Introduction to Learning Technologies

Reading through the history of learning technologies presents a woefully consistent approach. From the earliest mechanical computation machines, through television, the internet, and now virtual reality and artificial intelligence, the trend has always been for those in power to become enamored with the latest technology and try to shoe-horn it into the education space. Instead of asking “what is the cheapest way we can use this exciting new thing in education?”, we should be asking: “where are the weak points in education and what kind of technology would strengthen them?” Of course, it is not until recently that we would…

Debugging Away From Failure

Link to PDF: https://www.bartucz.com/mrbartucz/wp-content/uploads/2022/01/EPSY-5124-Debugging-Away-From-Failure-2.pdf Debugging Away From Failure Or How To Avoid Unrecoverable Loss John Bartucz Department of Curriculum and Instruction University of Minnesota EPSY 5124 – Debugging Failure Dr. David DeLiema December 22, 2021 Abstract Failure means many things to many people. From a low grade on a math test in elementary school to a space shuttle explosion, the word has different meanings and consequences for all of the individuals and groups involved. How can a single event be placed at so many different places on the continuum from success to failure by so many different people? This paper…

The Culture of Computer Science, A Short Review of Literature

Abstract Popular media and academic literature are rife with statistical descriptions of “underrepresentation” in computer science education and careers. Because of this, there is an increasing amount of research on what can be done in the classroom and in extra-curricular activities to attract women and students of color. A related effort is attempting to close the so-called “leaky pipeline” in which students lose their interest in computer science and pursue other subjects in high school or college. This literature review advances the idea that in order to treat these symptoms, the underlying cause must be addressed: the culture of computer…

Gender, Sexuality, and Perceived Differences in Mathematics Ability

Abstract In “Unpacking the Male Superiority Myth”, Leyva defines differences in sex, gender, race, and ethnicity, and how they have historically played a role in participation and achievement in mathematics. Fluid and individualistic definitions of gender, masculinity, and mathematical ability require new research on perceived differences.   Introduction Leyva reviews and reframes past literature on mathematics as a “gendered domain” (Leyva, 2017). While he references queer theory in defining gender, he does not do so in defining the expectations of masculinity.  In terms of mathematical ability, he defines only two subcategories – knowledge and participation (Leyva, 2017). I will argue that…

C. A. Bowers

In chapter 3, Bowers lays out the premise that “the ubiquity of computers in daily life now needs to be matched by an equally widespread public discussion of the cultural gains and losses associated with the mediating characteristics of computers.” The main arguments he presents are that computers (and the internet) are not objective transmitters of information but subtly modify both the information itself and the way it is communicated. While this fits in with Western ways of thinking and knowing (because it was designed, is used, and continues to be expanded by those in power), I wonder if computers…

Reflection on Kincheloe’s Critical Pedagogy Primer

In Critical Pedagogy, Joe Kincheloe puts forth the idea that education can not be separated from politics and social justice. Underlying this premise is the idea that not taking action is in itself an action. As Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King states in his Letter from a Birmingham Jail, “I have almost reached the regrettable conclusion that the Negro’s great stumbling block in the stride toward freedom is not the White Citizen’s Council-er or the Ku Klux Klanner, but the white moderate who is more devoted to “order” than to justice.” Or, put even more bluntly in recent slogans, “white…

Reflection on Freire’s Pedagogy of the Oppressed

In chapter three of Pedagogy of the Oppressed, Paulo Freire introduces the concept of culture at the personal, group, community, region, and national levels and cultural revolution as a progression of the individuals in each group coming together to understand their reality and take the steps needed to fully realize their humanity – to liberate themselves.  My question revolves around the members of the community who feel such a strong connection to the past (or some glorified mythology of the past) that they see any questioning (or “problem-posing”) as an attack on their identity. People who have been oppressed for…

What is equity and social justice in Computer Science?

Computers and computer science were not always the domain of rich, white males, but like most things that have become integrated with education and capitalism, these systems have used computer science to perpetuate themselves. As computer science gets pushed into high schools and even down into elementary schools, the curricula are increasingly looking like “college-light”. These curricula are developed by rich, white, males with their own interests and goals in mind and therefore attract other rich, white males. The current solutions offered usually involve putting posters of people of color on the walls and having women programmers come in to…