ERIC Number: ED383311
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1995
Understanding the Critics of Educational Technology: Gender Inequities and Computers 1983-1993.
Although many view computers purely as technological tools to be utilized in the classroom and workplace, attention has been drawn to the social differences computers perpetuate, including those of race, class, and gender. This paper focuses on gender and computing by examining recent analyses in regards to content, form, and usage concerns. The content of educational software packages has been critically examined to reveal partiality in their design; this encompasses differences in software design, concern for race, socioeconomic class, and gender stereotypes in the overall text, and the lack of quality evaluation of educational software to identify gender bias. Other research is rooted in theory that microcomputers have been developed through mathematics and science, typically viewed as masculine fields; an inherent bias toward male-dominated thinking results. The question of who is using computers and how they are being used has raised the issue of access. In order to ensure equity in microcomputer use, all students must have equal opportunity to learn about and use computers. While it may be apparent how differences in socioeconomic class would allow for these discrepancies in access, issues of gender become noticeable upon examination when coupled with the fact that most computers were initially associated with mathematics and science departments. This has affected the way computing is taught, the location of computers, integration of computers into schools, and use of computers in schools. (Contains 20 references.) (AEF)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: In: Proceedings of the 1995 Annual National Convention of the Association for Educational Communications and Technology (AECT), (17th, Anaheim, CA, 1995); see IR 017 139.