Foucault News

News and resources on French thinker Michel Foucault (1926-1984)

Lee, K. (2020). Michel Foucault in technology-enhanced learning: An analytic review of 10 Foucauldian studies on online education. Studies in Technology Enhanced Learning, 1(1).


This paper aims to introduce Foucault’s theoretical ideas to researchers of Technology-Enhanced Learning (TEL), particularly researchers who are interested in online educational provisions. This paper explains some of Foucault’s key ideas that may, if rigorously applied, exert disruptive and constructive power on TEL scholarship. The explanation is grounded on the author’s close reading of 10 journal articles that used Foucault’s theory to better understand social subjects and issues related to online education. Using Foucault’s ideas will enable TEL researchers to do the following: 1) to be more critical, challenging taken-for-granted assumptions that often prevent their knowledge progression; 2) to see the big picture, making sense of complex power relations embedded in their practices; and 3) to establish a historical and developmental perspective on the present, which is required to develop a better future. The paper concludes with a rather cautionary comment that researchers must use Foucault’s theory only when it clearly has something to contribute.

Keywords: Foucault; online education; open education; Discourse; subjectification

See also in the same issue
Lee, S., & Lee, K. (2020). Liberating teachers from the dominant theories and the unquestioned mission: Towards ‘disruptive theories’ in technology enhanced learning research. Studies in Technology Enhanced Learning, 1(1).


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