Engage, Empower, Enable: Developing a Shared Vision for Technology in Education



After more than two decades of computers in education in Australian schools there is still confusion at all levels about why technology matters and widespread reluctance to move beyond the tokenistic use of computers in classrooms. Why? The reasons are probably many and varied but this chapter proffers the notion that the confusion and reluctance stems from the lack of a shared vision, at the school and classroom level, and the lack of pragmatic teaching frameworks that take into account the realities of teaching in the 21st century. In this chapter scenario planning will be applied to the conundrum that is, Information and Communication Technologies in Education (ICTE). The focal point selected will be how ICT’s impact on teaching and learning. The organizational mental models that exist range from, the use of ICT underpinned by constructivist theory, to the behaviorist view, that technology makes learning faster, easier and cheaper. Colliding forces and trends include; outcomes based curriculum, rapidly changing technology, and increasing accountability. Two themes are chosen. The first theme, not surprisingly, is the technology itself. We can choose to saturate teaching and learning with technology or not. The second theme is teaching and learning theory. The two themes are placed on a continuum, intersected, and positioned on a matrix. From the matrix scenarios are extracted and presented as vignettes. It will be argued that the scenario planning stages of establishing a focal point, identifying organizational mental models, and conducting an environmental scan can greatly assist schools in developing a shared vision, and that the teasing out of narratives can greatly assist in the development of realistic teaching methods.


technology education computers scenario planning teaching learning theory practice vision 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Atkinson, R. (1968). Computerized instruction and the learning process. American Psychologist. 23, 225–239.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Brown, A. L., J. Bransford, et al. (1999). How people learn: brain, mind, experience, and school. Washington, D.C: National Academy Press.Google Scholar
  3. College of Marin (2002). Scenario Planning, College of Marin 835 College Ave Kentfield California. Accessed on 17.10.2002 at Scholar
  4. Dede, C. (2002). Vignettes about the Future of Learning Technologies. Visions 2020. U.S. Department of Commerce. Washington DC: Technology Administration Office of Public Affairs.Google Scholar
  5. Edwards, S. and G. Romeo (2003). Interlearn: an online teaching and learning system developed at Monash University. Paper presented at the E-Learn 2003 World Conference of E-Learning in corporate, government, healthcare & higher education, Arizona, USA.Google Scholar
  6. Helfgott, D. and M. Westhaver (2003). Inspiration, Inspiration Software Inc.Google Scholar
  7. Jonassen, D. H. (1996). Computers in the classroom: mindtools for critical thinking. Englewood Cliffs, N.J: Merrill.Google Scholar
  8. Jonassen, D. H. (2000). Computers as mindtools for schools: engaging critical thinking. Upper Saddle River, N.J: Merrill.Google Scholar
  9. NCREL (2002). Engauge, North Central Regional Educational Laboratory. Accessed on 17.10.2002 at Scholar
  10. NCREL, N. C. R. E. L. and G. Metiri (2003). enGauge 21st Century Skills for 21st Century Learners: Literacy in the Digital Age. Naperville, Illinois: 85.Google Scholar
  11. Papert, S. (1980). Mindstorms: children, computers, and powerful ideas. Brighton: Harvester.Google Scholar
  12. Papert, S. (1992). The children’s machine: Rethinking school in the age of the computer. New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
  13. Pausch, R. (2002). A Curmudgeon’s Vision for Technology in Education. Visions 2020. U.S. Department of Commerce. Washington DC: Technology Administration Office of Public Affairs.Google Scholar
  14. Romeo, G. I. (2003). Technology matters but good teaching matters more. In Information and communication technology and the teacher of the future: IFIP TC3/WG3.1 & WG3.3 Working Conference on ICT and the Teacher of the Future, January 27–31, 2003, Melbourne, Australia. International Federation for Information Processing; 131. C. Dowling and K.-W. Lai. Boston, Kluwer Academic Publishers: 191–202.Google Scholar
  15. Schwartz, P. and Australian Business Network. (1996). The Art of the Long View: Paths to Strategic Insight for Yourself and Your Company. St. Leonards, N.S.W: Australian Business Network.Google Scholar
  16. Spender, D. and F. Stewart (2002). Embracing e-learning in Australian Schools. Melbourne, Commonwealth Bank. Accessed on 17.10.2002 at,1687,2003%255Fe%252Dlearning%255Freport,00.pdf.Google Scholar
  17. Suppes, P. and M. Morningstar (1968). Computer-assisted instruction. Science, 16, 343–350.Google Scholar
  18. Taylor, R. (1980). The Computer in the school: tutor, tool, tutee. New York: Teachers College Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Monash UniversityAustralia

Personalised recommendations