In my current role as an Instructional Technology Support Specialist at Temple, I am regularly presented with new and innovative technologies that are developed and integrated into higher education. To most, the wave of interactive and collaborative systems that are available to educators is remarkable. At the same time, however, there are a growing number of teachers who literally and loudly refuse to incorporate the tools.
When I was a student at Temple, my view was constricted and unrefined; I was a student, Temple was where I went to school. As an employee, however, I see Temple University as a much greater entity, and essentially, as a business. In applying this weeks reading on disruptive innovation, I have cultivated sympathy toward the faculty members at Temple who value the traditional classroom.
The entire classroom dynamic in higher education has transformed. In light of innovative technologies ranging from collaborative Learning Management Systems to online video conferencing, learning environments today have the ability to be entirely digital (Exhibit A: our DIM program). The disruptive innovation theory points to situations in which new organizations can use relatively simple, convenient, low-cost innovations to create growth. In applying this theory, the move from the traditional classroom to a digital space seems ideal. What is more convenient than participating in a class from your bedroom?
While the majority of students are elated over the transition to “all things digital,” there is a growing number of instructors who are jumping ship. In fact, instructors in favor of traditional teaching methods are even refusing to take on additional classes. These men and women are so dedicated to the traditions of their craft that they are literally losing money in order to preserve their teaching style. Their diligence sheds notable light on the idea that technology is not for everyone (and print is not dead). It will be interesting to see how big data reacts to the rebels!