Envisioning Technological Literacy in Science Education: Building Sustainable Human-Technology-Lifeworld Relationships


  • Mijung Kim National Institute of Education Nanyang Technical University
  • Wolff-Michael Roth University of Victoria




Present discourses on technology education are taking a positive and value-neutral approach with utilitarian and vocational overtones. The discourses generally lack discussions of human agency and human responsibility for techno-scientific activities and technological literacy. To support the emergence of a collective civic literacy, we argue in this text that technology education needs to take up critical and value-acknowledging aspects with emphasis on building sustainable relationships among human beings, technology, and lifeworld. To understand the relationship between human agency and modern technology, we examine the nature of technology in the dimensions of technology as causality and technology as a relationship of lifeworld. Discussing Martin Heidegger's perspectives on the causalities of technology, we question how the nature of technology situates human beings in power-related relationships to the world. Understanding technology as process and relationship of lifeworld, the paper extends its discussion of the responsibility of a dialectical human-technology-lifeworld relation based on a socio-technical and ethico-moral framework of technology. By recognizing human responsibility of and for modern technology, we outline a critical and reflective approach to technological literacy. The approach challenges the position of current approaches to technology in the attempt to provide a foundation for a contemporary pedagogy of technological awareness and values.