Technological Determinism is Beside the Point #edcmooc

A number of my fellow students in this course have been taking a similar stance when it comes to Technological Determinism.  As I noted in my previous post about dystopian views of society and technology, such thoughts are fantasies. These fantasies originate from fearful reactions that technology may change our world and ourselves for the worse. These fears stem naturally from our apprehension of the unknown possibilities that new and unfamiliar technology pose.

In Technological or Media Determinism, Daniel Chandler argues that Technological determinism can lead us to develop erroneous conclusions that insist that technology plays the driving role in the development of society and culture.The theme of Technological Determinism’s negative effect can be seen countless times through human history each time a disruptive technology appears on the scene. From Socrate’s lament that writing would ruin human thought and reason to today’s pundits claims that obsessive texting renders youth into socially retarded bumblers, the an establish and usually older group takes up the  argument that a new and attractive technology will have deleterious consequences on the normal function of people and society.In most cases, new technologies are adapted from generation to generation despite the railing of the older folks and the establishment.  Despite the reticence of some to adopt technology, it advances.As educators, we need to objectively determine if any claims that new technology may have a negative effect on our students and how they learn. Though in designing online learning experiences and environments, we need to always aim for helping students achieve mastery of the topics we teach and not be dazzled by the potential of technologies.We need to test these technologies on ourselves and explore learning via these tools and platforms and assess whether or not they will work.

One of the major complaints around online learning is the overwhelming stream of discussion as well as information overload that comes with having seemingly unlimited access to information… not all of which are reputable resources for information. Thus, it’s our responsibilities as educators to help our students, young and old develop the skills and ability to be both discerning consumers of content as well as effective curators of what they find online.

Ia this where we're headed?

Is this good or bad? What do you think? Image found here


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