On the Mediatization of Education

Theo Hug and I just gave the presentation described below at the Euro. Conference forEducational Research in Vienna. The conference SIG or network on media has been great:http://tinyurl.com/yc28e5m

The powerpoint for the presentation is available as a .pdf: http://learningspaces.org/ECER09.pdf

A draft and citation for the book chapter used as a basis for this presentation is here:

Friesen, N. & Hug, T.  (2009). The Mediatic Turn: Exploring Consequences for Media Pedagogy. In K. Lundby (Ed.). Mediatization: Concept, Changes, Consequences. New York: Peter Lang. Pp. 64-81. Online version available at: http://learningspaces.org/papers/Media_Pedagogy_&_Mediatic_Turn.pdf

Media are in many ways presumed as important factors for educational processes. This applies to media use in everyday life as well as to institutions of learning and also to various forms of the creation of knowledge scapes by knowledge workers using knowledge media. Furthermore, media education has been promoted in diverse domains of practice, and it has become an established field in many universities. Today it is mostly seen as a branch of educational sciences and less as a specific concretisation of general pedagogy or educational theory. As for its foundations, tasks and aims, the dynamics of its development have been characterized by processes of extension and differentiation. New questions and research topics have been added, many new approaches and conceptions in different paradigmatic directions are being developed, some areas having a socio-pedagogic focus, some being directed towards learning sciences or being infiltrated by teaching psychology and some – due to didactic or technology-oriented reasons – addressing the topic of “e-activities.” Unsurprisingly, terms like ‘educational media,’ ‘knowledge media,’ or ‘learning space’ are used with different meanings and often in metaphorical ways which sometimes suggest questionable forms of reification of knowledge dynamics or ontologized media. Some of the corresponding problems can be clarified on a terminological level. The mediation of knowledge, for example, can be described in the sense of changing knowledge structures as a consequence of media use or as knowledge transmission in educational terms. But what do processes and results of the mediation of knowledge entail more explicitly? How can other concepts like mediality, mediatization, or medialization contribute to a better understanding of current educational dynamics? It is noticeable that some frequently employed patterns of thought and argumentation present the relationship between reality and media reality in such a way as if the media could be added to “actual” reality or not. The media open up many new rooms of reflection, creation and action but they also provide the material for discussing the relationship between the real world or “reality” and medialised realities including their consequential problems. This calls for more reflection in media education by reverting to elements from media theory. The paper seeks to elucidate the relationship between of education, knowledge, and media on a conceptual level. It refers to relevant debates on the mediatic turn as they have been led in English and German speaking countries recently. Furthermore, some consequences for education are considered.

The contribution focuses on the importance of (1) mediatisation, medialization, and mediation as theoretical objects of inquiry and conceptual elaboration, and (2) the application of these concepts in theory of education and its relation to media education. The paper seeks to make progress in these investigations through reflecting recent debates on the mediatic turn and considering them in educational contexts.

Expected Outcomes
The contribution aims at conceptual clarifications of the key terms at stake and their relevance for media education and educational theory. As a result, programmatic options for (media) education after the mediatic turn are described. Furthermore, the contribution shows exemplary innovative options for argumentations in media education and educational theory on that basis.

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