Don't Tell me how to Teach!

Ok, this has never actually been said to me, but it's implicit in a lot of my conversations and is a major barrier to the adoption of Learning Technologies in education. So why would they be thinking this? And what business is it of mine to poke my nose into their teaching? The simplest answer to this is that to adopt anything new you have to incorporate it into the learning design. You have to think holistically about how you teach and fit it in. This is true of any tool/method/environment. I wouldn't be doing my job properly if I didn't make this clear.

So what's the problem? It's because they don't want to go through a redesign process. A process that I would find natural and necessary. Underlying both is the natural human defense against outside influence into their course/lesson - What's wrong with what I'm doing and "don't tell me how to teach". For some, in the lazy teaching club, they teach by a bog-standard content dumping, didactic method. So here we have an added barrier. I like to think this isn't widespread but I'm sure there is no study which measures this. For others and in our Learning Technology context, there's an issue of lack of confidence/skills/understanding or what Learning Technologies have to offer. This is definitely widespread and I don't need any research to tell me that. Wrap bits of all these issues up and you get a pretty tricky situation.

And the standard result in this scenario? Add-ons. Adding on file repositories (most common), adding on a discussion forum or sometimes adding on something like audio files (often mistaken called podcasts) to give the illusion of e-learning wizardry. But what's important is that there is no threat to the existing course design, even if there hasn't really been any real design process in the first place.

So whatever you do Learning Technologists out there - DON'T TELL ME HOW TO TEACH!"