My first graduate school class, my first real graduate school assignment, Dr. Dondlinger, Introduction to Educational Technology ETEC 524, I was asked to read about Educational Technology and respond to my reading. Here is my initial response: (Artifact #1 ETEC 524)
I find myself amused by the fact that I am beginning the process of a Masters Degree in Education Technology/Leadership by reading a PDF published in June of 2004 and a wiki reference and discussion on the meaning of the term “Educational Technology”. I guess it would make sense for us to be clear about what it is we are supposed t be discussing, but hasn’t there been some substantial changes in both education and technology in the past ten years? I guess a rose by any other name would still be a rose, so maybe a definition can be somewhat static. I just finished my Bachelors in Education in February of this year and one of the things drilled into me was to make sure of the credibility and relevance of the sources one uses to cite for support and wiki’s were way down on the list of scholarly sources to cite, hence, my amusement.
- Did any of these readings provide answers to the questions or puzzles that you posted in your introduction? Why or why not?
I find myself puzzled by why more educators do not embrace the latest and greatest advances in technology and make use of all the possible tools to help bring learning to all of the students in their classroom. When I was in school educators were embracing the technology of the mimeograph machine that made it possible for teachers to provide handouts to every student. That saved endless hours of students taking notes from a chalkboard and standardized the notes each student took from the class. (Not to mention the great smell of a fresh batch of mimeographs!)
Each one of us in our personal lives is embracing the newest generation of smartphone, tablet, TV, or computer. Why can’t every classroom in every school be that same? That is a pretty easy question to answer. Do you want to invest in Beta or VHS? CD’s or Blu-ray? Jumping into the river of technology to soon can lead to spending way to much time and money if you pick the loser. Plus, technology becomes cheaper as it become ubiquitous.
- Did anything that you read prompt new questions or puzzle you more? If so, what are those questions?
I have found that the more I read to understand a topic, the less I know about it. Both of the readings for this discussion have created more and more reading, research and questions. Just the list of references cited at the end of both these reading assignments is an endless wander across the Internet and YouTube!
I especially like the conversation about “Digital Natives” and the “Digital Divide”. Today we are starting to have teachers in the classroom that have grown up with technology at their fingertips, but some of us older folks have some catching up to do, much like many of the Third World countries do. Older educators are suffering from the digital divide, but the younger educators just graduating from college this year have never been without the Internet, computers, or HDTV. Many people today have no idea what life is like without the Amazing Technology we have today. The question is now how do we use all of the fabulous tools at our disposal. The chalkboard of my school experience became the erasable marker board, then the Whiteboard that is in my wife’s second grade class. The first two just change the tools used for writing, but the Whiteboard has so many other possibilities! The computer, overhead projector, chalkboard, tablet, slide projector, movie projector and TV all rolled into one Whiteboard at the front of the room, but without a trained educator, it is just another way to write on a board at the front of the class.
- What one (or more) item or idea on the “Talk” page in Wikipedia struck you the most? Why?
I found the “Talk” part of the Wikipedia page very interesting. It appeared to be a bunch of folks that were very impressed with themselves arguing over very minute details of the correct way to define “Educational Technology” verses “Education Technology” or “Instructional Technology. What struck me most is how every area of expertise has to have it’s own unique set of terminology and acronyms to make sure that only the privileged few with the right information have any idea what you are actually talking about. The real movers and shakers are the folks that do a research study and can come up with the next three-step process and a new acronym to explain the process of learning or teaching with technology.
Here is a little treat for all my teacher friends in this class.
The Definition of Educational Technology. (2001). Association for Educational and Communication Technology. Retrieved June 3, 2014.
Educational technology. (2014, February 06). Retrieved from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Educational_technology