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Technology Integration:
Essential Questions (Page 1 of 3)

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Technology Integration is a four part series on essential questions, technology integration resources, web page design, and multimedia in projects.  Sections contain relevant opening essays and resources.

  • Part 2: Technology Integration Resources

    • Page 1: Best Practices for Teaching and Learning with Technology
    • Page 2: Building Internet, Search and Citation Skills, including some Web 2.0 resources that make conducting research easier.
    • Page 3: Online Student and Computer Safety
    • Page 4: Grants, Other Funding, Grant Writing, and Free Resources

  • Part 3: Web Page Design

  • Part 4: Multimedia in Projects

    • Page 1: About Multimedia and Project Development
    • Page 2: Tools for Viewing and Creating Media
    • Page 3: Copyright, Fair Use, Plagiarism

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Small question markHow is educational technology defined?

Historically, there have been numerous definitions and statements concerning the nature and function of educational technology, according to Saettler (2004).  Educational technology has been a term including both instructional technologies, which focus on the teacher and the pedagogies they might employ, and learning technologies, which focus on the learner.  Its meaning has been "intertwined with certain historical conceptions and practices or bound to specific philosophical and psychological theory as well as with particular scientific orientations" and clouded by "the tendency in some quarters to equate new information technology with a technology of instruction" (Saettler, 2004, p. 5).  In the 20th century, four paradigm shifts, each with different philosophical and theoretical orientations, affected theory and practice and definitions of educational technology.  Saettler characterized those as "(1) the physical science or media view; (2) the communications and systems concept; (3) the behavioral science-based view . . .; and (4) the cognitive science perspective" (p. 7).

Definitions, and resulting mindset of the educational technologist, have been influenced by the nature of technology of the time and what could be done with it.  In the early and mid-20th century, the focus was on using tools associated with instructional technologies from blackboards to overhead projectors, B. F. Skinner's learning machines, films and movies, and mainframe computers. However, the advent of computer terminals, personal computers, the Internet, and the growth of broadband communications in the late 20th century enabled mindset shifts toward learning technologies, as those advances enabled greater interactivity and increased possibilities for collaboration among learners.

Thus in the 21st century, we see definitions reflecting a new mindset leaning toward learning technologies and on how instructional technologies can best serve learning. For example, the Association for Educational Communications and Technology (AECT) defined educational technology as "the study and ethical practice of facilitating learning and improving performance by creating, using and managing appropriate technological processes and resources” (Richey, Silber, & Ely, 2008, p. 24).  AECT has also addressed this issue fully in its book Educational Technology: A Definition with Commentary, edited by Alan Januszewski and Michael Molenda (2007).

 

Do you know some key people who have influenced or are presently influencing educational technology?

Question mark

Check out The Tech&Learning 100@30, a project for 2010 related to Tech&Learning's 30th anniversary. The first 30 honorees were plucked from the past— the founding fathers and mothers whose inventions, declarations, and theories set the table for where we are today. This doesn’t mean they can’t be influential now or in the future. The goal was to recognize achievements from 1980 to the present, and even to recognize potential ground-breaking leaders of the future.  The beginning of the list contains such familiar names as Bandura, Jobs, Gardner, Bloom, Gates, McLuhan, Gagne, Papert, Thornburg, Skinner and others.

 

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Small question markHow is technology affecting the learning process?

Technology is affecting the learning process in at least seven ways, each of which is elaborated upon in what follows:

Nature of Learning

Technology is changing the nature of learning.  As noted in the National Education Technology Plan 2010 (U.S. Department of Education, 2010), there are "three connected types of human learning—factual knowledge, procedural knowledge, and motivational engagement ...  supported by three different brain systems. ... Social sciences reveal that human expertise integrates all three types of learning. Technology has increased our ability to both study and enhance all three types of learning" (p. 15).

One does not have to look far to see the affect and influence of the rise of broadband Internet connectivity, the increase in social networking, and greater use of mobile devices on learning.  These have enabled those who possess technology to quickly capture knowledge and information, easily communicate, get feedback from, and collaborate with peers.  Technology becomes another vehicle for creativity, self-expression, and self-production and publication.

Unlike using a paper-based book with a finite number of pages, technology makes the user aware that acquisition of knowledge is potentially limitless.  Knowledge is constantly evolving with the end result that complete mastery of any topic is not truly possible.  Not all information is complete, there are multiple points of view and opinions on a topic that can easily be accessed.  Not all of those perspectives are from authoritative, peer-reviewed sources.  The ease of anyone publishing anything leads to a need for constant questioning of what one reads.  The result is that schools must take a greater role in helping learners to critically evaluate online content.

Empowering Students

Technology is empowering students in four key ways, according to Lemke and Coughlin (2009): democratization of knowledge, participatory learning, authentic learning and multimodal learning.  Democratization is brought about because the "Internet has become a treasure trove for content related to the academic curriculum, providing learners with free access to thousands of valuable courses, information sources, and experts" (p. 54).  "The advent of low-cost global communications has led to mass collaboration in the social, economic, and political sectors" (p. 56) and has found its way into classrooms.  Teachers and students can use tools such as blogs and wikis for participatory and authentic learning in the context of those global issues. Sophisticated media combining text and visuals is supporting multimodal learning, but at the same time is posing challenges for educators in terms of helping learners to interpret and understand multimedia messages (Lemke & Coughlin, 2009).

This multimodal learning is evident in what 21st century students have come to expect in their learning.  They want learning on demand and speed is the name of the game.  They are not afraid of technology. They multi-task, think less linearly than those of us over 30, enjoy fantasy as an element of their lives, are less tolerant of passive activities, and use their tools to stay connected with each other.  That connectedness is the main goal of their multitasking, according to Sprenger (2009), rather than for being productive.  However, excessive connectedness can lead to stress, which overtime can potentially "lower the effectiveness of the immune system, weaken cognitive functioning, and, in some cases, lead to depression" (p. 36).  Their excessive communicating digitally, while being efficient, also has the potential to weaken the development of emotional intelligence in dealing with face-to-face situations (e.g., reading facial cues and body language).

Probable Effects on Cognition

The rapid way in which ideas become freely available, the desire to get that information quickly, and the instantaneous way of switching from one source to another potentially affects learning in yet other ways.  While Schmidt (2010) noted benefits of technology (e.g., online gaming improves strategic reasoning, navigational reasoning, and hand-eye coordination), he voiced a concern that people might be losing deep-reading skills, as they spend less time reading long-form literature passages.  This probably has an effect on cognition and reading, although no one really knows what that does.

In Gasser and Palfrey's (2009) view, multitasking is not going to go away.  It helps today's youth to cope with the vast amount of information coming their way.  It takes on a couple of forms: parallel processing or doing more than one thing at the same time and task-switching or quickly changing from doing one thing to doing another.  Rather than preventing our students from multitasking, a better approach would be to help students understand how multitasking challenges their learning.  After reviewing several studies on the affects of multitasking, Gasser and Palfrey concluded:

  • Multitasking does not render learning impossible.  It does not even necessarily make it more difficult to accomplish tasks.  However, we can safely conclude that task-switching in particular increases the amount of time needed to finish a task.
  • Multitasking is likely to change learning qualitatively by making the learner rely on different memory systems that vary in flexibility when it comes to the use of knowledge.
  • The loss of attention and the time spent switching from task to task is likely to have an adverse effect on digital natives' ability to learn complex new facts and concepts.  (p. 18)

Multitasking and participatory learning can be seen in the online activities of youth, many of whom benefit from the informal settings and activities they have defined for themselves.  In what has been called "the most extensive U.S. study of youth media use" to date, Mizuko Ito, Heather Horst, Matteo Bittanti, Danah Boyd, Becky Herr-Stephenson, Patricia G. Lange, C.J. Pascoe, and Laura Robinson (2008) found that youth use online media to extend friendships and interests. They engage in peer-based, self-directed learning online (pp. 1-2). The scenario has implications for instructional designers and educators:

  • Adults should facilitate young people's engagement with digital media. "Contrary to adult perceptions, while hanging out online, youth are picking up basic social and technical skills they need to fully participate in contemporary society. Erecting barriers to participation deprives teens of access to these forms of learning" (p. 2).
  • Youth using new media often learn from their peers, not teachers or adults. Yet, in interest-driven participation, adults have an important role to play (e.g. in setting learning goals) (pp. 2-3).
  • To stay relevant in the 21st century, education institutions need to keep pace with the rapid changes introduced by digital media.

 

Learn more on how to implement peer instruction.

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"Peer Instruction is a research-based, interactive teaching method developed by Eric Mazur in the 1990s. It has been adopted across the disciplines, institutional types, and throughout the world." To learn more about peer instruction, visit the Peer Instruction Network, "a global community for current and future users of Peer Instruction and related interactive teaching methods" (About section).  You'll also find valuable articles on peer instruction and the flipped classroom in Julie Schell's "official peer instruction" blog, Turn to Your Neighbor.

 

Commenting on results of a Pew Internet & American Life Project report, psychology professor Larry Rosen (2013) pointed out the multitasking with technology that learners do also can negatively affect academic performance in school as learners are unable to focus for long periods of time on any one task.  They might be only able to stay on task for as little as 3-5 minutes before being distracted by such things as having multiple devices in their study environments (e.g., iPods, laptops, smart phones), texting, and using Facebook (p. 62).  Jeffrey Kuznekoff and Scott Titsworth (2013) provided additional evidence on the negative affect on academic performance of learners using mobile devices during class lectures.  They found that "Students who were not using their mobile phones wrote down 62% more information in their notes, took more detailed notes, were able to recall more detailed information from the lecture, and scored a full letter grade and a half higher on a multiple choice test than those students who were actively using their mobile phones" (p. 233).  They suggested informing students of the results of their research, perhaps including a short summary of it within a course syllabus as a way to help learners make a more informed decision on potential impact on their learning of using mobile phones during class lectures.  Yet this might not be enough to convince learners that results might apply to them.

So how should educators facilitate young people's engagement with digital media?  The key is teaching learners how to focus using a process in instruction involving "technology breaks."  According to Rosen(2013):

A tech breaks starts with the teacher asking all students to check their texts, the web, Facebook, whatever, for a minute and then turn the device on silent and place it upside down on the desk in plain sight and to "focus" on the classroom work for 15 minutes.  The upside-down device prohibits external distractions from vibrations and flashing alerts and provide a signal to the brain that there is no need to be internally distracted, because an opportunity to "check in" will be coming soon. (p. 64)

At the end of the focus time, the tech break begins again, and the cycle continues.  Teachers might begin with a focus time of about 15 minutes, gradually increasing the focus time between tech breaks.  However, they might find the maximum focus time might reach about 30 minutes.  Rosen indicated that this technique has also proved successful at the dinner table at home or in restaurants, and during business meetings.

Rise of Informal Learning and New Learning Theory

Technology has also contributed to a rise in informal learning, or at least has made it more evident.  While content and courses are still viewed as the starting point of learning, George Siemens (2005a) indicated that the Web and the Internet are changing that, proof of which is illustrated in Ito and colleagues' study (2008) and in Lemke and Coughlin's view that the Internet has been a change agent for democratization of knowledge (2009).  The majority of education no longer occurs in formal settings.  People are learning "through communities of practice, personal networks, and through completion of work-related tasks" in an environment in which "[k]now-how and know-what is being supplemented with know-where (the understanding of where to find knowledge needed)" (Introduction section). Thus, he viewed making connections, not content, should be perceived as the beginning point of the learning process.

Siemens' "connectivism" theory calls for a rethinking of learning in the digital age, illustrating that technology has led to new learning theory.  To date theories of behaviorism, cognitivism, and constructivism have dominated instructional design and still have their place in the domains of learning (see Table 1).  However, those theories are challenged in the digital age because "[m]any of the processes previously handled by learning theories (especially in cognitive information processing) can now be off-loaded to, or supported by, technology" (Siemens, 2005a, Introduction).  In contrast to established theories of learning, the essence of connectivism is that learning is viewed as a connections/network-forming process (Siemens, 2005c).

Connectivism recognizes that learning resides in a collective of individuals' opinions and even in non-human appliances. Core skills include an ability to see connections between fields, ideas, and concepts and to locate sources of unknown knowledge when you need it at its point of application.  The intent of learning activities is currency (accurate, up-to-date knowledge).  Because knowledge is increasing exponentially, it can rapidly change what is perceived as a reality.  Thus, the decision making process (what to learn and its meaning) is a learning process itself (Siemens, 2005a).  The process is complicated by new communications tools that have sprung up, which give greater end-user control over what is published on the Web, resulting in some amateur contributions of questionable quality.

 

Table 1: Learning Domains with Associated Theories
Learning Domain Associated Theories Traits Percent of learning over a lifetime contributed by the domain
Transmission: Learning as instructor led courses, lectures, demonstrations Behaviorism & Cognitivism High organizational control over content and structure; Learning is mastering pre-determined objectives; developmental and formative learning occurs; formal learning about 10%
Emergence: Learning as reflection and cognition Cognitivism & Constructivism High personal control over content and structure; Learning is learner constructed; personal learning and innovation occur; informal learning about 1-2%
Acquisition: Learning as self-selected (e.g., exploring, experimenting, self-instruction, inquiry, satisfying a curiosity) Constructivism & Connectivism High personal control over content with some personal control over structure.  Learning is learner motivated, collaborative; involves a variety of sources; group and needs-based learning occurs; informal learning about 20%
Accretion: Learning as continual/embedded process; often subliminal or unconscious (e.g., accounting for learning of language, culture, habits, prejudices, social rules, behaviors) Connectivism High personal control over content with high organizational control over structure; Learning in a network; knowing-where to find information is valued; connection-making; informal learning about 70%

Sources for content and percentages adapted from:

Siemens, G. (2005). Learning development model: Bridging learning design and modern knowledge needs. Elearnspace. Retrieved July 24, 2007 from http://www.elearnspace.org/Articles/ldc.htm 

Wilson, L. O., (1997). Types of learning. Retrieved September 12, 2012 from http://www4.uwsp.edu/education/lwilson/learning/typesofl.htm

 

Personalization as a Trend in Life-Long Learning

Personalization is among trends driving the global economy, and this is no less true when working with technology, and the internet (Kelleher, 2006).  According to Siemens (2005b), learning ecologies and networks are structures that enable continual and personalized learning and should be considered in instructional design.  Learning communities, information sources, and individuals can all be considered nodes or connection points in a network and it only takes two nodes to share resources.  Networks need to occur within an ecology.  An ecological approach to learning is open, adaptive, decentralized, tolerates experimentation/failure, reflects a need for simplicity, promotes trust and learning in safe environments, and includes many tools for dialogue and making connections.  A learning ecology includes the following (Siemens, 2005b, Learning Ecology section):

  • A space for gurus and beginners to connect (master/apprentice)
  • A space for self-expression (blog, journal)
  • A space for debate and dialogue (listserv, discussion forum, open meetings)
  • A space to search archived knowledge (portal, website)
  • A space to learn in a structured manner (courses, tutorials)
  • A space to communicate new information and knowledge indicative of changing elements within the field of practice (news, research)

Ultimately, the value of the theory of connectivism is its link to the concept of life-long learning.  According to Siemens (2005c), "We are moving from formal, rigid learning into an environment of informal, connection-based, network-creating learning...Knowing is no longer a destination. Knowing is a process of walking in varying degrees of alignment with a dynamic environment" (Conclusion section). Gone are the days of "this is what it is."

For personalized learning to really take-off in classrooms and revolutionize education, technology will need to be at the forefront.  Thomas Greaves (2012) indicated, the most effective implementations include a "well-implemented 1-to-1 laptop initiative," "learning management systems ...because they provide the framework that supports several different personalization functions without adding a lot of extra work for the teacher," "access to online remedial coursework," and "open access to search tools" (p. 35).  "Each of the following types of learning can per personalized for and by students, in part by adjusting the instruction, complexity, and level of authenticity" per Cheryl Lemke (2014):

  • Drill and Practice
  • Blended Learning (a Combination of F2F plus Apps/Objects, Video, Intelligent Adaptive Learning, etc.)
  • Productivity Tools (word processors, spreadsheets, presentation software, etc.)
  • Organizational Tools Enabling Self-Directed Learning
  • Online Research
  • Communication Tools (including video, audio, and text, etc.)
  • Virtual Learning
  • Visual Thinking/Learning Tools
  • Collaboration/Social Networking and Media
  • Online and Embedded Assessment
  • Construction Tools/Game Creation
  • Problem Solving/ Data Analysis
  • Virtual Worlds/Serious Games/Simulations (Lemke, 2014)

Educators must keep in mind, however, that a true personalized learning environment (PLE) "draws on a variety of discrete tools, chosen by the learner, which can be connected or used in concert in a transparent way. ... a PLE is not simply a technology but an approach or process that is individualized by design, and thus different from person to person. It involves sociological and philosophical considerations and cannot be packaged, passed out, and handed around as a cell phone or tablet computer could. Widespread adoption of PLEs ... will almost certainly also require a shift in attitudes toward technology, teaching, and learning" (Johnson, Adams, & Haywood, 2011, p. 30).

 

Personalize Math Learning

Visit Symbaloo to see how Algebra might be personalized for teaching and learning.  You'll find a "webmix" of lesson plans, tutorials, and online tools for all levels of algebra.

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Don't let a one-computer classroom stop you from technology integration.  You can now "work in the cloud."

Jennifer Barnett (2011) provided a few tips in High-Tech Teaching in a Low-Tech Classroom.  Among those are the following ideas:

In the pass-it-on buddy method, students assist one another in creating the digital product.  Barnett stated, "Choose and prepare the best technological tool to fit your learning target. Students complete an assignment on paper (for example, writing text for a blog entry). Teach one student to translate their work into a digital product. Schedule a buddy system: Student A teaches student B, student B teaches student C, and so on."  Great for group work.

In the group consensus method, "Small groups of students engage in dialogue on a particular topic, then a member uses a digital tool to report on the group's consensus."

In the rotating scribe method, "Each day, one student uses technology [of his/her choice] to record the lesson for other students."  Begin by modeling the process.  "Then have the student record what happened in class: activities, explanations, student questions, discussion, etc. Review the scribe’s work after class. Begin class the next day by asking students to "evaluate" the scribe's report."

In a whole class method, the group (or half of the class at a time) gathers around the computer to explore web sites, tools, games, videos, interactive quizzes, and so on.  Groups can "share results, scores, impressions, or other information with each other."  Post resources on a class web site, so that students might explore at home.  Provide time in class for individuals to explore and then share their findings at the end of a unit.  Let the group decide on the best discovery and then reward the student who made the discovery.

Great tips!  Read the article for additional details.

 

What's the difference between personalization, differentiation and individualization in instruction?

Question markPersonalization, differentiation and individualization are buzzwords in education and have been elaborated upon and defined in various publications.  In the 2010 National Education Technology Plan, Transforming American Education: Learning Powered by Technology, the U.S. Department of Education defined them as follows:

Individualization refers to instruction that is paced to the learning needs of different learners. Learning goals are the same for all students, but students can progress through the material at different speeds according to their learning needs. For example, students might take longer to progress through a given topic, skip topics that cover information they already know, or repeat topics they need more help on.

Differentiation refers to instruction that is tailored to the learning preferences of different learners. Learning goals are the same for all students, but the method or approach of instruction varies according to the preferences of each student or what research has found works best for students like them.

Personalization refers to instruction that is paced to learning needs, tailored to learning preferences, and tailored to the specific interests of different learners. In an environment that is fully personalized, the learning objectives and content as well as the method and pace may all vary (so personalization encompasses differentiation and individualization).  (p. 12)

These definitions above focus on instruction, rather than the learner in the view of Barbara Bray and Kathleen McClaskey.  They elaborated on the learner and these terms in their Report about Personalization vs Differentiation vs Individualization (V2) (2013) at Personalize Learning.  For example, they noted that personalization is learner-centered in that the "learner drives their learning", and differentiation and individualization are teacher-centered.  For differentiation, "the teacher provides instruction to groups of learners."  For individualization, "the teacher provides instruction to an individual learner" (p. 3).  They provide a full chart on the differences that is worth viewing.

Personalized Learning: A Guide to Engaging Students with Technology by Grant & Basye

Personalized Learning: A Guide to Engaging Students with Technology by Peggy Grant and Dale Basye (2014) includes what you need to know to implement personalized learning with technology in your school setting.  You'll learn why personalized learning is important and how it differs from differentiation and individualized learning, how personalization relates to the Common Core standards, and how personalization can transform teaching via the models of technology integration presented.  Assessment in a personalized environment is addressed, along with policies and perspectives that make 1:1 and mobile device initiatives successful.  The book concludes with funding information and a planning process for a 1:1 personalized learning program.

Note: Educators have also been hearing about the buzzword "adaptive learning" in connection with products from ed tech companies and publishers.  However, the term is not the same as "personalized learning."  Per John Waters (2014), adaptive learning is "an approach to instruction and remediation that uses technology and accumulated data to provide customized program adjustments based on an individual student's level of demonstrated mastery" (online p. 1).  Technology is not required for personalization, the latter of which educators have been doing for decades.  Read more in Adaptive Learning: Are We There Yet? at T.H.E. Journal.

 

Emerging Technologies Impact Teaching and Learning

The K-12 Horizon Reports (Johnson, Adams, & Haywood, 2011; Johnson, Levine, Smith, & Haywood, 2010; Johnson, Levine, Smith, & Smythe, 2009) lend support to views expressed above. Written as a joint effort of the New Media Consortium and the Consortium for School Networking (CoSN) with funding from Microsoft, the reports examine "emerging technologies for their potential impact on and use in teaching, learning, and creative expression within the environment of pre-college education" (Johnson, Levine, Smith, & Smythe, 2009, p. 3).  Thus in summation, look for the following predictions from the 2009 report for technology adoptions that will change the learning process in the near future:

  • In one year or less: collaborative environments and online communication tools.  Johnson, Levine, Smith, and Smythe (2009) indicated, “both groups of technologies are now standard in the digital toolset of postsecondary students. In many grade schools, on the other hand, integrating these kinds of technologies into teaching and learning has proven difficult because of barriers such as policy constraints on using online tools, the fact that many students do not bring laptops to school (as opposed to many college students, who do), and policies that restrict Internet access in many schools” (p. 4).

  • Within two to three years, mobiles and cloud computing.  This time estimate "is a reflection of the fact that younger students are, at present, less likely than college-age students to carry mobile devices, especially Internet-capable ones — although there is a growing trend that suggests this will not always be the case — and that access to cloud-based applications is more difficult for younger students for the same reasons that collaborative environments and online communication tools are often out of reach” (p. 4). Note that cloud computing refers to large groups of networked servers, which have "made processing power and storage capacity available in abundant quantities. Applications that are developed to run in the cloud and take advantage of the ability to scale up or down along with the number of users and storage demands are changing the way we think about programs and files. Collaborative work, research, social networking, media sharing, virtual computers: all are enabled by applications that live in the cloud” (p. 5).

  • In four to five years, smart objects and the personal web . Smart object appliances aimed at consumers are appearing on the market, and the technology shows promise for linking physical objects with rich caches of online content, but common use in schools is still several years away. The technology was placed on the same horizon in the higher education edition of the 2009 Horizon Report. The personal web, on the other hand, is perceived as being slightly closer to mainstream adoption in higher education than in grade schools; the topic appears on the mid-term horizon for higher education” (p. 4).

From the 2010 K-12 Horizon Report, Johnson, Levine, Smith, and Haywood (2010) noted that cloud computing and collaborative environments remain as top emerging technologies for adoptions within 2010-2011, followed by interest in and rise of adoptions of game-based-learning and mobiles within two to three years from 2010.  On a further horizon, set for four to five years away from 2010, look for adoptions of augmented reality and flexible displays, which are elaborated on within this report. Of key interest is that technology integration is challenged by the fundamental structure of K-12 education.  Unfortunately, many activities related to learning and education that take place outside the school setting are often undervalued or not acknowledged.

Table 2 contains comparisons of emerging technologies from K-12 Horizon Reports from 2009-2014.  Notice that the 2011, 2013, and 2014 reports include the emergence of learning analytics.  Learn more about Learning Analytics: Leveraging Information Data in an infographic from informED.  What can it do?  What can it be used for?  How it will affect the future?  Why is it not widely used yet?

 

Table 2: Emerging Technologies Predicted in K-12 Horizon Reports 2009-2014
Time to Adoption 1 yr. or less 2-3 yrs. 4-5 yrs.
2009 Collaborative environments and online communication Mobiles and cloud computing Smart objects and the personal web
2010 Cloud computing and collaborative environments Game-based learning and mobiles Augmented reality and flexible displays
2011 Mobile apps and cloud computing Game-based learning and open content Personalized learning environments and learning analytics
2012 Mobile devices and apps; and tablet computing Game-based learning and personal learning environments Augmented reality and natural user interfaces
2013 Cloud computing; mobile learning Learning analytics; open content 3D Printing; remote and virtual laboratories
2014 BYOD (Bring Your Own Device); Cloud computing Games and Gamification; Learning analytics The Internet of Things*; Wearable technology

Sources:

Johnson, L., Adams Becker, S., Estrada, V., and Freeman, A. (2014). The NMC Horizon Report: 2014 K-12 Edition. Austin, TX: The New Media Consortium. Retrieved from http://cdn.nmc.org/media/2014-nmc-horizon-report-k12-EN.pdf

Johnson, L., Adams Becker, S., Cummins, M., Estrada V., Freeman, A., & Ludgate, H. (2013). The NMC Horizon Report: 2013 K-12 Edition. Austin, TX: The New Media Consortium. Retrieved from http://www.nmc.org/pdf/2013-horizon-report-k12.pdf

Johnson, L., Adams, S., & Cummins, M. (2012). The NMC Horizon Report: 2012 K-12 Edition. Austin, TX: The New Media Consortium. Retrieved from http://www.nmc.org/pdf/2012-horizon-report-K12.pdf

Johnson, L., Adams, S., & Haywood, K. (2011). The NMC Horizon Report: 2011 K-12 Edition. Austin, TX: The New Media Consortium. Retrieved from http://media.nmc.org/iTunesU/HR-K12/2011/2011-Horizon-Report-K12.pdf

Johnson, L., Smith, R., Levine, A., & Haywood, K. (2010). 2010 Horizon Report: K-12 Edition. Austin, TX: The New Media Consortium. Retrieved from http://www.nmc.org/pdf/2010-Horizon-Report-K12.pdf

Johnson, L., Levine, A., Smith, R., & Smythe, T. (2009). 2009 Horizon Report: K-12 edition. Austin, TX: The New Media Consortium. Retrieved from http://www.nmc.org/pdf/2009-Horizon-Report-K12.pdf

*For more on The Internet of Things, view the video from IBM on how we are becoming a smarter planet.  The internet enables communication with people and with objects where everything becomes networked.

 

 

To further keep abreast of how technology is changing the learning process, visit MindShift, which explores "the future of learning in all its dimensions – covering cultural and technology trends, groundbreaking research, education policy and more" (About this Site section).

New and Enhanced Processes in Mathematics Education

Technology (e.g., Web 2.0 and the social internet) is changing the learning process within mathematics education in ways Lemke and Coughlin (2009) noted (i.e., democratization of knowledge, participatory learning, authentic learning and multimodal learning) and in consideration of Siemens (2005c) theory of connectivism.  Maria Droujkova (2009), developer of Natural Math, formulated a Math 2.0 framework “where mathematical education is viewed within a cultural context, defining learning as taking on roles in communities and networks. Changes in mathematics education, then, are culture shifts that include many events at individual, family, local community and group, and global network levels" (p. 2).  This framework considers mathematical authoring; community mathematics; humanistic mathematics; executable mathematics; and psychology of mathematics learning and education (p. 2). In describing these directions, she noted (p. 3):

  • Tools and practices of user-generated content, as well as the internet participatory trends of co-production, crowdsourcing, and open educational resources can powerfully support mathematical authoring.

  • For community mathematics, free, well-designed communication platforms such as nings, blogs, wikis, microblogging, forums, aggregators, and distributed content mash-ups can support online and local math clubs and math circles, topical discussion and study communities, and networks growing around a variety of particular math endeavors: competitions, educational philosophies, comic strips, books, or curricula.

  • . . . Humanistic mathematics approach promotes activities that an audience can enjoy. On the web, this includes infusing mathematics into robust artistic and musical communities; creation and viral spread of appealing math-rich media; and developing newbie-friendly tools and communities supporting authoring of such media.”

  • . . . Web 2.0 brings several crucial changes to this field of executable mathematics, including zero-cost distribution of virtual manipulatives; an invitation for everybody to create their own math-rich objects through programming or “construction set” mash-up environments; situating math objects in multi-user virtual worlds; and ease of sharing and continuing development in open educational resource communities.

  • Psychology of mathematics education incorporates theories of teaching and learning, studies and practices of meta-cognition, developmental awareness, and support of emotional well-being such as math anxiety reduction. Web 2.0 requires a shift toward more social views on the psychology of mathematics education and its role, within this framework, of supporting the other four dimensions. (Droujkova, 2009, p. 3)

Math in a Cultural Context (MCC): Lessons Learned from Yup’ik Eskimo Elders from the University of Alaska Fairbanks exemplifies Droujkova's framework.  MCC is "a long-term and ongoing set of interrelated federally funded projects. Central to MCC is its long-term collaboration with Yup’ik elders, teachers, and Alaskan school districts to develop culturally based curricular materials, especially supplemental math curriculum for elementary school students." In addition to supplemental math modules for grades 2-6, MCC includes  "supporting materials such as DVD clips of teachers’ implementing exemplary lessons, written case studies, a Guide to Implementing MCC, literacy activities and stories that develop cultural, mathematical, and contextual connections for students. Most importantly, most MCC modules have been tested using either a quasi or experimental design with findings repeatedly showing that MCC students outperform comparable control group students who use their regular math curriculum." (MCC About Us section)

Another resource illustrating community mathematics in Droujkova's framework (2009) is the National Association of Math Circles, which is for students.  According to the Association, "Mathematical Circles are a form of education enrichment and outreach that bring mathematicians and mathematical scientists into direct contact with pre-college students. These students, and sometimes their teachers, meet with mathematical professionals in an informal setting, after school or on weekends, to work on interesting problems or topics in mathematics. The goal is to get the students excited about the mathematics, giving them a setting that encourages them to become passionate about mathematics" (Introduction to Math Circles section).  Similarly, middle school teachers can take advantage of the Math Teachers’ Circle Network from the American Institute of Mathematics.  Their math circles throughout the United States work to foster an enjoyment of mathematics among middle school math teachers within a culture of problem solving.

 

Web 2.0 in Instruction: Adding Spice to Math Education

Read more about the Math 2.0 framework and its relevance for math education in Dr. Patricia Deubel's article Web 2.0 in Instruction: Adding Spice to Math Education of  February 17, 2010,  in T.H.E. Journal.

 

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Small question markWhat is technological literacy?

Various definitions have been proposed for technological literacy.

The International Technology Education Association (ITEA, 2000) defined technological literacy as the "ability to use, manage, assess, and understand technology" (p. 9). Greg Pearson and A. Thomas Young (2002) stated that it “encompasses three interdependent dimensions--knowledge, ways of thinking and acting, and capabilities," with the goal "to provide people with the tools to participate intelligently and thoughtfully in the world around them" (p. 9).  "Although technical competency is not the same as technological literacy, the development of skills in technology can lead to a better understanding of the underlying technology and could be used as a basis for teaching about the nature, history, and role of technology in our lives" (p. 11).

The North Central Regional Educational Laboratory and the Metiri Group (2003) offered a definition of Literacy for the Digital Age. This definition includes basic literacy, scientific literacy, economic literacy, technological literacy, visual literacy, information literacy, multicultural literacy, and global awareness.  "Technological literacy is knowledge about what technology is, how it works, what purposes it can serve, and how it can be used efficiently and effectively to achieve specific goals" (p. 15).

Within the State Educational Technology Directors Association's National Leadership Toolkit (2003), "Technology literacy is the ability to responsibly use appropriate technology to communicate, solve problems, and access, manage, integrate, evaluate, and create information to improve learning in all subject areas and to acquire lifelong knowledge and skills in the 21st century" (Technology Literacy Assessment section).

In its Framework for 21st Century Learning, the Partnership for 21st Century Skills (2009) defined ICT (information, communications, and technology) literacy as applying technology effectively.  Learners should be able to:

  • Use technology as a tool to research, organize, evaluate and communicate information

  • Use digital technologies (computers, PDAs, media players, GPS, etc.), communication/networking tools and social networks appropriately to access, manage, integrate, evaluate and create information to successfully function in a knowledge economy

  • Apply a fundamental understanding of the ethical/legal issues surrounding the access and use of information technologies(section: P21 Framework Definitions Document, pp. 5-6).

The emergence and integration of ICT into instruction and student lives has given new meaning to Bloom's Taxonomy of cognitive objectives.  Andrew Churches (2008) discussed an interesting set of new digital verbs for each of the levels in the taxonomy, reflecting new objectives in the road to literacy.  He calls it Bloom's Digital Taxonomy Map, a must see.

Thus, by integrating technology into K-12 schools, we are assisting with the development of technologically literate citizens.  However, schools must also be aware of a conclusion reached by Ito and colleagues (2008): Given the diversity of digital media, "it is problematic to develop a standardized set of benchmarks to measure levels of new media and technical literacy" for our youth (p. 2).

 

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Small question markWhat do we mean by technology integration?

There are multiple ways to think about technology integration.  According to Johnson, Adams Becker, Estrada, and Freeman (2014, pp. 32-33), there are at least seven categories of technologies, tools, and strategies to help categorize emerging technologies and to serve as lenses into technology integration and innovation:

  • Consumer technologies find their way into schools because people use them at home, for recreation, or professionally.  Examples include 3D video, electronic publishing, mobile apps, tablet computing, telepresence, and wearable technology.

  • Digital strategies are ways of using digital devices and software in both formal and informal settings.  Among strategies are Bring Your Own Device, the flipped classroom, games and gamification, location intelligence, makerspaces, and preservation/conservation technologies.

  • Enabling technologies "expand the reach of our tools, and make them more capable and useful, and often easier to use as well" (p. 32).  There are multiple examples to illustrate.  Among those are cellular networks, electrovibration, flexible displays, geolocation, machine learning, mobile broadband, natural user interfaces, next-generation batteries, open hardware, speech-to-speech translation, statistical machine translation, virtual assistants, and wireless power.

  • Internet technologies "include techniques and essential infrastructure that help to make the technologies underlying how we interact with the network more transparent, less obtrusive, and easier to use" (p. 33).  Consider technologies such as cloud computing, the Internet of Things, real-time translation, semantic applications, single sign-on, and syndication tools.

  • Learning technologies are tools and resources designed for education.  They "include technologies that are changing the landscape of learning, whether formal or informal, by making it more accessible and personalized" (p. 33).  Badges/Microcredit, learning analytics, MOOCs, mobile learning, online learning, open content, open licensing, and virtual and remote laboratories examplify this category.

  • Social media technologies are characterized by keywords such as collaborative environments, collective intelligence, crowdfunding, crowdsourcing, digital identity, social networks, and tacit intelligence.

  • Visualization technologies range from "simple infographics to complex forms of visual data analysis. What they have in common is that they tap the brain’s inherent ability to rapidly process visual information, identify patterns, and sense order in complex situations" (p. 33).  Examples include 3D printing/rapid prototyping, augmented reality, information visualization, visual data analysis, and volumetric and holographic displays.

Technology integration, as defined by the National Forum on Education Statistics (2005), Forum Unified Education Technology Suite, "is the incorporation of technology resources and technology-based practices into the daily routines, work, and management of schools" (Part 8). Resources are computers and specialized software, network-based communication systems, and other equipment and infrastructure. Practices include collaborative work and communication, Internet-based research, remote access to instrumentation, network-based transmission and retrieval of data, and other methods.

Software for integration includes a wide variety of applications (Software & Information Industry Association, 2006) that:

  • meet instructional, curriculum/content, assessment, classroom management, and enterprise level administrative tasks;
  • are used in the classroom, school office, and potentially accessed offsite such as from home (student or educator) or from a mobile device;
  • are installed on a computer or other device, installed on a school local network or wide area network, or hosted by a third party and accessed online via a web browser;
  • include a wide variety of digital content ranging from an electronic version of a printed material (e.g., e-book or pdf file) to multi-media, interactive and adaptive courseware. (p. 3)

Aditi Rao (2013) of TeachBytes made a concise comparison of "using technology" versus "technology integration."  In her view of "using technology," technology use is random, arbitrary, and often an afterthought.  Technology is rare and sporadically used in the classroom, used for the sake of using technology, used mostly by the teacher to instruct learners on content.  It's used more to complete lower order thinking tasks, and more instructional time is spent learning how to use the technology itself.  Learners would use it primarily for working alone.  Technology is used to facilitate activities that are feasible or easier to complete without technology.  Technology is used to deliver information and is peripheral to the learning activity.  Whereas, in her view of "technology integration," technology usage is planned and purposeful; technology is a routine part of the classroom environment and used to support curricular content and learning objectives.  Technology is used to engage students and is used mostly by them.  The focus on using technologies is to create and develop new thinking processes.  More instructional time is spent using technology to learn.  Technology is used to encourage higher order thinking skills, to facilitate collaboration in and out of the classroom, and to facilitate activities that would otherwise be difficult or impossible.  Technology is used to construct and build knowledge.  It is essential to the learning activity.

To measure the extent of technology integration within your setting, consider the following key questions (National Forum of Education Statistics, 2005, adapted from Part 8):

  • Are teachers and students proficient in using technology in the teaching/learning environment?
  • To what extent (percentage) has technology been integrated in the teaching/learning environment?
  • Do teaching and learning standards and student assessment include technology proficiencies and measures?
  • Do administrative standards include technology proficiencies and measures?
  • Are administrators and support personnel proficient in using technology for school management?
  • Is technology incorporated into administrative processes?
  • Is technology proficiency integrated into evaluation of instructional and support staff?

 

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References

Barnett, J. (2011, August 10).  High-tech teaching in a low-tech classroom. Education Week: Teacher Leaders Network.  Retrieved from http://www.edweek.org/tm/articles/2011/08/10/barnett_hightechteaching.html?tkn=XXCCCxWg8HCvlD2vO3uDaIFdDC6YXlBjOMzH&cmp=clp-sb-edtech

Bray, B., & McClaskey, K. (2013).  Report about personalization vs differentiation vs individualization (v2).  Retrieved from http://www.personalizelearning.com/2012/04/explaining-chart.html

Churches, A. (2008, April 1). Bloom's taxonomy blooms digitally. Retrieved from http://www.techlearning.com/article/8670

Droujkova, M. (2009, July 14). "Where is math 2.0?" Accepted anthology chapter [MariaD's blog].  Retrieved from http://www.naturalmath.com/blog

Gasser, U., & Palfrey, J. (2009). Mastering multitasking. Educational Leadership, 66(6), 15-19.

Greaves, T. (2012). This time it's personal. T.H.E. Journal, 39(1), 33-36.

ITEA (2000). Standards for technological literacy: Content for the study of technology. Reston, VA: Author. Retrieved from http://www.iteaconnect.org/TAA/PDFs/xstnd.pdf

Ito, M., Horst, H. A., Bittanti, M., Boyd, D., Herr-Stephenson, B., Lange, P. G., Pascoe, C. J., & Robinson, L. (2008, November). Living and learning with new media: Summary of findings from the digital youth project. The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Reports on Digital Media and Learning. Retrieved from http://digitalyouth.ischool.berkeley.edu/report

Johnson, L., Adams Becker, S., Estrada, V., and Freeman, A. (2014). The NMC Horizon Report: 2014 K-12 Edition. Austin, TX: The New Media Consortium. Retrieved from http://cdn.nmc.org/media/2014-nmc-horizon-report-k12-EN.pdf

Johnson, L., Adams Becker, S., Cummins, M., Estrada V., Freeman, A., & Ludgate, H. (2013). The NMC Horizon Report: 2013 K-12 Edition. Austin, TX: The New Media Consortium. Retrieved from http://www.nmc.org/pdf/2013-horizon-report-k12.pdf

Johnson, L., Adams, S., & Cummins, M. (2012). The NMC Horizon Report: 2012 K-12 Edition. Austin, TX: The New Media Consortium. Retrieved from http://www.nmc.org/pdf/2012-horizon-report-K12.pdf

Johnson, L., Adams, S., & Haywood, K. (2011). The NMC Horizon Report: 2011 K-12 Edition. Austin, TX: The New Media Consortium. Retrieved from http://media.nmc.org/iTunesU/HR-K12/2011/2011-Horizon-Report-K12.pdf

Johnson, L., Smith, R., Levine, A., & Haywood, K. (2010). 2010 Horizon Report: K-12 Edition. Austin, TX: The New Media Consortium. Retrieved from http://www.nmc.org/pdf/2010-Horizon-Report-K12.pdf

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Kelleher, K. (2006, July). Personalize it. Wired Magazine, 136.

Kuznekoff. J. H., & Titsworth, S. (2013). The impact of mobile phone usage on student learning. Communication Education, 62(3), 233-252.  Retrieved from http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/03634523.2013.767917

Lemke, C. (2014, August 19). Range of use for digital learning.  Retrieved from http://www.k12blueprint.com/content/range-use-digital-learning

Lemke, C., & Coughlin, E. (2009, September). The change agents. Educational Leadership, 67(1), 54-59.

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North Central Regional Educational Laboratory, & Metiri Group (2003). enGauge® 21st century skills: Literacy in the digital age. Retrieved from http://learning.metiri.com/

Partnership for 21st Century Skills (2009). Framework for 21st century learning. Retrieved from http://www.p21.org/ 

Pearson, G., & Young, A. T. (2002). Technically speaking: Why all Americans need to know more about technology. The Technology Teacher, 62(1), 8-12.

Rao, A. (2013, March 29). What's the difference between "using technology" and "technology integration"? [Web log post].  Retrieved from http://teachbytes.com/2013/03/29/whats-the-difference-between-using-technology-and-technology-integration/

Richey, R. C., Silber, K. H., & Ely, D. P. (2008). Reflections on the 2008 AECT definitions of the field. TechTrends, 52(1), 24-25.

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Saettler, P. (2004). The evolution of American educational technology. Greenwich, CT: Information Age Publishing.

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Wilson, L. O. (1997). Types of learning. Retrieved from http://www4.uwsp.edu/education/lwilson/learning/typesofl.htm

 

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Binoculars GifSee other Technology Integration pages:

Part 1:Technology Integration: Essential Questions: Page 1  |  2  | 3  |

Part 2: Technology Integration Resources  |  Part 3: Web Page Design  |  Part 4: Multimedia in Projects