Robert O’Dowd University of León, Spain April, 2011 Describing the Competences of the Telecollaborative Teacher
“ Language Teacher Competences in CMC Settings” <ul><li>European Profile for Language Teacher Education – A Frame of Reference </li></ul><ul><li>… the report proposes that foreign language teacher education in the twentyfirst century should include the following elements of initial and in-service education: </li></ul><ul><li>6. Participation in links with partners abroad, including visits, exchanges or ICT links. </li></ul><ul><li>17. Training in information and communication technology for pedagogical use in the </li></ul><ul><li>classroom. </li></ul>
<ul><li>Review of available models of competences for online educators: (Hempel & Stickler, 2005; Salmon,2003; ISTE, 2008; UNESCO, 2008) </li></ul><ul><li>Identify where these fail to capture the ‘uniqueness’ of Telecollaborative (TC) activity </li></ul><ul><li>Describe the process of developing a model of TC competence for Teachers using the Delphi Method </li></ul><ul><li>Discuss the ‘dilemmas’ which emerged during the process </li></ul><ul><li>Present the ‘working version’ for discussion and grading according to difficulty </li></ul><ul><li>How to teach and assess TC Teacher Competence? </li></ul>Towards a Model of Competences for Telecollaborative Teachers: My Plan for this Morning
Need to develop a model of TC Teacher Competence which will be of value to teachers and teacher-trainers working with all of these different contexts: Educational Contexts: Classroom-integrated set-ups ( Cultura ), Autonomous learning set-ups (versions of e-tandem ), Distance-based set-ups ( Tridem ), informal learning set-ups ( Literalia : Stickler & Emke, 2011) Types of partners for exchanges: Partner classes of L2, Individuals from C2, Partner classes using Lengua Franca, specialised interest communities ( Thorne, Black and Sykes, 2009; Hanna and de Nooy, 2009) Tools and Environments: ‘Closed environments’ – Moodle, ePals, eTwinning, NINGs, ‘Public tools’ – blogs, fora, skype… Pedagogical Approaches/Emphasis taken: Intercultural, Interactionist, autonomy/ socioconstructivist … Current Incarnations of ‘Telecollaboration 2.0’
The Roles for TC Teachers highlighted to date : Pedagogical and Organisational: “ In the initial stages of a project the teacher is responsible for preparing learners for the challenges to come; designing tasks which will enable them to engage productively with members of another culture; selecting the right tools for the project; setting basic rules ; establishing a clear timeframe and providing the space necessary for learners to reflect periodically... (Lewis, Chanier, & Youngs, 2011: Special Issue Commentary: Language Learning & Technology ) “ Inevitably…Teacher 2.0 must be able to not only design effective telecollaborative tasks, but be able to monitor and assess the learner interaction (in the classroom and online) in order to optimise the task-as-process (Dooly, 2010: 293)” What is involved in being a Telecollaborative Foreign Language Teacher?
Models of ICT competence for Teachers Hempel & Stickler (2005) International Society for Technology in Education (2008) UNESCO: ICT Competency Standards for Teachers (2008) Salmon (2003): E-moderator competencies <ul><li>Basic ICT competence </li></ul><ul><li>Tech competence with software </li></ul><ul><li>Dealing with constraints of the medium </li></ul><ul><li>Online socialization </li></ul><ul><li>Facilitating communicative competence </li></ul><ul><li>Creativity & Choice </li></ul><ul><li>Own style </li></ul><ul><li>Facilitating and Inspiring student learning </li></ul><ul><li>Designing digital-age learning experiences and assessments </li></ul><ul><li>Model digital-age work and learning </li></ul><ul><li>Promote digital citizenship and responsibility </li></ul><ul><li>Engage in professional growth and leadership </li></ul><ul><li>Educational Policy </li></ul><ul><li>Curriculum & Assessment </li></ul><ul><li>Pedagogy </li></ul><ul><li>ICT (technical) competence </li></ul><ul><li>Organisation & Administration </li></ul><ul><li>Teacher professional development </li></ul><ul><li>Understanding of online processes </li></ul><ul><li>Technical skills </li></ul><ul><li>Online communication skills </li></ul><ul><li>Content expertise </li></ul><ul><li>Personal characteristics </li></ul>
Models of ICT competence for Teachers – common elements… ICT /Online Competence for Teachers Technical competence- basic knowledge of variety of tools and software Online communication skills & socialisation skills Pedagogical skills – desgning appropriate tasks and assessment procedures Digital Age citizenship- attitudes and modelling
Telecollaboration is inherently ‘intercultural’ – both in practice and in its underlying pedagogical principles The telecollaborative teacher is not alone – usually two or more teachers working together from different cultural and institutional contexts - requires of the teacher keenly refined intercultural skills and attitudes of intercultural competence Telecollaboration tends to be a long-term, complex activity which permeates the whole FL course – themes, tasks, classroom interaction etc. In many telecollaborative set-ups, the active participation of the teacher in the online interaction is not required – less need for technical ICT competence? What differentiates Telecollaborative Competence from ‘Traditional’ Online Competence for FL Teachers?
The Competences of the Telecollaborative Teacher Organisational: Setting up, Structuring & Integrating an exchange Pedagogical: Task design, Exploiting an exchange for learning, Assessment Electronic Literacy: Tools, Affordances, Appropriate use etc.
<ul><li>Hampel & Stickler (2005): </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Skills pyramid for successful online FL teaching’ </li></ul><ul><li>How was the model arrived at? </li></ul><ul><li>“ On the basis of several years’ experience with teaching languages using a synchronous online environment and training tutors for online language courses (2005: 311)” </li></ul><ul><li>Salmon (2003): </li></ul><ul><li>‘ E-moderator competencies’ </li></ul><ul><li>How was the model arrived at? </li></ul><ul><li>Content analysis of online interaction </li></ul><ul><li>Focus groups – to collect qualitative data on online teachers’ experiences </li></ul><ul><li>Drafts of models adapted according to practitioner feedback (2003: 25-27). </li></ul>How to Develop a Model of Teacher ICT Competences (1)?
<ul><li>UNESCO (2008): </li></ul><ul><li>‘ ICT Competency Standards for Teachers’ </li></ul><ul><li>How was the model arrived at? </li></ul><ul><li>Experts Meeting on Teachers/Facilitators Training in Technology-Pedagogy Integration </li></ul><ul><li>Multidisciplinary group workshop on Development of Guidelines for Teacher Training in ICT Integration and Standards of Competency </li></ul><ul><li>International Society for Technology in Education (2008): </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Performance Indicators for Teachers’ </li></ul><ul><li>How was the model arrived at? </li></ul><ul><li>Developed by experts in the field of education, industry, and higher education. </li></ul><ul><li>Vetted by individuals in more than 30 countries. </li></ul><ul><li>” It is more of a "wisdom from the field" methodology rather than a formal research cycle (personal correspondence with ISTE, April 2011). </li></ul>How to Develop a Model of Teacher ICT Competences (2)?
Developing a robust, consensual model of Telecollaborative Competence for Teachers Need to find an approach which: Takes into account literature on TC Teacher competence to date Reflects collective experience of both experienced practitioners and researchers Is scientifically rigorous (i.e. not anecdotal) Is comprehensive (takes into account different forms of telecollaboration) Produces a model which is relevant and applicable in different teacher-education contexts (easily graded, evaluated and used with assessment tools )
The Delphi Method: <ul><li>Delphi method – three stage iterative questionnaire-based research technique </li></ul><ul><li>Aim of Delphi studies : Establish consensus in group of selected experts to ‘the solution of a problem’ without them ever having to meet. </li></ul><ul><li>Advantages over a ‘focus group’ technique: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>No risk of a participant’s ideas being suppressed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>No one dominates proceedings </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Experts work on their answers in their own timeframe </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Avoids logisitics and cost probems of gathering experts together </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Recent Example of use in our area: Kelly, M. Grenfell, M., Allan, R. Kriza, C. & McEvoy, W. (2004). </li></ul>
The Delphi Method: Procedure: Round 1: Draft of 30 ‘can do’ statements Telecollaborative Competence for FL Teachers drawn up based on extensive literature review . 100 experts and experienced practitioners from different TC contexts identified: Personal network / Authors of published literature on the area / Active practitioners from etwinning and ePals / Colleagues recommended by experts Participants asked to grade skills 1-5 and add comments about missing skills, bad formulations etc. Responses received from 60 participants & 76 separate qualitative comments and suggestions provided by these participants.
The Delphi Method: Round 2: The descriptors which received a mean value greater than four and a standard deviation less than one were maintained (25/30). The remainder (5/30) were eliminated . New descriptors suggested by practitioners were incorporated (10 items). Some of the original descriptors were also reformulated based on suggestions . Key changes to descriptors in 2nd round: 1. Use of 'can do' statements to describe competences – practical but very limiting – excludes knowledge, attitudes 2. Although difficult to assess and measure , necessary to identify the attitudes and beliefs which successful telecollaborative teachers bring with them to their exchanges.
The Competences of the Telecollaborative Teacher (Round 2) Organisational Pedagogical Electronic Literacy Intercultural /Socio-affective
Contrast: “ Teachers… require a certain level of technological competence . They need the confidence to bring technology out of the labs where it’s cloistered away and make it part of the everyday curriculum. They need the self-assurance to venture beyond the restrictions of pre-packaged software and explore open source software and free web services ( Pegrum, 2009 ).” With: “… many school teachers will resist the notion that they have to be able to manage a moodle , when their schools employ an IT person to do that. In this range of new skills being demanded, I believe teachers best expertise lies in the language and intercultural domains, they can look for technical support . ( Respondent feedback to Round 1) “ “ I think it is vital for the teacher to CHOOSE the tools but not to be an expert in USING the tools... ( Respondent feedback to Round 2) ” The Technical Literacy Dilemma
“ Teachers also need the pedagogical competence to work with digital technologies, understanding how contemporary pedagogies and literacies fit with web 2.0. That means they need the skills to deal with the heavy monitoring and mentoring demands of social constructivism … ( Pegrum, 2009 ).” “ Rather than being responsible for imparting knowledge (which in some cases she may not possess), her task is to scaffold the construction by learners of shared knowledge …( Lewis, Chanier and Youngs, 2011 )”. How constructivist should we be? Respondent from Round 2: “ As for ‘organising culturally and linguistically rich tasks’, I don't think this teacher-led approach works in a constructivist learning exchange.” But this exclude alternative, equally legitimate approaches to telecollaboration? Respondent from Round 1: “ If this survey is only geared toward socio-constructivist learning, you could stress this in the instructions or by giving a definition of the term ‘telecollaborative teacher’.” The Constructivist Pedagogy Dilemma
Suggestions for Round 2 from Participants: “ The teacher can ensure that … the exchange is fully recognised by the learners' institution . ” “ Having sufficient 'weight' within his/her own institution to ensure that management backs up the telecollaborative project at every point.” “… someone, probably the individual language teacher involved needs to have some strategic skills to approach colleagues and management to move project initiatives up from individual teacher level to departmental/school level .” The Institutional Integration Dilemma
Suggestions for Round 1 Participants: “ I think ‘can do’ is too narrow an interpretation of competence myself and a Delphi technique should also collect insights into values education etc…” Moderating and conflict-management skills (they are not strictly speaking 'pedagogical skills'. Maybe you need an extra category of skills (socio-affective)? “ showing empathy…[with partner-teacher]” Problem: How can these be identifed, assessed and developed in teacher-education programmes? The Socio-Affective Dilemma
The TC Teacher can… use the resources available to them in their own institution to ensure sufficient access to ICT for their students to carry out the exchange effectively The TC Teacher can… locate and reserve computer laboratories in their institution provide students with language structures and vocabulary which they can use in their online interaction The TC Teacher can… make students aware of the differences between online and face-to-face interaction The TC Teacher can… use a battery of examples from previous exchanges to illustrate to learners appropriate use of language, how to deal with intercultural communication breakdown etc. The TC Teacher can… interact appropriately online with their partner-teacher and the participating students, using aspects of ‘netspeak’ (i.e. emoticons) when appropriate and attending to online communication norms (e.g. responding to emails relatively quickly) Eliminated Descriptors from Round 1-2:
The Delphi Method: Round 3: “ I still think that a general list of these competences is a great achievement already - with all of them being important - and if at some point you or sb. is able to maybe design descriptors that differentiate between 2-3 competence levels for each main point that would be still another achievement.”
<ul><li>Modelling good practice in under-graduate and post-graduate courses </li></ul><ul><li>Teaching practice with mentors who are proficient users of technology </li></ul><ul><li>“ The best teacher preparation occurs through collaborative apprenticeship, and the modelling of effective classroom technology practices by both methods teachers and school-based mentors is thus critical to pre-service teachers’ own professional development in the educational use of information and communication technologies (Brown & Warschauer, 2006: 619).” </li></ul><ul><li>Portfolio-based learning (EPOSTL for TC Teachers) </li></ul>How to Train & Assess Teachers in these Competences?
<ul><li>One example of dealing with Teacher Education for one area of ICT/CMC </li></ul><ul><li>Need for further work on what FL teachers need to know in order to work effectively in other areas of CMC, data-based learning, mobile learning etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Need for models to be sufficiently generic to reflect needs and contexts and tools over a long-period of time – avoid technology-specific models </li></ul>Moving forward in CMC FL Teacher Education
Thank You! <ul><li>Contact and suggestions welcome: </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>http://www3.unileon.es/personal/wwdfmrod </li></ul>