Identifying the Contributors to Improve Mobile-Based TPACK Competency of Elementary School Teachers in China

Identifying the Contributors to Improve Mobile-Based TPACK Competency of Elementary School Teachers in China

Zhong Sun (Capital Normal University, China), Jiaxin You (Capital Normal University, China), Wei Song (Capital Normal University, China), Zheng Qu (Capital Normal University, China) and Liming Luo (Capital Normal University, China)
Copyright: © 2017 |Pages: 18
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-0783-3.ch049
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Abstract

Self-Efficacy (SE) and technology acceptance are two contributors related to Technological Pedagogical and Content Knowledge (TPACK). Many studies have indicated that TPACK is correlated with SE and the level of technology acceptance in both traditional and online learning environments. Studies using mobile learning devices in the classroom, however, are yet to be established. The authors conducted an empirical study by investigating mobile-based TPACK, SE, and technology acceptance of more than 500 English teachers from about 220 elementary schools in China, who used Android system-based pad in classrooms for one year. As a result, SE and technology acceptance had indirect positive effects on mobile-based TPACK, while no significant difference was observed in gender for TPACK. However, younger teachers and teachers with higher levels of education showed superior TPACK levels than other participants in the study. Finally, several implications for teacher professional development, limitations, and future research plans are presented.
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Literature Review

Technological Pedagogical and Content Knowledge

Proposed by Koehler and Mishra in 2005, based on Shulman’s pedagogical content knowledge (PCK), the TPACK framework comprises three parts, namely: technological knowledge (TK); pedagogical knowledge (PK); and content knowledge (CK) (Koehler et. al., 2007). Besides TK, PK, and CK, the additional four elements originated from this framework were pedagogical content knowledge (PCK), technological content knowledge (TCK), technological pedagogical knowledge (TPK), and technological pedagogical and content knowledge (TPACK), as shown in Figure 1.

Figure 1.

TPACK framework (Koehler and Mishra, 2005)

Although some researchers argued that TPACK takes the concept of technology integration and packages it as a framework that is much too big (i.e., one that embodies seven distinct knowledge types) while simultaneously making it too small by dividing the “package” into so many pieces that they have become impossible to distinguish from one another (e.g., TK vs. TCK), thus might be vague to enable reasonable application (Brantley & Ertmer, 2013). However, many other researches indicated that TPACK provides a new perspective on repositioning and developing professional qualities of teachers. Many scholars emphasized the importance of TPACK application in teachers (Finger, Proctor & Albion, 2010; Harris, Grandgenett, & Hofer, 2010; Koehler, Shin, and Mishra, 2012), regarding TPACK as a framework to cultivate world language teachers (Van, 2008); a tool to design the mobile learning environment (Wong, et.al., 2015); and, an indicator of future teachers’ technology integration into laptop infused classroom (Hughes, 2013). Therefore, improving TPACK capabilities has become an important research focus in IT-enabled professional development of teachers.

In order to make TPACK more effective to improve the teachers’ expertise, many scholars examined the possible factors influencing TPACK such as age, gender, self-efficacy and technology acceptance. Koh and his colleagues analyzed the relative effect of age, gender, and TPACK constructs on the TPACK perceptions of pre-service teachers. (Koh, et. al., 2011). SE and technology acceptance are regarded as valuable contributors for the development of teachers’ TPACK (Abbitt, 2011;Bull, 2009; Huang & Liaw, 2007; Smith & Sivo, 2012; Teo & Noyes, 2010; Wang et al., 2004).

However, only a few studies focused on contributors that impact TPACK from the perspectives of SE and technology acceptance in a mobile learning environment. To enrich this line of research, this study aims to analyze the mobile-based TPACK of elementary school English teachers in China and its relationship with their mobile-based SE and technology acceptance.

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