Technology Use Planning Overview

Technology Planning
Technology planning is often defined in different ways by many different people. I believe the best way to explain it is two-pronged. It is both a document and a process. The final document that is created is a detailed visual representation of goals a technology committee creates through a continual process (Graduate Students, 2002). This continual process is always adding as new technologies are created, and subtracting as older technologies are outdated. This planning process has to think about the present and future needs of the school, and how best to implement the plan.

National Education Technology Plan 2010
The main purpose of the National Education Technology Plan is to enable, motivate, and inspire all students to learn regardless of background, languages or disabilities. This technology plan is broken down into five categories: Learning, Assessment, Teaching, Infrastructure, and Productivity.
In helping students learn, we should leverage technology to provide personalized learning to all students. In assessments, we should use technology-based assessments that combine cognitive research and theory about how students think with multimedia, interactivity, and connectivity make it possible to directly assess these types of skills. (Johnson, 2012). Because of the evolution of technology, we have access to resources 24/7 and we no longer need to be in the classroom to teach or learn. This technology also allows us to collaborate seamlessly with our colleagues.
These helpful guidelines by the NETP give us a focal point on our goals in the classroom and allow us to center our technology plans around these five areas.

Short Term vs Long Term
In John See’s Technology plan, he states that technology plans should have a short term focus (1 year) rather than long term (5 years) because of how often technology is evolving. I understand his point, but technologies we use do not just come out of nowhere. A great resource to help us determine what technologies will be used in the next 1-5 years can be found in the NMC Horizon Report, where they break down the adoption phase into one year or less, two to three years, and four to five years. It is unrealistic for See to think districts can plan with such short term objectives.

Applications not Technology
This time, I agree with John See when he states that our technology plan should focus on what we want to be able to do with the technology, and those outcomes will determine they types of technology needed. (See, 1992) I believe you must have a focus on what you want your technology to be able to do before you buy it. Otherwise, you may buy technology that is great in some aspects, but those aspects may not be what you are in need of. I will relate this to baseball in that it would be like buying a real expensive catchers glove, then your coach telling you that you are an outfielder. You have to have the right equipment for your needs.

Experience with Technology Planning
My experience with technology planning is very limited. The only time I have ever been on a technology committee is at the beginning of this year when we were trying to figure out the best way to handle our outdated computer labs and limited wi-fi accessibility. During our few short meetings, we came to the conclusion that the best way to spend our money was to increase our wi-fi accessibility throughout the school and encourage students to bring their own devices. I found this experience to be both fun and rewarding. It was the first time I was passionate about a committee I was on and since our principal followed through with our recommendation, it has been a great addition to our school.

Sources
Anderson, L. (1999). Technology planning: It’s more than computers. Retrieved from:http://www.nctp.com/articles/tpmore.pdf

Graduate Students at Mississippi State University for National Center for Technology Planning. (2002). Guidebook for Developing an Effective Instructional Technology Plan. Retrieved from http://www.nctp.com/downloads/Guidebook35.pdf

Johnson, L., Adams, S., and Cummins, M. (2012).NMC Horizon Report: 2012 K-12 Edition. Austin, Texas: The New Media Consortium

See, J. (1992, May). Developing effective technology plans. The Computer Teacher, 19, (8). Retrieved from: http://www.nctp.com/html/john_see.cfm

U.S. Department of Education Office of Educational Technology. (2010). National education technology plan. Washington D.C: U.S. Department of Education. Retrieved from:http://www.ed.gov/sites/default/files/netp2010.pdf

Digital Divide & Digital Inequality

I found this Digital Divide & Digital Inequality assignment to be the most fascinating, endless research I have ever done. I found myself researching one topic, then learning new information that would lead me to research a different topic.

For my project, I initially wanted to find out more information on the digital divide at my affluent high school. This then lead me to look at 3 other high schools of the same socioeconomic status, and 4 high schools of different socioeconomic status.
To do this, I had to find common comparable data among high schools. I chose to investigate schools based on the percentage of students who receive free or reduced lunch and the correlation of state test scores, graduation rates, and SAT scores. I chose 8 schools total with 4 schools having the highest percentage of free/reduced lunch, and the others have 4 of the lowest percentage of free/reduced lunch in Oregon.

This project was tricky because there are so many different variables that go into State Testing, SAT scores, graduation rates, and whether or not a student qualifies for free or reduced lunches. However, I do think there is a correlation between access to technology and achievement on State Testing and SAT scores.
I truly believe I could have researched this topic for another 4 weeks and found many new avenues to add to this project. My understanding of the digital divide has developed immensely through all my research and I look forward to diving into this topic even more.

Research in Educational Technology

Intro to Business/High School

Instructional Objective: Increase appropriate researching skills

Discussion:

One of the most prevalent issues we face at our high school is plagiarism. I would like to teach my students the proper way to research and cite their work. Currently, my students’ research skills consist of using whichever websites pop-up first through Google, or going straight to wikipedia.com. I would like to instill these skills into my students so they will be prepared for their latter years of high school and once they get to college.

Currently, the only “citing” my students have to do is copy and paste the URL onto the assignment to let me know which websites they used. I do not require APA format, or any other formal type of citing. I often find multiple paragraphs directly pasted onto their assignments without proper citation.  I believe The OWL at Purdue University summarized my experience best; research-based writing is filled with rules that writers aren’t aware of or don’t know how to follow.

I believe it is my responsibility to inform my students on the proper way to research and cite their work. I am enabling them to plagiarize by not holding them accountable for the sources they use, nor the citations. My goal is to educate my students about tools to use to when researching so that they no longer have to rely on plagiarism.

Annotated Bibliography

Jacso, P. (2008). Google scholar revisited. Online Information Review32(1), 102-114. doi: 10.1108/14684520810866010

This articles talks about the pros and cons of using Google Scholar. One great thing Google has done is it has made it easy for people to find scholarly information. Google has huge databases of the largest and most well-known scholarly publishers and university presses, their digital hosts/facilitators, societies and other scholarly organizations and government agencies, and preprint/reprint servers. Google has access to journals, books, digital repositories, and other resources in multiple languages and geographics. However, Google Scholar does have a minor flaw in that it has a hard time distinguishing author names from other parts of the text using its parsing algorithm.

Potter, C. (2008). Standing on the shoulders of libraries: a holistic and rhetorical approach to teaching Google Scholar. Journal of Library Administration, 47(1-2), 5-28.

This article talks about how the goal of Google is much like that of a public or academic library. The stated goal of Google, “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.” With Google Scholar, they have teamed up with libraries and provided an interface that represents the library resources. Instead of having to go to a library, one can now use Google Scholar to search through the library databases for you.

Suarez, J. & Martin, A. (2001). Internet plagiarism: A teacher’s combat guide. Contemporary Issues in Technology and Teacher Education, 1(4), 546-549. Norfolk, VA: AACE.

This article lists what plagiarism is, how to detect plagiarism, and strategies to prevent it. It recommends having the paper written in a specific format with a certain number of references. I should let students know how to avoid plagiarism and that I know about “Internet paper mills”

Reflection

For this assignment, I really wanted to take a dual approach to this and look at the effectiveness of Google Scholar and strategies to prevent plagiarism. What was interesting is that I was using Google Scholar to research the pros/cons of using Google Scholar. Very few articles came up that showed unfavorable information on Google Scholar. Either suggesting Google Scholar is a great resource to use, or Google Scholar has auto-filter for research on negative aspects of itself; just like us humans do.
After researching both topics, I am convinced I need to hold my students more accountable with their researching and citing. Not only so that they have to think for themselves, but also to prepare them for their post-high school lives.

RSS for Education

Teaching Resources Bundle

I have now begun my journey into the overwhelming world of RSS feeds. Really Simple Syndication, or RSS feeds, are a way to organize and streamline information from your favorite websites.

Even though I am familiar finding ten or more daily new emails from websites or blogs I subscribe to, I am finding my Google Reader feed to be quite mind-boggling. I’m not sure if this is because I am reading my feed in addition to my emails, or because my feed is a new system I am getting use to. Currently, I read multiple emails from multiple email accounts and delete or archive the email once I am done reading the article.

The way I see myself using RSS in the classroom is using my feed as a database for new ways of effectively using technology in the classroom. I do not plan on having my students use it at this time, but I do plan on “unsubscribing” to all the emails I am receiving and now just checking my Google Reader for all the new updates.  RSS seems to fit well with my motto of work smarter, not harder.