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Authors:Matt McLain: Liverpool John Moores University, Liverpool, UK
Publication title:The importance of technological activity and designing and making activity, a historical perspective
Conference:PATT 26 Conference, Technology Education in the 21st Century, Stockholm, Sweden, 26-30 June, 2012
Publication type: Abstract and Fulltext
Issue:073
Article No.:039
Abstract:Whilst tool use is by no means an exclusive human trait, the “ability to deliberately manipulate” is central to our development, and it is our ability to “create complex artefacts” (Wolpert, 2003) that sets us apart. Recent archaeological and neuroscience advances have suggested that the activity of designing and making of tools, such as the handaxe, played a crucial role in the development of language. This paper will argue that the technological mindset is a preeminent paradigm in human development.

The paper will work within an interpretive and constructivist paradigm. The standpoint of the author is that of a technologist and literature is used to build and argument for the historic relevance of technological achievement, the trustworthiness of the research will be addressed through critical and reflective review of literature. The conclusion ends with polemic and rhetorical questions, based on the discussion, aimed a generating further debate both within the subject and the wider educational communities.

In the context of curriculum change in the English education system, the aim of this paper is to re-examine the role of designing and making activity and technology education. The findings will be literature from contemporary neuroscience, and revisit the original nature of design and technology and current challenges (Ofsted, 2011), highlighting the historical and social importance of the designing and making activity.

A central assertion of this paper is that core subjects, such as science, in the contemporary English curriculum owe their origins to technological innovation, in terms of solving human needs through design and making. As such, they argue for the case for continued inclusion within a broad curriculum, in whatever form it may take, from a cultural rather than purely a technical or economic perspective.

Language:English
Keywords:Technology, designing, making, design and technology, tool use, neuroscience, cultural psychology, constructivism, socio-technological
Year:2012
No. of pages:11
Pages:330-340
ISBN:978-91-7519-849-1
Series:Linköping Electronic Conference Proceedings
ISSN (print):1650-3686
ISSN (online):1650-3740
File:http://www.ep.liu.se/ecp/073/039/ecp12073039.pdf
Available:2012-06-18
Publisher:Linköping University Electronic Press, Linköpings universitet

REFERENCE TO THIS PAGE
Matt McLain (2012). The importance of technological activity and designing and making activity, a historical perspective, PATT 26 Conference, Technology Education in the 21st Century, Stockholm, Sweden, 26-30 June, 2012 http://www.ep.liu.se/ecp_article/index.en.aspx?issue=073;article=039 (accessed 8/27/2014)