ICT, education and impact learning in the social sciences

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Recent developments in the field of new technology have revolutionised the ways in which knowledge transfer can occur in the social sciences. This has created both problems and opportunities. On the one hand, it has become much easier to transmit information through the use of new technology. On the other hand, there is a problem of information overload. One English head teacher recently weighed what he had been sent by the Department for Education in a month and it came to 38 kilos, more than the weight of most of his pupils (Times Educational Supplement 27 June 2003). Much of this information is simply binned or ignored. Moreover, even information which is ‘actioned’ quickly disappears from the consciousness of recipients. As Fontana (1993) notes, ‘We each of us receive a constant and varied stream of experiences throughout our waking moments, each one of which can potentially give rise to learning, yet most of which apparently vanish without trace from our mental lives.’ The paper examines some of the misconceptions and mistaken assumptions which have been made with regard to the use of new technology for knowledge transfer in the social sciences, with particular reference to the field of education, and some ways of using new technology which have been shown to lead to effective knowledge transfer and ‘impact’ learning. The findings have implications for both research and teaching in education and other social sciences.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23-30
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 16 Nov 2007


  • Education
  • ICT
  • Impact Learning
  • Knowledge Transfer
  • New Technology

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