Assuming for the sake of argument that ABA is effective at changing people’s behavior, it either does so via changing their underlying thought structures or values (“deep change”), or it does not (“superficial change”). If ABA is “successful” by way of deep change, then ABA violates autonomy insofar as it coercively closes off certain paths of identity formation. If ABA is “successful” by way of superficial change, then ABA violates autonomy by coercively modifying children’s patterns of behavior to be misaligned with their preferences, passions, and pursuits. Such superficial change is a pervasive form of interference that compromises children’s present and future autonomy.
Source: Project MUSE – Ethical Concerns with Applied Behavior Analysis for Autism Spectrum “Disorder”
“This year, I introduced reflective blogging with my students to slowly release control. They write, everyone reads, and everyone comments. Here’s how it’s made them more independent:”
Instead of me answering questions, my students write through their confusion.
Instead of waiting for my judgement, they look to one another.
Source: Using Blogging to Grow Independent Writers (or: How to Kick Your Little Birds Out of the Nest) | Moving Writers
“Students love the fact that their blog is their own space. They can design it however they want and it really adds to the ownership factor. It is not about what I want, it is about them developing their own learning environment that is a reflect of them, not a teacher’s desires.”
Source: Brian Sztabnik | Student Blogging
And that, increasingly, is the dividing line in modern workplaces: trust versus the lack of it; autonomy versus micro-management; being treated like a human being or programmed like a machine. Human jobs give the people who do them chances to exercise their own judgment, even if it’s only deciding what radio station to have on in the background, or set their own pace. Machine jobs offer at best a petty, box-ticking mentality with no scope for individual discretion, and at worst the ever-present threat of being tracked, timed and stalked by technology – a practice reaching its nadir among gig economy platforms controlling a resentful army of supposedly self-employed workers.
There have always been crummy jobs, and badly paid ones. Not everyone gets to follow their dream or discover a vocation – and for some people, work will only ever be a means of paying the rent. But the saving grace of crummy jobs was often that there was at least some leeway for goofing around; for taking a fag break, gossiping with your equally bored workmates, or chatting a bit longer than necessary to lonely customers.
The mark of human jobs is an increasing understanding that you don’t have to know where your employees are and what they’re doing every second of the day to ensure they do it; that people can be just as productive, say, working from home, or switching their hours around so that they are working in the evening. Machine jobs offer all the insecurity of working for yourself without any of the freedom.
The debate about whether robots will soon be coming for everyone’s jobs is real. But it shouldn’t blind us to the risk right under our noses: not so much of people being automated out of jobs, as automated while still in them.
Source: We fear robots at work, but robotic jobs for humans are awful too | Gaby Hinsliff | Opinion | The Guardian
…he divides his colleagues into three different types:
The first group suffer burnout, he said. The second group survive but are “lousy”. It’s the third group that cope, as they “care for patients without sacrificing themselves on the altar of professional vocation”.
What we need to be focusing on in education is preparing young people to be compassionate human beings, not cogs in the capitalist machine.
Source: The spectrum of work autonomy | Doug Belshaw’s Thought Shrapnel