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ERIC Number: EJ1000728
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 2
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0013-1962
The Educational Technology Myth
Stansfield, David
Educational Technology, v52 n2 p63-64 Mar-Apr 2012
If one wants to teach youth to think, one has to restrain himself from doing all their thinking for them. One has to refrain from specifying in advance what they are going to think. Yet, this is just what educational technologists are consistently guilty of doing. Educational technology is committed to excluding the possibility of anything new or original happening while a student is learning any given material. The great stress this approach lays on the prediction and accomplishment of specific behaviors on the part of the student makes it extremely improbable that the student will ever be able to learn or even do anything that threatens any aspect of the way of life of the society that worked out his behavioral objectives for or with him. It will be impossible for students to develop a critical awareness of their society if they are brought up in a system which eliminates originality and divergent thinking. But educational technology seems to have one much more fundamental flaw: the assumption that the tools and techniques of physical sciences are applicable to the social or behavioral sciences. In other words, to use the scientific precision and analytical methods of a physicist or an engineer when dealing with human beings is absurd. Human beings are much too complex and fluid for any scientific method, however sophisticated, to pin down. Not only does educational technology make it very difficult for the student to think for himself, its very techniques--of multiple-choice testing, statistical analysis, control groups, feedback, and so forth--are inappropriate to anything as intricate and subtle as a child's mind.
Educational Technology Publications. 700 Palisade Avenue, Englewood Cliffs, NJ 07632-0564. Tel: 800-952-2665; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A