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ERIC Number: EJ1143867
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1528-3518
Reframing the Role of Educational Media Technologies
Westera, Wim
Quarterly Review of Distance Education, v16 n2 p19-32 2015
Distance universities excel in using digital media technologies for content delivery and collaborative interaction to compensate for limited face-to-face opportunities. Now that an ever-growing variety of media technologies, devices, and services are flooding the market, possession of expertise about the educational opportunities of these technologies is becoming a strategic asset for any education provider. Distance universities may act as informative examples in this regard. This article discusses how distance universities face the challenges of the ever-shortening lifespans of these new technologies. We describe some of the disruptive changes effected by the Internet and discuss the critical factors for adopting and implementing the associated information and communication technologies in education. Although many practical, organizational, pedagogical, and financial factors are relevant, this article focuses on hidden conceptual barriers that are the result of misconceptions about the role and function that technology possesses and that seem to foster education's intrinsic conservatism. Particularly, the notion of technology instrumentalism which emphasizes the one sided subservient role of technology, is a widely popular, but at the same time a naive, greatly outdated and fallacious view of technology that confuses the discussion and hampers educational innovation. This article aims to contribute to the removal of these misconceptions by framing technology in a contemporary view that emphasizes the enabling role of technology-particularly media technologies-to develop new pedagogical models and to offer new opportunities for augmenting human cognitive performance.
IAP - Information Age Publishing, Inc. P.O. Box 79049, Charlotte, NC 28271-7047. Tel: 704-752-9125; Fax: 704-752-9113; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A