ICT as an integral teaching and learning tool: UNDA's experience


Even though a wide cross section of society today has accepted ICT as an entrenched characteristic of its culture, education has been slow to adopt it as an integral tool within the classroom (Cuban, 2001; Rogers, 2001; Elliott, 2004). Many reasons for this lethargy have been reported in the literature, ranging from inadequate professional development opportunities for teachers, to negative teacher attitudes towards technology. Similarly, an assortment of solutions to these dilemmas has been proposed. One in particular has been the push to integrate ICT into teacher education programs. Exposure to ICT during their training is expected to increase graduating teachers' willingness to integrate it into their own classroom curricula.

While the outcomes of studies into this phenomenon have largely been inconclusive (Brush, Igoe, Brinkerhoff, Glazewski, Ku & Smith, 2001; Albion, 2003), their collective findings are useful in informing similar contexts. For example, drawing on the outcomes of previous research, staff within the College of Education at The University of Notre Dame Australia (UNDA) has commenced an investigation into how the design of their teacher training programs can contribute to authentic and sustained application of ICT within K-12 classrooms. This paper serves to outline the process of this investigation. It begins with a literature review of related research, the findings from which are used as a springboard for the proposal of a study that aims to inform the instructional design of teacher training programs at UNDA.


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