What is considered technology? Is the pen I hold in my hand for writing technology? Are the blackboard and chalk or the whiteboard and marker technology? Is the book from which I learn technology? Of course these tools designed for providing educational opportunities are technology. However, when I applied to the Ed Tech master’s here at Boise state, these were not the tools I had in mind. For me, educational technology started with the computer, branched out to the monitor and projector, intertwined with tablets and smart-phones and was all made possible by the Internet.
Now in my third semester in the EdTech program, I know educational technology is much more than this simple list of hardware. Educational technology is processes, methods, strategies and design. It is tools, applications and an understanding of how these various elements combine to enhance and foster learning opportunities. It is also an understanding that it is not only the teacher and students who play a role, but that parents, administrators and government all share in the process of effective technology integration.
The history of educational technology is long. Along the way, many technologies have been touted as the ‘future’ of instruction. Though some still remain, others lay dusty and unused in the closet of time. Is it possible to predict the technologies of the future? Most likely not. Yet to imagine a future devoid of computers and the Internet seems almost entirely unlikely. Therefore, it is imperative to ready our students now to use these tools because, like this video demonstrates, the world is changing fast.
As I begin another semester teaching at Daegu National University of Education, I am encouraged by my continuing efforts to incorporate technology into my practice. Each year I improve upon the previous year by updating and fine-tuning my wikis. I provide assistance to other instructors looking to find better ways of using technology. And this semester, I am excited to see one of my PBL project take wings as my colleague will be integrating it into one of his freshmen English classes on a pilot basis. I look forward to receiving his feedback and preparing the project for full integration.
From this course I hope to better understand individual theories of learning and how they fit within the context of educational technology. I am hoping that after this course, I will be able to look back through my assignments in EdTech 541 and 542 and have a more critical eye and a deeper understanding of my work. I want to be able to retroactively apply the theory I learn now to past lessons. And I want to use this knowledge to help make me an effective instructor who seamlessly integrates technology into my curriculum.
Januszewski, A. (2001). Educational technology: The development of a concept. Englewood, CO: Libraries Unlimited, Inc.
Luppicini, R. (2005). A systems definition of educational technology in society. Educational Technology & Society, 8 (3),103-109.