Digital recording equipment Essay
Digital recording equipment
The use of information and communications technology has permeated almost every fabric of society. The education sector and the teaching of mathematics in particular are no exception. Increasingly, information and communication technologies are being used to administer teaching materials to students. Students also benefit from these tools in their knowledge acquisition (Goodison,2002; Hall and Higgins, 2005; Oldknow, 2002; Wall, Higgins and Smith, 2005) .
This development is taking place in the developed as well as the developing world. The usage of information of communications technology has become so endemic that schools and teachers for that matter that fail to participate in this development risk increasing marginalization (Spanos, Prastacos and Poulymenakou, 2002). Information and communication technologies being used in the education sector include computers, the internet, telephone, emails, among others.
Other specific tools offered by information and communication technology for teaching and learning have been catalogued by Osborne and Hennessy (2007) as follows: (a) tools for data capture, processing and interpretation such as data logging systems, databases and spreadsheets, graphing tools and modeling environments (b) multimedia software for simulation of processes and carrying out “virtual experiments”. (c) Publishing and presentation tools (d) Digital recording equipment
(e) Computer projection technology These research workers added that these forms of information and communication technology can enhance both the practical and theoretical aspects of teaching. Other advantages of information and communication technology include enhancing the learning experience by offering a more personalized environment to students (Williams, 2005), boundaryless to which teaching materials can be administered and learning received
(Osborne and Hennessy, 2007) and its limitless capacity to reach countless pupils and students with the same teaching materials (Van Brakel and Chisenga, 2003. , Johnston-Wilder and Pimm, 2004). It is known that many school pupils and students alike shy away from mathematics, claiming it is a difficult subject. It maybe a worthwhile undertaking to find out how information and communication technology help students overcome the problem of learning the subject and also teachers in effectively teaching it.
Also, despite the widespread use of information and communication technology in the teaching of mathematics, few studies have been conducted to assess its effectiveness as a teaching tool and its impact on learning. Consequently, there is paucity of information in this area of education. This study therefore was instituted to help fill the information gap. Specifically, it shall seek to answer the question of whether the use of information and communication technology enhance teaching and learning of mathematics or otherwise. 2.
0 LITERATURE REVIEW 2. 1 Information and Communication Technologies for teaching mathematics Oldknow (2004) has given a vivid description of the information and communication technology hardwares, softwares and gadgets available for teaching and learning of mathematics. According to this author, information and communication technology hardware used to support interactive whole class teaching are conventionally based on a computer (desktop or laptop) or a projector or both. These gadgets can be permanently mounted or are movable.
This author also pointed out that the objects projected can be displayed on an interactive white board (IWB) or an ordinary whiteboard or a clear patch of wall or screen. The IWB also come with its own pack of software tools. Two commonly used softwares for teaching mathematics are the Dynamic Geometry Software (DGS) and the Cabri Geometry Software. The former can be used at all levels of education. Other tools in use are the graphical calculators and data-loggers as well as integrated mathematical softwares such as the TI Inter-active.
In their book titled “Teaching secondary mathematics with ICT (Learning and teaching with Information and communication technology), Johnston-Wilder and Pimm (2004) offered useful tools used in teaching and learning of mathematics. For example, they showed how the internet and video conferencing can be used to enhance teaching. They also revealed how interactive boards can be used in the classroom. Softwares that support the teaching and learning of mathematics in primary schools have been categorized by the DfES (2007).
These include (a) software for numbering and number patterns (b) spreadsheet software and calculators (c) pixie and roamer programmable toys for stage one pupils (d) shape programs using computer-aided design (CAD), (e) Abacus 1, 2, and 3 teaching software and (f) 123-CD for numeric skill development. 2. 2 The use of information and communication technology in schools In the last decade or two, information and communication technology (ICT) has considerably altered the way and manner teaching of students and pupils, learning and school administration is carried out.
According to Gurr (2001) school systems worldwide face increasing pressure to use technology to enhance teaching, learning and administration. This research worker further pointed out that in the school system of Victoria, Australia, school principals had been able to manage the decade of explosive change through an increasing reliance on information communication and technology. Some of the principals he interviewed in this study revealed that they would not have been able to do their work, if they had not been familiar with information and communication technology.
A lot of changes have taken place since 2001 in the information and communication technology sector itself and its usage in teaching, learning and administration of schools that lack of knowledge in information and communication technology would have made the work of operatives in this sector virtually possible. Loveless (2003) studied the interaction between primary school teachers’ perceptions of information and communication technology and their pedagogy at Carberry Junior School in England.
He found that Information and communication technology was perceived as by the teachers as a social and cultural phenomenon and an ambiguous area constructed as a discrete subject and a ‘new’ field in primary schools. Yuen, Law and Wong (2003), on the other hand, studied the models of change in eighteen schools striving to integrate the use of information and communications technology in teaching and learning across school curriculum in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.
They found that the strategy adopted by a school instituting such change and the resulting variation of pedagogical practices using information and communication technology was strongly dependent on the school leader’s vision and understanding of the role and impact of information and communication technology in the curriculum, culture and background of the school and its general vision and mission. Hennessy, Ruthven and Brindley (2005) also examined how secondary school teachers of core subjects such as English, Mathematics and Science integrate information and communication technology into mainstream classroom practice in English schools.
They found that teachers used Information and communication technology to enhance and extend their existing classroom practice. Teachers also developed and tried new strategies specifically for mediating Information and communication technology supported learning. These research workers also found that teachers were able to overcome potentially obstructive role of some forms of information and communication technology by focusing pupils’ attention to underlying learning objectives.
In another study involving a survey of teachers, Ruthven and Hennessy (2003) reported that ICT enabled teachers to facilitate more of their routine components of classroom activity, increasing the productivity of pupils and improving the quality of work they produced. These researchers also added that ICT allowed the teachers’ activities to be carried out more quickly and reliably, with greater ease and higher quality (Ruthven and Hennessy, 2002) Sutherland and co-workers (2004) also studied how teams of teachers and researchers embed information and communication technology into everyday classroom practices to enhance learning.
The study focused on the teaching and learning across a range of subjects such as English, History, Geography, Mathematics, Foreign languages, Music and Science. They found that young people out of school uses of information and communication technology influenced their in-school learning. Higgins (2007), on the other hand, has pointed out that there is evidence from research that information and communication technology could help pupils to learn and teachers to teach more effectively. This researcher however, added that there was not a simple message in such evidence that ICT would make a difference simply by being used.
In other words, concrete plans and objectives must be set in place and stringently implemented before observable results can be seen. Higgins (2007) further added that findings suggest that although information and communication technology can improve learning, there were a number of issues that must be addressed if technology was to make a difference. These issues are (a) the modest effect of information and communication technology compared with other research interventions and (b) the almost negligible effect of the provision and use of information and communication technology at a general level.
Lawson and Comber (1999) have examined the non-technical factors which lead to successful integration of information and communication technology into school curriculum. The factors identified included (a) teachers’ attitudes prior to the innovation (b) the role of the information and communication technology coordinator (c) the attitude of senior management and (d) the existence of adequate support and training. These research workers concluded that the interplay between these four factors provided the necessary conditions for a successful deployment of superhighways technology in the curriculum.
According to McCarney (2004) previous studies into teacher attitude and motivation in Scotland, identified staff development as one of the contributing factors to the effective usage of information and communication technology in the classroom. This study further revealed that there was the need to place greater emphasis on the pedagogy of information and communication technology. The study concluded that these findings should be of interest to all involved in teacher education and the continuing professional development of teachers. 2. 3 Problems associated with information and communication technology usage in schools
The use of information and communication technology in the educational sector has not been without its peculiar problems. Littlejohn (2002) has pointed out that common shortcomings in educational design in higher education had not been fully addressed in some schools during the rapid shift towards online, resource-based learning. He noted that a contributing factor to this problem has been the adherence of academic staffs towards passive and didactic forms of online teaching and learning. Continuous professional development has been offered as the most valid way of rectifying this problem (Davies and Preston, 2002; Littlejohn, 2002).
There are more primary and secondary schools than schools catering for higher educations, so it can be expected that the problem can be more pronounced in the lower end of the educational ladder. Some educators have suggested that information and communication technology use should start at the schools where teachers are trained. Galanouli and McNair (2001) have shown from a study that students’ use of information and communication technology on teaching practice was necessary for effective future use of information and communication technology in the classroom.
They therefore recommended that schools should be supported and resourced properly to enable teachers gain effective information and communication technology training for their future careers. Some researchers have highlighted the negative effects information and communication technology can have on pupils or students. Tolmie (2001) has pointed out that whilst information and communication technology has tremendous benefits, it can have unexpected diverse effects on students according to the setting in which they are used.
He counseled that if the object was to exercise control over the outcome, then conditions of use need to be planned for within the design and implementation of the technology. In order to do this, Tolmie (2001) recommended that data should be gathered on how outcomes are affected by the interplay between technology and the context within which they are used. Watson (2004) has bemoaned technology’s role in education. According to this research worker despite the ubiquity of technology in the business world, no clear role has emerged for it in education.
He further pointed out that this was happening after many years of national policies and investment in information technologies in the UK and elsewhere. He added that technology is still considered by many people as having been imposed and novel “outsider” in the pedagogy of schools. Kennewell (2001) has conceded that evaluating the nature and extent of the influence of information and communication technology on the quality of learning is highly problematic, owning to the number and complexity of interacting variables involved in the settings of teaching and learning.
These difficulties notwithstanding, Kennewell (2001) pointed out that there was the need to identify, characterize, measure and model more precisely the features and processes through which technology impacts upon teaching and learning. According to this research worker, such information is very much needed by those responsible for allocating large sums of money for the development of information and communication technology in education. METHODOLOGY A qualitative study involving in-depth personal interviews with mathematics teachers shall be conducted.
Three teachers shall be engaged for this interview. The questionnaire to be used is given in the Appendix. This study shall endeavour to assess the knowledge and understanding of the three chosen mathematics teachers about information and communication technology as well as problems they encountered in using them.
1. Davies, R. and Preston, M. (2002). An evaluation of the impact of continuing professional development on personal and professional lives, Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 28(2):231-254.
University/College: University of California
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Date: 20 April 2017
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