Criteria for the Implementation of Learning Technologies

Criteria for the Implementation of Learning Technologies

Michael Vallance (Future University Hakodate, Japan), Kay Vallance (Brynteg Comprehensive School, UK) and Masahiro Matsui (Toshiba TEC, Japan)
Copyright: © 2009 |Pages: 19
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-190-2.ch001
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Abstract

The grand narrative of educational policy statements lack clear guidelines on Information Communications Technology (ICT) integration. A review of current academic literature fails to provide consistent strategies for institutions and practitioners determined to adopt ICT in an informed way. This chapter introduces criteria for the successful implementation of ICT-enabled tasks. It argues that the integration of ICT is best supported by a pedagogy that facilitates experiential learning and a development of academic competencies. The context for demonstrating the importance of the informed use of ICT is a research project entitled, “iPod therefore iWrite,” in which multiple-media content was developed by students in Japan and the United Kingdom.
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Introduction

In the past two decades the uptake of Information Communications Technology (ICT) in education has been inconsistent. Some countries, districts, and educational institutes have certainly embraced ICT as a central component of their teaching and learning experiences: Singapore’s Masterplan for IT in Education (Goh, 1997) and one-to-one learning in Maine, USA (Greenstone, 2006) come to mind. There are also a number of excellent research studies of “good practice” in ICT integration (Sandholtz, Ringstaff & Dwyer, 1997) and extensive literature reviews (Sivin-Kachala & Bialo, 1996; Parr, 2003). Despite the huge financial investments made by nations and individual institutions, however, many practitioners recognize that ICT adoption is not universal in mainstream education. Becker and Ravitz (2001) found that only 25% of secondary English instructors, 17% of science instructors, 13% of social studies instructors, and 11% of maths instructors in the USA made weekly use of computers. Moreover, the computers were not used to develop a deeper understanding of concepts, tackle difficult topics or change the approach to teaching methods. In Japan the uptake of technology in education, “remains comparatively low, and ICT does not appear as a priority in national education policy” (UNESCO, 2007, para 1). Additionally, educators like Stanford University professor Larry Cuban (2002) are unimpressed by attempts to inculcate ICT into mainstream education:

Although promoters of new technologies often spout the rhetoric of fundamental change, few have pursued deep and comprehensive changes in the existing systems of schooling. The introduction of information technologies into schools over the past two decades has achieved neither the transformation of teaching and learning nor the productivity gains that a reform coalition of corporate executives, public officials, parents, academics, and educators have sought. (p. 195)

Cuban’s observation appears to be supported by academic research and agency reports of ICT adoption. For instance, academic literature that considered the effect size of research in the 1990’s portrays a varied picture of some gains in quantitative tests by students in experimental groups (Kulik, 1994; Wood, Underwood & Avis, 1999; Parr, 2003). Kulik (1994) used meta-analysis to aggregate the findings from 254 controlled evaluation studies, and discovered that technology rich classes produced an effect size of 0.3 on quantitative measures of educational performance; considered significant but moderate (Fitz-Gibbon & Morris, 1987). Apologetically, the British Educational Communications and Technology Agency (BECTA) reports that it will take time for empirical evidence of the benefits of ICT integration to emerge (Cox, Abbot, Webb, Blakeley, Beauchamp & Rhodes, 2003). The conclusion is that computer assisted learning is no more effective than other types of intervention (Parr, 2003). Why is this? Selwyn (1997) points to education policy statements and the discourse of promoters of technology which often lack a solid rationale for ICT adoption. In other words, despite the attempts of implementation of technology in schools and universities, there lacks direction about ICT’s integration into course curricula and pedagogical practices. This deficiency is supported by Avriam (2000) who argues that, “the introduction of ICT into education has often been carried out with vague and confused conceptions of the desired model of learning which the new technologies were supposed to enhance and without clear conceptions of any guiding educational values” (p. 332).

A policy example in Asia is Singapore’s first Masterplan for IT in Education (Goh, 1997). Four key statements summarize the Masterplan’s goals:

  • Instructors and pupils will communicate and collaborate with other institutions.

  • Innovative processes in education will be generated.

  • Creative thinking, lifelong learning, and social responsibility will be enhanced.

  • Administrative and management excellence in the education system will be promoted.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Informed Use: Adding value to good tasks, or making tasks worthwhile.

Policy: A plan of action adopted by a government or ministry.

Collaboration: A process where students work together to achieve an outcome not possible otherwise.

ICT: Information Communications Technology may be described as technologies that enable access, retrieval, storage, and sharing of data. Often viewed as a technology subject at schools, Web 2.0 is shifting the onus towards communication by users.

Task Design: An arrangement of a scheme of actions leading to a learning outcome or artifact.

Shared Spaces: A common location, usually online in a Bulletin Board System, where remote students can contribute.

Complete Chapter List

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Editorial Advisory Board
Table of Contents
Foreword
Mark Warschauer
Preface
Michael Thomas
Acknowledgment
Michael Thomas
Chapter 1
Michael Vallance, Kay Vallance, Masahiro Matsui
The grand narrative of educational policy statements lack clear guidelines on Information Communications Technology (ICT) integration. A review of... Sample PDF
Criteria for the Implementation of Learning Technologies
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Chapter 2
Mark Pegrum
This chapter discusses the application of a range of Web 2.0 technologies to language education. It argues that Web 2.0 is fundamentally about... Sample PDF
Communicative Networking and Linguistic Mashups on Web 2.0
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Chapter 3
Bernd Rüschoff
Current thinking in SLA methodology favours knowledge construction rather than simple instructivist learning as an appropriate paradigm for language... Sample PDF
Output-Oriented Language Learning With Digital Media
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Chapter 4
Infoxication 2.0  (pages 60-79)
Elena Benito-Ruiz
This chapter reviews the issue of information overload, introducing the concept of “infoxication 2.0” as one of the main downsides to Web 2.0. The... Sample PDF
Infoxication 2.0
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Chapter 5
Margaret Rasulo
The aim of this chapter is to discuss the effectiveness and the necessity of forming a community when engaged in online learning. The Internet and... Sample PDF
The Role of Community Formation in Learning Processes
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Chapter 6
Tony Mullen, Christine Appel, Trevor Shanklin
An important aspect of the Web 2.0 phenomenon is the use of Web-embedded and integrated non-browser Internet applications to facilitate... Sample PDF
Skype-Based Tandem Language Learning and Web 2.0
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Chapter 7
Gary Motteram, Susan Brown
Web 2.0 offers potentially powerful tools for the field of language education. As language teacher tutors exploring Web 2.0 with participants on an... Sample PDF
A Context-Based Approach to Web 2.0 and Language Education
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Chapter 8
Lut Baten, Nicolas Bouckaert, Kan Yingli
This case study describes how a project-based approach offers valuable new opportunities for graduate students to equip them with the necessary... Sample PDF
The Use of Communities in a Virtual Learning Environment
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Chapter 9
George R. MacLean, James A. Elwood
Prensky (2001) posited the emergence of a new generation of “digital natives” fluent in the language of cyberspace and familiar with the tools of... Sample PDF
Digital Natives, Learner Perceptions and the Use of ICT
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Chapter 10
Steve McCarty
In a cross-cultural educational context of TEFL in Japan, the author sought to enhance the integrative motivation of students toward the target... Sample PDF
Social Networking Behind Student Lines in Japan
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Chapter 11
Antonie Alm
This chapter discusses the use of blogs for foreign and second language (L2) learning. It first outlines the suitability of blogs for language... Sample PDF
Blogging for Self-Determination with L2 Learner Journals
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Chapter 12
Revathi Viswanathan
Training ESL students in soft skills and employability skills with the help of Web 2.0 technologies is the current trend in Indian educational... Sample PDF
Using Mobile Technology and Podcasts to Teach Soft Skills
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Chapter 13
Andy Halvorsen
This chapter looks at the potential use of Social Networking Sites (SNSs) for educators and second language learners. It views SNSs broadly through... Sample PDF
Social Networking Sites and Critical Language Learning
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Chapter 14
Nicolas Gromik
This chapter reports on an ongoing project conducted at Tohoku University in Sendai, Japan. A mixed group of seven advanced EFL learners produced... Sample PDF
Producing Cell Phone Video Diaries
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Chapter 15
Thomas Raith
This chapter explores in how far Web 2.0, Weblogs in particular, has changed foreign language learning. It argues that Weblogs, along with Web 2.0... Sample PDF
The Use of Weblogs in Language Education
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Chapter 16
Nat Carney
This chapter gives a comprehensive overview of blogs in Foreign Language Education (FLE) through reviewing literature, critically analyzing... Sample PDF
Blogging in Foreign Language Education
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Chapter 17
Pete Travis, Fiona Joseph
In particular, this chapter looks at the potential role of Web 2.0 technologies and podcasting to act as a transformational force within language... Sample PDF
Improving Learners' Speaking Skills with Podcasts
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Chapter 18
Volker Hegelheimer, Anne O’Bryan
The increasing availability of mobile technologies is allowing users to interact seamlessly with a variety of content anytime, anywhere. One of... Sample PDF
Mobile Technologies, Podcasting and Language Education
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Chapter 19
Jenny Ang Lu
This chapter aims to investigate how podcasts can be made to fit into the repertoire of resources utilized by teachers, especially in language... Sample PDF
Podcasting as a Next Generation Teaching Resource
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Chapter 20
Matthias Sturm, Trudy Kennell, Rob McBride, Mike Kelly
Web 2.0 tools like blogs, Wikis, and podcasts are new to the vocabulary of language acquisition. Teachers and students who take full advantage of... Sample PDF
The Pedagogical Implications of Web 2.0
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Chapter 21
John Paul Loucky
This study describes a task-based assessment (TBA) approach to teaching reading and writing online. It then analyzes key factors emerging from the... Sample PDF
Improving Online Readability in a Web 2.0 Context
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Chapter 22
Jaroslaw Krajka
This chapter contrasts the use of corpora and concordancing in the Web 1.0 era with the opportunities presented to the language teachers by the Web... Sample PDF
Concordancing 2.0: On Custom-Made Corpora in the Classroom
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Chapter 23
Darren Elliott
This chapter looks at the ways in which teacher training and teacher development are taking place online. It seeks to address the ways in which... Sample PDF
Internet Technologies and Language Teacher Education
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Chapter 24
Sarah Guth
This chapter discusses the potential of social software and Web 2.0 tools to enhance language learning in a blended learning context. It describes... Sample PDF
Personal Learning Environments for Language Learning
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Chapter 25
Shudong Wang, Neil Heffernan
This chapter introduces the concept of Mobile 2.0, a mobile version of Web 2.0, and its application to language learning. The chapter addresses the... Sample PDF
Mobile 2.0 and Mobile Language Learning
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Chapter 26
Euline Cutrim Schmid
The first part of this chapter discusses the transformative potential of Interactive Whiteboards (IWBs), by analyzing the opportunities of using... Sample PDF
The Pedagogical Potential of Interactive Whiteboards 2.0
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Chapter 27
David Miller, Derek Glover
This chapter summarizes the work underway to chart, critically evaluate, and systematize the introduction of interactive whiteboards (IWB) into... Sample PDF
Interactive Whiteboards in the Web 2.0 Classroom
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Chapter 28
Samuel Holtzman
The process of technological inclusion begins with an analysis of the features and functions of the specific tool in consideration. Pedagogy should... Sample PDF
Web 2.0 and CMS for Second Language Learning
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About the Contributors