Graduate Studies in Educational Informatics

by Robbie McClintock

The introductory statement about the programs in Communication, Computing, and Technology in Education, 1999.

Length: 700 words

Communication, Computing, and Technology in Education provides a cluster of degree programs for students who seek to develop leadership capacities in the uses of information and communication technologies in education. It serves students, staff, and faculty members who share a commitment as educators to use digital technologies to improve education at all levels. Work through CCTE should move simultaneously towards two poles of understanding and practice -- towards comprehending the cultural and historical implications of new technologies for education and life, and towards purposefully selecting and shaping the uses of new media in educational work at all levels.

CCTE's programs deal with the many ways in which material culture changes and shapes educational practice at all its levels. Here are some assumptions about the long-run effects that innovations in information and communications technologies may be having on education and culture. Work through CCTE should lead faculty and students to study, criticize, develop, and extend propositions such as these.

Communication, Computing, and Technology in Education aims to prepare students to deal with both the present and future implications of new media, and to play a constructive role in shaping the educational response to innovations in information and communications technologies. Although these concerns are common to its three programs, each has distinctive nuances with respect to methods and purpose:

Across the three programs, students and faculty members all engage in research, development, theory, and application. All three programs put a high priority on group work, on field work and internships, and on planning, implementing, and completing innovative projects. Schools, computer companies, businesses, and other agencies are normally partners in projects, providing environments, materials, personnel, or opportunities for carrying them out. The Institute for Learning Technologies (www.ilt.columbia.edu), the Center for Technology and School Change (www.tc.columbia.edu/~academic/ctsc/), and the Columbia Center for New Media Teaching and Learning (www.ccnmtl.columbia.edu) work closely with CCTE faculty members and students and provide a wide range of internship and fieldwork opportunities.