Online education: presence and proximity in the age of the “new normal”


The study of the relationships between culture and technology, especially in light of media studies and mediology, shows that distinctions typical of common sense, which are not always rigorous from an epistemological point of view, continue to be used in the pedagogical field. The concrete forms of online teaching experience imposed by the coronavirus emergency - almost completely unknown for the school and generally defined with the acronym DAD - led to the development of a debate that has confirmed an arbitrary and not infrequently dichotomous distinction between technology and culture, artificial and natural, digitization and learning. The same reference to distance in teaching, just as for what has been improperly defined as social distancing, is based solely on the concept of physical distance. This paper analyzes the concepts of presence and proximity in didactics from an epistemological point of view, to show in a non-deterministic way that learning processes are built on educational relationships and methodologies based on the awareness of the chosen media ecosystem.