Friday, March 7, 2008

Deus eP Machina

Whistle stops: In an earlier post, I presented a discussion referring to Neil Postman's Deus Machina and my concerns about education's institutional technophobia. This has led to some side tracks; not particularly productive but interesting diversions all the same. The ePortfolio in the National Calibre College website has certainly been fleshed out with much more material, research and recommendations this past couple of weeks. One area I concentrated on is my theories of Hype vs Adoption which can be found in the Alignment (Technical Aspects) part of the site. Basically, I suggest that the tech/innovation profile of an institution may be evident in the speed by which they adopt new innovations (genius, hey?). Mapping Gartner's Hype Cycle against Everett Rogers' Tech adoption curve, I propose a hypothesis that suggests some realtionship between hype/visibility and innovative culture. It doesn't help to get institutions off their (uh, hands) but it helps to see where the problem lies, and suggests ways to measure it in your institution.

I also suggested in that earlier blog post that in order to overcome the inertia and resistance to tech change I will need to make a convincing argument of why ePortfolio is any better than regular (low fat, high fibre) portfolio. Under ePortfolio, Benefits and Features, I present some arguments that include the inclusion of necessary new literacies in its completion, better metacognitive outcomes, agility of the data, and benefits for the institution that are just not available in an overloaded scrapbook that walks out the door (with the student) on graduation.

This past few weeks I have really focused on analysis and writing to get the most cogent stuff from the literature review into the site. Along the way I have been conducting videotaped interviews and, oh boy! have they given me some great stuff. I'll be editing those videos and putting content on the site very soon.

Next Stops: Look for vid clips as early as next week. I am booked to go to LaGuardia Community College Apr. 10-13 for their "Making Connections" Conference and exposition of student ePortfolios. Next blog post will be on the imperative of institutionally hosted eP systems.