Professor Neil Selwyn is a Distinguished Research Professor in the Faculty of Education at Monash University in Australia (International Science Council, n.d.). It seems that almost every article on Ed Tech that we have read has at least one reference to his work. This bore further scrutiny, and not for nothing, his name is ubiquitous in educational technology. Indeed, he literally wrote the book on it in 2011, entitled Education and Technology: Key Issues and Debates (Books by Neil Selwyn, n.d.). In fact, Google Scholar demonstrates the abundance of Selwyn’s writings, that he has authored more than 200 articles, dating back to 1994, including 11 books (Books by Neil Selwyn, n.d.), (Neil Selwyn, n.d.).
So how does someone create a legacy in the field of Ed Tech to the extent that Dr. Selwyn has? I think the key to Selwyn’s 20+ year reach stems from his ongoing and evolving critical nature of the field. For instance, back in 1999, Selwyn and Dawes recognized that teachers were, in a manner, being pushed aside as computer-based models of teaching were touted as the latest and greatest evolution in education (p.290). This concern is as warranted today as it was then, with Selwyn’s 2019 book discussing robots and AI replacing teachers (see also Selwyn & Jandrić, 2020). Maintaining a steadfast voice of cool logic in the face of emotional extolling over the newest Ed Tech triumph has established Selwyn as a trusted voice in this field. Especially given that the industry side of the field would have you believe that some new startup will revolutionize educational technology, having a trusted, critical expert on learning is very valuable. I personally like that in many ways he is like a David, fighting against the giants of the Ed Tech business, yet he simultaneously evolves with the rapidly-changing field, maintaining his relevance with a kind of trademark skepticism.
Books by Neil Selwyn (n.d.). Thriftbooks. (https://www.thriftbooks.com/a/neil-selwyn/751882/)
Dawes, L., & Selwyn, N. (1999). Teaching with the dream machines: the representation of teachers and computers in information technology advertising. Journal of Information Technology for Teacher Education, 8(3), 289–304.
International Science Council (n.d.). Prof. Neil Selwyn, Retrieved Sept 19, 2021 from https://council.science/profile/prof-neil-selwyn/
Neil Selwyn (n.d.). Google Scholar. (https://scholar-google-com.ezproxy.royalroads.ca/citations?user=8bLsyZ4AAAAJ&hl=en&oi=ao)
Selwyn, N., & Jandrić, P. (2020). Postdigital living in the age of covid-19: unsettling what we see as possible. Postdigital Science and Education, 2(3), 989–1005. https://doi.org/10.1007/s42438-020-00166-9