JITE v36n1 - From the Editor

Volume 36, Number 1
Fall 1998

From the Editor

When I agreed to edit the Journal of Industrial Teacher Education the last thing on my mind were the few pages in the front of every journal "From the Editor." In fact, late into the preparation of the first issue I finally realized that I had a responsibility for creating an editorial preface to each issue. Like many a reader, I was vaguely aware of past editor's comments, but usually more eager to read the latest information about industrial education than to dwell on the comment section. The personal discovery of this new opportunity left me uneasy as to the nature and the extent of the editorial comments to be made.

In my typical style, I dug out all of my copies of JITE starting from graduate school days in 1979 and continuing on until the present, minus those copies, presumably, still out on loan to various students. I wanted to do research to answer some of the questions I had about the role and purpose of the editor's comments. For example, on occasion, a journal is numbered incorrectly. This sounds like something I would and probably will do. Identifying characteristics are sometimes attributed incorrectly. I apologize to the administration and faculty of The Pennsylvania State University; I have never been employed by this fine institution, but I am employed by a Big Ten rival, The Ohio State University. I will also probably make this mistake with someone's records. So, the first thing that I've learned by my research is that I had better be able to accept, humbly, fallibility.

My real mission was to leaf through these editorials to determine the nature of them, and I found that they have been refreshingly multi-vocal. Each editor has expressed himself in his own editorial voice, mixing information about the journal with a timely concern for issues which confront the profession. To me, this revelation is like receiving a blank check with respect to how I will deal with the few words from the editor, now, and in the future.


First, some important announcements about the editorial responsibility for Volume 36. Leaving the editorial board as assistant editors after several years of quality service are Richard Lakes and David Pucel. Their service to the journal has been exemplary and valued. Joining the editorial board as new assistant editors are George E. Rogers of the University of Nebraska and John W. Schell of the University of Georgia. They are welcomed and already are at work. Continuing as editors for this volume will be Dan Brown and Richard Satchwell. Stepping up to associate editor is Marie Hoepfl of Appalachian State University. After having serve as an assistant editor, Marie is welcomed as the associate editor and will be taking a more active role in the editorial process.

Second, there appears to be some change in the air as the profession evolves. Thirty-five years of journals have preceded this issue and JITE is entering its middle age by human life standards. Some notable changes are occurring both in the journal and in the profession as maturation shakes off some of the tentativeness of the past and industrial education professionals begin to explore scholarship beyond the positivistic/behavioristic paradigm which has dominated most of their scholarship. This issue clearly signals the evolution of thought as the authors call for a rethinking of pedagogy and practice, present qualitative research to the readers, and take the initiative to critique our practices.

In This Issue

The authors in this issue bring cognitive psychology and cognition to the profession for discussion. Almost as if planned as a theme issue, three of the articles are directly concerned with cognition in industrial education as teacher education, technology education, and technical education in general.

The issue opens with a very detailed discussion of problem posing as it relates to technological problem solving in technology education. Theodore Lewis, Stephen Petrina, and Anne Marie Hill explore the role, purpose, and value of problem posing as method in technology education. Adding to the discussion of problem posing, Dennis Herschbach provides a thorough explanation of constructivism as a result of cognitive psychology and as a teaching method for technical education. Finally, France Boutin and Christian Chinien add to a previous report on a study of the use of a cognitive-based instructional system in teacher education by providing the qualitative interpretation of the study.

Adding to the aura of change in the profession, another qualitative study by K. Peter Kuchinke, James M. Brown, Howie Anderson, and Joseph Hobson provide us with information about employee training needs.

Finally, as both a book review and an editorial, Stephen Petrina thoroughly analyzes the Council on Technology Teacher Education's 44 th yearbook, pointing out many of the things that he believes needs to change with technology education professionals.

Cognition, qualitative research, and criticism, all these ideas are representing a changing industrial education profession. As we approach the next millenium, isn't it about time?