Campus Technology: Working in educational technology often means coping with change. New technologies frequently appear, institutional dynamics mutate and user populations gradually transform. When we grapple with these changes we invoke the assistance of many fields, from computer science to organizational psychology and even therapy. I would like to nominate an additional discipline to help technologists working in education: the futures field, also known as forecasting.
Humans have been imagining our future for millennia, using techniques as varied as science fiction, betting and divination, but the futures field as we know it today dates only to the mid/late 20th century. That's when several visionaries working in business and the military, such as Herman Kahn and Pierre Wack, began codifying forecasting as a set of methods. Those methods have since been honed, extensively studied by scholars, supported by professional associations and deployed internationally.