Technology and Culture (advantages and disadvantages)

Write one page each (total of two pages) discussing your personal and profession production applications. Shoot for an equivalent of two pages of single spaced content.

In the write up, spend half a page or so, discussion apps that you use, name the applications, purpose, details of the application, i.e., computer, mobile device (both), cost, resides on the device or cloud. Discuss how you integrate the device into your life style. Is the application one that you would recommend to others or any other insights into the application.

I have never lived or worked in a rural area of Alaska and have limited first-hand experience with issues of culture as it is integrated in Alaska’s classroom. These are merely observations and I would benefit from those who are more experienced in correcting me.

Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA): Rural Development Course

Several years ago our unit worked in collaboration with the UAF Rural Development program to create an online, open course site for a specific class that provided an overview and analysis of ANCSA. The course’s audience, beyond the student’s enrolled, was targeted at CEOs, future leaders of native and village corporations, and those who may be involved in working with Alaska Natives or their corporations. It was important to the instructor that video interviews be recorded to document the stories of the leaders who were central to the movement and active in seeing the act adopted.

Using technology to record and edit the lectures and then posting the interviews online, in an open and public space, created a resource with an Alaska Native emphasis on the act that is a rich resource for all Alaska Natives. The videos of the elders can be used as inspiration and as examples of role models that the Native community might want their youth to have access to. This website also creates an opportunity for the Alaska Native Community to show their perspective, which may differ from others perceptions of the events or strategies used in moving the act forward.

This example may not seem as much like “culture” as other things like passing down traditional knowledge of hunting, medicine, or songs, but I do believe that historic events such as ANCSA has had a huge impact on subsistence, village life, and the interaction with western culture. As an example, this map can be viewed by both region and by language: which helped to shape how the corporations were created.

Another example of using technology in culture is shown at the Sealaska Heritage Institute Language Resources website:

John F. Pingayak, states that reviving and maintaining language is fundamental in keeping a culture alive. ( I’ve heard this statement before among members of the Native community. The Sealaska site provides resources and suggested curriculum for teacher to use to incorporate into their classes or events. I can only see this as a positive step towards language acquisition and steps towards fluency. How often and to what extent teachers are using this resource is unknown as an observer. What is the success or acceptance level of students when incorporating these kinds of resources into a class of students who might not all be Tlingit, Haida, Alaska Native or might not even be native-english speakers, is also a question that is unknown to me. Should these resources be used only in small communities like Angoon and not in larger communities like Juneau? I’m sure there are differing opinions!




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