Educational Development through Information and Communications Technology

Educational Development through Information and Communications Technology

Educational Development through Information and Communications Technology

Educational Development through Information and Communications Technology

Synopsis

Bringing together contributions from a range of higher educational settings in the UK and Internationally, this book explores the practical use that can be made of information technology by educators seeking to improve their teaching and learning.

Excerpt

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Stephen Fallows and Rakesh Bhanot

SUMMARY

The uses of information and communications technologies (ICT) provide us with some of the latest examples of the way in which technological developments have been taken up and used by educators. In the past hundred years alone, educators have adopted, to some extent or other, developments such as film, radio, television, video (recording and/or playback); each has been utilized as an adjunct to the established practices of face to face lectures, seminars and tutorials. Now it is the turn of ICT. This chapter provides a short introduction to the use of ICT in higher education and is intended to give a lead into the series of detailed chapters that follow.

THE MEANING OF EDUCATIONAL DEVELOPMENT

An 'educational development' can, for the purposes of this book at least, be considered as any novel action taken with the intention of either enhancing the teaching of a particular subject or enhancing of the students' learning of the subject. Many educational developments seek to achieve both of these objectives. In addition, it is increasingly the case that educational developments take place with a view to increasing the efficiency or productivity of teaching and learning. Often the institution, department or individual teacher is seeking to increase the educational outcomes while maintaining the direct face to face teaching at a constant level. A push for efficient and 'more productive' education has often been a feature of ICT based initiatives.

The concept of a 'novel action' needs a degree of clarification, since for most educators it is novelty within a particular context or set of circumstances that is important, rather than the absolute introduction of that which has never been tried before. Indeed, within the context of education, there is little that is absolutely new; most educational developments rest upon the adaptation of existing approaches and skills to changed circumstances.

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