Evolution of a Course for Special Education Teachers on Integrating Technology into Math and Science

Evolution of a Course for Special Education Teachers on Integrating Technology into Math and Science

Irina Lyublinskaya (College of Staten Island, USA)
Copyright: © 2015 |Pages: 27
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-8403-4.ch020
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Abstract

This chapter describes a two-year development of a graduate pedagogy course for pre-service special education teachers to integrate technology into teaching mathematics and science. The Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge (TPACK) framework was used for the course design. The chapter discusses the modifications made to the course from semester to semester based on the analysis of lesson plan TPACK scores and information drawn from pre-service teachers' written feedback. The challenge was to determine an optimal balance between theory and practice and between guided and independent learning that leads to higher TPACK gains. Data analysis showed that in a semester when the instructor provided extensive instructional support coupled with a large amount of work required of the pre-service teachers, they achieved the highest TPACK level; however, this design resulted in unreasonable workload. Reducing the amount of work to a reasonable level produced lower TPACK; nevertheless, the gain in TPACK was still significant.
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Background

This section provides review of relevant literature. The first part focuses on the research about technology in teacher education in general. The second part introduces TPACK framework and its role in the design of programs and courses in teacher preparation programs. Finally, the last section introduces few studies that focus on TPACK in the context of preparation of special education teachers.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Differentiated Instruction: Methodology of teaching that organizes instruction and assessment according to different learning styles and abilities of students in the same classroom.

Special Education: Education that prepares teachers to teach students with special needs, including those with disabilities.

Science Education: Teaching and learning of natural sciences.

Educational Technology: Technological tools used in education and methods of teaching and learning with these tools.

Mathematics Education: Teaching and learning of mathematics.

TPACK (Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge): Knowledge that teachers need to effectively integrate technology into teaching subject-specific curriculum within specific classroom contexts.

Pre-Service Teacher Education: Education required to enter the teaching profession, in US it is education necessary to prepare students for initial teacher certification.

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