Issues and Challenges in Preparing Teachers to Teach in the Twenty-First Century

Susan Gibson (University of Alberta, Canada)
Copyright: © 2012 |Pages: 194
EISBN13: 9781466616929|DOI: 10.4018/978-1-61350-492-5.ch028
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Abstract

Preservice teachers need to acquire both technological skill and understanding about how technology rich environments can develop subject-specific knowledge as a part of their teacher education programs. The purpose of the research project, as described in this case study, was to examine the impact that immersion in technology-infused social studies pedagogy courses had on preservice teachers’ willingness to use computer and online tools as well as how they used them during their student teaching. Teacher education students enrolled in two pedagogy courses were surveyed at the beginning and end of the courses and interviewed over the duration of the courses regarding the nature and extent of their technological knowledge and skill. Following the completion of the pedagogy courses, six volunteered to have their technology use tracked during their nine-week practice teaching experience. Findings showed that while the preservice pedagogy courses did increase the student teachers’ knowledge of and skill with a variety of computer and online tools as well as their desire to use them during their student teaching, the elementary schools in which they were placed for their practicum were poorly equipped and the mentor teachers were not using the tools that were modeled on campus. If preservice teachers are to truly understand the benefits of learning and teaching with technology, teacher education institutions and school districts need to work together to present a consistent vision of technology integration, and schools need to provide environments that encourage and support technology use.
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