Computing Education Research and the Technology Readiness Level
I just learned about this Technology Readiness Level (see Wikipedia page here) and found it interesting. Does it make sense for computing education research, or any education research at all? Aren’t we too much pragmatists when it comes to education research — we don’t become interested unless it can really work in classrooms. Or maybe early stage education research is just called “psychology”?
There’s a useful high-tech concept called the Technology Readiness Level that helps explain why Uber pounced when it did. NASA came up with this scale to gauge the maturity of a given field of applied science. At Level 1, an area of scientific inquiry is so new that nobody understands its basic principles. At Level 9, the related technology is so mature it’s ready to be used in commercial products. ‘‘Basically, 1 is like Newton figuring out the laws of gravity, and 9 is you’ve been launching rockets into space, constantly and reliably,’’ says Jeff Legault, the director of strategic business development at the National Robotics Engineering Center.