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EDUC Lecture #1.docx

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Brock University
Trevor Norris

The Mechanization of Schooling Winter Readings Readings available on Sakai under 'Winter Readings' Efficiency, Scientific Management and Industry Central issue in the chapter:  Influence of industrialism, business, engineering, etc on society Central Questions:  Can efficiency models used in factories and industry be brought into education  What happens if they are? To students, teachers, learning and society?  How and why did it happen in the 20th century? Taylorism  Aka "Scientific management"  Based on time and motion studies by engineers  The impact of the advent of mass production on education  Mechanization, automation  Break a process into distinct tasks  Contributed greatly to economic growth  Seen as a great success Fordism  Henry Ford: Invented the assembly line  Based on Taylorism  1 person does 1 task  The rise of Industrialism: "the application of mechanical power the production of goods" What's Controversial About it?  It seems to make sense, to be common sense  Who would promote inefficiency? Implications  Not a form of empowerment, but of dehumanization  Making work boring and repetitive, and therefore unrewarding  Workers become interchangeable- "A cog in the machine"  "De-skilling" & specialization: You could easily be replaced, and that you had no sense of the larger project. You were not a craftsmen. You become a machine, a tool.  Because they were overspecialized, only knew their specific function within a system, not the whole process  "Deprives workers of control over the workplace, over their tools, over their bodies" Mechanization of Human Beings  Human beings become lost in the gears  Human beings become like machines, or just extensions of machines  We have to think like and act like machines in order to survive in modern society  The "mechanization of human
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