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Invisible success: Problems with the grand technological innovation in higher education

Whitworth, A

Abstract:
This paper investigates a ‘grand’ educational technology innovation through theoretical lenses inspired by Cervero and Wilson’s work (1994; 1998). Through taking this approach it is possible to show how ideas about the form of the innovation and perceptions of its ultimate ‘success’ or ‘failure’, varied between stakeholder groups. The project was pedagogically effective and popular with students, but was difficult to ‘sell’ to academics, had no senior management sponsor, and was unable to bring about cultural change in the institution despite the capital funding designed to do just that. Although many pedagogical lessons were learnt, and have since been applied in other learning spaces around the host campus and elsewhere, these successful disseminations of changed practice were not in accordance with the objectives of key stakeholders. Therefore, they went unconsidered when decisions were taken about the project’s sustainability: hence the notion of ‘invisible success’. The project’s ‘failure’ is only apparent when viewed from certain perspectives; nevertheless, these perspectives are those of the powerful (or in Bourdieu’s terms (1986; 1988), those possessing capital and academic power) and are the consequence of deeply-rooted structural features in HE, which include funding models, risk-averseness, and fragmented responsibilities

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Document Title: Invisible success: Problems with the grand technological innovation in higher education
Journal: Computers & Education


Document Type:Journal Article (Not Peer Reviewed)
Subject Area:Contributory Studies and Research Approaches
Country:International
Keywords:Higher Education, Teaching, Learning


File Size:202 KB
Date Added:13 October 2011


Invisible success: Problems with the grand technological innovation in higher education