The fuzzy boundaries of an EdTech’s job function

“Educational Technologist”, what type of job functions does that title bring to mind? Would instructors ask an Educational Technologist for assistance in assuring their curriculum aligns with their online content? Would an instructor ask an EdTech to help design an online or hybrid course? Probably not.

Instructors ask EdTechs to fix their Moodle Grade Center, but they would not ask how much to weight a quiz. They would ask how to import a quiz into their course, but they would not ask if the quiz should be graded.

Technology and education are now one, Education assumes technology will be used to some degree to achieve learning objectives. The title “Educational Technologist” should evolve and become more holistic combining instructional design and development. But are faculty ready for the progression?

The EdTech label does not lend credibility to suggest an EdTech can make instructional design or development recommendations. However, EdTechs see hundreds of courses and some have taken many courses and have also taught. They know thirteen weeks of downloadable PowerPoints followed by group discussions and formative quizzing does not make for an engaging course. Only the most dedicated will make it through to the end. EdTechs are in a good position to make instructional recommendations.

Why are EdTechs only asked technology related questions when common Definitions of Educational Technologist do not even include the word “Technology”. “Educational technology is a systematic, iterative process for designing instruction or training used to improve performance” and “Educational Technology involves the disciplined application of knowledge for the purpose of improving learning, instruction and/or performance”. I found that strange too.

Many EdTechs know intuitively that some online or hybrid courses will flop but they have to bite their tongues when they want to recommend changes to the content of the course. We’re the EdTechs and you’re the Instructors, let’s keep that division clear. Just help embed Word documents and move on. But the division is becoming fuzzy.

Should we change the job title to something other than “Educational Technologist”? Or, should we all just change our perception of what Educational Technologists do. As an EdTech, it would be nice to hear, “What do you think of this online course? Are there any changes that you can suggest that would help the students?”

Really?? I’m glad you asked…

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.