Notes from Two TPACK Sessions at SITE 2010

Testing a TPACK-Based Technology Integration Assessment Rubric

Judi Harris, Neal Grandgenett, and Mark Hofer
  • Looking at the work of TPACK over the past five years
    • Much exploration of the construct — what does it look like?
    • About two years ago, more work about how to help teachers develop TPACK
    • Now we are interested in finding out more about assessing TPACK, both for pre-service and in-service teachers
  • Testing instruments for reliability and validity
    • Most of the instruments have been self-reporting instruments
      • This is important as their sense of their own knowledge is crucial
      • Yet, we need to triangulate their own assessments with external measures
        • Observation
        • Interview
        • Artifacts
        • Self-report
      • We still strongly believe that we need to do some or all of these in order to have the optimal approach to measuring TPACK, but we know that is not always possible
    • Wanted to create an instrument that would help external reporting of TPACK
  • Search
    • We did find one external assessment of teachers’ lesson plans, but it didn’t quite work well for a larger picture
    • Adapted the Technology Integration Assessment Instrument (Britten and Cassady, 2005)
  • Design
    • Informal feedback from experienced teachers
    • Formal feedback from TPACK researchers
    • Revised rubric based on that feedback
  • Technology Integration Assessment Rubric — licensed under CC AT-NC-ND
    • Construct validity from 6 expert reviewers
    • Face validity from 14 experienced teachers
    • Reliability Analyses with interrater reliability, internal consistency, and test-retest reliability
    • We can recommend it to be used with pre-service teachers’ lesson plans, and we would like to test it with experienced teacher’s lesson plans
      • Also, by using interviews with experienced teachers
      • Develop an observation instrument
Aspiring to Reach 21st Century Ideals: Teacher Educators’ Experiences in Developing Their TPACK
Mia Kim Williams, Keith Wetzel, and Teresa Folger
  • Teacher educators prepare their students for the future of education, yet the world keeps changing
    • Need to include technology, develop processes for teacher to learn skills and transfer to their practice, and change the way we teach
    • Wanted to develop projects that would help teachers transfer ideas about technology use, 21st century tools, and project-based learning to their classroom
  • Professional development model
    • Working in a face-to-face setting while learning web 2.0 tools
    • Revise a unit that they taught in their pre-service courses
  • Research questions
    • What innovative characteristics exist among faculty?
    • How did faculty build technological, pedagogical, and content knowledge through the workshop experience?
  • Findings
    • Thinking about technology promoted pedagogical change, but no change in content knowledge
    • TPACK increased through the curriculum development process, but there is still a long way to go
    • Some did take on new strategies with a changed approach; did appreciate the collaborative approach
    • Are the pre-service teachers actually improving their TPACK?


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Notes from Lisa Dawley’s “The Evolution of Teacher Education in a Digital Learning Era” at SITe 2010″

The Evolution of Teacher Education in a Digital Learning Era: Transforming Knowledge in the Global Network

Lisa Dawley, Boise State University
  • The Unavoidable Evolution in Teacher Education
    • Travels around the world, others saying that American students are creative; yet, still calls for reform, especially in teacher education, keep happening here in US
    • New US EdTech plan, too
  • Growth in Online Education
    • Over 1 million K-12 kids learn online; 47% increase in the past two years
    • Fall 2007, 20% of college student were enrolled in an online course
    • 45 states offer some kind of state supplemental program online, as well as fully online K-12 programs offered as charter schools
    • Idaho K12 virtual schools — 14,000 students enrolled last year
  • K12 Online Options
    • Moving along a continuum from traditional integrated tech classroom to hybrid course to online tech enhanced schools to full-time virtual schooling
    • Other hybrids exist, including options that are in brick and mortar schools and homeschools
    • iNACOL – The International Association for K-12 Online Learning
  • Effects of online learning report
    • The effectiveness of online learning is tied to learning time, curriculum, pedagogy, and opportunities for collaboration
    • Gives learners control of their interactions with media… move, use, remix, edit, build, chance, click, interact, change…
    • Online learning can be enhanced by prompting learner reflection
    • What doesn’t impact learning
      • Incorporating online quizzes
      • Media combinations don’t matter, but control over them does
    • Henry Jenkins and participatory culture: MIT TV clip
  • Pedagogical Framework from Dawley: Social Network Knowledge Construction
    • Identify
    • Lurk
    • Contribute
    • Create
    • Lead
  • How do we design programs to rethink teacher education?
    • At Boise State, it is only graduate degrees and certificates
    • Fully online for past seven years; students throughout the world
    • Moved from Blackboard to Moodle, integrating web 2.0 tools into portal
    • Integration of videos from YouTube, TeacherTube, WatchKnow
    • Avatar creation through Voki and SitePals
    • Graphic blogs through Glogster
    • 3D learning games such as Conspiracy Code
  • Open source and free content
    • iTunesU
    • 3D virtual worlds: Opensource metaverse, croquet
    • Moodle learning management systen
  • Mobile learning
    • Educational apps
    • Texting
    • LMS access
    • Multimedia
    • GPS-based curriculum
    • In three years, mobile devices will become the main interface used to browse the internet
  • Exergaming
    • State-wide online tournaments for gaming
  • Innovative courses, participatory networks
  • Help lead the teacher education revolution


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Notes from Erin Reilly’s “Remix Culture for Learning” at SITE 2010

The Gap Between Life and Art: Remix Culture for Learning

Erin Reilly, University of Southern California


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Notes from “Blending Online and On-Site Spaces and Communities: Developing Effective Practices”

Notes from “Blending Online and On-Site Spaces and Communities: Developing Effective Practices”

Niki Davis, Julie Mackey, Ann Mcgrath, Donna Morrow, Lawrence Walker, Nicki Dabner, University of Canterbury, New Zealand

  • E-learning blends to discuss
    • Blending physical and virtual spaces
    • Blending teacher’s online learning communities and local communities of colleagues
    • Blending teaching practice online with teachers redeveloping K-12 education
  • Online learning?
    • Learning with and through digital technologies
    • Online courses and resources for teachers, students, and the wider community
    • Online and blended learning is more effective
    • Creating learning communities
  • Characteristics of a learning community
    • Common cultural and historical heritage — build heritage with mediated artifacts
    • Interdependent system — sense of shared purpose and identity
    • Reproduction cycle — moving in and out, legitimate peripheral participation
  • Context of the two studies
    • Teachers participating in a graduate course, geographically dispersed across New Zealand
    • Took the ideas from the class back to their local classrooms, communities, families — need to think about how to value their local communities and classrooms in a way that lets them talk about the process that gets them to the point of participating in the online course
    • Blended learning, then, is a combination of the online class and the communities in which the participants are situated
  • Blending physical and virtual using Web 2.0
    • Doing more with less
    • Maintaining quality and integrity
    • Enriching the students’ authentic experiences
  • New Imperatives
    • Move to larger classes
    • Effectively model ICT as a tool
    • Wanted to model what may be reality in school
    • E-learning lab
  • Pedagogy re-thought
    • Creating a physical space that allows for large group, small group, and individual work that is collaborative
    • Screens around the room can display various screens from students, teacher, or multiple sources
  • Portfolio assessment — not connected to university network, students are able to use it outside of school
    • Grading the meaning that students have made from the process of creating the portfolio

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Notes from “Pre-Service English Teachers and Web 2.0” from SITE 2010

Notes from “Pre-Service English Teachers and Web 2.0: Teaching and Learning Literacy with Digital Applications”

Luke Rodesiler and Lauren Tripp, University of Florida

  • Helping pre-service teachers re-imagine what it means to be literate
    • Tools including VoiceThread, PBWorks, and Xtranormal
    • Theoretical framework including social constructionism, interactional elements of effective literacy instruction and how texts are constructed
  • Primary research questions:
    • What understandings of technology do prospective English teachers receal when they are describing their technology use in public school classrooms?
    • How do prospective English teachers understandings of technology change as they become familiar with Web 2.0 applications?
    • How do prospective English teachers understand the role of Web 2.0 applications in teaching?
  • Data sources:
    • Surveys with open and closed ended questions to gain understandings of their technology use in the classroom
    • Classroom observations of student teachers in context
    • Artifacts of student work, including assignments and reflections
    • Focus group interviews at the end of the semester
  • Data analysis
    • Quantitative analysis of survey data
    • Qualitative analysis of classroom observations, student work, and focus group interviews
  • Findings
    • Student teachers were using technology in narrowly conceived ways
      • Accessing web content to search for and/or enhance lessons
      • Using Power Point to present information
      • “When I was in my internship, YouTube and Google was all I thought of using…”
    • Understanding how Web 2.0 technologies could foster collaboration and support teaching and learning where enhanced
      • Recognized collaborative tools
      • Their own facility with technology
      • Own discourse about teaching
      • Future organization and distribution of student work
    • Collaborative effort — how this experience could work as a method for professional learning
    • Made connections between the affordances of Web 2.0 applications and literacy practices valued in English language arts
      • Potential for student collaboration, revision of student writing, engaging students
  • Conclusions
    • Many students were unaware, yet were nudged toward more nuanced views of technology, texts, and literacy practices
    • We saw a shift in perception from “web-for-consumption” to “web-for-production” (using wikis, for instance)
  • Concerns
    • Lack of computer and internet access in schools
    • Expanding definitions of literacy
    • Personal use of technologies vs. professional use
  • Further questions
    • How can we support pre-service teachers in recognizing the availability of the tools
    • How can we expand their notions of literacy outside of technology
    • How can we help them build their personal learning network


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Notes from Doug Hartman’s Talk at MRA 2010

Doug Hartman, from MSU’s Literacy Achievement Resource Center, spoke at MRA 2010 on “The Future of Reading and Writing at the Present Time: Preparing Students and Teachers for the 21st Century.”

Update – 3/30/10 – Embedded Slideshare Presentation

He outlined four shifts that are happening as we continue to think about new literacies and technologies:

  • Shift 1: The technologies students use for reading and writing are changing
    • Linguistic texts to semiotic texts (images, audio, etc)
      • The balance is tipping towards semiotic texts
      • Semiotic texts are increasingly digital
      • Digital texts are ever more online
      • Reading and viewing across these texts
    • Questions to pose:
      • Do our curriculum, standards, and assessments include the range of technologies that our students use?
  • Shift 2: The strategies that students use to read and write these texts are changing
    • Looking for information to supplement what they are able to find in textbooks and is able to find so much more
      • Reading the book, looks up words he doesn’t know, and may use a secondary source
      • Reading online requires different strategies — moving from one web page to another, back to the original, and one way leading on to another; the potential for his comprehension to be expanded is enormous
      • This second type of comprehension places a higher demand on people’s cognitive abilities than typical book reading
    • Types of knowledge for reading: declarative, procedural, and conditional; once online, also adding identity, locational, and goal knowledge. Read more on his Slideshare document. (NOTE: He said that the slides from this presentation will be posted there later today.)
    • Do our curriculum, standards, and assessments include the range of strategies  that our students use?
  • Shift 3 and 4 — ran out of time in the session, but “moment to moment instruction” and “professional development” are the third and fourth shifts

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Notes from Alfie Kohn’s Talk at CMU

Alfie Kohn, an outspoken critic of traditional schooling and standardized testing, spoke at CMU on Wednesday, March 17, 2010. Here are some notes I captured from his talk, “Overhauling the Transmission Model: An overview of traditional versus progressive teaching”

  • You may know if you have been a student or teacher that learning is not simply a process of absorbing information throw at you, but if that is true then it makes sense for this presentation to not be about me just talking at you
  • What I am going to describe for you is a first grade classroom in New England, where kids were studying the Mayflower, and the kids showed up to see that the chairs and tables were pushed to the edge of the room and the floor had an outline of a ship made in masking tape.
    • A classmate comes in and unrolls a scroll from the king — we cannot sail on the ship until we know how big it is. Teacher asks — any ideas for how to figure this out? Figuring out how tall a student is, using him as a measure, then with hands, etc. The king doesn’t know how long the child, the hands, etc are.
    • They don’t get it that day, but they return to it the next day… measure it with the classmate’s feet… he knows the king!
    • Finally, on the third day, the teacher finally introduces the concept of standard units of measurement, and gives them rulers.
    • What distinguishes this lesson, makes it unusual?
      • She took three days to let the students discover this concept; “covering” material makes you feel that you don’t have enough time — this is about “discovering” material
      • There was a rationale, not just “open wide” and here come the facts
      • Basis for life-long learning and problem solving
      • It was connected and inter-disciplinary
      • It was generative and collaborative
      • Invited the children to use their imaginations
      • Both hands-on and minds-on — they were inventing the idea of a ruler and figuring out standard units of measure
  • How might we find teaching and learning more generative if we were involved in these types of classrooms?
  • Middle school example — what questions do you have about yourself? What questions do you have about the world?
    • Looking at questions together to develop themes, then the teacher takes themes from each of the groups and to synthesize what students are saying to look at some overarching themes to intrigue them all. Examples: conflict and war, the future, etc. This becomes the overarching curriculum for the entire school for the entire year. Teachers in this school see them as generalists first, then content area specialists second.
    • The teaching is organized around questions that the kids themselves have asked. The students themselves become scholars, far more engaged in what they are doing than in traditional school settings.
  • High school example — Harvey Daniels and Best Practice High School, Chicago
    • Cross-disciplinary unit on fast food and how it connects to health, economics, popular culture, etc.
    • Read Fast Food Nation and connected it to content in biology related to nutrition, digestion, etc.
    • Students then chose from magazine articles about the fast food industry — animal cruelty, locations of fast food in low-income neighborhoods, etc.
    • Went to restaurants and kept anthropological observation journals of patrons and employees
    • Some became activists around the issue
    • Did they test at the end? No… they kept portfolios of letters, pamphlets, and other materials that they created
  • What can we do in classrooms to make this happen?
  • Setting up a false dichotomy… but one to use as a way to compare/contrast…
    • Traditional — skill and drill (although, “traditional” models in the sense of being “old” is multiage learning and apprenticeship models)
    • A new, progressive way… as exemplified by the examples I offered
      • Differences:
        • Traditional — the purpose is to get the “right” answer and spit it out on demand to the teacher who has all the power and will determine who talks when (the point is not to have an intellectual conversation, but to give the one answer that the teacher wants, the one that she is fishing for)
          • What to Look for in a Classroom (from alfiekohn.com)
          • I want to see stuff from the kids on the walls… but what does it look like? I don’t want all the pumpkins on the wall in a kindergarten room to look the same.
          • How to teach kids to read — a teacher thinking about phonics may look at the phonemes, the progressive teacher will focus on meaning
          • Standardized tests measure what we need least; efforts to improve tests scores lead to less authentic learning
          • Mom asks “what did you do in school today?” Kid answers, “nothing.” He is probably right — he may have had a lot done to him.
        • Old school — bunch of facts and skills. Worksheets to learn how to add, but not applying it.
          • Progressive school — facts and skills are taught in a context.
          • It is easier, not just more interesting, to make sense of this if there is a context… “I think that I could read this if I knew what it was about.”
        • Traditional — no good reason for learning
        • Progressive — create a lesson with and for your students that will engage them
  • When I talk about this in terms of context, problem-based learning, etc… I am referring to the idea that teachers have a collection of facts to but into students’ heads ala Dewey, Freire
    • When the kids have nothing to say about the course, the curriculum… consider the “ten year” question. What is left of your course after a decade has passed? We are creating elaborate snow structures on the last day before spring… it drains right out again if we are not helping students learn in real ways. We are meaning-makers, and we work from a constructivist approach. The best learning is a process of reconstructing ideas.
    • When people talk about making things more “rigorous,” we should be worried about that…
    • We often think that AP courses are the best courses in the high school because they are “accelerated”
    • It almost always works out that when we are trying to “raise the bar” and “close the gap,” we have kids who are poor who are being given more drill and skill while the rich kids are doing more real learning.
  • Last effect of traditional education is the loss of curiosity
    • As kids move into school, their intrinsic motivation dies off as a response to traditional instruction
  • Final question — if everything I have said is true, especially if progressive schools are proven by research to be effective, then why is the traditional approach still so common?
    • It is difficult to do well
    • Not given training in college
    • We teach how we are taught
    • “Any idiot can stay one chapter ahead of the kids”
    • Top down leadership; lack of autonomy
  • Q/A
    • Books: effects of grading, negative effects of homework, negatives of standardized tests, bribes and threats of disciplines
    • Check out Diane Ravitch‘s “Death and Life of the Great American School
    • Question to ask at schools — How do you hope these kids will turn out? Happiness, problem-solving, ethics — these are the things that we care about in the long run and these are the criteria we should set as “standards”
    • Ted Sizer‘s work on the Coalition of Essential Schools
    • The teachers who were glad to have me didn’t need me; the ones who didn’t want to talk fit the model of traditional education

Reflections

Alfie Kohn certainly stays on message, despite his “digressions.” I first started reading him over a decade ago, saw him speak about five years ago, and have been influenced by his ideas in many ways. There are some points that I disagree on, especially the idea that assessment is — in and of itself — an almost evil force, because I think that we can do assessment in responsible ways that help kids learn and help teachers teach. But, overall, he reiterates the negative data (and anecdotes) about testing, grading, skill and drill teaching, and awards for kids that he has been discussing for years. As I think about writing instruction, especially in an age of technology, I think that we can take some of these ideas and look at how a writing workshop approach can foster student learning in a constructivist manner, one that values the context in which students work and the authentic inquiry that they choose to pursue.

I think, too, that we have to recognize the overwhelming forces that teachers face — it is not just about individual choices inside our own classrooms, although that is important; it is about the structural aspects of schooling and the expectations of our society that place particular demands on schools, teachers, and students. At the end, he began to talk about the socio-economic and political influences on our system of education, and I think that we really need to talk more about these influences because they permeate our classrooms. Teachers can be progressive within their four walls, or their school, but that is not going to create substantive change in the system. It is a start, indeed, but will not change the entire system.

At any rate, I know that many of my CMU students were in the audience, and my sincere hope is that they have gained some insights into some of the perspectives that I bring to ENG 315. I try to alleviate the pressures of grading and invite them to think critically and creatively about what they can do as writers and teachers of writing. I ask them to do authentic writing, both personally and professionally, and I do not rely on tests in any way. Instead, I ask them to write in different genres, for different purposes, and to different audiences. As one student said in class the other night, “This is a lot of work.” Indeed, it is. And, I know that it is overwhelming and that my class doesn’t meet the expectations that they have of what a college course, or a methods course, should look like. Yet, I think that it is valuable work, and I hope that it will encourage them as writers and teachers of writing to be a little more, as Kohn would suggest, “progressive” in their own classrooms.


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