Sunday, June 14th, 2009 | Computer Usage, technology
A few decades ago Computer Aided Design (CAD) software packages became commercially available. CAD programmes automated the drawing of technical diagrams. The software made it possible to draw diagrams in a few minutes that previously took draughtsmen hours – if not days – to complete, and with greater accuracy.
Surprisingly, many draughtsmen resisted the use of CAD software, feeling that it posed a threat to their careers. They’ve spent years developing drawing skills – if computers were to be used to draw diagrams, what were they going to do?
Some farsighted draughtsmen accepted the change and learned to use CAD software. They discovered that it took the drudgery out of their jobs and allowed them time to focus on higher level design tasks. For them CAD proved to be a productivity boon.
Today practically all technical drawings are done by means of CAD. Those draughtsmen who did not embrace technology were phased out over time.
Educators are in a similar situation today. Technology is changing the face of education but, sadly, some educators are not prepared to accept the challenge to learn new skills. It is not as if they are scared of technology – they fear that technology will take over their jobs. If computers are used for teaching, what will teachers do? They resist technology because they see it as a threat to their careers.
Visionary educators behave differently. They embrace opportunities that allow them to elevate their personal involvement to a higher level; technology enables them to be true facilitators of the learning process, while using computers for more mundane things such as admin tasks, drill and practice and the dissemination of learning content.
Where will educators find themselves in a decade from now if they do not adapt to a mode of education where technology plays a significant role?
Remember what happened to the draughtsmen!