Thursday, July 16, 2015

Part 2: Pushing back against the Scorn for “Using Tech for Tech’s Sake”

In my last post I pushed back against a common theme I heard at the ISTE 2015 educational technology conference in Philadelphia. The theme was that using technology in schools “for its own sake” was a practice to be avoided at all costs and far too many schools were pursuing it.

In that post I argued that tech “for its own sake” did indeed make if one considered that it is unreasonable to expect the students to leverage technology for innovative projects that call for self-direction creativity,and critical thinking if they have not practiced and played with the tools. Essentially such practice would be “tech for tech’s sake”. I pled guilty to appending technology activities to assignments that did not directly align with outcomes— the purpose being to reinforce the their competency with the technology.

In this post I wish to consider the following poster that was pushed out on Twitter by ISTE shortly after the conference:

Once again I would like to push back on criticizing technology use for its own sake. In this illustration, merely using tech is in every way secondary to higher more dynamic purposes like "learn from anyone (and everyone!)

It is my contention that a technology leader must model competency with tech tools in order to have the credibility to lead. For example I think if a leader did not authentically use technology (left column) his or her feet of clay would be showing as while attempting to change a school culture (right column).  My Becoming a Digital Administrator course is predicated on the importance of leaders walking the talk, which I guess to others would be tech "for its own sake."

I get it that simply being able to use tech tools is not leadership. However I think that some tech for its own sake-- modeling the use of technology oneself to collaborate, create, and discover-- is essential for the desired leadership outcomes I see on this chart. 


No comments:

Blog Archive