Building Education and Technology Competencies for a Changing Society

Building Education and Technology Competencies for a Changing Society

Maria Martinez Witte (Auburn University, USA), Elisha Wohleb (Auburn University, USA) and Leane Skinner (Auburn University, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-6046-5.ch025
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Abstract

This chapter provides an overview of needed competencies in the education and technology areas for a changing society. Advanced technology has changed the structure of the economy and should be changing the K-12 and postsecondary classrooms. Society is requiring higher levels of skills that schools were not initially designed to teach. Specific competencies are needed for educators and higher education students in order to prepare a college- and career-ready workforce. Educators must begin or continue incorporating digital tools and technology in their content in order to meet the demands of an increasingly technological world.
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Using Technology In Education

Miller (2009) indicated that preparing educators to deliver college and career-ready instruction is a simple process:

If we want the very best for our students, their teachers must be able to provide them with the very best education. The members of the next generation of Americans will need to graduate from high school ready to compete in a world of rapid globalization, burgeoning technological innovations, and changing labor markets. (p. 1)

Teacher quality is tied closely with student achievement; however, there is a lack of research and insufficient data on what the most effective teacher preparation programs would be to equip teachers to guide students to becoming informed citizens (Miller, 2009).

The Partnership for 21st Century Skills (Overview, n.d.) initiative was developed to assist teachers and administrators with integrating skills into core academic subjects. Promoting an understanding of academic content is through interdisciplinary themes such as global awareness and financial, economic, business, and entrepreneurial literacy. Learning, innovation, information, and technology skills will prepare students for a complex world and train them for constant change in the use of technology and collaboration tools. Educators are being encouraged to use technological tools to enhance student engagement and access. Technological tools can include Web-based instruction, learning management systems, virtual chat rooms and discussions, connecting through Webcams, Skype, and Face time applications.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Middle Skills Jobs: Jobs that require more than a high school education but less than a four-year degree or postsecondary education certificate.

Globalization: The process of integrating and exchanging ideas, products, and culture on an international scale.

Multi-National: A company or individual that works in more than one country and interacts with more than one culture or nation.

Lifelong Learning: An individual’s continuous, ongoing, and lifetime of learning to pursue knowledge for personal or professional reasons.

Digital Divide: The span between those who have and those that do not have easy access to computers and the Internet.

Digital Natives: Individuals that were born or raised during the age of digital technology and who are familiar and comfortable with computers and the Internet from an early age.

Skills Gap: The mismatch between a worker’s current skill levels and the skill levels that are needed for specific positions.

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