NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
ERIC Number: ED399594
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1996-Aug
Pages: 23
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Do Professors Dream of Electric Sheep? Academic Anxiety about the Information Age.
Novek, Eleanor M.
Having automated many professions, computers may now be used to downsize higher education. How do professors respond to this concern? A survey at a small branch of a northeastern university suggests that the question generates profound anxiety as it moves from the theoretical to the personal. Such anxiety about information technology can be seen as a communication problem. All 250 full-time faculty members of the branch campus were surveyed about their current and anticipated future uses of technologies, including computer labs, "smart classrooms," distance learning, local access networks, the Internet, etc. The survey contained 28 multiple-choice questions and a single open-ended question about any concerns the faculty member had about the use of computer technology in education. Returned surveys numbered 135, and 29 (21.5%) of these answered the "concerns" question. Respondents expressed two main areas of concern: they worried about the devaluation of the teaching profession, and with it, the loss of their jobs; and they were anxious about the dehumanization and alienation their students might face in a computer-dominated learning environment workplace. Although concerns voiced by respondents are not the exclusive domain of communication scholars, these respondents are the educators who teach others how to use communication media, and how to create and disseminate messages through them. Comments of the participants suggest that the expansion of the information economy is a cause for deep concern in higher education. (Contains 22 references.) (Author/NKA)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A