Hubble's Expanding Universe: A Model for Technology Infused Adult Learning

Hubble's Expanding Universe: A Model for Technology Infused Adult Learning

Judith Parker (Teachers College/Columbia University, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-5872-1.ch011
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Until Edwin Hubble's discoveries in 1924, astronomers thought that our Milky Way galaxy was the entire universe. Hubble provided a model of a larger universe beyond our galaxy and an expanding universe. Since then, the Hubble telescope has allowed us to view galaxies farther and farther away and introduce ideas beyond our comprehension nearly a century ago. This seems an appropriate model for the expanding universe of learning that is provided by technology. Technology has provided us with an expanding view of our personal and collective adult learning universe. It has provided expanded access to information and increased opportunities for communication. This chapter explores how our learning communities can span our neighborhood, field of interest, and the globe.
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While astronomy and education may initially seem like two unrelated disciplines, this chapter will use a model from physics/astronomy to propose a more accurate model for the ever expanding universe of technology infused learning. For decades, this has been described by noting changes introduced by technology. But the experience is more than that. The effect of technology is not changing but expanding possibilities and opportunities in the realm of pedagogy and andragogy and in curriculum and program development in those areas. This chapter will focus on andragogy.

This chapter has two clear objectives: The first objective is to provide a view of technology in education through a different lens. This lens shows technology as infused into education, not just added on. The second objective is to develop a new model for andragogy by exploring parallels between the impact of Hubble’s discoveries on astronomers accepted view of the universe and the impact of technology on educators’ traditional view of curriculum and program development.

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