The Elder Sophists, a small group of peripatetic teachers drawn to Athens during the
last half of the fifth century B.C., were probably the first instructional technologists.(p.24)
The Elder Sophists belonged to the pre-Socratic-Promethean liberal tradition in Greek
thought. The basic tenets were:
I. Man evolves through technology and social organization to a state of civilization
where he can guide his affairs effectively.
2. This evolutionary process is continuous. Morality and law evolve and are accepted
because they have survival value, and derive their sanction from social consensus,
not from a priori absolute principles or from divine authority.
The Elder Sophists / 25
3. History is a slow but forward progress in the management of human affairs, neither
cyclical nor regressive.
4. Society should be democratic and egalitarian.
5. The theory of knowledge is progressive, pragmatic, empirical, and behavioristic. (p.25)
Saettler, P (1990). Evolution of American Educational Technology . Information Age Publishing, Inc..