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SITE 2014 - Multiple Roles of the Teacher in the K-12 Online Learning Environment: Cautions for Teacher Education


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Barbour, M. K. (2014, March). Multiple roles of the teacher in the K-12 online learning environment: Cautions for teacher education. A paper presented at the annual conference of the Society for Information Technology and Teacher Education, Jacksonville, FL.

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SITE 2014 - Multiple Roles of the Teacher in the K-12 Online Learning Environment: Cautions for Teacher Education

  1. 1. Michael Barbour Sacred Heart University
  2. 2. Full-Time Model
  3. 3. Virtual School Designer: Course Development  design instructional materials  works in team with teachers and a virtual school to construct the online course, etc. Virtual School Teacher: Pedagogy & Class Management  presents activities, manages pacing, rigor, etc.  interacts with students and their facilitators  undertakes assessment, grading, etc. Virtual School Site Facilitator: Mentoring & Advocating  local mentor and advocate for student(s)  proctors & records grades, etc. Davis (2007)
  4. 4. Developed by team on behalf of the online program  a team of teachers, multimedia specialists, instructional designers  work for hire/contract Developed by the online teacher  hired to teach a non-existent course  course developed throughout semester
  5. 5. Copyright  who owns the content?  what happens if teacher leaves? Expertise/Training  “more than 31% of teachers reported receiving no training in online lesson design” (Rice & Dawley, 2007, p. 26)  to create one hour of training it took 43 hours for instructor-led, 79 hours for basic e-learning, 184 hours for interactive e-learning, and 490 hours for advanced e-learning (Chapman Alliance, 2010) Lack of Research to Guide Practice  studies have focused on unreliable and invalid measures  primary data has been teacher and developer perceptions  no open access research-based standards
  6. 6. Similar to classroom-based teaching, with differences  time management, creation of materials, understanding current technology and working with a student one-on-one (Kearsley & Blomeyer, 2004)  work differently to have positive communication and assessments, using non-verbal communication, time is needed for teachers to become comfortable with technology, shift occurring from teacher-centered to student- centered learning (Easton, 2003)
  7. 7. Online teaching is more work  CDLI class size limit (official & unofficial)  asynchronous instruction in particular Lack of reliable and valid empirical research  most research is based on teacher perceptions What is known about teacher training  learn online in order to teach online  works in team with teachers and a virtual school to construct the online course, etc.
  8. 8. Critical to the success of students  research has shown the presence of active facilitators increase student performance (Roblyer, Freeman, Stabler, & Schneidmiller, 2007)  a trained facilitator also has a positive impact on student performance (UNC-Chapel Hill) Facilitator should  monitor student activities  support students soft learning skills Facilitator should not  provide regular tutoring  provide significant or substantial technical assistance
  9. 9. Support for the facilitator  the allocation of one teaching per school for each 175 students to support the delivery of CDLI courses (Shortall & Greene-Fraize, 2007)  schools that had students participating in supplemental distributed learning were eligible to receive 0.125 of a full-time equivalent for the local or school-based support of their students engaged in distributed learning (Barbour, 2011)
  10. 10. Role of the parent  full-time environment  parent is responsible for significant instruction  Programs need to consider how to measure (Liu, Black, Algina, Cavanaugh, & Dawson, 2010) and foster it (Borup, Graham, & Davies, 2013; Halser Waters, 2012; Klein, 2006)  overall findings  parental involvement tends to decrease as student performance increases (Borup, Graham, & Davies, 2013)
  11. 11. Lack of reliable and valid empirical research  Most of the research is based on teacher perceptions (methodological limitations)  most of the research is geographically or contextually limited
  12. 12. Study Results Methodological Limitation Online Course Design Barbour (2005, 2007) 7 Principles of effective asynchronous course design for adolescent learners Interviews with teachers and course developers at a single province-wide virtual school that had a strong synchronous delivery model. Beliefs were not validated through observation or student performance Online Teaching DiPietro et al. (2008) 37 Best practice for effective asynchronous online instruction Interviews with teachers at a single, statewide virtual school that were selected by virtual school administrators. Online teacher beliefs were not validated through observation or student performance.
  13. 13. Course developers should: 1. prior to beginning development of any of the web-based material, plan out the course with ideas for the individual lessons and specific items that they would like to include; 2. keep the navigation simple and to a minimum, but don’t present the material the same way in every lesson; 3. provide a summary of the content from the required readings or the synchronous lesson and include examples that are personalized to the students’ own context; 4. ensure students are given clear instructions and model expectations of the style and level that will be required for student work; 5. refrain from using too much text and consider the use of visuals to replace or supplement text when applicable; 6. only use multimedia that will enhances the content and not simply because it is available; and 7. develop their content for the average or below average student.
  14. 14.  general characteristics – 12 practices  classroom management strategies – 2 practices  pedagogical strategies: assessment – 3 practices  pedagogical strategies: engaging students with content – 7 practices  pedagogical strategies: making course meaningful for students – 4 practices  pedagogical strategies: providing support– 1 practice  pedagogical strategies: communication & community – 5 practices  technology – 3 practices
  15. 15.  based on University of Florida’s Virtual School Clearinghouse initiative  AT&T Foundation-funded project from 2006-2009  designed to provide K-12 online learning programs, particularly statewide supplemental programs, with data analysis tools and metrics for school improvement  13 of those K-12 online programs were outlined in a publication entitled Lessons Learned for Virtual Schools: Experiences and Recommendations from the Field Black, Ferdig, DiPietro (2008)
  16. 16.  design-based research approach to first five years of VHS  SRI International were external evaluators  identified seven goals and focused all of their research and evaluation  resulted in:  three annual evaluations  one five-year evaluation  two subject specific evaluations
  17. 17. Lack of professional development  less than 40% of online teachers reported to receiving any professional development before they began teaching online (Rice & Dawley, 2007) Lack of teacher preparation programs  less than 2% of universities in the United States provided any systematic training in their pre- service or in-service teacher education programs (Kennedy & Archambault, 2012)
  18. 18. Barbour, M. K. (2005). Perceptions of effective web-based design for secondary school students: A narrative analysis of previously collected data. The Morning Watch, 32(3-4). Retrieved from Barbour, M. K. (2007). Principles of effective web-based content for secondary school students: Teacher and developer perceptions. Journal of Distance Education, 21(3), 93-114. Black, E. W., Ferdig, R. E., DiPietro, M. (2008). An overview of evaluative instrumentation for virtual high schools. American Journal of Distance Education, 22(1), 24-45. Borup, J., Graham, C. R., & Davies, R. S. (2013). The nature of parental interactions in an online charter school. American Journal of Distance Education, 27(1), 40-55. Chaplain Alliance. (2010). How long does it take to create learning. Sandy, UT: Chapman Alliance LLC. Retrieved from Davis, N. E. (2007, February). Teacher Education Goes into Virtual Schooling. Paper presented at the FIPSE Comprehensive Conference. Retrieved from DiPetro, M., Ferdig, R. E., Black, E. W., & Preston, M. (2008). Best practices in teaching K-12 online: Lessons learned from Michigan Virtual School teachers. Journal of Interactive Online Learning, 7(1). Retrieved from
  19. 19. Easton, S. (2003). Clarifying the instructor’s role in online distance learning. Communication Education, 52(2), 87–105. Elbaum, B., McIntyre, C., & Smith, A. (2002). Essential elements: Prepare, design, and teach your online course. Madison, WI: Atwood Publishing. Espinoza, C., Dove, T., Zucker, A., & Kozma, R. (1999). An evaluation of the Virtual High School after two years in operation. Arlington, VA: SRI International Ferdig, R. E. & Cavanaugh, C. (Eds.). (2008). Lessons learned for virtual schools: Experiences and recommendations from the field. Vienna, VA: International Association for K-12 Online Learning. Halser Waters, L. (2012). Exploring the experience of learning choices in a cyber charter schools: A qualitative case study. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of Hawaii, Mānoa, HI. Kearsley, G., & Blomeyer, R. (2004), Preparing K-12 teachers to teach online. Educational Technology, 44(1), pp. 49-52. Retrieved from Kennedy, K., & Archambault, L. M. (2012). Offering pre-service teachers field experiences in K-12 online learning: A national survey of teacher education programs. Journal of Teacher Education, 63(3), 185–200. Klein, C. (2006). Virtual charter schools and home schooling. Youngstown, NY: Cambria Press.
  20. 20. Kozma, R., Zucker, A., & Espinoza, C. (1998). An evaluation of the Virtual High School after one year in operation. Arlington, VA: SRI International. Retrieved from pdf Kozma, R., Zucker, A., Espinoza, C., McGhee, R., Yarnall, L., Zalles, D., et al. (2000). The online course experience: Evaluation of the Virtual High School's third year of implementation, 1999-2000. Arlington, VA: SRI International. Retrieved from Lui, F., Black, E., Algina, J., Cavanaugh, C., & Dawson, K. (2010). The validation of one parental in- volvement measurement in virtual schooling. Journal of Interactive Online Learning, 9(2). Retrieved from measurement-in-virtual-schooling Rice, K., & Dawley, L. (2007). Going Virtual: The status of professional development of K-12 online teachers. Boise ID: Boise State University. Retrieved from Yamashiro, K., & Zucker, A. (1999). An expert panel review of the quality of Virtual High School courses: Final report. Arlington, VA: SRI International. Retrieved from Zucker, A., & Kozma, R. (2003). The Virtual High School: Teaching generation V. New York, NY: Teachers College Press.
  21. 21. Director of Doctoral Studies Sacred Heart University, USA