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Nine Paradoxes


Educational Technology

Educational technology is a curious field -- those who work in it are at once expected to be at the forefront of the new, and yet at the same time uphold many cherished ideas about educational practice that we have inherited from the past. What follows are a few speculative thoughts about the paradoxes that this tension generates for our field. I put these together quickly for my Seminar on Educational Technology in Spring, 1997. They are presented here in virtually the same form that I presented them then. Thoughts, reactions, and comments are welcome!


The paradoxes are divided into three groups--Paradoxes of Teaching and Learning, Paradoxes of Design and Assessment, and Paradoxes of the Implementation Context.

The Paradoxes of Teaching and Learning

1. The Paradox of Learning

2. The Paradox of Engagement

3. The Paradox of Content

The Paradoxes of Design and Assessment

4. The Paradox of Design

5. The Paradox of Interactivity

6. The Paradox of Assessment

The Paradoxes of the Implementation Context

7. The Paradox of Expectations

8. The Paradox of Scale

9. The Paradox of the Pace of Change