On the commoditisation of instruction

With the commoditization of instruction, teachers are drawn into a production process designed for the efficient creation of instructional commodities, and hence become subject to all the pressures that have befallen production workers in other industries undergoing rapid technological transformation from above. In this context faculty have much more in common with the historic plight of other skilled workers than they care to acknowlege. Like these others, their activity is being restructured, via the technology, in order to reduce their autonomy, independence, and control over their work and to place workplace knowledge and control as much as possible into the hands of the administration. As in other in other industries, the technology is being deployed by management primarily to discipline, de-skill, and displace labor.

David F. Noble (1998) in Digital Diploma Mills: The Automation of Higher Education.

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