The records of the Association for Educational Communications and Technology (AECT), covering the years 1912-1984, document the organization's efforts to promote "more effective communication in the classroom, through the use of a wider range of learning resources," including the use of audiovisual materials. The collection deals largely with the history and operation of AECT before 1970 when it was the Department of Audio-Visual Instruction, as well as research into the use and effectiveness of audiovisual materials in education. The records includes correspondence, articles, catalogs, convention material, minutes, reports, pamphlets, serials, teacher guides, bound ledgers and scrapbooks, catalog cards, and audiovisual material (including photographs, audio cassettes, audio reels, slides, and overheads).
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36.25 Linear Feet
The records of AECT span the period from 1912 to 1984, with the bulk of the material dating from 1940 to 1970. The collection contains correspondence, articles, catalogs, convention material, minutes, reports, pamphlets, serials, teacher guides, bound ledgers and scrapbooks, catalog cards, and audiovisual material (including photographs, audio cassettes, audio reels, slides, and overheads). The collection deals largely with the history and operation of AECT before 1970 when it was the Department of Audio-Visual Instruction, as well as research into the use and effectiveness of audiovisual materials in education. A significant portion of the collection (9.50 linear feet) deals with the use and production of training aids for the military during World War II.
In 1923, the National Education Association established the Department of Visual Instruction (DVI), for the purpose of promoting "more effective communication in the classroom, through the use of a wider range of learning resources." H. B. Wilson served as DVI's first president. In 1923, DVI merged with the Visual Instruction Association of America (VIAA) and the National Academy of Visual Instruction (NAVI) to become the one dominant professional voice for the AV movement in the nation.
During World War II, DVI worked toward the development and production of instructional audio-visual materials for military training. Shortly after the war, in 1945, the NEA established its Division of Audio-Visual Instructional Service, to "promote the establishment of new programs of audio-visual instruction and the expansion and development of existing programs on all levels of education throughout the nation."
In 1947, DVI underwent a name change, becoming the Department of Audio-Visual Instruction (DAVI). NEA provided DAVI with an executive secretary and full-time paid staff, giving the agency even more prestige and national exposure.
At DAVI's Atlantic City Convention in 1951, Dr. E. Winifred Crawford proposed the establishment of an Archives and History Committee and an Archives Library. The Archives was started to preserve valuable documents that record the beginnings and the development of the use of AV materials in education, and to make such materials available for study. DAVI president Francis Noel appointed Crawford the first chair of the Archives Committee. In 1954, William F. Kruse replaced Crawford as DAVI archivist, and the DAVI Archives was established at the University of Iowa.
In 1971, DAVI changed its name to the Association for Educational Communications and Technology (AECT), and separated from NEA. The new name for this independent organization reflected a growing concern with the total educational experience from a "systems" or instructional technology viewpoint. Today, AECT continues to be a leader in educational technology, promoting the use of media and technology to enhance and improve learning.
This collection is arranged into six series, several of which contain subseries:
The records of AECT were donated to the University of Maryland Libraries by AECT in August 1991, and by Robert deKeiffer in September 1992. Additional materials were donated in 1997, 1999, 2000, 2007 and 2013 that have not been incorporated into this collection.
Materials were placed in acid-free folders and then into acid-free boxes.