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Why the deterministic view of EdTech is wrong: Affordance is the key

I always take a global view on EdTech, and hence read a lot about what's happening in the US and in particular in the K-12 arena. This morning it was some new guidance related to EdTech research, and the challenge that ESSA - the Every Student Succeeds Act - has laid out for companies who offer EdTech products and services (disclaimer - like mine!). The bottom line is that they've outlined four different levels of evidence that providers should be exploring to support their offerings, with the strongest evidence receiving the best funding. Makes a lot of sense, and I'm glad to see that they appreciate that evidence is not just black and white, but comes in different standards.

That said though, I still think this smacks of a deterministic approach to EdTech procurement for schools. By that I mean that this kind of view of EdTech suggests that it can have an effect on practice regardless of context, that it is independently deterministic - the EdTech will determine what hap…

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