ERIC Number: ED256339
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1985-Jan
Computer Literacy and Empowered Learning: A Theoretical Perspective.
Stevenson, Robert B.
The dual conception of literacy as functional knowledge and communication skills has provided the parameters of the debate on computer literacy, which has focussed on what type of knowledge is necessary, and what level, if any, of programming should be taught. These arguments and definitions, however, reflect a particular view of epistemology, pedagogy, the nature of communication, and the role of schooling in relation to the social order. An alternative view of these assumptions implies a markedly different conception of computer literacy. Unlike the dominant functional paradigm, the critical paradigm views knowledge as more subjective, spiritual, and personal; recognizes the learner as an active participant in the production of meaning; and links the possession and creation of knowledge. To empower students to learn in a dialogical relationship with a computer, the only solution compatible with the critical paradigm is to treat the computer as a cultural object for critical reflection. The computer has a place in the curriculum as an object of inquiry in the continual construction of social knowledge. All other conceptions of computer literacy risk assigning consciousness and autonomy to computers, and therefore surrendering our uniqueness as human beings and our quest for the meaning of existence. (LMM)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the Association for Educational Communications and Technology (Anaheim, CA, January 17-23, 1985). For entire proceedings, see IR 011 621.