Date of Award
Educational Administration and Policy Studies
Kristina Hesbol, Ph.D.
Instructional technology, Educator perspectives, Learning environments
The promise of using instructional technology to enhance student learning has been a dream and a goal for more than 30 years. During these past few decades, the reasoning has shifted from providing word processing, to supporting information access, to preparing students to become global citizens in our continually evolving technological world. While many educators are successful in these endeavors, there is still a disparity across the spectrum of consistent, intentional technology integration for learning. This varies not only from school district to school district, but between schools within districts, as well as from classroom to classroom. There has been an exponential increase in the number of devices available to students, even more so recently due to online state assessment requirements. However, the mere availability and accessibility of devices does not necessarily correlate to technology use in classrooms, or increased student achievement.
This descriptive case study sought to explore educator perspectives regarding the integration of instructional technology in one alternative middle school. Through participant observations and interviews, several themes emerged answering this inquiry. The most prevalent themes included having purposeful/intentional use of technology with a focus on content, being cognizant of the amount of students' screen time and making sure there is balance, the importance of personal human connections, and ensuring an equitable, culturally responsive system where every student has access to technology.
However, perceptions of the realization of these themes differ based on the educator's job role. Based on the evidence and discussion regarding this specific case study, the shared perceptions included a district-wide vision and intentional purpose for using technology to enhance content learning, a district-wide commitment to providing both technical and professional development supports, and a district-wide mission to provide learning environments that support students' needs. Evidence also brought to light discrepancies between perceptions and the reality of equity and access for students, as well as how the alternative school students are included in the district's mission to educate all students for the future.
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Kohl, Lauren Marie, "An Exploration of Teacher, School and District Leaders' Perspectives Regarding the Integration of Instructional Technology in an Alternative Middle School: A Descriptive Case Study" (2017). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 1322.
Received from ProQuest
Lauren Marie Kohl