Current challenges for educational technology research
Mayes described educational technology research as being like the film, 'Groundhog Day', with "cycles of high expectation [...] followed by proportionate disappointment", and "a cyclical failure to learn from the past". Fifteen years on, this experience still rings true.
Is this pattern inevitable and inescapable? This paper identified several challenges faced by work in this area. Together, they go some way towards explaining this pattern, and identifying what will need to change if we are to break out of this.
These challenges include the strategic difficulty of maintaining research work across cycles of new technology; the methodological challenge of studying things people have forgotten they are using; the epistemological challenge of reconceptualising the relationship between technology, users and effects; the practical challenge of knowing our learners; and the political challenge of securing funding for anything other than instrumental, applied work.
Seminar at Oxford education department, 17/11/10. Cited papers listed in the speaker's notes.