International Symposium on Literacy/English Teacher Education: A Focus on Digital Technology

With the symposium a few days behind us, I (Pooja) have had some time to reflect on what was discussed in London, England. Clare wrote a reflection post on day one of the symposium (https://literacyteaching.net/2014/06/06/symposium-day-1-reflections/), so I want to reflect a bit on day two. Day two started off with mini-presentations which asked presenters to focus on a central question: What is happening with digital technology in your context?

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Shawn Bullock, assistant professor at Simon Fraser University, raised some interesting issues related to digital technology and education:

  • Technological Determinism: A theory which asserts we need to stay current with technology to stay relevant in society; technology determines cultural values and society’s structures
  • Digital Publics: The theory that the nature of public space has changed significantly over the past years. The nature of public space has gone from persistent to replicable to searchable in the past few decades:

o   Persistent- recording (video, audio) events changed the nature of public space;

o   Replicable- recordings became replicable;

o   Searchable- today we can search for any recording

(danah boyd)

Understanding how the nature of public space has drastically changed over the years, Shawn posed an important question to the group: What is the role of education in theorizing privacy in the digital age?

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As the symposium was coming to a close, we were guided to reflect on the past two days. Many people realized that the rapid increase of standardization and data driven initiatives was happening across all contexts. However, many individuals commented that the conversations over the past two days were “energizing.” Being in conversation about big issues across international contexts made many teacher educators realize they were not alone. In fact, many commented they wanted to keep up the momentum by further collaborating and “making some noise” in teacher education.

 

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Once again, we’d like to thank TUG Agency for so graciously hosting us. TUG provided a vibrant and exciting atmosphere for our symposium to take place. Check out their website at: http://www.tugagency.com

Thank you!!!

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