What are the Different Approaches of Educational Technology?

Approaches of Educational Technology are as follows:

I. Hardware Approach:

Hardware Approach has physical science and applied engineering as its basis. They have mechanised the whole teaching-learning process. There is even reduction in the cost of education. Educational Technology that way has almost revolationised the total teaching-learning.

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The new mechanism of teaching-learning with improved technology as its basis is suggesting innumerable new ways of doing things to the class-room teachers.

A good many gadgets of teaching-learning find their place in the class­room situations and many more of that type are expected to enter into the class-rooms in the near future. The job and the duties of the teacher are likely to have multifaceted changes.

As a result of Hardware technology, electro-mechanical equipments have been developed which are used for instructional purposes.

In the overcrowded class-room, the teacher uses microphones for making his voice fully audible to the learners. Radio, T.V., tape recorder, epidiascope, projector, closed circuit television (C.C.T.V.), teaching machines, and computers are used for teaching the students.


Silverman (1968), called this type of educational technology ‘Relative Technology’. According to Marilym Nickson (1971), educational technology deals with the application of many fields of science to the educational needs of the individual as well as of society.

Davis (1971) thinks that the hardware approach is based on the application of physical science to the education and training system which mechanizes the process of teaching gradually so that teachers would be able to deal with more students, resulting in less cost and economy in finances.

Hardware approach, undoubtedly, is bound to work wonders in the area of education. It has a few draw-backs which are given below:

(a) Hardware material, equipment were devised by science for use in science but now they have been borrowed from there and are being used in education.


(b) While operating in the field of education, it works in isolation and not as an integral part of that system where it existed earlier.

II. Software Approach:

In software approach, the basis of all thinking and working is behavioural science and psychology of learning. The scholar can exploit psychology of learning to any extent to attain the different objectives.

With every new thinking he can evolve something new for teaching purposes. The teacher with added knowledge of software approach can use the films, flash- cards, tapes etc., for various purposes. There is not end to his thinking. Decidedly he can plan better teaching which results into better learning.

Software approach uses the principles of psychology for the purpose of behaviour modification.

In this connection, Davis (1971), observes, “This view of educational technology is closely associated with the modern principles of programmed learning and is characterised by task analysis, writing precise objectives, selection of appropriate learning strategies, reinforcement of correct responses and constant education.”

Silverman (1968) termed this educational technology as ‘constructive educational technology.’

Both software and hardware approaches are so interlinked that they cannot be separated from each other. One without the other is incomplete. It is software approach which makes the hardware approach function well.

Mitchell (1973), writes, “By directing attention to the achievement of educational aims of standards through knowledge and control relation between inputs in man-machine systems and organisations, educational technology can be expected to make more contributions to behavioural science than science has made to educational technology.”

III. System Approach:

This new technology has influenced the educational administration and organisation to a great extent. This is the modern approach.

It acts as a link between hardware and software approach. It is also known as ‘Management Technology’. It has brought to educational management a scientific approach for solving educational administrative problems.

It is essentially a new management approach, influencing management decisions in business, industry and education. Education is regard as a system and system approach is a systematic way of designing an effective and economical educational system.

System is defined in the dictionary as “an assemblage of objects united by some form of regular interaction or inter-dependence; as organic or organised whole as the solar system or a new telegraph system”. System may be divided into three broad categories.

For instance, there are natural systems as solar system; there are systems which have been designed by man as telegraph system and lastly, there are systems which are combinations of natural and man-made systems like hydro-electric plants or modern dairies.

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