Wow – this was a module which really made me realize that I have so much to learn. This module had us reading about and learning from the AECT Code of Professional Ethics to further our understanding of just how important professional ethics are. To be honest, when I started I rather over confidently thought that I knew what it would mean. I was very wrong. Being wrong is good though – I am always harping on at my pupils that making mistakes is learning.
The role of professional ethics is both different and more important that I thought – not just because it provides a framework but because it helps to define our profession. Not something that I had really given any thought to at all. I had to read the chapter a few times to figure out what I wanted to get from it. The historical aspect of the development of AECT and the code was interesting and relevant in terms of context . However, I engaged more as the chapter moved on to talk about current thinking and the future. The rapid changes in society are mirrored by the changes in technology. They are linked in so many ways. For a profession to remain relevant and consistent, codes and guidelines are important. They have to be living and changing guidelines in order to respond to changes we cannot foresee.
I believed that ethics was all about doing the ‘right’ thing, which to a certain extent it is. What I have learned is that there are so many complex layers to this topic – there is no simple discussion to be had. The distinction made between ethics and professional ethics has made me reflect on how as an educator I can use the AECT guidelines to not only troubleshoot in my school but help to define both myself as a professional and my role in educational technology. I think that reading guidelines and making an attempt to adopt and reflect on them as part of my practice will make me a better person and contribute to the greater professional identity of Educational Technology.
I am glad we tackled this module. It made me think, made me wrong, I had to struggle. I have not written a ‘proper’ paper in many years. I’m going to bed happy though.