Our topic is e-Learning in schools and the team is Amelia, Belinda, Bob, Tacey and meAs a group our focus is the challenges that schools face for the implementation of e-Learning, and this challenges have been nicely identified by Tracey as “Institutional Barriers to e-Learning in Schools”
Schools, either private or public are somehow very bureaucratic and the implementation of any new policy, procedure or else has to be justified in order to gain support from the executives of the school and then from teachers in general.
We have identified 5 barriers that in one way or another prevent the smooth transition of e-Learning and its associated technologies.The barrier here listed have been analysed by each member of the team .
Now Tracey will present Legal Constraint …
Many teachers have been practicing their profession for some time that the are unable to identify pitfalls in their doings, consequently there are reluctant to change their routines, habits, mind-sets etc.
Teacher move from their teacher role to a reluctant learner role.These teachers fiercely oppose to e-learning. They have no motivations towards new technologies/teaching strategies, therefore they do not see the benefits of implementing e-Learning within their subject area.
The lack of interest demonstrated by these characters puts off any attempt to move to more advanced technologies, like e-Learning, as these important elements of the equation do not want to participate.
In some faculties the Head teacher is the main barrier for the implementation of e-Learning and the professional development of faculty members (unless PD is compulsory)Commonly these faculties have a high teachers turnover1 or 2 teachers follow the leader, everyone else work on their ownThese characters tend to have benefactors within the school that make them untouchables As most politicians, speak loud, use big words like quality teaching framework, significance, higher order thinking, deep knowledge/understanding
Institutional Barriers for the implementation of e-Learning in Schools <br />The implementation of e-Learning in schools faces a number of Institutional Barriers that prevent the adoption and implementation of new teaching strategies supported by e-Learning and its associated technologies. <br />
Institutional Barriers for the implementation of e-Learning in Schools <br /><ul><li>Legal and Ethical Constraints
“…it would be unfortunate if we became so concerned with the potential dangers that we denied students the benefits to be gained from meeting and talking with people from diverse cultures and backgrounds…” <br />(Arnold 1998, p.14)<br />
Cybersafety<br />Cyberbullying<br />unwanted contact<br />breaches of e-security<br />availability of personal information<br />access of inappropriate content<br />excessive internet use<br />http://www.cybersmart.gov.au/<br />
“Today's communication technologies may make it easier, or more anonymous to mistreat others… Cyberspace is, for some, a morality-free zone where the basest behaviours are celebrated in the style of Lord of the Flies.” (Seidel 2009, p.61). <br />
Intellectual Property<br />Copyright and licencing<br />Plagarism<br />
Overcoming Legal/ Ethical Barriers<br />Acceptable Use Policies<br />Communication and Education<br />Use of technologies to protect<br />
Human resources constraints<br />‘The chains of habit are too weak to be felt until they are too strong to be broken’<br />Dr Samuel Johnson (1709-1784)<br />
Human resources constraints<br />Reluctant learners/Reluctant teachers<br />“Seeing the mote in your neighbour's eye..” <br />“I know what I am doing”<br />“I am not going to change my way”<br /> “I know what works with these kids“<br />“It has never been like that”<br />
Human resources constraints<br />Reluctant Teachers are:<br />Inflexible<br />Unenthusiastic<br />Uncreative<br />Good at following prescriptions<br />
Human resources constraints<br />The oppressive head teacher<br />Usually more that 10 years in charge of faculty<br />Lack of IT knowledge<br />Rule under the ‘divide and rule’ principle<br />Promote unsafe environment for learning<br />Good politicians: members of every school committee<br />
Human resources constraints<br />‘…the most important factor affecting student learning is the teacher’<br />Wright, S., Horn, S., & Sanders, W. (1997)<br />A quality teacher in every classroom is the ultimate aim, but how to achieve this is the big question and challenge. <br />
Looking at Professional <br />Development Opportunities<br />as an<br />Institutional Barrier <br />to <br />Effective e-Learning in Schools<br />http://www.softwaremag.com<br />
“The teacher is the chief learner in the classroom” – Donald Graves (2010)<br />It is clear that teachers have the greatest impact on daily student learning in the vast majority of secondary schools in mainstream Australia. <br />Teaching capacity needs to be valued and nurtured in order to create the very best learning opportunities for our students. <br />Professional development is an integral part of every teacher’s growth as a professional and provides opportunities to enhance teaching expertise, intellectual development, professional judgement and effective networking. <br />
Such professional development by definition will benefit the individual teacher, and then by definition the organisation as a whole also. <br />Killion and Harrison, (1990), identified this important aspect of whole school success:<br />“organisational development requires a planned approach to change based on meeting the needs of both the people and the organisation”.<br />
The reality of many school situations in mainstream Australian schools is one where professional development is not catered for or prioritised highly enough to support the level of teaching and learning which is required today<br />http://blogs.scholastic.com<br />
Many of the rate determining steps are by definition institutional barriers as secondary schools as organisations are not designed to accommodate release time for professional development: as it is almost without exception an “add-on” or application for leave. <br />http://tln.typepad.com<br />
Conscious of the requirements of changing current approaches or material currently used in classes, in the pursuit of a better outcome for students, is often limited in reality to the motivated minority, or staff in leadership positions. <br />Unfortunately this culture of lack of engagement with pro-active future focussed professional development is often left unchecked by school administrations who are feeling burdened by greater reporting and bureaucratic requirements.<br />http://dailynews.mcmaster.ca/images/Carolyn_-Eyles_teaching_09.jpg<br />
A fundamental re-think and fresh approach is required both by schools and school systems to ensure sufficient, appropriate, professional development becomes a component of teacher allocations and school budgets. <br />School systems have a role to play in providing or facilitating worthwhile professional development opportunities which are appropriate and useful. <br />http://personal.tcu.edu/sehill/Teaching.jpg<br />
Small allocations of system funds to replace released teachers to do this would be a good investment, as returns in student performance for money outlaid, is high.<br />Fiszer, (2004) Strongly suggests that teachers need regular :<br />“opportunities to explore, question, and debate in order to integrate new ideas into their repertoires and classroom practices”. <br />and<br />“a lack of time for reflection and dialogue could negatively impact on-going teacher professional development”. <br />Inherent in this concept is the direct relationship often between in-service occurring and adoption in the classroom, as ideas are communicated to and from similar contexts by current like practitioners.<br />http://eslarticle.com/uploads/_notregistered/art_730_4f58d80100.jpg<br />
‘Professional development should reflect the following principles:<br />1. The professional development should provide teachers with opportunities for collaboration and coaching.<br />2. The participants should be actively engaged in reflection, inquiry, research, and collective problem solving.<br />3. The professional development should be grounded in instructional practices, assessments, and results specific to the participants’ content area or school improvement process.<br />4. The professional development should be ongoing, sustained, rigorous, and job-embedded.<br />5. The participants should have the necessary resources and opportunities to grow and learn effectively.<br />Darling-Hammond and McLaughlin 1995, Little 1993, Harrison and Killian 2007, Sparks and Hirsh,2000 <br />
There are several steps that can be taken immediately to address these issues at a structural level:<br />Provision of opportunities for teachers to dialogue and network can be an efficient and relatively low cost for school systems to implement and lift student performance. Small allocations of system funds to replace released teachers to do this would be a good investment, as returns in student performance for money outlaid, is high. <br />http://www.oecd.org/vgn/images/portal<br />
There are several steps that can be taken immediately to address these issues at a structural level:<br />Professional development needs to be identified by policy makers as an essential on-going component of teaching and be reflected in funding and allocations to staff, as part of the award and job specification. <br />http://www.oecd.org/vgn/images/portal<br />
There are several steps that can be taken immediately to address these issues at a structural level:<br />Professional development organised at the school level needs to be focused on any objectives of the school’s Annual Plan, which usually draws from a more long term Strategic Plan. In this way, each Department needs to plan opportunities for individual staff members to enhance the whole school stated objectives. <br />http://www.oecd.org/vgn/images/portal<br />
There are several steps that can be taken immediately to address these issues at a structural level:<br />The construction of a Departmental Strategic Professional Development Plan will create opportunities for thoughtful dialogue in ways in which each staff member and department (KLA) can contribute to the school’s overall success. <br />http://www.oecd.org/vgn/images/portal<br />
Departmental Strategic Professional Development Plan<br />
There are several steps that can be taken immediately to address these issues at a structural level:<br />The NSW Institute of Teachers initiatives mandates specified hours of professional development to reach and maintain teaching status, however workplace time allocations do not reflect the fulfillment of these requirements seamlessly.<br />http://www.oecd.org/vgn/images/portal<br />
There are several steps that can be taken immediately to address these issues at a structural level:<br />Interestingly most school leadership contracts mandate reflective practices and on-going professional development and mentoring, however this does not always flow down to all members of staff including classroom teachers.<br />http://www.oecd.org/vgn/images/portal<br />
There are several steps that can be taken immediately to address these issues at a structural level:<br />Increasingly competent and relevant e-learning professional development is being developed for teachers, but changes are needed to allow teachers to more readily access it, if the establishment of sustainable learning communities is to be routinely nurtured and promoted in mainstream secondary schools.<br />http://www.oecd.org/vgn/images/portal<br />
The reality of life-long learning, includes staff as well as students, and behooves work place and role descriptions to reflect these facts. <br />http://ehlt.flinders.edu.au/education/DLiT/2004/13DLT/Images/dyslexia_3.gif<br />
Technology Constraints<br />While education systems and institutions have recognised that learning has been largely impacted by technology, varying levels of elearning adoption exist and are hindered by technology constrains.<br />1. Emerging Technologies 2010 Horizon Report: K-12 Edition<br />A variety of emerging technologies could potentially impact on teaching and learning in pre-college education including cloud computing, collaborative environments, game-based learning, mobiles, augmented reality, and flexible displays.<br />Challenge for school systems is the facilitation of effective information and communication technology resources, which utilise such emerging technologies<br />
Technology Barriers<br />2. Resource funding and initiatives<br />Challenges with funding and initiatives by the government to provide technology hardware to school intuitions, limiting institutions flexibility in creating personalisedelearning solutions. <br />Digital Education Revolution<br />The national secondary computer fund is a key component of the digital education revolution initiative, assisting secondary schools with students in years 9 to 12 to achieve a 1:1 computer ratio.<br />State, catholic, and independent schools all currently have a varied approach in the implementation of both government and institutionally funded technology resources.<br />
Technology Barriers<br />3. e-learning based on information communication technology hardware resources<br />E-Learning Assumptions<br /> ‘If they we build it, they will come’ (Zemsky et al, 2004).<br />Many institutions implementing the technology hardware reources as the education elearning solution, without the strategic development of effective elearning environments. <br />Little consideration for the digital and social tools that can be used to create elearning environments.<br />Need for the adoption of constructivist and connectivist learning theories to create effective elearning models in K-12 classrooms. <br />
Recommendations<br />Information and communication technology resources<br />Strategic ICT resource implementation to meet Individualised elearning solutions <br />Regulation in student use of personal devices in the school environment such as laptops and mobile devices <br />Flexible and meaningful ICT resource solutions for elearning in consideration of emerging technologies<br />Use of digital and social tools to create meaningful elearning environments<br />Devising a school based elearning plan developed beyond the computer hardware technologies available, in order adopt more effective elearning models in learning<br />Incorporating digital and social software technologies in elearning plans to establish elearning models<br />Development of learning environments based on constructivist and connectivism theories of learning <br />
Digital Natives<br />Impact on e-learning in schools<br />
“One student walks across campus <br />listening to an iPod; another is engrossed in text messaging <br />on her cell phone. During class, they’re Googling, <br />Instant Messaging and playing games- often at the same time. <br />More likely to use the library as a gathering place than a resource, <br />this is the Net Generation.” <br />(Oblinger 2006 in Jones et al 2010) <br />
Source: Online Identity Wiki Created by Mauricio Aguirre-PinedaUniversity of Manitoba, Faculty of Education online-identity.wikispaces.com accessed 10/5/11 <br />
Defining Digital Natives<br />Can this notion be defined?<br />Prensky (2001) recognised the dramatic change in the students of today.<br />The first generation to grow up with this new technology. Living their lives surrounded by computers, videogames, mobile phones- all of the tools and gadgets of the digital age.<br />Source: ABS (2010) Household Use of Information Technology, Australia. 2008-2009<br />
Assumptions<br />Changes to current teaching practice need to be made to address the needs of these Digital Natives<br />Students skills distinguish them from previous generations and their teachers<br />As students live their lives immersed in technology, they therefore possess highly developed technology skills<br />All students are interested in, reliant upon and able to use technology<br />
Implications<br />Does the popularity of ICT in everyday life determine its application to education?<br />A “one size fits all” model will not work<br />A digital divide exists<br />Students learning styles can not be generalised, cognitive differences must be recognised<br />Students use of technology differs inside and outside of the school setting<br />High use of technology does not equal high skill base<br />
Recommendations<br />The use of ICT can enrich learning experiences and motivate and engage students<br />Differences must be recognised when implementing e-learning<br />Evaluate students technology skill base<br />Work towards developing critical thinking skills when using technology<br />Develop a whole school approaches to the implementation of e-learning<br />
Conclusion<br />Overcoming Legal/ Ethical Barriers<br />Acceptable Usage Policies (AUPs)<br />Communication and Education about Legal and Ethical Issues<br />Use of technologies to manage internet usage<br />Overcoming the Human Resources Barriers<br />New procedures and appropriate staff training <br />Overcoming the Professional Development Barriers<br />Strategic professional development plan<br />Overcoming the Technology Barriers <br />Information and communication technology resources<br />Use of digital and social tools to create meaningful elearningenvironments<br />Overcoming the Digital Native Debate<br />Recognisingdifferences in the technology skills of students<br />Reviewing technology skills<br />
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