Liisa Ilomaki

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Liisa Ilomaki

  1. 1. School in Front of Challenges of Knowledge Society, Again and Again Liisa Ilomäki Department of Psychology University of Helsinki 25.10.2007 EDEN conference
  2. 2. For policy-makes in all OECD countries, ICT in education was regarded as a means to promote information society, and educational technology was expected to change the education. Requirements were less evident, something like “life long learning” Researchers expectations arouse from the severe critics by “constructivist” researchers against “school learning” instead of learning for authentic activities and real life contexts. They expected to conduct theoretical ideas with ICT. Liisa Ilomäki 2007 ICT to change education
  3. 3. Changes in schools because of ICT, beliefs <ul><li>teachers have a better ICT competence </li></ul><ul><li>working practices are more student-centred </li></ul><ul><li>all kind of network applications are used in education </li></ul><ul><li>ICT in general is used in schools </li></ul><ul><li>Internet is used for searches </li></ul><ul><li>wonderful pilots and examples of advanced working and knowledge practices </li></ul><ul><ul><li>..so we are doing fine? </li></ul></ul>Liisa Ilomäki 2007
  4. 4. In successful pilot schools <ul><li>ICT-skills were taught in a context integrated in the curriculum and as part of complex skills such as information handling, collaboration and communication and were embedded in an authentic context </li></ul><ul><li>Learning projects became student-centered; they were longer, more time-consuming processes, and many of the ICT-based innovations involved multidisciplinary and collaborative projects, such as project-based learning and independent inquiry </li></ul><ul><li>The proportion of authentic activities increased, and students worked on topics meaningful to them because of the connection to real life and student’s own experiences . </li></ul>Liisa Ilomäki 2007
  5. 5. <ul><li>Teachers’ role changed from that of primary source of information to one who creates structure and provides advice for students, monitors their progress, and assesses their accomplishments, and works as a coach </li></ul><ul><li>Respectively students’ role changed and they were engaged in general and or online inquiry, and in productive learning, which developed their sense of capability and agency </li></ul><ul><li>Students skills of ICT, problem solving, information management, collaboration and communication develop (often called for “lifelong competencies”) when ICT is used in a student-centered way </li></ul>Liisa Ilomäki 2007 In successful pilot schools 2
  6. 6. <ul><li>ICT was used for the existing content or at offering the existing curriculum content in a different way, not in changing the content </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The use of Internet helped to give a much wider coverage of topics and it gave access to authentic sources and materials, which helped to establish a sense of contact between the classroom and a wider world </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Computer was more frequently used as a learning tool rather than to deliver instruction. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The working atmosphere was more free than in a traditional classroom without ICT; the relationship between teacher and students more open and free, because teachers have less rules; students were motivated to work with computers because the activities are more challenging than ordinary tasks and the overall learning environment is more meaningful. </li></ul>Liisa Ilomäki 2007 In successful pilot schools 3
  7. 7. Characteristics in successful schools <ul><li>Strong educational vision and experience in innovation and ICT use </li></ul><ul><li>Reputation for being an innovation school </li></ul><ul><li>Alignment with government education policy </li></ul><ul><li>The principal and the school leadership are key actors </li></ul><ul><li>Several community-directed strategies for solving the problems of using ICT, especially transformations of school organization. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>For instance, at some schools, there was a shift from hierarchical structures to more horizontal ones, and improvements in staff development through building the teachers' professional community </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Teachers' effective professional development requires training in a broad sense, integrating teachers’ ICT competencies with their pedagogical knowledge and skills </li></ul>Liisa Ilomäki 2007
  8. 8. Characteristics in successful schools 2 <ul><li>A strong professional teacher community and a well-supported instructional technology were in a reciprocal and recursive interaction: teachers' common need to learn about technology contributed to the development of the professional community, which again contributed to more integrated and focused uses of technology, the refinement of the school's visions, and gradual development of a better support system for technology use. </li></ul><ul><li>The use of ICT inspires teachers' pedagogical collaboration: educational settings with ICT become cross disciplinary: large projects and process-oriented activities, special expertise of several teachers required. Teachers become team members instead of independent workers. </li></ul><ul><li>Teachers' personal commitment and appreciative, collaborative community with support of the principals. </li></ul>Liisa Ilomäki 2007
  9. 9. Two kinds of ICT stories in schools <ul><li>In successful pilots, the way of implementing ICT is tailored. Schools and teachers are supported in individuals ways, focusing especially on the needs of that specific school and supporting the internal improvement of that school. These schools are better prepared to answer the “knowledge society challenges” </li></ul><ul><li>Change is active transformation </li></ul><ul><li>In the large majority of schools, ICT has been mainly implemented to fit the ordinary practices, and to adapt to the “inevitable” future with educational technology. No individual support, no extra resources. </li></ul><ul><li>Change is slow revolution </li></ul>Liisa Ilomäki 2007
  10. 10. In ordinary schools <ul><li>No problems in access to ICT. </li></ul><ul><li>Big differences between the amount of use and practices of using ICT between ordinary schools and pilot schools </li></ul><ul><li>ICT is mainly used to adapt in the existing teaching practices and or to adapt in the “inevitable” changes caused by technology </li></ul><ul><li>Pedagogical practices have changed only little; the use of ICT is dependent on an individual teacher’s interest and motivation. </li></ul>Liisa Ilomäki 2007
  11. 11. An example: Learning tasks based on cognitive challenge Inquiry- and problemsolving (n=2) The level of cognitive Traditional individual or challenge collaborative projects (n=13) ” Lesson writings” (n=4) N=34 Applying practice (n=11) lessons Strictly structured drill and practice task (n=4) Liisa Ilomäki and Minna Lakkala, 2005
  12. 12. <ul><li>School has not used all the powerful possibilities of new technology to transform the existing teaching and learning practices in the majority of schools. </li></ul><ul><li>There is a digital gap in education: the technology used in education is for students boring, ineffective, and it does not give competence for using advanced technology. </li></ul><ul><li>The large majority of teachers are still quite low level users, and many of them still have difficulties to find meaningful pedagogical use for technology . </li></ul><ul><li>Concentration on technology instead of learning has prevented the pedagogical reform </li></ul>Liisa Ilomäki 2007 School in front of challenges:
  13. 13. <ul><li>The change process in school is undervalued in the ICT implementation, and ICT was thought to cause changes in learning and teaching practices as such. The importance of change process was not understood. </li></ul><ul><li>There is a need to re-think the schooling: what we want and why, how to reach the goals. Experiences from pilot schools can give examples and guidelines to be conducted in “ordinary” schools. </li></ul><ul><li>This is a political question, not a research question. </li></ul>School in front of challenges 2: Liisa Ilomäki 2007

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