going to support the establishment. Some of the sociologists have pointed out that for a third of the century the dominant industry was U.S. Steel and the labor market was the equivalent of U.S. Steel. The middle third was General Motors, and again the labor market had to be better educated, but not that much better. The final third was IBM. What we found in our institute in Utah is that we cannot hire a substantial percentage of the population although we are the fastest growing industry in the valley because they do not have the necessary skills in mathematics and science. Thus ultimately the labor market will have a strong impact in driving our educational curriculum. If we do not get the schools into mathematics and science, the national growth will be restricted.
Let me tell you about the video program. You see on that table a silver instrument made by Magnavox, which is a subsidiary of North American Philips. I will hold the disk up in the air. It looks like a long playing record.
Two new technologies will impact education. One is the use of the laser and the second is the microprocessor. We are doing work with the National Science Foundation making certain that, as the technology develops and is put out in the consumer markets, that, in fact, the industries using it will be thinking of education in their planning. We constantly had streams of visitors last year observing the results of our NSF research. We had the head of research laboratories from Philips, we had Texas Instruments, and we had representatives from many corporations visiting to view the NSF work, to see if they could modify their instruments they are producing for the consumer markets so it could be usable for schools.
One thing that the disk will do that is very unusual is to combine the power of the three most powerful educational technologies. The first is the book itself, and we forget that the book is a function of the printing press, or a technology.
The second is movies or television, and this is very important as we will show you very briefly here for emotional interest and for gaining attention.
Then thirdly, it will combine the power of the computer in a useful combination that can produce interactivity and get the student involved and make him an activist instead of a passive observer. In terms of productivity, we can introduce a computer into the interaction. Our research suggests that such computer interactions can produce a minimum of 25 times the productive use of a learner's time.
It would appear in the latest studies that in the educational system as a whole that 42 percent of the 17 year old blacks in America are functionally illiterate. One way of viewing these statistics is to suggest that their time has been used very unproductively, and that just putting teachers on video tapes to talk to them and make the teacher more productive will have very little impact. The question is how to get the students involved. To do this we must concentrate on learner productivity instead of teacher productivity, and this is where the video disc will play a very important role.
The significant thing is that two large studies and these are very little known statistics—demonstrate that for every hour a learner puts into the classroom, he or she can only have 10 seconds of help or personal instruction. That is the national average. So if you are going to look at mathematics, the student has only one-fifth of that. So for every hour a student spends in mathematics instruction in a school situation, he gets 2 seconds of individual help.
I am going to show you now some examples of what makes a video disk unique®(demonstrating). It will sell for from $5 to $25. It is pressed like a record read by a laser. It can store 54,000 colored pictures or photographs or graphics, however you want to use it, in a frame like this.