"Responding to the advent of the information society" has been one of the pillars of educational policy in Japan since the 1980s. In the debate over academic competences that has unfolded since the late 1990s, neither of the two opposing camps seek to define these competences in terms of knowledge as a representation of reality; instead they both agree in defining it in terms of the ability to effectively process information. Suppositions concerning "the information society" have become factors implicitly shaping current educational discourse; one might even say that an "antirepresentationalism" congruent with these suppositions has now become a common tenet of contemporary educational theory. The later philosophy of Ludwig Wittgenstein is a major locus classicus of antirepresentationalism, and in terms of pedagogy, has been interpreted in line with the tendency of contemporary educational theory to privilege "ability." This paper will attempt a different interpretation of the later Wittgenstein, as a philosophy that in fact undermines the very foundations of such educational theories. Contemporary educational theory attempts to magically bridge the difficulties involved in teaching by employing the philosophical construct of an "ability" posited as residing in the mind of the child. In contrast, Wittgenstein, through his uncompromising commitment to an anti-representational stance, on the one hand, exposes the uncertainty of the act of teaching, and on the other, deconstructs the notion of "ability" as a state of the mind. As a result, education appears to be an extremely fragile enterprise. We may surmise that Wittgenstein directly encountered this fragility during his tenure as an elementary-school teacher. However, in Philosophical Investigations he hints at the potential for a realistic, as opposed to idealistic, way of bridging over the fragility of education. This potential exists in the mechanism of the media comprising the educational process. It is in the medial structure of "example"-the use of example to express that which is not comprehended in terms of what is-that the thread of this potential is to be grasped.
The purpose of this article is to show the tasks and problems of educational research in the information age. For this, he shows his discussions on education and technology through his qualitative researches on information technology uses in education. Through the discussion, he asserts the importance of observational and theoretical approach in educational settings for future educational research. From this article, the author tries to examine the meaning and significance of information technologies i.e. personal computers and the internet in education, ultimately aiming at an examination on technologies in education. He then tries to understand what is the relationship between information technologies and humankind, how it appears in what phenomena, how we can confirm the appearance, and what kind of methodologies through which we theorize them and develop the discussions on technologies in education. He especially tries to accomplish it based on Martin Heidegger's work on the theory of technology "The Question Concerning Technology". He first overviews the educational policies related to coping with the information age. He briefly describes how Course of Study of Japan led the information-oriented education in Japanese schools. He then introduces both relatively positive and negative writings on the information age and information oriented society, and allows the readers to understand that the information society has various aspects. These opinions and outlooks are based only on understandings of the characteristics and nature of information technology. He then asserts the necessity to examine information technologies in education within a comprehensive context of ontological examination of technology itself. The author then examines the phenomenological and ontological meaning and significance of technology citing phrases from Martine Heidegger's "The Question Concerning Technology". He emphasizes the importance of Heidegger's idea that not only nature but also humankind is to be transformed by technologies. Then he also amplifies Heidegger's understanding on modern technologies on information technologies. He also introduces Heidegger's idea on danger and saving power contained technology itself citing "But where danger is, grows the saving power also." which was cited by the philosopher from Friedrich Hoelderin's poetry. He then describes his phenomenologist qualitative researches on technology uses in education. He briefly describes qualitative research methodologies. He goes on to introduce a topic of the students' encounter with unlearned Kanjis on the internet that are quite often observed during the Integrated Learning Time. He discusses the fact that Japanese curricular and teaching-learning culture are profoundly and unconsciously formed by modern technologies especially by printing technologies through the analyses of the topic. But he also shows a case of one student's solution to the problem using a Japanese dictionary installed in her PC. He regards it as liberation from such constraint utilizing information technology. He also discusses about invisible power structures between teachers and students that have been formed by modern technology's restrictions that mostly consists of printing and documentation technologies. He asserts the importance of deconstruction of such structures considering latent impacts by modern technologies in terms of expected change of professional development of teachers. He then discusses the negative aspects of human development through common daily uses of information technologies in the information age. But, at the same time, he argues about possibilities and the cases of liberation of humankind through saving power of information technology, i.e. Internet. Finally, he notes future tasks for the research and the researcher.
The aim of this paper is to examine the impact of IT on a higher education system using e-Learning and globalization as key words: 1) the relationship between the Internet and globalization, 2) globalization of e-Learning in higher education promoted by market mechanism, 3) the reactions of nation states to globalization of e-Learning, and 4) the relationship between some intrinsic educational issues and globalization of e-Learning. The Internet has come into wide use since the 1990's. It offers a technological base for globalization and specifically contributes to the development of the knowledge industry. It becomes important to develop knowledgeable workers resulting in higher education being regarded as important for this society. IT promotes globalization in the form of e-Learning in the field of higher education. Because of regional imbalance of higher education demand and supply, e-Learning becomes widespread. Transnational e-Learning flows from English speaking developed countries where the social prestige of higher education degrees is high to developing countries where higher education demand can not be met within their countries. It is notable that globalization of e-Learning is lead by different category of business organizations such as for-profit universities and media conglomerate. Nation states stipulate guidelines or regulations to assure the quality of transnational e-Learning. Those reactions seem to make use of globalization of e-Learning in order to enhance national power. Nation states find that education is an effective policy instrument. The scenario in which nation states lose their sovereignty and power in globalization does not come to realization. It is because nation states keep the rights to authorize the degrees which higher education institutions issue. No organization authorizes the degrees of which higher education institutions does not affiliate with any states. International educational organizations i.e. UNESCO or OECD have no way to treat that problem. Such higher education institutions, however, may not increase in the future. Globalization of e-learning reveals some complicated educational problems, not a simple relationship between economics and politics. For instance, it is possible to make guidelines and criteria to assure e-Learning quality in terms of educational methods, not educational contents. As e-learning is one form of educational methods, it is hard to make comprehensive guidelines and criteria in terms of educational contents of e-Learning. There is criticism stating that the globalization of e-Learning is U.S. imperialism and that it promotes the spread of U.S. higher education all over the world. However, globalizing the US accreditation in a specific field such as business education also plays a key role of quality assurance of transnational e-Learning in terms of contents. The developing nations actively introducing e-Learning in English speaking nations start to export e-Learning courses which they themselves have created for other developing countries. The flow of transnational e-Learning may become multiple. We can find that another phase of globalization happens when we deeply pursue the quality issue of transnational e-Learning. We must understand these complicated situations well and consider what type of education and society should be chosen for our future.
With the arrival of the highly advanced information age, the introduction of technology, such as computers and the Internet, has made progress in the education of physically and mentally handicapped children. The author proposes the following four reasons for incorporating technology into the education of physically and mentally handicapped children. 1. When technology assists and substitutes an obstacle, the life of a handicapped child becomes more comfortable. 2. Through technology, information about education for physically and mentally handicapped children can be efficiently collected, and straightforward information exchange becomes possible. 3. Technology facilitates more effective learning during educational activities. 4. The knowledge acquired in technology research can provide insight into the education and intellectual development of handicapped children. The 1st and 2nd points are discussed in the present report with a focus on my previous research. Regarding the 3rd point, 'Computer-Aided Instruction' (CAI) is investigated as a central theme in the present research. In particular, the present report examines the 4th point in detail. This point originates in the deadlock that has occurred in the autism educational field. In general, school-based education for physically and mentally handicapped children has been lead by the teacher. This practice relies on the teacher to take the lead and teach each child independently in a thorough and careful manner, moving from simple tasks to more complicated tasks according to the characteristics of each child. This has been the dominant pedagogy in modern Western culture. However, the deadlock in the one-way educational method of 'from teacher to autistic child' is now accepted. This 'deadlock' is identical to the deadlock known as the 'frame problem', which occurred in robot research in the 1980s. When robot research encountered the 'frame problem' the conventional fundamental design paradigm was abandoned and a new direction was adopted. Finally, robot researchers considered that as daily life is complicated and ambiguous, a robot must self-learn through daily life. In my research on the education of a child with a severe autism, I referred to the knowledge from robot research and applied the educational method different from conventional methods. I did not adopt the conventional one-way educational method consisting of 'from teacher to autistic child'. Instead, I adopted a 'polite child-rearing' method and worked with an autistic child for more than 15 years. This 'polite child-rearing' method is ideal for supporting the development of a child's innate abilities while valuing the child's relationships with the individuals around him and with the environment. Consequently, the autistic child developed beyond my expectations. The method utilized in this research is based on the 'situated learning theory', which developed from cognitive science in the 1980s.