«We’re not saying ICTs are good or bad, but that We need to investigate them»

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On Wednesday, 18 February 2015, the first session in the “Edu_aldia" cycle of continuing education lectures was held at the UIC’s Faculty of Education. The philologist, journalist and communications consultant Domingo Malmierca spoke about the use and abuse of new technologies in the field of education.

«We’re not saying ICTs are good or bad, but that We need to investigate them»

‘Close your eyes’, a teacher said to one of the children in his class. ‘Close your eyes and listen to “El Tango de Roxanne” from Moulin Rouge. Close your eyes and focus on the violins. Only on the violins’… –‘Wow!’ –said the child. ‘I’d never noticed!’ –‘Exactly. Did you realize what I asked you to do? I asked you to close your eyes and not be distracted by anything else’, the teacher replied”.

Malmierca told this story to illustrate the pros and cons of new technologies. He went on to say: “We receive so much input every day and it distracts us from what’s really important. Digital tools have helped us a great deal in terms of organization, but that means we put less effort into what we do and we find it hard to pay attention”.

The guest lecturer at this first session in the “Edu_aldia” cycle of lectures, then went on to talk about the need to analyse technologies in the classroom. “We’re not saying ICTs are good or bad, but we need to investigate them. It’s an urgent issue and public and private organizations should invest money in this area and allow ICTs to be studied”, he argued. “Although they’re tools that are here to stay, we still need to gain a good understanding of them. They’re useful, but have we introduced them into education too early?"

To answer this question, Malmierca suggested that we go back to basics. “Parents should have to give their permission and should be told that their children will be used as guinea pigs. Most of all, I don’t think it’s a question of standards or parental control, but of values and education”, he concluded.