Reflection on Weller: 1994-2001

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After completing the assigned reading from Weller (2020) and learning more about the educational technology (ed tech) field, I was surprised to learn details of the challenges that early technologies faced when being implemented such as the lack of “buy in” from students and faculty, or the additional tech and support the technology needed.  It led me to reflect back on Roger’s diffusion of innovation theory, to help explain why some of these technologies may not have been easily adopted while keeping in mind the notion Weller (2020) pointed out that ed tech is a fast changing field and has led to the mindset that you need to change with it or risk being left behind.   

I was also surprised to learn that as web based learning gained popularity, people began to look for different models of teaching because of the new challenges which arose (Weller, 2020, p.27).  This point stands out because it seems odd to me that questions were not asked and addressed prior to the implementation of the technology? Wouldn’t there have been a plan which included teaching model options? Was technology implemented with the hopes of bringing new solutions which ultimately introduced a new set of problems which may or may not have been predicted? In my work field, decisions are to be evidence based even when new products/innovations come out.  It is in my nature to ask for evidence to support or back up its claims.  I recognise that at the time, institutions were keeping up with the changes and that there was little to no research on web based learning at the time but I wonder what does the research show now? I look forward to continuing learning more about the histories of ed tech and discovering what we can learn from those histories.


Weller, M. (2020). 25 Years of Ed Tech. Athabasca University Press.

4 thoughts on “Reflection on Weller: 1994-2001”

  1. I found it interesting that you had questions on the questions that were not addressed prior to the implementation of the technology as the Web based learning gained its momentum. I just wonder if it is because scholars were resisting the initial online learning that perhaps, these questions were not even on their radar. In your professional field, what are some of the questions you are asking yourself to get the evidence you need? I also would be interested in understanding what is the research shows now that we are constant users of online learning. Looking forward to connect further!

    1. Hi Stephanie,
      I suspect that these technologies had so much momentum that as Weller mentioned no one wanted to be left behind; FOMO,perhaps? No doubt that the technologies brought advantages but I also found it interesting that as Weller stated in some cases students were not enthusiastic about the new technology. I think that there are so many components/pieces to consider when bringing in big changes and perhaps they just were not on the radar because of the momentum. Agree with your point about connecting further. Thanks.

  2. Hi Gail,
    reading the first chapters of the book also made me think about the Diffusion of Innovation Theory that we both studied and presented in the previous course. How some early adopters jump in the bandwagon of change right away and how others decide to wait and become laggards of the same process. I do think that it is very difficult to get all the expected answers and evidence before the implementation of any new technology, to some degree I think that is the beauty of new technologies, to explore the unexplored, what do you think?

    1. Hi Luis,
      Thank you for your comment. Great point about new technologies and the exploration/discovery phase that goes along with it. I believe that due to my training and education background, I will always want to see the supporting evidence before making changes to things. However, I believe that there can be advantages to throwing out a “rule book” or process guide and just having fun exploring it as you never know what you may learn.

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