TPACK in a textbook!

Just found out from Kathryn Dirkin that a prominent textbook of Educational Technology now features the TPACK framework. The book is titled “Integrating Educational Technology into Teaching” [link to Amazon.com] and is authored by Margaret D. Roblyer and Aaron H Doering. This is not an endorsement of the book (which I haven’t yet seen) though I know that Margaret has been a bestselling author and active in educational technology for many years (this is the fifth edition of the book) and I do know Aaron, having met him most recently at the SITE conference.

According to Amazon.com the back cover of the book states the following:

The only book on the market to offer specific content area chapters, the fifth edition introduces the Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge (TPACK) framework in Chapter 2 and incorporates it within these content-specific chapters to encourage teachers to reflect on the three domains to develop the knowledge and skills to overcome roadblocks to integration.

This is of course great news… but there is a flip side to this as well. The fact that an idea ends up in a textbook means not just that it has been accepted by the field but also that the idea is no longer considered controversial or worthy of debate. A feeling of mustiness comes in the air… A gain in authority goes hand in hand with a rise in sterility and a loss of flexibility. Ideas in textbooks seem to somehow end up as being bullet points, lacking the suppleness and evocative richness of the original ideas. Becoming part of the establishment has its risks.

Maybe it is time for Matt Koehler and me to begin a rebellion against narrow, ivory-tower, academic frameworks that try to contain the complexity of educational technology integration in three overlapping circles :-)

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