The Future History of Industrial Technology

  • Gordon Minty (Indiana State University)


Industrial technology (IT) is approaching a junction in its journey from conception, incubation, early development and full development, and health as a discipline. Faculty who nurtured IT programs through the early years of development are retiring in large numbers. Zargari, Patrick, and Coddington (2002) found that 23% are expected to retire within five years. Fearful that these faculty will be difficult to replace, some institutions have developed Ph.D. programs to develop the faculty for the future (the Indiana State University led consortium of 6 institutions, Eastern Michigan’s recently approved program, and the existing programs of Iowa State and Northern Iowa are prominent examples). The faculty emerging from these new programs will not have the same experience and training as the retiring faculty. Zargari, et al, show that 75% of IT faculty hold degrees in the three areas of industrial arts (17%), IT (24%), and Vocational & Trade (34%). Most retiring faculty experi- enced the transition from Industrial Arts for the preparation of teachers to what has become IT for the preparation of technologists. New faculty coming from the Ph.D. programs will have studied technology and technology management. As they develop their expertise, they may see little connection to Industrial Arts or the history of Industrial Arts (IA). Nor may they see much connection between what they do and vocational education. They will connect with the history of technology and the history of technology management (TM). As this occurs, there could be a shift in the historical underpinning of IT. These new faculty may look back beyond the approaching junction and identify with a different trail than the one that was taken. The question of this study is: Will these faculty hold a different view of the history of IT and TM? This paper is submitted as a kind of aerial view, a brief view of the historical landscape and the areas where the historical trails are most likely to be seen. This aerial survey leads the author to conclude, from the evidence, that NAIT should be a significant factor in the history of IT and TM to these students.

Keywords: administration|curriculum|higher education|leadership|philosophy

How to Cite:

Minty, G., (2003) “The Future History of Industrial Technology”, Journal of Industrial Technology 20(1).

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Published on
01 Nov 2003