What is the Alberta the World Needs to See?

Promise and Peril: The Impact of Technology on Children, Schools and Communities

April 25, 2012
Invitational Research Colloquium
Fairmont Hotel Macdonald, Empire Ballroom


Emerging technologies are paradoxical in that they hold both promise and peril for individuals, families and communities. At a time of rapid technological change, those who work with children, families, schools and communities need to understand the effects of online digital activities for offline health and mental wellbeing.

This invitational research colloquium held in April 2012 was sponsored by the Alberta Teachers? Association, in partnership with the Alberta Centre for Child, Family and Community Research. It was a one day intensive conversation with approximately 150 delegates from over 70 different groups/organizations. The colloquium explored the psychosocial and physiological impacts of technology on children and youth.

A ?colloquium? by definition pulls together diverse specialities in an area where there is a shared research interest. Representatives at this event were drawn from specialist councils of the Alberta Teachers? Association, research scholars from multiple universities, health sector professionals, Government of Alberta officials from Human Services, Alberta Education and the Department of Justice, Alberta Teachers? Association officials, College of Alberta Superintendents, Alberta School Boards Association, Alberta School Councils Association, community representatives, business leaders, and our distinguished keynote speakers from Harvard Medical School and the University of Bristol Neuroscience.

The colloquium had three intended outcomes:

  • To consider the extent to which technologies are (re)shaping the minds and bodies of children and youth.
  • To identify the issues, perspectives and contentions emerging from current research.
  • To generate key questions to guide policy decisions and future research on emerging technologies, learning, teaching and the wellbeing of children and youth.

Below you will find the colloquium program and working journal, presentations from our distinguished speakers, and video highlights from an evening public lecture and live webcast.


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