Using the power of research to inform ICT integration in education

Posts tagged ‘computer technology’

How can technology support students develop higher order thinking skills?

McMahon, G. (2009). Critical Thinking and ICT Integration in a Western Australian Secondary School. Educational Technology & Society, 12 (4), 269–281.

This study examined the relationship between students working in a technology-rich environment and their development of higher order thinking skills. Based on a PhD thesis, which examined a greater range of relationships than can be reported here, this article focuses on developing critical thinking skills within a technology-rich environment. Staff and students from one school participated in the study. Data were collected to determine the degree of correlation between factors of the learning environment and the extent to which critical thinking skills were demonstrated by the students. Statistical correlations allowed relationships between environmental factors and critical thinking to be established. The results indicate that there are statistically significant correlations between studying within a technology-rich learning environment and the development of students’ critical thinking skills. Length of time spent in the environment has a positive, non-linear effect on the development of critical thinking skills. Students with better developed computing skills scored higher on critical thinking activities. This was most significant for students with better computer programming skills and the ability to competently manipulate Boolean logic. The research suggests that to develop students’ higher order thinking skills, schools should integrate technology across all of the learning areas. This will allow students to apply technology to the attainment of higher levels of cognition within specific contexts. This will need to be paralleled by providing students the opportunity to develop appropriate computer skills.

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How can the beliefs of teachers impact the way computer technology enhances learning of reading and writing for preschool students?

Ihmeideh, Fathi (2010) The role of computer technology in teaching reading and writing: preschool teachers’ beliefs and practices,  Journal of Research in Childhood Education, Jan-March, 2010 Source Volume: 24 Source Issue: 1

This study investigated preschool teachers’ beliefs and practices regarding the use of computer technology in teaching reading and writing in Jordan. The researcher developed a questionnaire consisting of two scales–Teachers’ Beliefs Scale (TB Scale) and Teachers’ Practices Scale (TP Scale)–to examine the role of computer technology in teaching reading and writing to preschoolers. A random sample of 154 preschool teachers participated in the study by completing the questionnaire; 12 teachers were later interviewed. Results indicated that the preschool teachers’ beliefs about the use of computer technology were aligned with their perceptions of their teaching practices, although teachers’ beliefs and their perceptions of their practices were fairly moderate. The results also revealed significant differences between kindergartens in favor of public kindergartens, and the training programs in favor of trained teachers, whereas there was no difference due to area of certification. Directions for further research and recommendations for policy and practice are discussed.

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