On Wednesday, 11th March, Lord Puttnam, Digital Champion of Ireland, was in St Patrick’s College to officially launch Shaping the future – How technology can lead to educational transformation, which was edited by Dr Deirdre Butler and Margaret Leahy – both members of the Education Department and the NIDL ‘Digital Learning Research Network‘. Kevin Marshall of Microsoft was third member of the editorial team.
The twenty-first century presents challenges and opportunities in equal magnitude to policy makers for information and communications technology (ICT) use in education. In today’s world of a changing workforce, rapid advancements in technology and in-creased global competition, learning is more critical than ever. The need to have a long-term vision for education that ensures all students experience success and have the knowledge, skills, abilities and competencies to be successful in the twenty-first century was never more important.
The book charts some of the significant developments in relation to the use of ICT in schools in Ireland. It takes the format of a collection of essays that captures the views of a cross-section of people who have participated in the formulation of ICT policy and in the implementation of digital technologies in school systems in the north and south of Ireland over several decades. The topics covered are diverse, ranging from policy formulation and ICT infrastructure in schools to teacher professional learning and the design of learning environments for learning, teaching and assessment.
Speaking at the launch Lord Puttnam said “The development of creativity through digital technologies matters to our collective future, but most particularly to the future of our young people, and their prospects of securing the type of satisfying careers they really want. “Shaping the Future” reminds us that this task is both urgent and exceptionally challenging, yet it is one that’s absolutely within our grasp if we can only re-discover sufficient ambition, energy and imagination.”
Copies of the book can be purchased through The Liffey Press.