Assignment 2: Mythbusters

When technology and education meet, certain ideas can capture educators’ attention
and become the basis for real instructional practice. Of course, there is nothing wrong
with this, so long as the ideas are beneficial, accurate and evidence-based. The
problem is that this is not always the case.
By way of an example, many teachers are trained that content should be presented in
multiple ways so as to appeal to students’ differing preferences for information
acquisition. So far, so good. The problem begins when technology enables the teacher
to take this concept too far:
“Well, if more than one way of presenting information is good, then providing
information in a multimedia format with as much music, video, voiceover, text,
diagrams, animation and subtitles as possible must be fantastic!”
The teacher assumes that each student will focus on the information modality that they
prefer and, as there is something for everyone, the whole class will experience optimal
transfer. Of course, that’s not what happens. Instead, the students don’t know where to
direct their attention and the multiple simultaneous information streams are simply too
much. In a state of cognitive overload, the students learn far less than they would have
with a focused and clear video, simple reading or discussion activity.
There are many more inaccurate beliefs surrounding the use of educational technology,
such as:
a. Eventually, teachers will be replaced by technology
b. Students find online courses easier than seated classes
c. All young people are more adept at using technology so do not need training
d. “Screen time” is an outdated concept and there are no negative effects from
unregulated device use
e. Taking typed notes using a computer or tablet is more effective than taking
handwritten notes

For this assignment, your task is to write a research paper about an educational
technology myth. The objective is to select one myth from the previous list a. – e., then
produce a research-supported paper that includes the following minimum elements:
Detailed description of the myth
The probable source of the myth or reasons for its existence
What causes the continued propagation of the myth
Which parts (if any) of the myth are true and which are not
The potential impact of educators’ belief in the myth
You may research an ed tech myth that is not on the a. – e. list. To do so, you
must
first obtain approval
by emailing me with a summary of the alternative myth you wish
to cover. This is to ensure that the myth has sufficient depth to serve as the basis for a
detailed and rich research paper.
Note: A research paper uses high-quality sources to inform the reader about the topic.
The idea is to get as close to the objective truth as possible by citing studies that
provide evidence for or against stated claims. This is not an opinion piece – all
assertions must be supported by high-quality research that you have carefully
evaluated.

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