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Lecture notes on technophobia - psychological implications and educational contexts

Published in: Education, Technology


  1. Technophobia
  2. • Technophobia is the fear of modern technology and is the opposite of technophilia. It is exemplified in popular culture and thinking through movies such as Terminator 2: Judgment Day and can even be seen earlier in 19th Century literature, such as Frankenstein by Mary Shelly.
  3. • Most real-life examples of Technophobia are far more sedate, from fear of learning to use a computer to choosing to withdraw cash from a human bank cashier rather than from the ‘Hole in the Wall’ (ATM).
  4. What are the symptoms of Technophobia ?
  5. What are the symptoms of Technophobia • Breathlessness • Dizziness • Excessive perspiration • Nausea • Dry mouth • Shaking • Heart palpitations ? • Inability to speak or think clearly • Becoming angry or ‘losing control’ • Sensation of detachment from reality • Full blown anxiety attack. Source:
  6. What are some signs of Technophobia in schools?
  7. What are some signs of Technophobia in schools? • Reluctance to use computers and related technologies • Resistance to automating processes • Unwillingness to change from one system to another or one software to another. • Highly critical of any technology changes or implementation • Passive resistance to new technology initiatives
  8. What are some signs of Technophobia in schools? • Unwillingness to attend training classes • Slow to learn new technologies • Providing excuses for not attending training sessions • Relentlessly arguing the lack of need for technologies • Pleading "the old way is the best way!" • Convincing colleagues that "I’ve made it this far without technology. Why now?" Source:
  9. Luddism • Several groups are often said to be technophobic, notably Luddites and the Amish. Sometimes, businesses and environmentalist groups trying to prevent the spread of a technology are also called technophobic by opponents even though they may only be advocating ‘best practice’. • In contrast, a Luddite has a social stance against technology, not simply a fear. The Amish are against modern technology because of religeous conviction. Source:
  10. What can we do to Address Technophobia?
  11. What can we do to Address Technophobia? 1. Hold seminars, workshops, and training sessions on technophobia. The more we share information and knowledge on the topic, the easier it becomes for individuals to recognise that they have a problem.     
  12. What can we do to Address Technophobia? 2. Technophobia is not a shameful thing. It is not a disease and it is certainly not a reflection on the intellectual capacity of the individual. Hence it is important to remove blame and shame from any discussion on technophobia. Share with individuals that this is a problem that affects many individuals, from Head Teachers to cleaners.   
  13. What can we do to Address Technophobia? 3. Admit and recognise the information overload problem (cognitive load) and the relentless pace of technology. Let individuals know that all of us struggle to keep up with technology. It is only the degree of struggle that is different.
  14. What can we do to Address Technophobia? 4. Provide meaningful and sustained support to help individuals identify and overcome their phobia. A class or a forum to discuss technophobias may be a first step.     
  15. What can we do to Address Technophobia? 5. Create a friendly, non-threatening learning environment. Educate people to see that failing a few times while learning new technologies is normal. In fact, the more you fail the more you learn!    
  16. What can we do to Address Technophobia? 6. Help people take one small step at a time. Reward their efforts and be a mentor.      Adapted from Gupta, U. M. (2001) Technology is Conquerable!  Student Affairs Online 
  17. What are the implications of Technophobia in School? Discus
  18. Technophobia Sorted