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unCon 2013 Session: Changing Roles of Teachers in the Ed Tech Area

Moderator: Christina Inge
Today, Christina Inge led an
interesting session on “The Changing Roles of Teachers in the Ed Tech Area”. A
hot topic at today’s MassTLC unConference, Ed Tech came up in Jean Hammond’s
earlier session called “What’s Next in the MA Ed Tech Cluster?”
Unlike Hammond, Inge concentrated on
the impact of Ed Tech on teachers regardless of location. Inge described the
obligations of a teacher today to be much more than simply giving students
information. Referring to Maslow’s ‘Hierarchy of Needs’, Inge theorized that
teachers also play a large part in the socialization and self-actualization of
their students. With EdTech, some of the so-called ‘grunt work’ like grading
papers has been taken out of the equation leaving them more time to concentrate
on these more difficult aspects of teaching.
On the other hand, Ed Tech may aid
teachers not only by getting rid of the grunt work, but also by enabling many
alternative versions of the classroom that, in the past, were simply not
possible. One of these alternative classrooms discussed was the ‘flipped’
classroom in which the traditional lecture is reduced to homework and the more
hands-on applications of learned knowledge usually left to homework becomes the
main focus. Clearly, the effects of EdTech on teachers are massive, leaving
lots of room for discussion, a perfect topic for an unConference session.
The unConference offers not only an
incredible array of perspectives but also an intimate setting so that each of these
unique perspectives can be expressed. With this special atmosphere that the
unConference creates, Inge’s session was littered with personal anecdotes and
extensive discussion about these many different implementations of EdTech.

Jade Beguelin

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