Maslow hierarchy for edtech

5 ways to apply Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs to edtech for better outcomes

By Dave Saltmarsh September 26th, 2017
My Note: when stripped from the commercialized plug in for Apple, this article makes a good memorization exercise for pedagogues.

According to American psychologist Abraham Maslow, all humans have the same fundamental needs (food, clothing and shelter), and these needs must be met before an individual is motivated to look beyond these basic needs. This motivational theory is commonly referred to as Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.

  • Physiological (basic) needs: food, water, warmth, rest
  • Safety needs: security, safety
  • Love needs: intimate relationships, friends
  • Esteem needs: feeling of accomplishment
  • Self-actualization: achieving one’s full potential

Maslow’s hierarchy of needs can serve as an analogy for what is possible with instructionally-designed technology

1. Device Deployment = Basic Needs

Device deployment is the first basic need of any school looking to leverage education technology. If schools are unable to procure devices and if IT is unable to get these devices into the hands of students and educators, there is no moving forward.

2. Communication = Safety Needs

Beyond basic communications functions, apps must be made available and installed for an additional layer of connectivity. For example, learning management systems (LMS) enable communication beyond classroom walls and empower students with the learning resources they need while at home or in the community. However, how do we ensure access off-campus for those without ubiquitous internet connections

3. Productivity = Love Needs

Communication that encourages higher-level thinking and problem solving is where dramatic learning happens.

4. Transformation = Esteem and Self-Actualization Needs

IT and educators are pairing innovative teaching methods such as blended learning (a mix of technology and traditional learning) or flipped classrooms (teaching is done at home and exercises during class time) with education apps (productivity layer).

5. Let Mobile Device Management (MDM) Be Your Stepladder

more on digital literacy for EDAD in this IMS blog

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