1828 – first definition of “technology”

Late 1800s – used the term audio-visual education

– developed visual resources for education

1920s – intro of movies/radio to education

– first research on effects of media/technologies on young people

1923 – founding year for the Department of Visual Instruction in the National Education Association

1933 – Sidney Pressey was first to use term educational technology

1930s – agencies formed to regulate media industries in education

1950s – AV morphed into technology education and educational technology

Late 1950s – term instructional technology replaces audiovisual communications and education

1963 – AECT defined audiovisual communications

1970s – early days of internet

1970 – definition for instructional technology to include physical science and behavioural science

– Presidential Commission on Instructional Tech made two definitions for instructional tech

1971- Hooper looked at philosophical side of ed tech

1972 – ed tech became field and not just a theory

1977 – The Definition of Ed Tech (AECT, 1977) was a 169 page book with the definition alone being 16 pages

1978 – Davies looked at processes as well as products of teaching and learning

– Hartley examined application of learning theories to instruction

Late 1970s and 1980s – educational tech courses called computer science

Mid-1990s – computer science courses renamed to information technology

1990s – WWW created

– definition for learning technology in England

1993 – Association for learning tech established in England

1994 – Carl Mitcham identifies 4 parts of technology (artifact or object, activity or process, knowledge, volition or will)

1994 – simplified the definition of ed tech

1995 – Howard Rheingold published, “The Virtual Community”

1996 – The Canadian Office of Learning Technologies (OLT) was created

– US National Science Foundation began a Collaborative Research on Learning Technologies program

1998 – The Canadian OLT defined learning technologies

2002 – UBC Office of Learning Technology started

2004 – Uden said learning tech = application of technology for the enhancement of teaching, learning and assessment

2004 – computer courses in BC renamed from IT to ICT

2007 – The Association for Learning Technology (ALT) redefined learning technology

– Andrews R. and Haythornthwaite C. published “The SAGE handbook of E-Learning Research”

Now – the term “new media” is replacing information technology


Hawkridge, D. (1981). The Telesis of educational technology. British Journal of Educational Technology, 12, 4-18. Library Portal Access.

Januszewski, A. (2001). Educational technology: The development of a concept. Englewood, CO: Libraries Unlimited.

Loh, C. S. (2007). A suitable textbook for the classroom. However… Review of the SAGE handbook of e-learning research. Educational Researcher, 36(9), 573-578.

Petrina, S. & Feng, F. (2007) New Media Primer: Cultural and New Media Studies. Vancouver, BC: Tech no-Printing Press.

Petrina, S. & Feng, F. (2008). Primer for defining and theorizing technology in education, pt. 1. Vancouver, BC: Tech no-Printing Press.

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