Instructional capital

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Instructional capital is a term used in educational administration after the 1960s, to reflect capital resulting from investment in producing learning materials.

Some have objected to this phrasing, which is an elaboration of referring to training as "human capital", either for the same reason that phrase is objectionable, or on the grounds that it implies that the human in which the knowledge is "invested" is a resource to be exploited.

Instructional capital can be used to guide or limit or restrict action by people (individual capital) or equipment (infrastructural capital) (if the learning materials are computer programs). It cannot generally make either individuals or infrastructure do what they are not trained or designed to do, but it can help prevent them from doing most stupid, destructive and dangerous things.

When people begin to trust instructions, they tend to associate social capital with them, as symbolized by a brand, flag or label. This usually opens up a possibility for those with power to start cheating and/or creating bad instructions that can no longer be trusted, but the good reputation of the brand, flag or label protects them from being caught for longer than would be the case without the symbol that is associated with good reputation.