Presentation ECER 2013. Added Value? ICT in preschool

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Presented at The European Conference on Educational Research (ECER), 10-13 september 2013, Istanbul, Turkey,

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Presentation ECER 2013. Added Value? ICT in preschool

  1. 1. Added value? Preschool teacher students’ views on and examples of the added pedagogical value of ICT as a tool for learning Jörgen Holmberg. Faculty of Education and Business Studies. University of Gävle, Sweden
  2. 2. Pilot study. Full scale study in late fall 2013 Part of a research project at the University of Gävle: ICT in preschool – Digital practice in preschool, preschool teachers’ norms, attitudes and actions.
  3. 3. Overarching goal of research project: increase our understanding of preschool teachers’ integration of ICT in their practice. Main goal of pilot study and later full scale study: Increased understanding of what kind of added pedagogical value preschool teacher students think educational technologies can bring to preschools Secondary goal: Testing the TPACK-framework as a tool for analyzing ICT use in preschools
  4. 4. Background, ICT in Swedish preschools Report from The Swedish National Agency for Education published in 2013. ICT-use and ICT-competence among preschool teachers in Swedish preschools Statistics on ICT access in preschools and on preschool teachers ICT use/ICT competence
  5. 5. ICT access in Swedish preschools Almost every preschool teacher has access to a computer at work. 11% have access to a personal computer or tablet. 70% of the preschool teachers feel that they have sufficient computer access when not working with the children Around 50% of the preschool teachers believe they have sufficient access to computers when they want to use ICT to work together with children
  6. 6. Number of computers/tablets per child approx. 13 Equal distribution between stationary computers, portable computers and tablets Around 2/3 of all preschools have access to a wireless network 83% of preschool teachers think that they have sufficient access to wireless network
  7. 7. Preschool teachers’ ICT use and ICT competence 2/3 believe their ICT competence to be good or very good 1/3 state that their preschool children use computers on their own in preschool a couple of times a week.
  8. 8. 16% use computers or tablets together with the children every day. 31% say they do so every week Around 50% think that ICT is an important pedagogical tool Around 70% want to use it more than they do today
  9. 9. Aim of the pilot study To increase our knowledge about what added pedagogical value preschool teacher students think educational technologies can bring to preschools by analyzing written and oral/visual examples of such added value through the lenses of the TPACK-framework
  10. 10. Theoretical framework Why TPACK? Internationally recognized as useful in discussing and analyzing the complex relationships that exist between content, pedagogy and technology in technology enhanced learning environments
  11. 11. The pilot study 25 informants. Preschool teacher students in their last semester before graduation. Data collected during a course in the pedagogical use of ICT taught by myself and another teacher. I was the only researcher performing this pilot study. Risk for bias and taken for granted assumptions!? Main study will strive to have two researchers analyze and code the students written and oral/visual examples
  12. 12. Data collection from two course assignments 1. A written assignment. Students were to describe 2-5 different ways in which ICT could be used to create added pedagogical value in preschools. Students based their descriptions on their own observations or use of ICT in preschool during their teacher practice. They also used examples from the course literature or examples given by teachers/students during the course.
  13. 13. 2. Students’ oral and visual presentations. Presentations made at the end of the course. Assignment = to present a digital artifact for use in preschools and argue for the added pedagogical values that this artifact could help create. Presentations were videotaped and the digital artifacts submitted in LMS
  14. 14. Assignment instructions In both assignments students were asked to specify the added pedagogical value that ICT could contribute in preschool practice. They received the instructions below: For each example of what you have observed, read about or produced/carried out, you are to present arguments for how ICT has contributed in creating an added pedagogical value and explain how, in your view, the use of ICT has or will allow the learner to experience, practice and learn in a way that would not be possible without ICT. You are expected to justify your use of ICT and explain why the learner would not get the same experience and learning opportunities using analogue "traditional" teaching
  15. 15. Research questions • What types of arguments did the preschool teacher students present to support the use of ICT to create added pedagogical value in preschools? • What types of examples were given of successful ICT use for added pedagogical value in preschools by the preschool teacher students? • To what extent do the preschool teacher students’ written examples and presentations show signs of added pedagogical value by successful ICT integration
  16. 16. Content analysis The collected data was first analyzed and labeled in coding protocols consistent with the TPCK framework. The researcher analyzed and categorized each example of added value as CK, PK, TK, TCK, TPK. Examples coded as TCK or TPK were considered examples of ICT use providing added pedagogical value.
  17. 17. Examples
  18. 18. Every example coded as TCK or TPK was then re- analyzed These examples were then categorized depending on the added pedagogical value they represented.
  19. 19. Results 6 categories were created to describe students suggested added pedagogical values In the following slides the first category presented had the highest number of suggestions as added pedagogical value in the analyzed student examples.
  20. 20. The informed use of ICT in preschool was suggested to afford an added pedagogical value in documentation by: making children´s learning and development visible for parents making learning and development visible for the child making children´s learning and development visible for preschool teachers allowing evaluation of preschool teachers’ pedagogical practice making children´s interests visible to preschool teachers
  21. 21. The informed use of ICT in preschool was suggested to afford an added pedagogical value: through the ability of collaborative ICT use to strengthen the children’s self-image and self-confidence. Teachers and children can become collaborators “on equal ground” in the use of apps, the recording and editing of video, etc. Children contributors as quick learners or “experts” on tablets/smartphones, uninhibited actors and free thinkers.
  22. 22. The informed use of ICT in preschool was suggested to afford an added pedagogical value: through individualization allowing children to both learn and express their learning through different modalities providing children experiences within their zones of proximal development (for example through different difficulty levels in an app – adding/removing visual or auditory hints)
  23. 23. The informed use of ICT in preschool was suggested to afford an added pedagogical value: by giving preschool teachers access to a versatile pedagogical tool (focus on preschool teachers as teachers) administrative tool access to online materials and facts presentation tool tool for pedagogical development (preschool teacher forums, resource banks , etc.)
  24. 24. The informed use of ICT in preschool was suggested to afford an added pedagogical value: by providing ALL preschool children with an ability to develop a basic digital competence Focusing on the role of the preschool in compensating for differences in socioeconomic and sociocultural background
  25. 25. The informed use of ICT in preschool was suggested to afford an added pedagogical value: by providing parents the opportunity to become involved and influence preschool agenda and practice
  26. 26. Conclusions and discussion The pilot study provided detailed examples of the possible added pedagogical value that can be created by informed use of ICT in preschools. Based on these examples of added pedagogical value a number of possible categories of such added value have been created for use in later research
  27. 27. Using the TPACK framework for analysis Sometimes difficult to distinguish between TCK and TPK in observations and analysis of ICT use. For example, one suggested added value of ICT expressed by the preschool teacher students was: the ability of collaborative ICT use to strengthen the children’s self-image and self- confidence
  28. 28. This added value could be regarded as TCK (since strengthening every child’s self-image and self- confidence is a goal in the Swedish preschool curriculum). However, finding ways of making learners believe in their capacity to learn is also part of a teacher’s pedagogical knowledge. Understanding how to use ICT for this purpose could thus be considered TPK.
  29. 29. Heterogenity in students’ TK On the surface respondents made up a homogenous group in some respects (91% were women in roughly the same age and in their last semester of their preschool teacher studies) However, there was a pronounced heterogenity in students technological knowledge.
  30. 30. Questions for further research When children use ICT together with preschool teachers (or other grown ups), what are the most important factors that that might create an added value? Is it that the affordances of the tool let children use multiple modalities in learning? or
  31. 31. that the ability to set the difficulty level in for example an app gives children learning experiences in their zone of proximal development? The child and/or the teacher can in a way decide how “capable a peer” the computer or tablet should be. or that the preschool teacher/grown up by using a new app together engage in “real” collaborative learning (as opposed to when the teacher ask questions that he/she already knows the answer to, which the children also realize)?
  32. 32. Questions, comments? Thank you for your attention! Jörgen Holmberg jonhog@hig.se

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