Instruction and Technology
Designs for Everyday Learning
- 2012 National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) / Conference on College Composition and Communication's Best Book in Technical and Scientific Communication Award
520 pp., 7 x 9 in, 3 halftones, 23 line drawings, 38 tables
- Published: August 6, 2010
- Publisher: The MIT Press
A rigorous multidisciplinary analysis of the influence of emerging technologies on instruction and learning that lays the groundwork for future inquiry.
The perpetual connectivity made possible by twenty-first-century technology has profoundly affected instruction and learning. Emerging technologies that upend traditional notions of communication and community also influence the ways we design and evaluate instruction and how we understand learning and learning environments. In Instruction and Technology, Brad Mehlenbacher offers a detailed, multidisciplinary analysis of the dynamic relationship between technology and learning. Mehlenbacher describes how today's ubiquitous technology conflates our once separated learning worlds—work, leisure, and higher educational spaces. He reviews the ongoing cross-disciplinary conversation about learning with technology and distance education and examines a dozen models of instruction and learning with technology drawn from peer-reviewed research. Taking an integrative perspective toward design, Mehlenbacher offers a framework for everyday instructional situations, describing five interdependent dimensions: learner background and knowledge, learner tasks and activities, social dynamics, instructor activities, and learning environment and artifacts. The technologies that distribute today's classroom across time and space call for a new discussion about what we value in the traditional classroom. [Rather than simply offering recipes for creating online instruction,] with Instruction and Technology Mehlenbacher lays the groundwork for the long-term multidisciplinary investigation that will be required as researchers and practitioners shape and extend the boundaries of this emerging field.
Mehlenbacher brings the lens of learning styles to Web-based instruction, but winds up reintegrating the elephant of instruction, perceived piecemeal by so many disciplinary blind men. This comprehensive critical review could not have come at a better time: technology is the lynchpin in the vision of every instructional entrepreneur. This book provides the broad and thoughtful foundation for designers and researchers that those visions require. Today's graduate students, who will have to transcend disciplinary boundaries, should read this book.
John M. Carroll, Edward M. Frymoyer Professor of Information Sciences and Technology, Pennsylvania State University
Mehlenbacher unpacks the complex relationships between instruction and technology while emerging as a sensitive guide to the frequently confusing and disparate landscapes of learning with technology.
Karen Schriver, President, KSA Communication Design & Research