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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Transgressing the technocratic culture of technology education: dominant and other stories of teacher, technology, curricula and teaching Bastone, Christopher


This thesis is a study and transgression of the technocratic culture of technology education. The study problematizes technocratic ideology entrenched within the socialization of technology education teachers, common sense understandings of technology, technology education curricula, and industrial/technology education teaching practices. Knowledge is gained through life-history de/construction, socially critical examination of orthodox understandings of technology, technology education curricula, and classroom research in teaching social aspects of technology. Dominant and contrasting stories are revealed that describe and challenge the technocratic culture of technology education. The culture of technology education, from one teacher's perspective, is informed by the interpretative frames of industrial/technology educators, a technocratic consciousness within society, historical practices of industrial arts, and current political forces that shape technology education curricula. The author, as a classroom teacher, comes to a critical consciousness of personal and professional saturation in technocratic ideology. The story is told of the author's dislodgement from technocratic metanarratives and the growth of a heightened social consciousness of self, technology, curricula, and teaching. Such accounts infringe upon, or transgress, the near totalizing grip of technocratic consciousness within the culture of technology education. The study concludes that there is strong evidence of ingrained technocratic orientations within technology educators, common sense understanding of technology, curricular emphasis, and teaching practice and of the necessity to challenge such dominance. Possibilities are discussed for pedagogical practices that emphasize a critical, social, and cultural intelligence, rather than just a technical intelligence, in technology. While a technocratic culture for technology education may contribute to the goals of a technocracy, it is detrimental to the growth of an informed and critical democratic citizenry.

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