Historical Perspective of Technoethics in Education

Historical Perspective of Technoethics in Education

J. José Cortez (Syracuse University, USA)
Copyright: © 2009 |Pages: 17
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-022-6.ch042
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Fundamental democratic principles and values that guide our social relationships have been important concerns in the evolution of this nation’s system of formal public schooling. With its increased use and reliance on advanced technologies, education faces some fundamental challenges that have potentially far-reaching implications for educational institutions, professional teaching strategies and practices, and student learning. This chapter explores the topic of technoethics as an applied field of ethics and research, viewed from a historical perspective of education in the United States and its embrace of technology. The underlying intent is to inform the readers’ understanding of the basic concepts of common good, citizenship, and democratic values that are the underlying precepts associated with the history of public schooling in the United States. Additionally, the author discusses the increasingly critical need for educators to address the social and ethical dilemmas associated with new technological developments and their application to educational settings.
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The world of technology has undergone transformations that have profound implications for the moral and ethical, as well as the legal and professional, dimensions of educational practice as well as for society in general. Just as the invention of the automobile, printing press, telescope, and space exploration had led to revolutionary changes in culture and societal values that were not predicted at the time of their discovery and initial use—technology has had similar impacts upon society. Milson (2001) states, technology—defined, in a broad sense, as tools to accomplish objectives—can also “incorporate the interrelationship of the tool with life, society, and the environment. Arguably, technology has the ability to impact and transform our conception of key democratic values, such as liberty, equality, and justice. The emergence of telecommunications, for example, is causing us to reconceptualize liberty as it relates to freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, and privacy” (p. 88).

Are printed and online pornography unethical, or are they expressions of free speech and artist expression? Are the attempts of the Homeland Security agency in the United States to monitor telecommunications transmission, Internet Web site and e-mail, and long-distance phone calls justified in the name of national security, or are these measures an affront to freedom of speech and privacy? What are the implications of parental controls of cable television in the home and Internet access restrictions at public libraries? What threats to intellectual property rights does the Internet pose? These are but several of the many ethical issues that confront society today and its embrace of technology. Likewise, they are important ethical concerns that impact educational institutions, processes, and professional practices.

Ethics Defined

Emmans (2000) defines ethics as a set of moral principles or values, built upon existing mores, and result from a society’s ideas and actions. They do not precede the society and the situation in which it finds itself; rather, they are a reaction to the situation, ever changing, and reflect the current state of affairs of the society. Ethics differ from morals in that ethics is a “philosophical reflection on moral beliefs and practices…a conscious stepping back and reflecting on morality” (Hinman, 1984). Additionally, Muffoletto (2003) asserts, “ethics is based upon values grounded on some notions of and for the common good, or what is perceived as good and right (the truth) for individual and community actions” (p. 62).



Increasingly, education has become a critical area in society with a growing need to address moral and ethical dilemmas associated with new technological developments: Its manifold uses and reliance on advanced technologies creates fundamental challenges that have potentially far-reaching implications for educational institutions, professional teaching strategies and practices, student learning; and, research methods and processes. However, this is not to say that education as a field, and educational technology as a discipline, have not addressed ethical issues throughout their history in the United States; quite the contrary. Ethics and morals have nearly always been central to education’s history, reform movements, and philosophical thought: Fundamental democratic principles and values that guide our social relationships have been important concerns in the evolution of this nation’s system of formal public schooling.

This chapter explores the topic of educational technoethics as an applied field of ethics and research, viewed from the historical and philosophical perspectives of education in the United States. This view of education is important: History opens the mind to the world around us; and, through it we can better understand the events, issues, and crises in today’s social world.

History provides explanations of how our present society has evolved and why it has adopted certain institutions, roles, practices, and ideologies. From this history, we can gain a sense of perspective and a realization of the complexities and impacts brought about by social and technological changes:

Key Terms in this Chapter

Ethics: A set of moral principles or values, built upon existing mores, and result from a society’s ideas and actions. They do not precede the society and the situation in which it finds itself; rather, they are a reaction to the situation, ever changing, and reflect the current state of affairs of the society. Ethics is based upon values grounded on some notions of and for the common good, or what is perceived as good and right (the truth) for individual and community action.

Daguerreotype Process: Developed by Louis-Jacques-Mande Daguerree in France, this is a photographic process using the camera obscura and unfixed photographic images to obtain the most naturalistic rendering of contour and tone possible

Visual Instruction: A movement that developed from the mainstream of instructional technology during the period of 1918-1924. It was during this early period in the history of educational technology that educators were beginning to use filmstrips, motion pictures, audio recording, and radio in educational settings. As a movement, has its roots in the efforts of reformist educators and theorists, who revolted against formalism and verbalism in educational practice during the nineteenth and early twentieth century and sought to emphasis the role of the senses in learning.

Educational Apparatuses: A term describing such 18 th and 19 th century teaching aids such as timepieces, maps and globes, slates and blackboards, textbooks, and the abacus or numeral frames. These visual apparatuses or aids, in terms of their first role in elementary and secondary schools, also included field trips to museums—serving as instructional aids for teachers. Such aids included museum exhibits, charts, photographs, illustrations, lantern slides, and maps.

Educational Technoethics: An applied field of ethics and research focusing on the special problems and dilemmas in society posed by science and technology.

Educational Technology: For purposes of this book chapter, this term is defined, in a broad sense, as tools to accomplish objectives and the interrelationship of the tools with life, society, and the environment. Educational technology is a combination of the processes and tools involved in addressing educational needs and problems, with an emphasis on applying the most current tools: computers and their related technologies. The modern tools of this field are simply the latest developments in a field that is as old as education itself.

Complete Chapter List

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Editorial Advisory Board
Table of Contents
Rocci Luppicini, Rebecca Adell
Rocci Luppicini, Rebecca Adell
Chapter 1
Rocci Luppicini
Over the last 30 years, an amassing body of work has focused on ethical dimensions of technology in a variety of contexts impacting society. This... Sample PDF
The Emerging Field of Technoethics
Chapter 2
Marc J. de Vries
In this chapter it is argued that a multidisciplinary approach to technoethics is necessary to do justice to the complexity of technology.... Sample PDF
A Multi-Disciplinary Approach to Technoethics
Chapter 3
Daniela Cerqui, Kevin Warwick
Common ethical issues related to technology are formulated in terms of impact. With an anthropological approach, every technological device is... Sample PDF
Technoethics: An Anthropological Approach
Chapter 4
Michael S. Billinger
Despite the fact that analyses of biological populations within species have become increasing sophisticated in recent years, the language used to... Sample PDF
A Technoethical Approach to the Race Problem in Anthropology
Chapter 5
Andy Miah
This chapter outlines a technoethics for sport by addressing the relationship between sport ethics and bioethics. The purpose of this chapter is to... Sample PDF
The Ethics of Human Enhancement in Sport
Chapter 6
Darryl Macer
This chapter examines some of the cultural variation in the ethical factors associated with the use of science and technology. The issues discussed... Sample PDF
Education of Ethics of Science and Technology Across Cultures
Chapter 7
Seppo Visala
Within the organisational development people’s arguments rise from their personal or group interests, which in turn are based on the systemic... Sample PDF
Planning, Interests, and Argumentation
Chapter 8
Alireza Bagheri
This chapter elaborates on some of the existing concerns and ethical issues that may arise when biomedical research protocols are proposed or funded... Sample PDF
Ethics Review on Externally- Sponsored Research in Developing Countries
Chapter 9
Gerrhard Fortwengel
At the beginning of this section the authors provide a definition of biomedical research and an interpretation of the meaning of ethics and social... Sample PDF
Social and Ethical Aspects of Biomedical Research
Chapter 10
Stefano Fait
In assessing the ethical implications of genomics and biotechnology, it is important to acknowledge that science, technology, and bioethics do not... Sample PDF
Ethical Aspects of Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology
Chapter 11
Timothy F. Murphy
Military researchers are working to exploit advances in nanoscale research for military uniforms, medical diagnosis and treatment, enhanced soldier... Sample PDF
Nanoscale Research, Ethics, and the Military
Chapter 12
Keith Bauer
This chapter reviews key debates about the meaning of telehealth and also considers how new and emerging systems in telehealth work to protect... Sample PDF
Healthcare Ethics in the Information Age
Chapter 13
Matthew Charlesworth, David Sewry
The development of cybernetics and digital computers prompted the need for a greater exploration of computer ethics. Information ethics, as... Sample PDF
Ethical Theories and Computer Ethics
Chapter 14
John P. Sullins
This chapter will argue that artificial agents created or synthesized by technologies such as artificial life (ALife), artificial intelligence (AI)... Sample PDF
Artificial Moral Agency in Technoethics
Chapter 15
Pilar Alejandra Cortés Pascual
‘What positive and negative aspects are perceived of Information and Communications Technologies (ICT)?’ and ‘What dilemmas arise regarding these... Sample PDF
Ethical Controversy over Information and Communication Technology
Chapter 16
Martin Ryder
This chapter provides a brief summary of the technical and social hurdles that define the so-called ‘digital divide’ and it considers the celebrated... Sample PDF
The Cyborg and the Noble Savage: Ethics in the War on Information Poverty
Chapter 17
Mike Ribble
In todays changing global society, digital technology users need to be prepared to interact and work with users from around the world. Digital... Sample PDF
Becoming a Digital Citizen in a Technological World
Chapter 18
Deb Gearhart
Are we developing a (global) society where our youth think it is ok to copy and paste whatever they see on the Internet and turn it in for homework;... Sample PDF
Technoethics in Education for the Twenty-First Century
Chapter 19
May Thorseth
The purpose of this chapter is to discuss important ethical aspects of online communication of global scope. We focus particularly on procedural... Sample PDF
The Ethics of Global Communication Online
Chapter 20
Cameron Norman, Adrian Guta, Sarah Flicker
New information technologies are creating virtual spaces that allow youth to network and express themselves with unprecedented freedom and... Sample PDF
Engaging Youth in Health Promotion Using Multimedia Technologies: Reflecting on 10 Years of TeenNet Research Ethics and Practice
Chapter 21
Samantha Mei-che Pang
In Hong Kong, end-of-life practice ideally adheres to values that include respect for the patient’s selfdetermination and an understanding shared by... Sample PDF
Ethical Challenges of Engaging Chinese in End-of-Life Talk
Chapter 22
Busi Nkala
An estimated 39.5 million people are living with HIV worldwide. There were 4.3 million new infections in 2006 with 2.8 million (65%) of these... Sample PDF
Community Education in New HIV Prevention Technologies Research
Chapter 23
Makoto Nakada, Rafael Capurro
In this article we give an overview of the range and characteristics of intercultural information ethics (IIE) focusing on the public/private debate... Sample PDF
The Public / Private Debate: A Contribution to Intercultural Information Ethics
Chapter 24
Arsalan Butt
Consumer software piracy is widespread in many parts of the world. P2P based websites have made it easier to access pirated software, which has... Sample PDF
Ethical, Cultural and Socio- Economic Factors of Software Piracy Determinants in a Developing Country: Comparative Analysis of Pakistani and Canadian University Students
Chapter 25
A. Anderson, S. Allan, A. Petersen, C. Wilkinson
Recent evidence on genetically modified crops, cloning and stem cell research suggests that the news media play a significant role in shaping wider... Sample PDF
Nanoethics: The Role of News Media in Shaping Debate
Chapter 26
Russell W. Robbins, Kenneth R. Fleischmann, William A. Wallace
This chapter explains and integrates new approaches to teaching computing and information ethics (CIE) and researching CIE education. We first... Sample PDF
Computing and Information Ethics Education Research
Chapter 27
Jennifer Candor
The allocation of resources for assistive technology does not have to result in a gap between general and special education. This case study... Sample PDF
The Ethical Dilemma over Money in Special Education
Chapter 28
Pilar Alejandra Cortés Pascual
Educational orientation should be set within a specific socio-historical context, which is nowadays characterized by the Society of Information.... Sample PDF
Educational Technoethics Applied to Career Guidance
Chapter 29
A.K. Haghi
In this book chapter, the authors summarize their retrospections as an engineering educator for more than 20 years. Consideration is given to a... Sample PDF
The Scholarship of Teaching Engineering: Some Fundamental Issues
Chapter 30
Antoinette Rouvroy
The aim of the present chapter is to elucidate the paradoxical position of the individual legal subject in the context of human genetics. It first... Sample PDF
Which Rights for Which Subjects? Genetic Confidentiality and Privacy in the Post-Genomic Era
Chapter 31
Eduardo A. Rueda
This chapter focuses on showing legitimate ways for coping with uncertainties within the informed consent process of predictive genetic testing. It... Sample PDF
Predictive Genetic Testing,Uncertainty, and Informed Consent
Chapter 32
Soraj Hongladarom
The chapter argues that there is a way to justify privacy without relying on the metaphysical assumption of an independently existing self or... Sample PDF
Privacy, Contingency, Identity, and the Group
Chapter 33
Y. Ibrahim
This chapter situates the current debates on pornography in the virtual realm and its ethical and legal implications for users and researchers. It... Sample PDF
The Ethics of Gazing: The Politics of Online Pornography
Chapter 34
Neil C. Rowe
We examine the main ethical issues concerning deception in cyberspace. We first discuss the concept of deception and survey ethical theories... Sample PDF
The Ethics of Deception in Cyberspace
Chapter 35
Cyber Identity Theft  (pages 542-557)
Lynne D. Roberts
Information and communication technologies (ICTs) provide substantial benefits to governments, organizations and individuals through providing low... Sample PDF
Cyber Identity Theft
Chapter 36
A. Pablo Iannone
This chapter asks: What is information overload? At what levels of existence does it occur? Are there any features common to information overload at... Sample PDF
Walking the Information Overload Tightrope
Chapter 37
Cyber-Victimization  (pages 575-592)
Lynne D. Roberts
Information and communication technologies (ICTs); while providing a range of benefits to individuals, organisations and governments; also provide... Sample PDF
Chapter 38
Spyware  (pages 593-608)
Mathias Klang
It is well known that technology can be use as to effectively monitor the behavior of crows and individuals and in many cases this knowledge may b... Sample PDF
Chapter 39
D. Gareth Jones
The advent of in vitro fertilization (IVF) marked a watershed in the scientific understanding of the human embryo. This, in turn, led to a... Sample PDF
In Vitro Fertilization and the Embryonic Revolution
Chapter 40
Joyce Yi- Hui Lee
In this chapter we argue that even though conflict has been explored at an intra-organizational level, its effect and role at an... Sample PDF
Inter-Organizational Conflicts in Virtual Alliances
Chapter 41
Andreas Matthias
Creation of autonomously acting, learning artifacts has reached a point where humans cannot any more be justly held responsible for the actions of... Sample PDF
From Coder to Creator: Responsibility Issues in Intelligent Artifact Design
Chapter 42
J. José Cortez
Fundamental democratic principles and values that guide our social relationships have been important concerns in the evolution of this nation’s... Sample PDF
Historical Perspective of Technoethics in Education
Chapter 43
Heidi L. Schnackenberg
On the cutting edge of current technologies are portable media, where users can download information and take it with them to digest it anytime... Sample PDF
Podcasting and Vodcasting in Education and Training
Chapter 44
Technoethics in Schools  (pages 680-699)
Darren Pullen
School students are used to digital technology-they blog, create movies for public viewing on the web, create and download music and use instant... Sample PDF
Technoethics in Schools
Chapter 45
Charles R Crowell
This chapter discusses the ways in which moral psychology can inform information ethics. A “Four Component Model” of moral behavior is described... Sample PDF
Moral Psychology and Information Ethics: Psychological Distance and the Components of Moral Behavior in a Digital World
Chapter 46
José-Rodrigo Córdoba
Current developments in information systems (IS) evaluation emphasise stakeholder participation in order to ensure adequate and beneficial IS... Sample PDF
A Critical Systems View of Power-Ethics Interactions in Information Systems Evaluation
Chapter 47
Joan D. McMahon
If you were to survey course syllabi on your campus, you would probably find the standard syllabi to include: • Course title and number •... Sample PDF
Ethical Issues in Web-Based Learning
Chapter 48
Barbara Paterson
Computer ethicists foresee that as information and communication technology (ICT) increasingly pervades more and more aspects of life, ethical... Sample PDF
We Cannot Eat Data: The Need for Computer Ethics to Address the Cultural and Ecological Impacts of Computing
Chapter 49
Bernd Carsten Stahl, Simon Rogerson
The ever-changing face of ICT can render its deployment rather problematic in sensitive areas of applications, such as healthcare. The ethical... Sample PDF
Current and Future State of ICT Deployment and Utilization in Healthcare: An Analysis of Cross-Cultural Ethical Issues
Chapter 50
Sue Conger
With each new technology, new ethical issues emerge that threaten both individual and household privacy. This chapter investigates issues relating... Sample PDF
Emerging Technologies, Emerging Privacy Issues
Chapter 51
Robert N. Barger
This chapter discusses the ethics of a proof-of-concept demonstration of “parasitic computing.” A “parasite” computer attempts to solve a complex... Sample PDF
Ethics of "Parasitic Computing": Fair Use or Abuse of TCP/IP Over the Internet?
Chapter 52
Cecilia Andrews
“Counter-terrorism refers to the practices, tactics and strategies that governments, militaries and other groups adopt in order to fight terrorism.”... Sample PDF
Simulating Complexity-Based Ethics for Crucial Decision Making in Counter Terrorism
Chapter 53
Gundars Kaupins
This article summarizes the legal and ethical implications associated with employee location monitoring. It states that few international laws and... Sample PDF
Legal and Ethical Implications of Employee Location Monitoring
Chapter 54
Fjodor Ruzic
In today’s dynamic e-business environment where fast time to market is imperative, where information and telecommunications technology is costly and... Sample PDF
New Ethics for E-Business Offshore Outsourcing
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