Friday, April 1, 2011

Does Technology Have a Place in Education?

Asking the question that is also this blog entry's title may seem like a ridiculous question in today's time.  However, it's one that has been asked since the days of Socrates.  Did you know that Socrates was somewhat suspicious of the technology of letters?  As the ancient Greeks debated the invention of the alphabet (which was widely applauded and accepted), Socrates feared too much emphasis would be placed on the "learning of letters" rather than what they represented.  Regardless of his fear, the technology of letters changed an oral culture into a scribal culture.

The question at hand surfaced again when Gutenberg invented the printing press in 1452.  This invention radically changed the world and revolutionized education.  Some influential powers of the day tried to stop it but failed.  The printing press technologies changed a scribal culture into a print culture.

Now, we in the 21st century are witnessing another change in education. We are moving from a print culture to an electronic culture.  Just as earlier technologies like the alphabet and the printing press, the electronic technologies are changing the way we come to know and interact with the world.  The way we educate is being reinvented and there is no way to stop it from happening...no matter how resistant some may be because of their own fears and educational concerns.

So, I ask, "Does Technology Have a Place in Education?"

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