A Vision for Educational Technology

It seems I am doing a lot of this lately. Written for class of course…

(i) Come up with an appropriate Vision Statement for your school/university/company Technology Plan. While developing this Vision Statement consider where your school/organization is now, and picture where you would like it to be in the future.

A vision for the Educational Technology Department of the Orange County Department of Education:

Offer a world class education to every student in Orange County by using appropriate technologies to provide context-embedded, inquiry-driven, and socially negotiated learning opportunities.

(ii) Next is your chance to be a visionary! Create a description of what your school/organization will be like in the future. Reach for the stars while keeping your feet on the ground. (i.e. Consider funding constraints and other variables). Describe your school/organization of the future using this sentence starter, “Imagine a school/college/business where ……”
Use this sentence starter as much many times as necessary to include images of students, teachers, employees, the community etc.

Imagine an education system where…

… a 1:1 student to mobile networked computer ratio allows for anytime anywhere collaborative learning. Several Orange County programs such as Fullerton’s One to One Laptop initiative and Newport-Mesa’s Access for All program are already leading the way toward this goal. Meanwhile, research and development efforts across the nation, such as MIT’s $100 laptop project, will continue to close the gap between our schools and this goal. By cutting the costs of paper duplications and text books, this goal is well within reach. (A hundred dollar laptop, or two hundred dollar handheld for that matter, is only the cost of two or three textbooks, but can store many many times that amount of multimedia information in an interactive format.)

… every student, regardless of their gifts or disabilities, is able to excel to their full potential. The Assistive Technology Institute (ATI) recently gave Orange County teachers a window into what is possible when disabled students have access to technologies such as those offered at the Assistive Technology Exchange Center in Santa Ana. Allowing gifted students to be experts (and grow beyond the tradition classroom and teacher-student relationship) also makes it possible for programs such as the Digital Year Book program at Los Alamitos High School to succeed not only in providing students with memories, but also in providing them with valuable design experience… and real-world revenue generating power.

… every student is thus able to write for an authentic audience, collaborate with their peers, interact with experts, and play a roll in the adult world through the use of the read/write web.

… every student is also able to explore and solve problems in contexts that would be impossible in traditional schools… through the use of open ended multi-player online simulations and role playing games. Once again, MIT is helping to make this a reality for teachers by supporting the education arcade and the games and learning conference in LA.

… every administrator and teacher understands both the need for these changes and The Human Side of School Change, and is thus able to facilitate the systematic renewal that will be necessary to instigate, maintain, re-evaluate, and update this system in the years to come.

Additional Resources

My vision statement has been heavily influenced by the work of the following authors…

Jean Piaget
The Psychology of Intelligence, 1950 (1st English Edition)

Seymour Papert
Mindstorms, 1980
The Children’s Machine, 1993
The Connected Family, 1996

David H. Jonassen
Constructivism and the Technology of Instruction, 1992
Computers as Mindtools for Schools, 1996
Learning with Technology, 1999

And, my second to last “imagine” statement has been heavily influenced by the work of these authors…

Jusstine Cassell and Henry Jenkins
From Barbie to Mortal Kombat, 1999

Marc Prensky
Digital Game-Based Learning, 2001

James Gee
What Video Games Have to Teach Us About Learning and Literacy, 2003

Clark Aldrich
Simulations and the Future of Learning, 2004

And I could go on and on. ;)

‘Looking forward to your comments.