Conceptualising technology practice in education using Bourdieu's sociology

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Journal Article
Learning, Media and Technology, 2018, 43 (2), pp. 197 - 210
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© 2018 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. Evidence from large-scale studies of primary and secondary students’ technology practices at school over the last decade show disparities in student practices and suggest that schools need to do more to cater for all students. Research that explores the influence of social and cultural factors may be useful for understanding such inequality in student practice. Bourdieu’s theory of practice [(1977). Outline of a Theory of Practice. London: Cambridge University Press] is proposed as an example of a sociological theory that can be adopted in educational technology research to move towards understanding the wider complexities of technology practice. To encourage discourse and application of Bourdieu’s sociology in the field of educational technology research, this paper provides an introduction to the theory, a review of its application in research of primary and secondary students’ technology practice and relevant conceptual work. The paper presents a conceptual framework based on Bourdieu’s theory that has been developed through two recent studies, and review of empirical and conceptual works and invites its application in future research so that it can be critiqued and further developed.
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