History of Educational Technology During Ancient Times Professional Associations Assignment 1 by Christina Rogoza ITDE 7006 Foundations by otj20502


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									       Professional Associations

            Assignment 1


           Christina Rogoza

              ITDE 7006

Foundations of Instructional Technology

         Dr. Charles Schlosser

            Sept. 11, 2005

            Association for Educational Communications and Technology



       The Association for Educational Communications and Technology (AECT) was formed

in 1923 as the Department of Visual Instruction (DVI) of the National Education Association

(NEA). It remained part of the NEA, located within its Washington, DC headquarters, for 48

years until 1971. At this time there was an increasing interest in the potential of visual media,

i.e., slides and motion pictures in schools, colleges, and university extension divisions for

instructional purposes.

       In its first seven years, the DVI had no permanent staff, disseminated no publications,

and offered no services to its members. It took form only at the NEA summer convention where

members met and paid their annual fee of one dollar.

       The first presidents in the 1920‟s were all affiliated with public schools. However, the

trend began in the 1930‟s with representation from higher education and continued after World

War II with 23 of 25 presidents working in higher education (AECT, 2001).


       By the mid 1930‟s, training teachers to use the new media became the major focus of

DVI and membership grew to over 600 by the start of World War II. An issue that arose during

this period was the replacement of silent films with sound films for educational purposes. Silent

film advocates argued for the value of the personalization of the film by the teacher‟s narration

which also kept the teacher central to the presentation. Although research supported their claims,

commercialism won out at the end and “talkies” became the medium most used.

       As the war drew near large conventions were not allowed to be held and since the

association was essentially built around convention activity, it remained inactive until 1946

(AECT, 2001).

1946 – 1957

       After the war a large group of specialists who had been trained in audio-visual

technology came back to jobs in schools and colleges that were incorporating this media in their

curricula. DVI became the Department of Audio-Visual Instruction (DAVI) and now had a

permanent staff at NEA. DAVI now began its own separate convention and its own journals,

Audio-Visual Communication Review and Audio-Visual Instruction (AECT, 2001).


       The launch of the Sputnik satellite by the Soviet Union shocked the nation and resulted in

a major federal effort in the U.S. to improve the teaching of math, science, and foreign

languages. The National Defense Education Act (NDEA) of 1958 provided funding for

equipment, materials, research, and college scholarships. The act specifically referred to radio,

television, film, and audiovisual media. Schools now needed specialized professional staff to

oversee the use of the media and thousands of new jobs were created. As a result, DAVI

membership grew from 3000 to 11,000.

       During this period the concept of programmed instruction using machines was made

popular by B.F. Skinner and was reflected in DIVA‟s definition for educational technology. It

was oriented around audiovisual communications and was defined in 1963 as “that branch of

educational theory and practice primarily concerned with the design and use of messages which

control the learning process” (AECT, 2001).


       After reorganization, the association adopted a new name, the Association for

Educational Communications and Technology (AECT). AECT became an “umbrella”

organization with nine special interest Divisions and ten National Affiliates. The journals were

renamed Educational Communication and Technology Journal and Instructional Innovator, and a

new journal was added, Journal of Instructional Development.

       During the 1970‟s, the videocassette player-recorder was changing the face of

audiovisual use in the classroom. It was easy to use and teacher‟s clearly preferred it to 16mm

film. This coupled with education funding cuts during the recession of the early 1970‟s resulted

in the loss of many AV jobs in schools and colleges. The librarians now became the overseers of

the educational technology resources.

       AECT now adopted a new definition that eliminated the audiovisual label of 1963 and

focused on process. The 1972 definition appeared as, “Educational technology is a field involved

in the facilitation of human learning through the systematic identification, development,

organization, and utilization of a full range of learning resources and through the management of

these processes” (AECT, 2001).

       In 1977 this was further re-defined with a focus on a systematic problem-solving

process as “Educational technology is a complex, integrated process, involving people,

procedures, ideas, devices, and organization, for analyzing problems and devising,

implementing, evaluating, and managing solutions to those problems, involved in all aspects of

human learning” (AECT, 2001).


       This was the era of the computer and digital media and more members now came from

the higher education sector than the school sector. In 1985, Instructional Innovator became

TechTrends and the Journal of Instructional Development (JID) and Educational Communication

and Technology (ECTJ) merged under the new name of Educational Technology Research and

Development (ETR&D).

       AECT‟s 1994 definition of instructional technology illustrated the continuing shift

toward a process focus, moving away from the audiovisual media definition (1963) and the

problem-solving process (1977) and now placed the instructional design process at the center,

”Instructional Technology is the theory and practice of design, development, utilization,

management, and evaluation of processes and resources for learning” (AECT, 2001).

                                 Headquarters and Membership

       In 1999, AECT moved their headquarters to Bloomington, Indiana to share space with

the Agency for Instructional Technology (AIT). It continues as an umbrella organization with

professors and graduate students comprising about 60% of the membership, while school media

specialists comprise about 30% reflecting a change from the original composition of school

administrators and school visual instruction coordinators. As of July 2005, AECT had 2,219

members (Lowell, 2005).


   The mission of the Association for Educational Communications and Technology is to

   provide international leadership by promoting scholarship and best practices in the creation,

   use, and management of technologies for effective teaching and learning in a wide range of



        Define the disciplines and professional activities that comprise the field of educational

         communications and technology.

        Serve and represent professionals in the field and support professional growth.

        Advance scholarship and practice that contribute to and enlarge the knowledge base of

         the field.

        Promote policies that ensure the humane and ethical use of educational communications

         and technology at all levels, from the personal through the international (AECT, 2005).


         Since 1923, AECT has been involved in annual conferences. As the trade show that

accompanied the conventions brought in a major portion of the association‟s total revenues, the

conference remained the focus of AECT activities. Although the conference is important for

academic networking, there should be more opportunities for dialogue than just at the

conferences. Blogs are currently being promoted as an alternative for social networking (Lowell,



President (2006) Sharon Smaldino, Northern Illinois University

Executive Director – Dr. Phillip Harris

Divisional Officers (9) (see http://www.aect.org/about/DivOfficers.htm)

State Affiliates (41) with governing officers (see http://www.aect.org/Affiliates/default.htm)

Chapters (8) with governing officers (see http://www.aect.org/Chapters/default.htm)

Committees (21) (see http://www.aect.org/about/committees.asp)

                                       Personal Membership

       The concept of the Agora in ancient Greek times was to provide a public meeting place

for political, social, educational, and other forums. This was how people came to „know‟.

Learning happened with social interaction. This concept continues today not only with the

conference concept but in the virtual world as well. It is clear that in this ever evolving field of

educational technology that interaction with other professionals is key to knowledge building.

Membership in associations is a primary method for connecting with others in the same field or

discipline. My professional goals lie in research and align with AECT goals. The association

continues to attract professionals interested in research in instructional technology and design in

higher education. In addition, it houses a substantial resource of publications concerning

instructional technology.


Association for Educational Communications and Technology. (2001). In the 20th century: A

       brief history. Retrieved Sept. 10, 2005 from


Lowell, Nate. (2005). Core and context. Terra Incognita Exploring new dimensions of

       membership Retrieved Sept. 10, 2005 from


Lowell, Nate. (2005). Membership numbers. Terra Incognita Exploring new dimensions of

       membership Retrieved Sept. 10, 2005 from



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