- a focus on students as consumers undermines the learning/teaching relationship, the ethos of collaborative knowledge-building and the capacity of learners to develop as human beings;
- our current system of quality assurance in HE - driven by marketisation, standardisation, and human resource management - is measuring the wrong things and does not value radical, inclusive (or indeed any truly transformative) approaches to learning;
- innovative technologies have a role to play but 'it is not the technology in itself that is transforming education and society; it is, rather, the creative ways in which people are using technology to educate and drive change'
- 'We are moving towards a more open access environment, where access to research and teaching is more egalitarian, but also more open to abuse by market forces... the potential benefits of open and mobile access to learning resources could be marred by the profiteering of private providers or by the unfair exploitation of academic labour.'
Meanwhile, how does this tie in with what I originally planned to say today (my slides are here)?
|CC Perry McKenna: https://www.flickr.com/photos/63567936@N00/4585933619/|
Looking beyond the crisis in education itself, we should be developing people who can tackle our most pressing human, economic and environmental problems, and who believe these to be their concern. As I argued in my first set of slides ('in the wake'), digital technologies are relevant to many of these probems. And as with inequalities of opportunity, we need to understand the contribution that digital technologies make to amplifying or dampening the crises around us. But as developers we need to move on from asking 'are there digital technologies in the curriculum?' to asking: does the curriculum foster an awareness of sustainability? of fairness and justice? of global citizenship? And then: what role do digital technologies play in this? We need to move on from delivering 'digital literacy' as a set of competences and ask how are students are becoming critical (and creative and empowered) in relation to practices of knowledge, and in relation to the tools they are offered to accomplish that.
So if we better understand the ways in which digital technologies change the context for learning and development, how can we (do we need to) get over our obsession with the digital as an agenda for change? That is the last of the three questions I will ask delegates to discuss with me on Friday and that I have tried to open up in these posts:
- What real changes have digital technologies brought about in educational practice? ('in the wake')
- How do those accord with our values as educational developers? ('in response')
- (If we need to), how do we move on from 'digital' as a positive agenda for educational change? ('in recovery')