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Developing an online Master of Education in Educational Technology in a learning paradigm: the process and the product.

The political process necessary for planning and implementing a new degree program at Northern Arizona University (NAU), The Educational Technology Master of Education (M. Ed.), began in the spring of 1997. The program was finally discussed and approved by the Arizona Board of Regents at their February, 2000 meeting. However, over the three years of establishing the program, it became much more than just a political or academic task. As the process of research, discussion, and reflection was experienced while searching for an ideal M. Ed. in Educational Technology program, current struggles with new pedagogies and new approaches were exemplified. The program development became living proof that changes in thinking and doing come over time, not in a day, or a week, or even a year. As the developers struggled to articulate to each other what they believed to be important, they became what can only be hoped for students in this new program: uncomfortable learners who stretched their minds and pushed the envelope s of their comfort zones to complete an engaging and meaningful task.

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In the spring of 1997, planning was begun on an Educational Technology Master of Education (M. Ed.) degree in the Center for Excellence in Education (CEE) at Northern Arizona University (NAU). By the fall of 1997, tentative syllabi for the eight courses that would be the core content of the degree had been completed by the Educational Technology faculty. The process of gaining university approval was initiated by submitting the program description and course syllabi to the Educational Specialties faculty, the department in which Educational Technology resides. After faculty approval, the program description and syllabi were submitted to the GEE Curriculum Committee and then finally to the NAU Graduate Curriculum Committee. All courses and the program had final approval by the end of the fall 1997 semester.

The next step was to gain Planning Authority for a new program from the Arizona Board of Regents (ABOR). Educational Technology faculty completed the necessary forms in the early spring of 1998 and sent them to the NAU provost for approval and then to the ABOR for consideration at their June, 1998 meeting. At this meeting, the ABOR identified issues of concern about the degree and authorized the creation of an Implementation Proposal. Early in the fall of 1998 a meeting was held that included the Educational Technology faculty, the Educational Specialties department chairperson, the dean of the CEE, and the NAU provost. At this meeting the stakeholders identified the issues of concern established by the ABOR and devised a strategy to address those issues in the Implementation Proposal. The Implementation Proposal was completed in the fall of 1998, was sent to the NAU provost, and went on the agenda for the February, 1999 ABOR meeting for further discussion and approval.

That is the political process necessary for planning and implementing a new program at NAU, but the M. Ed. in Educational Technology became more than a political or academic task. It was a labor of love, born of hours of heartfelt discussion about ideas and ideals, of reflections shared in the wee hours of the morning. The philosophical and theoretical underpinning presented here supports the Implementation Proposal that went before the ABOR, but it is, for the authors, much more...

PROBLEM STATEMENT

At the end of the millennium in which the idea of the university has blossomed, population growth is outpacing the world's capacity to give people access to universities. A sizable new university would now be needed every week merely to sustain current participation rates in higher education. New institutions are not being created at this frequency. A crisis of access lies ahead....the world's educators should aim to ensure that all people can develop their potential in the essentially unlimited domain of human skill and intellect. (Daniel, 1996, p. 4-5)

The principal challenge to the flexibility of universities is the changing nature of the student body. Meeting this challenge requires more cost-effective methods of education and training. A steadily increasing proportion of university students are working adults who do not find attendance on campus to be a convenient way to learn. Lifelong learning describes the need for people to continue their education and training throughout their lives, as they face multiple careers and longer life spans than in the past. Daniel (1996) stated that the term "learner" now designates a role, not a person.

Many universities, including NAU, have reacted to this challenge by adding new programs and services. Kauffman (1980) distinguished a system from a "heap": A heap is something made up of a number of parts, and it does not matter how these parts are arranged. Graduate programs are many times offered as a heap--made up of a number of courses, and it does not matter how these courses are arranged. The Educational Technology faculty at the CEE were concerned that these programs and services are based on a university, as it's always been known in our lifetime, and that instead new environments should be created that are much different than what has been known. These concerns led to a proposal of a four-pronged system of professional development for inservice teachers seeking Technology Leader status: (a) professional development credits for Arizona teachers, (b) Technology Leader Certification for Arizona teachers, (c) Master of Education in Educational Technology for Technology Leaders, and (d) a web-based M. Ed. of Educational Technology program and a certification program for Technology Leaders anywhere in the world. The first priority for CEE was planning an M. Ed. in Educational Technology and is the focus of this discussion.

STATUS OF M. ED. IN EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY

No M. Ed. in Educational Technology was offered at Northern Arizona University (NAU). Planning Authority for an M. Ed. degree in Educational Technology was granted by the Arizona Board of Regents (ABOR) to the Center for Excellence in Education (CEE) at NAU at the June 3, 1998, meeting. Discussion, planning, and reflection about this program had been ongoing among CEE technology faculty since August, 1997. Eight new courses with the prefix ETC were designed, created, and approved by CEE and NAU. These eight courses were developed using the professional standards for Technology Leaders guidelines of the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE). The initial course, Instructional Theory and Strategies in Technology Integration (ETC 547), was piloted as a web-based course, ECI 599, during Summer Session II, 1998, with 13 students participating on and off campus.

EVIDENCE OF NEED

For several years, professionals working in Arizona school districts as educational technology coordinators requested an M. Ed. in Educational Technology from Educational Technology faculty. These educators did not need degrees in elementary, secondary, or special education because they are or have been inservice teachers before assuming technology-related responsibilities. Additionally, requests for access to a graduate degree in educational technology from educators outside of Arizona had increased each year.

Arizona school districts are now supported in their needs for technology training by the Regional Training Centers, whose mission is to disseminate technology training and information throughout Arizona. Districts also benefit from academic units in their areas that provide workshops, conferences, and classes for teachers who express interest in continuing education in technology or in learning more about technology for their classrooms. These opportunities for technology training and education, however, are usually directed at hardware and technical issues. There is a real need for learning opportunities that focus on curriculum and instructional strategies that integrate technology into the teaching and learning process. In fact, few educational opportunities are available to teachers that provide long-term, sustained, rigorous models concerning the role of technology in their curriculum and classroom practice, or building a core of educational change agents to assume technology leadership in their schools and districts. Planning for the M. Ed. in Educational Technology to be offered by CEE included these criteria, but also extended thinking beyond Kauffman's (1980) "heap" analogy. The ideas of learning cohorts, learning communities, and research in professional development, change theory, and the learning paradigm were incorporated.

TECHNOLOGY IN TODAY'S WORLD

Historical eras may be defined by their technologies, and the most recent, extending from 1700 to 1900 (Mumford, 1939) saw the emergence of the machine as the dominant metaphor. Mumford thought that the next era, the neotechnic, would be driven by electricity and dominated by science, and communication technologies would come to the forefront. Bolter (1984) suggested that the merging electronic technologies of our modem world, such as recording equipment, radio, television, and the computer, was becoming the defining metaphor that would lead us to label our era the "information age." It is not the label that is important, but the real living and learning environment created by these technologies--the cultural and personal expressions that are structured by them. Society has now come to filter, symbolize, abstract, and organize knowledge about the world through these electronic information technologies (Norton & Sprague, 1997).

To learn is to make sense of life experiences, and information technologies are the tools now used to learn about and understand personal arenas as well as the world at large. When these technological formats are learned, experience is interpreted in significantly different ways than from language acquisition or reading and writing (Norton & Sprague, 1997). Visual, audio, and computer technologies merge today, and all are influenced by bytes of information that come from politicians on the television, employers who put e-mail at our fingertips, scientists who share their research over the World Wide Web (WWW or Web), and enthusiastic friends who encourage us to "chat" over network lines. It is not just the young who must learn to participate in this electronic world; all of us must learn to access and use the electronic environments and acquire new ways to process what they offer. We must "reconsider what it means to think, to feel and to be human" (Turkle, 1995)--these are not easy tasks.

TEACHERS AND TECHNOLOGY

Learning to participate in the electronic environment of today's world is an urgent challenge: documents are sent around the globe in a few seconds; the nightly television news transports one instantly to the scenes of earthquakes, riots, hurricanes, and wars; computers allow us to talk to friends and experts on monumental treks, even to the stars. New understandings and perspectives with which to view and study these "information age" phenomena are needed. As is often the case during societal change, the educational system and classroom teachers must take on the difficult task of realizing the enormous potential of technology to improve educational practice. Educators must integrate technology into an already overloaded curriculum that meets both content standards and the needs of an increasingly diverse student population. The challenge to teachers and educational reformers lies not, perhaps, in adding technology to traditional curriculum models that have existed for almost 100 years, but in revising admini strative policy and classroom practice.

One of the difficulties in changing the way teachers "do" things may be that the educational system is one in which the new generation of teachers is taught the same way as the last--it is self-replicating. New teachers enter the system with similar beliefs and experiences as their predecessors; thus, they continue to teach the way they were taught! For change to happen, perhaps preservice and inservice teachers need to experience alternative teaching and learning models and strategies as part of their own education.

Distance learning over the Internet and/or Interactive Instructional Television (IITV), as a means to achieve these educational ends, is offered by the majority of institutions of higher education in the United States, either as courses or complete programs of study, and enrollment has become a substantial portion of the university population in many institutions (Curran, 1997). The advances in technology, the Internet and other new media, have transformed higher education by improving student access and radically changing approaches to teaching and learning. For educators, the emergence of web-based distance education has brought the notion of the lifelong learner, essential to continued competence and the possibility of advancement, to a more accessible level. Distance learning offers options for these knowledge workers to meet their personal and professional learning needs. They no longer must plan their summers around attending campus-based summer workshops or classes, or attend night or week-end courses at the closest college campus. Instead, web-based distance education provides them with ongoing professional development while they are able to maintain regular employment and/or family responsibilities.

However, there are two primary challenges for teachers learning to use electronic technologies. First, their use requires substantial shifts in what many teachers already know, their attitudes, and their behaviors. Second, their use demands many new skills and competencies, as well as innovative thinking in integrating them into the curriculum. For instance, research shows that technology-using environments promote a shift from unilateral, information-delivering environments to those that are interactive and highly complex (Norton & Sprague, 1995).

For teachers to become effective change agents, to rethink their own practice, and to integrate technology into schools, they must be supported as they make improvements and changes. They become change agents not just in their own teaching, but as leaders within a wider school context, knowing when and how to implement possibilities and cope with policies, programs, and challenges (Norton & Sprague, 1997). One challenge comes from the technology adoption life cycle identified by Moore (1991, 1995).

Like many phenomena, the adoption of new technology follows a bell curve if one plots the number of people adopting a new technology against time. Moore's analysis of the Technology Adoption Life Cycle starts with the key finding that this bell curve is a segmented curve with some potential time gaps. Understanding these time gaps and developing a strategy to effectively deal with these gaps will determine the success of many technology integration projects. Stated in another way, not understanding that these gaps do occur and not having an effective strategy to deal with them will almost always result in failure for a technology integration project.

For Moore the most important gap in technology integration, which he called the chasm, is between the early adopters and the early majority. This is where most integration projects collapse. The collapse of such a project usually comes as an unpleasant surprise for most administrators because the integration of technology goes so smoothly during the early adoption phase. Then just as the school district is gearing up for increased adoption, the project collapses because the early majority do not buy into the project. Some teachers will always be attracted to new technology for its own sake (the innovators). Others will quickly see the potential for more convenient and efficient learning (the early adopters). The key question is, will average teachers, on whom the success of the integration project depends, be attracted enough to form an early majority of users?

How does a school district cross the chasm? Moore's studies and others show that a general assault in the form of workshops and inservice training on the mass of teachers does not work. If a school district is to be successful in creating systemic change in integrating technology into the learning processes, the district must create what Moore called a "niche." The first step in the creation of this niche is a basic understanding of the cause of the chasm. Innovators and early adopters have both the motivation and the problem-solving skills to deal with the complexity of the technology itself. When the technology creates a roadblock that interferes with the integration process, these groups have the necessary skills to overcome that roadblock. The early majority does not have these problem-solving skills and the motivation to overcome roadblocks is small due to the everyday stress of their jobs. When they encounter a roadblock they will spend a certain amount of time attempting to solve the problem, after whi ch the issue is dropped and the integration is abandoned for traditional methods. Creation of the niche is necessary to overcome this basic problem.

The niche is created in two steps. First, the school district must identify an innovator or an early adopter who has both the problem-solving skills to solve the technical issues associated with any technology thorough understanding of the integration process and most important, the skills necessary to work with people under stress. Second, the district must make the commitment to make this person available throughout the entire school day to the early majority. When they have adopted the technology, the process has enough energy to become self-generating and the niche is no longer needed.

PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Teachers are increasingly being forced to bring technology into their classrooms. There is a "new insistence that teachers must become technologically literate" (Ely, Blair, Lichvar, Tyksinski, & Martinez, 1996, p. 33). With personal computer penetration reaching close to half of U.S. households (Edupage, August 23, 1998), many students come to class expecting to use technology. In 1995, the U.S. Congress Office of Technology Assessment (OTA) reported that in the process of acquiring hardware and software for students, teachers are often overlooked. Districts, on average, reported no more than 15% of technology budgets earmarked for professional development. The OTA findings include the following:

1. Despite having access to technology in schools, a substantial number of teachers report that they do not use computers and other technologies regularly for instruction.

2. Most teachers report feeling inadequately prepared to use technology resources, particularly computer-based technologies.

3. Using technology can change the way teachers teach. Technology can support more student-centered approaches to instruction so students can conduct their own inquiries and engage in collaborative activities while the teacher assumes the role of facilitator.

4. Teacher development activities usually focus on mechanics, not on integrating technology into the curriculum.

5. Helping teachers use technology effectively may be the most important step in assuring that current and future investments in technology are realized.

Yocam (1996), in reviewing the Apple Classrooms of Tomorrow Teacher Professional Development Center Project, reported that students and teachers who use technology as part of the teaching and learning process become a "community of learners." The model revealed several important principles for teacher development to be effective:

1. Teacher development activities should be situated in classrooms so that participants can observe and interact with teachers and students engaged in changing classroom practice.

2. Participant teachers should attend in teams; they are more likely to supporteach other and feel less isolated.

3. A constructivist approach should be used. Instructors should model the facilitative role and provide ample hands-on time.

4. Ongoing conversation and reflection about their practice, their students, theories of learning, technology, and how classroom practice might be changed should be an integral part of teacher development.

5. Participant teachers should develop and implement lessons or units that integrate technology into their own classroom practice.

6. Follow-up support should be provided.

To create technology-using environments that support inquiry-based learning--learning that is based on a constructivist philosophy, valuing understanding and process over procedural efficiency; learning that addresses and responds to students' prior knowledge and experience; learning that builds connections to the world outside of school; and learning that supports development of higher-order thinking skills and lifelong learning--teachers need experiences with these environments themselves. They can then internalize these goals and transform their own teaching (Grant, 1996).

LEARNING COMMUNITIES

Professional development for the information age means moving away from the traditional model where one size fits all, with little ongoing support and inadequate opportunity to practice new skills (Fulton, 1996; Grant, 1996; McKenzie, 1991). Professional development research suggests that teachers learn best when they can "play" and reflect in a safe setting, with the opportunity to discuss and collaborate with peers and instructors (Fulton, 1996; Grant, 1996; Yocam, 1996). Grant noted that professional development must help teachers "move beyond 'mechanical use' of curriculum and technology to become facilitators of inquiry" (p. 1).

NAU and most universities approach a domain of inquiry or program of study as a collection of courses to be taken by students on a course-available basis. A program of study is devised, approved, and completed by students from an outline, usually with faculty advisement, that specifies requirements and electives. Students face a number of problems with this approach:

1. The program is disjointed, comprised of courses pulled together from those available, rather than selected to fit the student's needs.

2. Uneven levels of skills and dispositions make it difficult to develop and sustain advanced levels of study and develop common experiences and a common base of knowledge.

3. Class size is often uneven-some are overly large and some have minimum enrollment.

To combat this fractured model and begin building a community of learners, the M. Ed. in Ed Tech program students first apply online using strategies that they will later use in classes, such as attaching documents to e-mail, completing and submitting online surveys, and posting to a bulletin board. Second, classes are capped at 25, insuring that students and professors have ample time and opportunity to discuss issues and concerns over email, chats, and on the bulletin boards. Third, high levels of interaction and collaborative and cooperate projects are structured into the coursework so the graduate study creates groups of students-thought communities-that share a common area of inquiry, but not necessarily uniformity of interest, thereby, facilitating vertical layers of expertise and horizontal sharing, processing, and product completion. Finally, the program itself is built around four conceptual strands that are addressed in each course: (a) learner, (b) knowledge, (c) community, and (d) assessment.

Though students do not begin their programs at the same time and proceed together, as a cohort does, they do develop shared experiences, knowledge, readings, activities, and support--eliminating the need to find common ground at the beginning of each new semester (Norton & Sprague, 1997). Ideally this community of learners continues as a support group beyond the university program.

THE LEARNING PARADIGM

The paradigm that appears to have governed colleges so far is that a college is an institution that exists to provide instruction. However, many in higher education are beginning to question this governing paradigm. Subtly and profoundly there has been a call to shift to a new paradigm where a college is an institution that exists to produce learning. This may sound like a play on words but it is a profound shift that totally affects how the business of a college is conducted. In the instruction paradigm, a college aims to transfer or deliver knowledge from faculty to students; it offers courses and degree programs and seeks to maintain a high quality of instruction within them, mostly by assuring that faculty members stay current in their fields. If new knowledge or clients appear, so will new course work. The very purpose of the instructional paradigm is to offer courses. Alternatively, in the learning paradigm, a college's purpose is not to transfer knowledge but to create environments and experiences that lead students to discover and construct knowledge for themselves, to make students members of communities of learners that make discoveries and solve problems. The college aims, in fact, to create a series of ever more powerful learning environments.

In the instruction paradigm, the mission of the college is to provide instruction, to teach. The method and the product are one and the same. The means is the end. In the learning paradigm, the mission of the college is to produce learning. The method and the products are separate. The end governs the means. The point of saying that colleges are to produce learning--not provide, not support, not encourage--is to say, unmistakably, that they are responsible for the degree to which students learn. The learning paradigm shifts what the institution takes responsibility for, from quality instruction (lecturing, talking) to student learning. Students, the coproducers of learning, can and must, of course, take responsibility for their own learning. Hence, responsibility is a win-win game wherein two agents take responsibility for the same outcome even though neither is in complete control of all the variables. The concept of responsibility as a framework for action is quite different: when one takes responsibility, one sets goals and then acts to achieve them, continuously modifying one's behavior to better achieve the goals. To take responsibility for achieving an outcome does not guarantee the outcome, nor does it entail the complete control of all relevant variables; it makes the achievement of the outcome the criterion by which one measures one's own efforts. In this sense, it is no contradiction to say that students, faculty, and the college as an institution, can all take responsibility for student learning.

The instruction paradigm frames learning atomistically. In it, knowledge, by definition, consists of matter dispensed or delivered by an instructor. The chief agent in the process is the teacher who delivers knowledge; students are viewed as passive vessels, ingesting knowledge for recall on tests. Hence, any expert can teach. Partly because the teacher knows which chunks of knowledge are most important, the teacher controls the learning activities. Learning is presumed to be cumulative because it amounts to ingesting more and more chunks. A degree is awarded when a student has received a specified amount of instruction.

The learning paradigm frames learning holistically, recognizing that the chief agent in the process is the learner. Thus, students must be active discoverers and constructors of their own knowledge. Knowledge consists of frameworks or wholes that are created or constructed by the learner. Knowledge is seen not as cumulative and linear, like a wall of bricks, but as a nesting and interacting of frameworks. Learning is revealed when the frameworks are used to understand and act. Seeing the whole of something--the forest rather than the trees, the image of the newspaper photo rather than its dots--gives meaning to its elements, and that whole becomes more than a sum of component parts. Wholes and frameworks can come in a moment--a flash of insight--often after much hard work with the pieces.

In the instruction paradigm, faculty are conceived primarily as disciplinary experts who impart knowledge by lecturing. The learning paradigm, on the other hand, conceives faculty as primarily the designers of learning environments--they study and apply the best methods for producing learning and student success. If the model in the instruction paradigm is that of delivering a lecture, then the model in the learning paradigm is that of designing and then playing a team game. A coach not only instructs football players, for example, but also designs football practices and the game plan; he/she participates in the game itself by sending in plays and making other decisions. The new faculty role goes a step further however, in that faculty not only design game plans but also create new and better "games," ones that generate more and better learning.

In the learning paradigm, as colleges specify learning goals and focus on learning technologies, faculty design teams become a major operating mode. The purpose of the design is to create a learning environment that consists of nesting and interacting frameworks that could be thought of as themes or modules. After developing and testing its new learning module, the design team may even be able to let students proceed through it without direct faculty contact except at designated points. Such teams could have the freedom that no faculty member has in today's atomized framework, that of organizing the learning environment in ways that maximize student learning.

VISION FOR THE M. ED. IN EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY

It may be helpful to share the initial vision of the M. Ed. in Educational Technology. It was the first priority for GEE educational technology faculty. Originally it was planned that students in this program would be Arizona teachers and an Arizona teaching credential was required for acceptance into the program. Students admitted to this program would probably be technology leaders in their school, and either informal technology coordinators or hired by their school district for technology leadership as a technology coordinator. However, it soon became apparent that the program planners had been shortsighted; inquiries about the degree and applications began coming in from around the world. The enrollment has grown since its inception in August, 2000, from 50 students to almost 300, and the teaching certificate requirement has been rescinded.

The M. Ed. in Educational Technology program contained several components that would make it unique:

* a program based on four strands that run through each course and define conversations among students in the program;

* a philosophy based on a learning paradigm rather than an instructional paradigm; and

* an opportunity to effect systemic change in P-12 schools.

The M. Ed. in Educational Technology was built around four strands found in each educational technology course offered by GEE. The idea behind using such strands was to build a community of learners that crosses the boundaries of individual courses and provides a means for continuing conversations among students, GEE faculty, and technology leaders around the world. Conversations would initially occur in the GEE Virtual Conference Center and all students and faculty would be invited to engage in these conversations. The strands are:

1. Learner

2. Knowledge

3. Community

4. Assessment

A REVISION FOR THE M. ED. IN EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY

The M. Ed. program originally required a component that we thought essential to building online and sustained learning communities: face-to-face meeting time to support the development of a learning cohort.

The authors original thinking and planning for the M.Ed. in Educational Technology program included the face-to-face components and the cohort model. However, prospective students let us know through surveys and focus groups that they were not interested in either of these plans. They told us that the face-to face sessions, although good in theory, would make entering and completing the program much more difficult for participants, many of whom are in rural areas and are full time, inservice teachers or trainers. They also noted that they wanted to enter and complete the program on their own terms and not be governed by a cohort grouping. As a response to those concerns, the program is now open-ended, and there is only a concluding face-to-face capstone experience during which the students present the artifacts, products, and/or results of their final project. The program is flexible, though, and there are small cohorts who chose to enter the program as a group, such as a library science cohort in one school district, who have completed their coursework together.

HOW THE M.ED. IN EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY LOOKS TODAY

Since its inception in fall 2000 we now know that through web-based courses, we are not limited to Arizona. There are currently students from outside Arizona, and there have been worldwide program inquiries and applications from places such as China, Puerto Rico, Canada, and Saudi Arabia. With little or no marketing, only a web site from which students apply and access a readiness survey, over 250 students have been admitted, and five web-based ETC courses are offered each semester, some with two or more sections. We have also added two instructors who assist with the teaching load on our four faculty members, and have implemented two new elective educational technology courses.

With an increase in students applying to and enrolled in the online M. Ed., a delivery model has been initiated that has enabled an increase in the number of online sections offered each semester. CEE professor X, a fulltime tenured faculty member, facilitates one M. Ed. course for the semester. For illustrative purposes, let's use ETC 547, Instructional Theory and Strategies in Technology Integration. Dr. X's responsibilities for this course include working throughout the semester with adjunct ETC 547 faculty, Instructor A, who might be a graduate of the program. This facilitated learning community provides several things. First, it allows CEE to offer multiple sections of a course with good assurance that the syllabus developed to support a specific program will be followed. It provides mentoring support for adjunct faculty when needed, and, with additional instructors, promotes the creation of a learning community of leaders in the educational technology field. (University instructors are almost as isolate d from their fields at times as P-12 teachers.) Consider one more benefit: ETC 547 is offered at the same time as several other courses in the program. Because of the four strands woven throughout the program, these students can engage in conversations with others taking different courses--the strands tie the courses together. But these instructors are now part of a larger community as they engage in larger conversations with other online instructors teaching courses in the same program.

CONCLUSION

This decade, as institutions struggled with issues of student focus and restructuring, two lessons came to the fore. One is that the cumulative longer-term impact of the new pedagogies, when deployed in single courses or workshops, is fairly small; deeper learning comes when knowledge and abilities are practiced, reinforced, and applied over time, in subsequent coursework and in the wider contexts of college life. The second is that the most promising and powerful of the new approaches--learning communities, for example--treat learning beyond the scope of capabilities of any one department or unit; they require the active engagement of multiple parties...(Engelkemeyer & Brown, 1998, p. 12).

Not only does this quote say what the authors believe, it also says what they did. As they experienced the process of research, discussion, and reflection-over and over--in the search for the ideal M. Ed. in Educational Technology program, they have exemplified the struggles with "new pedagogies" and "new approaches." The authors have become living proof that changes in thinking and doing come over time, not in a day, or a week, or even a year, and certainly not in single courses or workshops. They felt frustration and humility as they struggled to articulate what they believed to be important. They became what they can only hope for their students in this new program: uncomfortable learners who stretched their minds and pushed the envelopes of their comfort zones to complete an engaging, meaningful task.

References

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Curran, D. (1997). ODL and traditional universities: Dichotomy or convergence? European Journal of Education, 32(4), 335-346.

Daniel, J. (1996). Mega-universities and knowledge media: Technology strategies for higher education. London: Kogan Page.

Edupage (August 23, 1998). PC prices plummet. E-mail newsletter published three times weekly, providing brief summaries and overviews of articles about telecommunications industries. [Online]. Available: http//www.educause.edu

Ely, D., Blair, P., Lichvar, P., Tyksinski, D., & Martinez, M. (1996). Trends in educational technology 1995. Syracuse, NY: ERIC Clearinghouse on Information and Technology.

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http://cnets.iste.org/

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McKenzie, J. (April, 1991). Designing staff development for the information age. FromNowOn.org: The Educational Technology Journal, 1(4). [Online]. Available: http://www.fromnowon.org/fnoapr9l.html

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Moore, J. (1995). Inside the tornado. New York: HarperBusiness.

Mumford, L. (1939). Technics and civilization. New York: Harcourt, Brace.

Norton, P., Sprague, D. (1995). Changing teachers--teachers changing schools: Assessing a graduate program in technology education. Journal of Information Technology for Teacher Education, 5(1/2), 93-105.

Norton, P., & Sprague, D. (1997). A proposal for revision of track two--instructional technology program: Integration of technology in schools. Fairfax, VA: Graduate School of Education, George Mason University.

Office of Technology Assessment (1995). Teachers and technology: Making the connection (No. OTA-HER-616). Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office.

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Author:Gunn, Cathy
Publication:Journal of Technology and Teacher Education
Date:Mar 22, 2003
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