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ETEC511: Foundations of Educational Technology

Week 3 – Is technology almighty?

As technology developed, some people started to believe that technology is almighty, but this is not true. The benefits of technology in education must be proven so confidence in technology is not misplaced.  But as Mayer (2003) points out, discussing whether people learn better from computers or not is a little too simplistic, so a question like, “Which aspects of e-learning environments help which kinds of learners to learn which kinds of knowledge?” would be more appropriate.  Educators need to realize what works and what does not in educational settings.  I recall when people first started creating their personal websites, they were often over decorated with lots of irrelevant music, pictures, icons, etc. Web designers eventually learned that less can be more. Probably the genesis of educational technology was a little like that – a lot of irrelevant information was added without it being proven effective.  Technology development needs to be sophisticated and sort out the right information and the most effective methods to use.

Reference:

Mayer, R. A. (2003). Elements of a science of e-learning. Journal of Educational Computing Research, 29(3), 297-313.

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