The ideological appropriation of digital technology in UK education: symbolic violence and the selling and buying of the "Transformation Fallacy"

Timothy Rudd

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceeding with ISSN or ISBNChapter

Abstract

In the UK, the ‘New’ Labour Government’s ‘third way’ politics represented a clear break from the traditional ‘left’ and the symbolic appropriation of new technologies conveyed a wider modernising intent. Their aim of embedding digital technologies[1] in schools between 1997 and 2010 led to substantial investment, supported by rhetoric heralding the transformation of education, a need to develop pupils 21st Century learning skills, and based on an imprudent assumption that somehow such action would automatically assure future economic prosperity (DfEE 1997). Yet despite the significant emphasis, resourcing, growth in interest, activity, and the emergence of various bodies and organisations seeking to promote and embed technology in schools, such bold claims amounted to little more than hyperbole and rhetoric. In this chapter I critically reflect on these policies and outcomes, arguing that not only did the UK government fail to transform education, the outcome and legacy was the accentuation of broader neo-liberal frameworks and principles, through the stimulation of an educational technology marketplace, and the embedding and transmission of ideologically informed assumptions about the nature and purpose of education. [1] Over the specific period these tended to be referred to as either information technologies (IT), or information and communication technologies (ICT).
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe politics of education and technology: conflicts, controversies and connections
EditorsN. Selwyn, K. Facer
Place of PublicationBasingstoke, UK
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Pages147-168
Number of pages22
ISBN (Print)9781137031976
Publication statusPublished - 12 Sep 2013

Publication series

NameDigital Education and Learning

Bibliographical note

Timothy Rudd, The ideological appropriation of digital technology in UK education: symbolic violence and the selling and buying of the "Transformation Fallacy", 2013, Palgrave Macmillan, reproduced with permission of Palgrave Macmillan. This extract is taken from the author's original manuscript and has not been edited. The definitive, published, version of record is available here: http://www.palgrave.com/page/detail/the-politics-of-education-and-technology-neil-selwyn/?sf1=barcode&st1=9781137031976

Keywords

  • educational technology
  • politics
  • ideology
  • neo liberalism
  • new technologies
  • new labour

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    Rudd, T. (2013). The ideological appropriation of digital technology in UK education: symbolic violence and the selling and buying of the "Transformation Fallacy". In N. Selwyn, & K. Facer (Eds.), The politics of education and technology: conflicts, controversies and connections (pp. 147-168). (Digital Education and Learning). Palgrave Macmillan. http://www.palgrave.com/page/detail/the-politics-of-education-and-technology-neil-selwyn/?sf1=barcode&st1=9781137031976