: G0454/ Class Management and Education Media
Questions to be answered in deciding whether to use and how to use
Certain uses of technology can be quite expensive. The gulf between schools that can afford more sophisticated equipment and supplies and those that cannot creates an effect which is called “technology gap”. What will unequal access to technology do to the already existing gap in quality of schooling between those schools in poorer areas and those in wealthier ones ?
Schools must develop policies and procedures to ensure that only those with legitimate needs for information have access to student files, especially confidential testing and evaluation information.
Should students have ready and virtually unlimited access to all databases and information available on the networks, or should there be some way to limit access to educationally relevant and ageappropriate materials ?
Educators must develop policies on access and use of information, and establish procedures to limit access, if that is what they decide is necessary.
One of the biggest roadblocks to innovative uses of technology in the classroom is discomfort with the new role the teacher often must assume.
Teachers may have difficulty adjusting to not being the ones in charge and not making all the decisions in the classroom.
Some teachers may feel a bit uncomfortable when first using technology, and will need time to adjust to this different role.
Teachers could greatly benefit from a supportive network of other teachers who are integrating technology into their teaching. Setting up or joining groups of other teachers both within the school and in other schools is quite helpful in providing technical and moral support as well as providing ideas for dealing with instructional or management issues.
How to select appropriate hardware and software for your school ?
A variety of educator-oriented journals and magazines are available that provide reviews of new products, and several organizations exist that have the sole purpose of providing up-to-date and easily understandable reviews of new hardware and software.
Teachers can also make use of these resources by attending classes on educational technology at local colleges and universities and by inviting faculty knowledgeable about educational technology to present in-service workshops.
(1). General Criteria :
Is the subject matter covered accurately ?
Is the material written at an appropriate reading level ?
Are the activities of appropriate length ?
Are clear, concise instructions given for students ?
Are the activities sequenced logically ?
Is the lay out of the material appealing ?
Is correct grammar used in the materials ?
Are the activities motivating for students ?
Are the materials socially acceptable ?
Are the support materials complete ?
Is the cost reasonable ?
(2). Criteria specifically related to computers and computing :
Is the program easy to operate ?
Is the program versatile to use ?
Is the program attractive and motivating ?
Is the package well documented ?
Is the interactive capability of the computers used to advantage ?
Are special capabilities, such as the ability to produce random events, used to advantage ?
Does the use of features such as graphics animation, and sound enhance instruction rather than distracting students;
Does the software allow appropriate control over the activity by providing options for movement through the materials ?
Does the computer handle input from the students effectively, so that excessive typing is avoided and unexpected responses do not disrupt the activity.
Is feedback for correct and incorrect responses and performance provided effectively and appropriately.
Does the program produce realistic and valid results ?
Do the materials allow for appropriate Teacher - students and student
– student interaction.
5. Classroom set up for Technology
a. Where to put the machines, directly in individual classrooms or separate on computer labs ?
Regardless of whether machines are set up in a computer lab or in classrooms, experts recommend that they be networked so that software, databases, and so forth can be easily accessed from any location.
b. Whether students will use the machines individually or cooperatively ?
If technology is used cooperatively, it is important to remember that the work must be truly cooperative
– i.e, the students must understand how to offer constructive criticism to help one another.
When computers were first being implemented in classrooms, many educators worried that students’ social development would suffer, and that classroom interactions would be affected.
A recent review of computer usage in young children indicated that students working on the computer often showed a higher amount of social interaction than students working on noncomputer activities
Teachers must think about whether the forms of technology they are considering for their classrooms meet the individual needs of their students.
Most existing technology has not really taken other types of individual differences into account.
It is probably best to provide students with a variety of different learning activities and media, including several different forms of technological as well as non technological methods of an instruction.