Thinking must be practiced

“We need to make a break with the past; we need to forget in order to get on with the serious endeavor of philosophizing.”

I have not taken a “formal” philosophy course.  I have been exposed to philosophy, and the Bernstein essay reminds me of a familiar frustration.   Each time I read this essay, a different point or thought stands out for deeper study or thought. The styles of philosophy and the individuals with ideas about these styles are detailed and many are unfamiliar. The essay focuses on the “gap” or the battle of philosophy; the history of philosophy and the future of philosophy.  Some words I looked up when reading Bernstein are:

Emotivism-judgment as expression



Hermeneutics-study of interpretations

“Philosophy becomes thin and loses identify when it forgets the past.” 

Bernstein, R. J. (1991). The new constellation. USA: MIT Press.

The central theme of the Habermas reading stems from the statement of possible mutual understanding. This reading was difficult, but I relate to the basic idea of communicating with the end result being mutual understanding.  This is the goal.  Is it easier to attain a sense of mutual understanding with face-to-face verbal communication? Text messaging, email, chat, and other forms of communication remove the sensory experience, which could sever the communication experience.  Or, as we practice these types of communication, does mutual understanding become easier?

Sensory experience-observing

Communicative experience-understanding

Observation is directed toward things and understanding is directed toward the meaning. 

Habermas, J. (1998). On the pragmatics of communication. USA: MIT Press.

The historical development of educational technology originates much earlier than I thought.  The period of consolidation in the early 70s is the point “educational technology” became a recognized term and occupation.   In the 1980s it was thought that media did not affect learning. Some of the major contributors of educational technology include the development of distance education, the growth of supported self-study, and the development of technological support for people with disabilities.  The term “flexible learning” is a new term to me and combines the advantages of resource-based learning with action planning.  Around 1993 it was thought the process of change would remain gradual.  It would be interesting to see an update on the last 20 years in a continuation of this article.

Eraut, M. (n.d.).  Educational technology: Conceptual frameworks and historical development. 1882-1899.

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