Using the power of research to inform ICT integration in education

Archive for March, 2012

How are secondary school students using the internet in Nigeria?

Ukpebor Osaretin Christopher and Emwanta Maria-Gorretti (2012) Availability and the use of computer and internet by secondary school students in Benin City, Nigeria, International Journal of Library and Information Science Vol. 4(2), pp. 16-23, February 2012

This study identifies the availability of internet use among 1000 secondary schools students Benin City, Nigeria. Internet has become a useful tool for education. Access to information communication technology (ICT), the internet in particular, has provided people especially students with a foundation for meeting their information needs. Many private schools can boast of computer laboratories, but only few can pride themselves on Internet access. Another frustration is the capacity to use the Internet. 1000 students were selected from 20 private secondary schools across the two (out of three) local government of Benin City. Result showed that students have the capacity to use the internet which they learnt from friends and family members. However, the level of internet access in schools is poor despite the schools having computer laboratories. Students access the internet from their homes and cyber cafes since they are denied access in their respective schools while most of the students use the internet for educational activities. Internet availability should be considered as one of the most important scientific tools in schools.

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How Do Exemplary Science Teachers Use Technology?

Meral Hakverdi-Can,  Thomas M. Dana (2012) EXEMPLARY SCIENCE TEACHERS’ USE OF TECHNOLOGY, The Turkish Online Journal of Educational Technology – January 2012, volume 11 Issue 1

The purpose of this study is to examine exemplary science teachers’ level of computer use, their knowledge/skills in using specific computer applications for science instruction, their use of computer-related applications/tools during their instruction, how often they required their students to use those applications in or for their science class and factors influencing their decisions in using technology in the classroom. The sample of this study includes middle and high school science teachers who received the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science Teaching Award. Analysis of the survey responses indicated that exemplary science teachers have a variety of knowledge/skills in using computer related applications/tools. The most commonly used computer applications/tools are information retrieval via the Internet, presentation tools, online communication, digital cameras, and data collection probes. Results of the study revealed that students’ use of technology in their science classroom is highly correlated with the frequency of their science teachers’ use of computer applications/tools.

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How Is Instructional Technology Being Integrated in Higher Education?

Mariya Markova (2011) Integrating Instructional Technology into Higher Education, A dissertation submitted to the faculty of Franklin Pierce University in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Arts in Leadership in the College of Graduate and Professional Studies.

This dissertation presents the findings of an in-depth study conducted at two universities in New England. The purpose of this study is to identify the reasons why higher education faculties are not fully embracing instructional technology. Findings suggest that many faculty members view the instructional technology to be difficult to apply to existing instructional methodologies. In addition, existing technology infrastructure appears to be inadequate and unreliable. While technical problems persist, the primary cause of faculty resistance at this time relates to a lack of adequate faculty development and training resources. Results suggest, given the increasing sophistication of instructional technology, institutions should require a higher degree of technological proficiency than most faculty members currently possess.

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How Has YouTube Provided New Ways to Consume, Create, and Share Music?

Christopher Cayari (2011) The YouTube Effect: How YouTube Has Provided New Ways to Consume, Create, and Share Music, International Journal of Education & the Arts, 12(6).

This case study about a teenage musician, Wade Johnston, suggests how YouTube has affected music consumption, creation, and sharing. A literature review connects education, technology, and media. Informal learning, digital literacy, and twenty-first century technology are also connected in the review. Data reveals how Wade started his channel, gained popularity, interacted with others, and promoted his musical career through YouTube. Original songs, covers, collaborations, documentaries, self- interviews, video blogs (vlogs), and live performances are observed by the researcher. Interviews with the subject, key actors in his life, fans, and first time listeners were transcribed and results were used to triangulate. Previous musical media research is expanded upon to include YouTube and video sharing. The idea of amateur and professional musician, musical venue, and audience member are being changed through YouTube. Current practices of how YouTube is used in the classroom are discussed, and future research is suggested.

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How can Technology Enable Personalized Learning?

Mellita M. Jones,  Karen J. McLean (2012) Personalising Learning in Teacher Education through the use of Technology,  Australian Journal of Teacher Education, Volume 37 | Issue 1

The meaningful integration of technology in teaching and learning is consistently called for in all sectors of education. Recently it has appeared as a key tenet for achieving what has been termed as personalising learning. Personalising learning, a concept that addresses a range of current best-practice approaches with an added emphasis on ICT and the voice of individual learners, is becoming more prevalent in both general discussion, and in some countries, in policy regarding education. If its prevalence continues to grow, teacher educators need to consider how they too can incorporate personalising learning approaches in their courses to ensure graduate teachers are equipped with the necessary skills and knowledge to implement personalising learning approaches in their own classrooms. This paper considers the components of personalising learning and describes one approach to creating a technology-infused learning environment that has been trialled in the tertiary sector. The key focus of this trial was the effective integration of technology as an enabler of personalising learning. Findings indicate that meaningful student learning experiences can be achieved through a personalised approach which also supports the emerging tenets of effective, pedagogical use of ICT for learning. These findings led to a model of Technology for Personalising Learning (TPL) which is presented as a planning framework through which personalising learning with technology can be achieved in higher education.

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What do Physical Education Teachers Think about Integrating Technology in Physical Education?

Rolf Kretschmann (2012) What do Physical Education Teachers Think about Integrating Technology in Physical Education? European Journal of Social Sciences ISSN 1450-2267 Vol.27 No.3 (2012), pp. 444-448

In an exploratory approach 114 physical education teachers in selected secondary schools in Stuttgart (Germany) were surveyed using a questionnaire for the use of digital media in physical education. The questionnaire contained items for media equipment, media literacy, learning outcome, motivation, gender aspects, and comparison of analog and digital media.In summary, based on the empirical findings, said resistance and skepticism about digital media in physical education among physical education teachers can rather be approved than dispelled. Exemplarily, most physical education teachers stated by overwhelming majority that their teaching in physical education was successful even without integrating digital media at all.

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How is ICT Impacting Education in Pakistan?

M. Wasif Nisar, Ehsan Ullah Munir and Shafqat Ali shad (2012) Usage and Impact of ICT in Education Sector; A Study of Pakistan,  Australian Journal of Basic and Applied Sciences, 5(12): 578-583, 2011

In many countries, information and communication technology (ICT) has a lucid impact on the development of educational curriculum. This is the era of Information Communication Technology, so to perk up educational planning it is indispensable to implement the ICT in Education sector. Student can perform well throughout the usage of ICT. ICT helps the students to augment their knowledge skills as well as to improve their learning skills. To know with reference to the usage and Impact of ICT in Education sector of Pakistan, we accumulate data from 429 respondents from 5 colleges and universities, we use convenient sampling to accumulate the data from district Rawalpindi of Pakistan. The consequences show that Availability and Usage of ICT improves the knowledge and learning skills of students. This indicates that existence of ICT is improving the educational efficiency as well as obliging for making policies regarding education sector.

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Has the One Laptop per Child Program (OLPC) Made a Difference in Peru?

Julián P. Cristia Pablo Ibarrarán Santiago Cueto Ana Santiago Eugenio Severín (2012) Technology and Child Development: Evidence from the One Laptop Per Child Program,  IZA DP No. 6401

Although many countries are aggressively implementing the One Laptop per Child (OLPC) program, there is a lack of empirical evidence on its effects. This paper presents the impact of the first large-scale randomized evaluation of the OLPC program, using data collected after 15 months of implementation in 319 primary schools in rural Peru. The results indicate that the program increased the ratio of computers per student from 0.12 to 1.18 in treatment schools. This expansion in access translated into substantial increases in use both at school and at home. No evidence is found of effects on enrollment and test scores in Math and Language. Some positive effects are found, however, in general cognitive skills as measured by Raven’s Progressive Matrices, a verbal fluency test and a Coding test.

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Blended Learning or E-learning?

Maryam Tayebinik, Marlia Puteh (2012) Blended Learning or E-learning? International Magazine on Advances in Computer Science and Telecommunications, volume 3 number 1 february 2012 , Special Issue on International Conference on Advanced Information System, E-Education and Development ICAISED 2012, Malaysia

ICT or Information and Communication Technology has pervaded the fields of education. In recent years the term “e-learning” has emerged as a result of the integration of ICT in the education fields. Following the application this technology into teaching, some pitfalls have been identified and this have led to the “Blended learning” phenomenon. However, the preference on this new method has been debated quite extensively. The aim of this paper is to investigate the advantages of blended learning over face-to-face instruction through reviews of related literature. The present survey revealed that blended learning is more favorable than pure e- learning and offers many advantages for learners like producing a sense of community or belonging. This study concludes that blended learning can be considered as an efficient approach of distance learning in terms of students’ learning experience, student-student interaction as well as student-instructor interaction and is likely to emerge as the predominant education model in the future.

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Do people collaborate more effectively using computers than face to face?

Wadhah Amer Hatem, Alan S Kwan & John C Miles (2012) A Comparison of Face to Face and Computer Mediated Collaboration, Advanced Engineering Informatics, February 2012

In the construction industry, the need for collaboration between people who are geographically remote is a reoccurring feature. The traditional way of dealing with this is collocation but this is expensive and disruptive and so increasingly, use has been made of remote collaboration using computational technology over networks. To assess whether or not such computer mediated collaboration is effective, a carefully controlled set of experiments has been undertaken using ten groups of two people who are required to work on a partially developed design task. The work is undertaken using computer mediated communication supported by a 3D CAD package. As a control, the same people have also undertaken a similar design task working face to face. The results show that, for the type of design task involved, people collaborating using computer mediated communication, at worst are as effective as people working face to face and probably are slightly more effective.

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How can Serious Games Support Education?

Mary Ulicsak,  Martha Wright (2010) Games in Education: Serious Games,  A Futurelab literature review

It is argued that digital games, including simulations and virtual worlds, have the potential to be an important teaching tool because they are interactive, engaging and immersive activities. This document begins by briefly considering the rationale for using games in education – informal and formal. It then considers the various types of digital games that are described as being educational. The report then has an overview of their current use and research around their usage in multiple environments: the military, health, informal, vocational and formal education settings. It looks at the challenges of embedding serious games in formal education and three current methods for assessing appropriateness and effectiveness of games for teaching. From this it argues that what is required is a toolkit for educators, game designers and policy makers that allows the design and assessment of games to be used with an educational goal.

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Why Bother Theorizing Online Literacies?

Donna E. Alvermann (2008) Why Bother Theorizing Adolescents’ Online Literacies for Classroom Practice and Research? Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy 52(1) September 2008

Teachers, teacher educators, and researchers cannot turn their backs on the inevitable. When school work is deemed relevant and worthwhile, when opportunities exist for students to reinvent themselves as competent learners (even rewrite their social identities), then literacy instruction is both possible and welcomed. But theorizing adolescents’ penchant for creating online content is merely a start—half the task. The other half involves asking the young people whom we teach, conduct research on and with, and teach about in our teacher education classes for their input into how, or for that matter whether, their online literacies should be embraced in the regular curriculum. As Kirkland so deftly reminded us, “The work of [literacy] instruction [is] as much about listening and learning as it is about telling and teaching”

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Can engaging students in digital image tagging help them with information literacy?

Zorana Ercegovac (2012) Digital Image Tagging: A Case Study with Seventh Grade Students, School Libraries Worldwide, Volume 18, Number 1, January 2012

Results of this exploratory study suggested engaging students in digital image tagging can have analytical and educational importance. The study was designed to gauge middle school students’capacities to describe digital images from two digital libraries that they used in an information literacy activity. When describing the image attributes, students (N=81) freely chose single words and multiword phrases to describe the interpretations, feelings, and questions evoked by the images. These descriptors were used to derive conceptual categories for the seventeen digital images. Results demonstrated that students acknowledged the responsibility of indexers to choose index terms for objects in collections that enable identification, organization and retrieval. The study sheds light on the potential to improve age-appropriate access to images by means of offering a multi-tiered approach to image representation. It also introduces a transparent approach to teaching information literacy concepts through creative thinking about the meaning of resources and their relationship in a broader information cycle context.

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What are the Opportunities in Human-centric Sensing?

Mani Srivastava, Tarek Abdelzaher, and Boleslaw Szymanski (2012) Human-centric Sensing, Philosophical Transactions of Royal Society, 370 ser. A (1958), 2012 pp. 176-197

The first decade of the century witnessed a proliferation of devices with sensing and communication capabilities in the possession of the average individual. Examples range from camera phones and wireless GPS units to sensor-equipped, networked fitness devices and entertainment platforms (such as Wii). Social networking platforms emerged, such as Twitter, that allow sharing information in real time. The unprecedented deployment scale of such sensors and connectivity options usher in an era of novel data-driven applications that rely on inputs collected by networks of humans or measured by sensors acting on their behalf. These applications will impact domains as diverse as health, transportation, energy, disaster recovery, intelligence, and warfare. This paper surveys the important opportunities in human-centric sensing, identifies challenges brought about by such opportunities, and describes emerging solutions to these challenges.

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How Significant is the Web as a Learning Resource?

Si Fan (2011) Significance of the Web as a Learning Resource in an Australian University Context, Submitted in fulfilment of the requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy, University of Tasmania June 2011

This research involved the participation of 502 students and 100 teaching staff from seven faculties/disciplines at the University of Tasmania. The aim of this study was to investigate the significance of the Web as a learning resource in this university context. It examined the views of teaching staff and students toward the significance of the Web in teaching and learning practices, and identified the environment in which the Web was used to facilitate teaching and learning. The results of this study indicated a strong recognition of the role of the Web as a learning resource at the University of Tasmania. The Web was recognised as performing an essential role in the processes of communication, information retrieval, collaborative learning and assessment. Also, the Web and web-based technologies were seen as an important supplementary tool for face-to-face learning. However, there were differences between perceived expectations of web-based education by teaching staff and students, and the ways in which it was conducted and managed. By discussing the end-users‟ views and evaluations, recommendations are made on the further development and modification of the Web adoption. It suggests that taking student expectations and needs into consideration can help create a more supportive and meaningful web-based learning environment. Training for both staff and students is also desired to enhance their skills in using the Web as a learning resource and to provide standard web-based support in all courses.

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Quantitative vs. qualitative – do different research methods give consistent information about Library users and their space needs?

Susan E. Montgomery  (2011) Quantitative vs. qualitative – do different research methods give us consistent information about our users and their library space needs? Library and Information Research Volume 35 Number 111 2011

Assessment of how library patrons use space and the evaluation of their needs has become a “hot” topic in library research. But determining the best way to obtain information about their activity can be a challenge. Two types of data collection are quantitative and qualitative. Quantitative data provides a numerical count of what activities students perform within the library and therefore can be measured. Qualitative data gives personal opinions, feedback and individual perspectives regarding a topic but is not measurable. In this study, we were interested to learn if we would get substantially different results from a user observation study, a quantitative method, than from the results of asking users about their library space needs, a qualitative method. Essentially, would the results from both methods provide complementary results enabling us to obtain a comprehensive picture about our patrons’ needs and redesign the space to improve their library experience?

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Can a Virtual Reality Library help students develop information literacy skills?

Jamshid Beheshti (2012) Teens, Virtual Environments and Information Literacy, Bulletin of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, Volume 38, Issue 3

As digital natives, the vast majority of teens are used to cellphones, text messaging, social networking sites and other forms of electronic communications and technologies. Though rooted in the digital world for many of their daily activities, teens lack basic information literacy skills for academic tasks and other demands. Specific instruction through the educational system may not be feasible, but it may be possible to build teens’ information competence through interactive virtual learning environments. Game-style virtual environments are highly motivating and engaging, providing opportunities for repeated practice and reward for persistence and achieving goals. A virtual reality library, VRLibrary, was constructed, collaboratively designed by young teens and adults, based on the metaphor of a physical library. Teens could wander the virtual space and browse links to age-appropriate websites presented as virtual books. VRLibrary was very positively received and succeeded at engaging teen users. A librarian avatar could be incorporated to provide help as needed with a user’s information seeking.

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How can Library Media specialists be leaders in Professional Learning Communities?

Leslie E. Brantley (2011) The Leadership Role of the Library Media Specialist in a Professional Learning Community, a research paper submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science in Library Science and Information Services in the Department of Educational Leadership and Human Development University of Central Missouri

The Professional Learning Community (PLC) concept has been adopted by school districts as a model for professional development. A PLC requires strong leadership to function. The library media specialist is a natural servant-leader in school districts. The problem under study is what leadership role does the library media specialist play in a PLC? This is a review of the literature of PLC leadership and the role of the library media specialist in the PLC. The research demonstrates how the library media specialist fulfills a servant-leadership role in the daily structure of the school. The adoption of the PLC concept provides an opportunity to elevate the servant-leadership role of the library media specialist through collaboration, instructional leadership, and in the creation of a learning commons.

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What is the link between learning styles and self-perceived ICT skills?

Jef C. Verhoeven & Dirk Heerwegh & Kurt De Wit (2010) First year university students’ self-perception of ICT skills: Do learning styles matter?, Education and Information Technologies, Volume 17, Number 1

Do ICT skills of freshmen change in 6 months at the university? What is the contribution of learning styles (or patterns) to the explanation of the variance in self-perceived ICT skills and the possible change in these skills? And what is the contribution of learning styles and of gender, social class, and ICT course attendance to the explanation of the variance in these skills? To answer these questions, data were collected in a panel research project that recruited 714 freshmen at a large Belgian university. The data show that the ability of the students to maintain a computer and to develop a website improves at the university but not the ability to use the Internet or to apply basic ICT skills. The analyses show that there is a link, albeit weak, between learning styles and self-perceived ICT skills. Learning styles can partially explain differences between groups of students with different characteristics. The data show that having a certain learning style might influence the perception of students of their ICT skill, but learning styles do not allow one to predict the change in the self-perceived ICT skills of the students.

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Do ICT Competences Support Educational Attainment at University?

Kurt De Wit, Dirk Heerwegh (2012) Do ICT Competences Support Educational Attainment at University?, Journal of Information Technology Education: Research Volume 11, 2012

Taking into account that universities assume students will have at least some basic knowledge of the use of computers and the Internet, we hypothesize that the command of ICT skills by freshmen could have an influence on their educational attainment. To test this hypothesis an online questionnaire was used, which was answered by a representative sample of 1,529 freshmen studying at a large university. Four factors are very powerful in predicting a student’s educational attainment: the GPA in secondary school, the number of hours spent weekly on the study of maths in secondary school, the study of classical languages in secondary school, and any ambivalent feelings about the chosen study subject. Contrary to our expectations, ICT social contact skills and basic ICT skills do not provide a better prediction of educational attainment, whereas maintenance skills do.

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How can the TPACK framework be used to understand technology integration?

Charles R. Graham, Jered Borup, Nicolette Burgoyne Smith (2012) Using TPACK as a framework to understand teacher candidates’ technology integration decisions. In Journal of Computer Assisted Learning.

This research uses the technological pedagogical and content knowledge (TPACK) framework as a lens for understanding how teacher candidates make decisions about the use of information and communication technology in their teaching. Pre- and post-treatment assessments required elementary teacher candidates at Brigham Young University to articulate how and why they would integrate technology in three content teaching design tasks. Researchers identified themes from student rationales that mapped to the TPACK constructs. Rationales simultaneously supported subcategories of knowledge that could be helpful to other researchers trying to understand and measure TPACK. The research showed significant student growth in the use of rationales grounded in content-specific knowledge and general pedagogical knowledge, while rationales related to general technological knowledge remained constant.

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How does social capital affect individual performance in academic collaboration?

A Abbasi, L Hossain, R Wigand (2011) Social Capital and Individual Performance: A Study of Academic Collaboration, Arxiv preprint arXiv11122460

Studies on social networks highlight the importance of network structure or structural properties of a given network and its impact on performance outcome. The empirical validation of the association between network structures and performance has been well documented in a number of recent studies. One of the important properties of this network structure is referred as “social capital” which is the “network of contacts” and the associated values attached to these networks of contacts. There are very few systematic empirical studies suggesting a role of co-authors, as social capital in their scientific collaboration network and their effect on performance. In this study, our aim is to provide empirical evidence of the influence of social capital and performance within the context of academic collaboration. Results suggest that research performance of authors is positively correlated with their social capital measures. This study highlights the importance of scholars’ social capital characteristics on their performance suggesting stronger links to more powerful contacts will lead to better performance and, therefore, their respective professional social network shows indicative outcomes to evaluate and predict the performance of scholars. It further highlights that the Power-diversity Index, which is introduced as a new hybrid centrality measure, serves as an indicator of power and influence of an individual’s ability to control communication and information.

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How do parents perceive preschool children’s screen time?

De Decker, E., De Craemer, M., De Bourdeaudhuij, I., Wijndaele, K., Duvinage, K., Koletzko, B., Grammatikaki, E., Iotova, V., Usheva, N., Fernández-Alvira, J. M., Zych, K., Manios, Y., Cardon, G., ToyBox-study group (2012) Influencing factors of screen time in preschool children: an exploration of parents’ perceptions through focus groups in six European countries, Obesity Reviews, Volume 13, Issue Supplement s1, pages 75–84, March 2012

Preschoolers already spend significant proportions of their waking hours being sedentary. Screen time (i.e. television/DVD viewing and computer use) has been negatively associated with several health outcomes but interventions aiming to reduce preschoolers’ sedentary behaviour are scarce. This study aimed to explore parents’ perceptions of their preschool children’s screen time. One hundred twenty-two parents of low and medium-high socioeconomic status from six European countries with children between 4 and 6 years old were involved in 24 focus groups. Following a qualitative content analysis, the available information and key findings were centrally analysed. Results showed that children tend to like watching television (TV) and most parents do not express worries about their children’s TV viewing time. Education is considered to be the main benefit of watching TV and in general, parents only have informal rules about TV viewing. Computer and active games use are less frequent compared with TV viewing. No univocal results are found about the influence of siblings or friends on children’s screen time. Weather conditions and parental habits at home are the most important factors influencing children’s screen time. Alternatives for screen activities and information on how to set rules for screen time should be provided to parents to assist them in decreasing their preschool children’s screen time.

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What is the potential of narrative technology?

Tony Hall (2012) Digital Renaissance: The Creative Potential of Narrative Technology in Education, Creative Education 2012. Vol.3, No.1, 96-100

This paper outlines research which explores the potential of narrative technology: the synergy of storytelling and computing to enhance creativity and creative education. The paper outlines the theoretical basis of the research: nöogenic narrative, which is informed by contemporary debates and themes in the educational sciences. These include narrativity and storytelling in education; and positive and humanistic psychology. Furthermore, from an empirical/practical perspective, a number of examples of narrative technology are presented and discussed. These exemplify the principal ways in which narrative technology has been deployed in the research-enhanced teaching outlined in this paper: as both a pedagogical, and as a reflective methodology. The paper concludes with insights regarding the deployment of narrative technology to enhance creativity and creative education; and how the synergy of storytelling and computing is potentially affording new possibilities for a digital renaissance in education and educational technology.

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What is the impact of performance system-based instruction with peer instruction on student learning?

Tracy Michelle Hunter Allison (2012) The Impact of Classroom Performance System-Based Instruction with Peer Instruction Upon Student Achievement and Motivation in Eighth Grade Math Students, A Dissertation Presented in Partial Fulfillment Of the Requirements for the Degree Doctor of Education Liberty University January, 2012

The results of this study indicated that eighth grade students who received Classroom Performance System (CPS) based math instruction combined with Peer Instruction (PI) showed a statistically significant difference in posttest scores compared to eighth grade students who received CPS-based math instruction without PI. The findings from this study also demonstrated that student mean scores for motivation were statistically significantly different on two out of four subscales for eighth grade students who received CPS-based math instruction in conjunction with PI compared to eighth grade students who did not receive CPS-based math instruction with PI. Thus, this study suggests that the variable of PI used in conjunction with CPS has a positive effect on enhancing student achievement and certain aspects of student motivation in eighth grade students.

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What is the role of Principals in implementing ICT?

Mojgan Afshari, Simin Ghavifekr, Saedah Siraj and Rahmad Sukor Ab. Samad (2012) Transformational Leadership Role of Principals in Implementing Informational and Communication Technologies in Schools, Life Science Journal, 2012; 9(1)

The implementation of information and communication technologies is very important to schools. Transformational leaders provide greater contributions to implement technology in education. This paper examines the relationship between two independent variables (computer competence and computer use) and transformational leadership role of principals in implementing ICT in schools. This paper based on responses from 320 school leaders in Iran, reports that computer competence and ICT usage are key factors that influence technology leadership behaviors. It is suggested that decision makers should provide professional development for principals to become proficient in all the competency areas.

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How can administrators facilitate technology integration in their school?

Bryan Berrett, Jennifer Murphy and Jamie Sullivan (2012) Administrator Insights and Reflections: Technology Integration in Schools, The Qualitative Report Volume 17 Number 1 January 2012 200-221

There are numerous technology tools that educators utilize to support student learning. Often, technology is mandated from the top down with school administrators’ responsible for overseeing the implementation. Innovative technological approaches to learning often meet resistance within schools. The pervasive culture in education is counteractive to technology integration, which may be useful to pedagogy and in the long run may help students deal with the ever growing level of technology present in today’s society. Characteristics are identified at two out of four schools as a way of assessing the progress of technology integration and locating individuals who will help move the process forward. This knowledge, combined with competent leadership, makes the difference between success and failure of an innovation implementation.

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How do blogs help EFL students become academic writers through collaborative dialogues?

Yu-Chih Sun, Yu-jung Chang (2012) Blogging To Learn: Becoming EFL Academic Writers Through Collaborative DialoguesLanguage Learning & Technology, February 2012, Volume 16, Number 1

This study examines how blogs and their interactive and collaborative features help academically-advanced graduate students process academic writing knowledge and make sense of their writer identity. Seven graduate students undertaking Master’s level study in TESOL and Linguistics participated. The research questions are: (a) What kinds of writing-related topics do students blog about? (b) How do students’ collaborative dialogues on blogs help them process and reconstruct knowledge about academic writing? (c) How do students’ collaborative dialogues on blogs facilitate their negotiation of academic identities and construction of authorship? Open-coding and content analysis were conducted to inductively identify salient themes and patterns regarding students’ learning and perception of their writer identities. The results suggest that the blog activity not only encourages students to actively and reflectively engage in knowledge sharing, knowledge generation, and the development of numerous strategies to cope with difficulties encountered in the learning process. Blogs also endow students with a sense of authorship as the writers of blog entries and, at the same time, provide a space for them to sort out what being an author entails, their purposes of writing, and their authority in writing.

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How information literate are the Google generation entering university?

Fiona Salisbury, Sharon Karasmanis (2011) Are they ready? Exploring student information literacy skills in the transition from secondary to tertiary education, Australian Academic & Research Libraries

How information literate are the Google generation, and what information literacy skills do they bring to university? For university libraries, understanding student prior knowledge provides a foundation on which to introduce appropriate learning activities during the first year. In 2009, in response to a new pedagogical model in health sciences, La Trobe University Library measured and analysed the entry-level information literacy skills of first year health science students. The data was gathered during the first week of semester and 1,029 responses were collected. This paper examines the results of the survey and its implications for programs that broaden and build on students’ existing knowledge base.

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How are ICT-rich learning environments changing teacher practice in India, Turkey, and Chile?

Daniel Light with Scott Strother and Deborah Keisch Polin (2009) Emerging 
changes 
in 
ICT‐rich 
learning 
environments:
 The 
Intel®
Teach 
Essentials 
Course
 and
 changing 
teacher
practice 
in 
India, 
Turkey,
 and
 Chile, Center for Children and Technology Education Development Center

Understanding how technology fits into the complex realities of classrooms was a critical factor in creating real change in the industrialized nations, yet little is known about how educational technology projects are impacting the classrooms of the developing world. This study looked at successful schools from the Intel® Teach Essentials Course in Chile, India and Turkey to explore how schools and teachers have been able to integrate ICT and the pedagogical approaches from the Essentials Course into their schools and how these changes are, in turn, changing what happens in the classroom. The teachers are developing new beliefs about teaching and improving their knowledge of new practices; their students are engaging with content in new ways; and the relationships between teachers and students are changing relationships. And, both groups are using new ICT tools to support learning.


How are Web 2.0 tools changing the culture of learning?

Daniel  Light, Deborah  Keisch  Polin, (2010) Integrating Web 2.0 tools into the classroom: Changing the culture of learning, EDC Center for Children and Technology

While this study suggests great potential for Web 2.0 tools, it also demonstrates that careful planning is required to align  instructional activities and the affordances of these tools. Teachers need to design activities in which the communication facilitated by the Web 2.0 tools is meaningful and relates to students’ learning of the content or to their own lives. One of the most salient themes, consistent among more sophisticated users across all of our sites, is that we are perhaps beginning to see a Web  2.0 approach or mentality. It may not be the tool itself that defines Web 2.0, but how it is used to support teaching and learning, both in individual classrooms and as part of a school’s or district’s larger vision. All the tools employed within this approach do not necessarily have to be what immediately comes to mind when one thinks of  “Web 2.0” (e.g., blogs and wikis). However, the philosophy that has developed through the use of these tools embraces a Web 2.0 mentality. The tools are  interactive, they can be used  asynchronously, they are collected together as a suite of resources within a virtual platform, and teachers are integrating them seamlessly into their classrooms to extend and  deepen the educational environment.

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