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Jenlink Editorial

ePub

Editorial

Teacher Preparation for the Digital Age: Toward New Literacies, Epistemologies, and Pedagogies

Patrick M. Jenlink

We live in a democratic society that is rapidly being reshaped through new media and the advancement of digital technologies.1 These technologies “are fundamentally transforming economies, societies, and cultures worldwide, with consequent changes to education” (Shaffer Nash, & Ruis, 2015, p. 2). As teacher educators we are responsible for preparing each generation of teachers at a time when the technologies of the digital age are fundamentally changing cultures worldwide, enabling forms of communication and knowledge access heretofore never experienced on a global scale. Within this context, we are responsible for preparing each generation of teachers to respect freedom of thought and expression, and we must also prepare teachers to work in a digital ecology of education shaped by the marvels of technology that are enabling citizens to see the world and their society in new ways and through new means of communication.

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Ticknor

ePub

Reimagining Pedagogy in Online Teacher Education

(Re)shaping Participation in Literacy and Social Studies Methods Courses

Anne Swenson Ticknor, Christina M. Tschida, and Caitlin L. Ryan

ABSTRACT: With the rise in online course offerings in teacher education, elementary teacher educators are left to reimagine their pedagogies in these new formats in ways that still engage students in learning to be members of a highly interactive profession. Methods courses, in particular, often rely on the embodiment of specific practices, both for teachers and students, which can be challenging to create online. In this article, we examine our process of revising our online literacy and social studies methods courses to include opportunities for more fully embodied teaching and learning. Efforts include adding a series of videos to model instructional practices, modifying assignments to build interactive classroom communities, and organizing web conferences to scaffold participation in a professional community. Students reported feeling more supported, more connected, and more motivated to learn our courses as a result of these activities, therefore translating to more knowledgeable and better-prepared elementary teachers.

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Johnson

ePub

Flipped Learning

Student Perceptions and Achievement in Teacher Education

Vickie Johnston and Cynthia Dawn Martelli

ABSTRACT: This article offers preliminary evidence of the impact of using flipped learning on pre-service students’ perceptions of effectiveness and usefulness in teacher training programs. Content understanding and course perceptions of forty teacher candidates were examined. Content understanding was measured by both the performance on a course exam and the Florida Teacher Certification Exam (FTCE) Language Arts and Reading section of the Florida Subject Area Exam for Elementary Education (SAE); course perceptions were represented by an end-of-semester survey. While course exam results indicated no statistical increase in content understanding, results from FTCE/SAE indicated flipped classroom participants had higher passing rates; participants also reported positive learning and engagement in the flipped learning model. Themes involving engagement, pace, and quality of instruction consistently emerged from these student responses; anecdotal evidence suggests that student learning was improved when using a flipped classroom model compared to a traditional classroom model, but more research is needed.

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Kalonde

ePub

Technology Benefits

Pre-Service Teachers’ Attitudes and Usage of Computers in Science Instruction

Gilbert Kalonde

ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to investigate pre-service teachers’ perceived benefits in the usage and attitude on computer-aided instruction (CAI) in science instruction. Thirty-nine science pre-service teachers participated in the study. Data were collected through Likert-scale surveys and open-ended responses. The results from Likert items were analyzed using t-tests, ANOVA, and Pearson correlation, whereas those from open-ended questions were analyzed qualitatively using open coding. Results showed four major trends: there were no significant differences in attitude and usage benefit of CAI between the demographics compared; there was a significant difference in usage of CAI between participants enrolled in introductory and advanced science methods courses; there was a significant difference among attitudes, perceived benefits, and usage of CAI; and there were high and positive correlations among attitude, benefits, and usage of CAI. The implications of these results to science teacher education are discussed herein.

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Grande and Whalen

ePub

Creating Digital Science Texts

An Opportunity for Teacher Candidates to Understand and Implement Universal Design for Learning

Marya Grande and Jill Z. Whalen

ABSTRACT: This article investigated general education teacher candidates’ (TCs) use and understanding of universal design for learning (UDL) principles and their impact on digital science texts created for elementary students in inclusive classrooms. Mixed methods examined pre- and posttest surveys and reflections of 16 TCs enrolled in a science methods course. Data indicated that TCs significantly increased their comfort level using technology with students with and without disabilities from pretest to posttest. While qualitative data demonstrated that TCs were able to identify the barriers faced by students using traditional text and able to identify UDL solutions in their digital texts, there were no significant differences from pretest to posttest on their ability to identify barriers and solutions in a traditional science lesson plan. Implications for teacher education and future research are offered.

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Coyne

ePub

Assessing Pre-Service Teachers’ Attitudes and Self-Efficacy in Using Technology in the Classroom

Jaime Coyne, Mae Lane, Lautrice Nickson, Tori Hollas, and Jalene P. Potter

ABSTRACT: No one can argue that technology plays a crucial role in our society. It is imperative that our students have the opportunity to learn technological skills, but there are a variety of barriers for teachers. A promising resolution is to integrate technology in our pre-service education classes. In an effort to assess our current role as teacher educators in preparing pre-service teachers in the use of technology, a survey was given to secondary student teachers to assess their perceptions about various aspects of technology. The following themes emerged after analyzing the data including the following: (a) technology is important to incorporate in the K–12 classroom according to pre-service teachers and (b) pre-service teachers have a relative high level of preparedness in using technology in the classroom but have limited pedagogy knowledge warranting the need for teacher education programs to increase effective instruction in technological pedagogical content knowledge. Our hope is that this article will shed light on the importance of preparing pre-service teachers for using technology effectively in the classroom.

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Grote-Carcia

ePub

Transforming Social Media Photo Albums into Learning Albums

A Glance into One Teacher Educator’s Experience

Stephanie Grote-Garcia, Nathanael J. Jones, and Norman St. Clair

ABSTRACT: This article provides an overview of learning albums, an original instructional method that transforms online photo albums, such as those found on Facebook or Instagram, into collaborative learning units that invite students to locate, evaluate, synthesize, and communicate online information. One teacher educator’s experience of integrating learning albums into a pre-service teacher education course further illustrates the method. Included are descriptions of specific activities and a brief reflection from the teacher educator.

Sidewalks, wet from a morning rain, stretch beneath yellow leaves that dance precariously in the blustery autumn breeze. Below the leaves, college students file from university campus buildings onto pathways leading to their next classes. Most have their heads craned down, barely aware of their surroundings, oblivious to the rain, cars, and the crisp morning air. A soft, warm glow from an LCD screen bathes each face.

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Riegel

ePub

Educational Technology and Teacher Education Programs

A Geographic Information Systems Study

Caitlin Riegel and Yonghong Tong

Abstract: As technology continues to play a major role in education, the ability for pre-service teachers to effectively utilize technology becomes increasingly important. Accreditation bodies like the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) work to ensure that institutions offering teacher education programs meet technology standards; however, literature suggests teachers working in the field are still exceedingly underprepared to utilize technology. In this study, data collected by the U.S. Department of Education and the National Center for Education Statistics regarding technology preparation within teacher education programs in the United States was mapped and analyzed using geographic information systems (GIS) software. Undergraduate programs were found to prepare teachers to a “major extent” to use technology, an average of 9.48 percent of the time, graduate programs 16.37 percent, professional development activities 23.04 percent, training 25.35 percent, and independent learning 46.31 percent. These findings suggest that more technology preparation is needed for pre-service teachers.

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Connors

ePub

Initiating a Conversation

Articulating a Role for Media Literacy in Teacher Education

Sean P. Connors and Christian Z. Goering

ABSTRACT: This article considers the role of media literacy in one teacher education program and what that means to two relatively new professors of English education. Drawing on anecdotal evidence, readings, and their experiences working with pre-service teachers, the authors engage one another in conversation with the intention of outlining issues and obstacles they expect to face as they contemplate introducing a strong media literacy component to the program in which they work. In doing so, they establish a plan for advancing a media literacy agenda, a course of action they deem critical to their work with pre-service teachers.

We are beginning to realize that the salvation of our republic hangs upon the ability of the ordinary man to think. And he must think more swiftly, deeply, and extensively than ever the forefathers thought. (Cox, 1915, p. 310)

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Caudle

ePub

Promoting Higher Levels of Pre-Service Teacher Informal Reflection through Virtual Critical Friend Partnerships

Lori A. Caudle, Cathy L. Grist, and Myra K. Watson

ABSTRACT: This study investigated how changes in the design and implementation of an online seminar course influenced pre-service teachers’ use of informal reflection and ongoing communication. In the fall, participants were provided predetermined discussion topics. In the following spring, participants responded to prompts emerging from synchronous class discussions. Participant surveys and instructor feedback prompted course changes across semesters, including implementation of critical friend dyads, new synchronous software, and reorganization of the online course. Qualitative codes were applied to informal student comments. Results revealed participants in spring engaged in deeper levels of reflection and more ongoing exchanges within discussions than those in the fall. Exchanges were analyzed using open coding techniques, resulting in dominant categories that demonstrated how critical friend discussions were based on practical theories, emotional support, and mutual feelings and experiences. Implications include a focus on emergent design for online seminar that consists of informal discussions, critical friend partners, and high-quality technology.

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Embry Jenlink Book Review

ePub

Book Review

Educators Online: Preparing Today’s Teachers for Tomorrow’s Digital Literacies

by Laura M. Nicosia

New York, NY: Peter Lang, 2013

(The New Literacies and Digital Epistemologies Series, Vol. 49)

170 pages, $27.49 (Paperback), ISBN: 978-1433109300

Karen Embry Jenlink

“Who are you when you are online?” asks teacher educator Laura Nicosia in the opening chapter of Educators Online: Preparing Today’s Teachers for Tomorrow’s Digital Literacies, a book for preparing educators for the virtual classrooms, which increasingly dominates the P–20 educational landscape. Considering myself a digital immigrant, my curiosity was piqued with the opening question as I reflectively pondered, “Who am I online? How is my presence in an online setting different from my presence in the physical classroom? Are both selves authentic?”

With engaging language and the right mix of questions, Nicosia allows us to peer directly into our practice and poses an array of pedagogical inquiry about teaching that is drawn from the commingled social world we inhabit and within which we learn. Across five chapters complemented by an introduction and a conclusion, Nicosia stimulates our appetite to learn how to navigate a digital learning space with greater prowess, authenticity, and epistemological curiosity. Relevant for use with both undergraduate and graduate students or for personal growth in digital literacy, here is a glimpse of the contents of this book.

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Call for Book Review

ePub

Call for Book Reviews

 

Teacher Education & Practice is interested in receiving high-quality book reviews for upcoming issues. Individuals interested in reviewing a book or providing a review essay that examines one to three books focused on a common issue, topic, or theme should submit a proposal to the editor. The proposal should not exceed one page and should identify the book(s), along with a rationale supporting the appropriateness of the book review or review essay for Teacher Education & Practice.

Books selected for review should demonstrate a clear alignment with teacher preparation and/or practice. Book reviews and/or essay reviews should provide a critical examination of the book(s) under review. High-quality reviews offer the reader a thoughtful critique of the book(s), juxtaposing select and/or salient points from the book(s) under review in relation to other important contributions in the field of teacher preparation and practice. Individuals may elect to offer reviews or review essays that align with a special issue or as an open-theme submission. Teacher Education & Practice is interested in receiving manuscripts that address social practice, teacher preparation, pedagogy, curriculum, standards and accountability, teacher learning, issues of diversity, teacher as researcher, alternative certification programs, and other germane topics. Submissions should follow manuscript guidelines for Teacher Education & Practice, and should be approximately five to seven double-spaced pages, depending on whether the review is for a single book or an essay covering multiple books. In addition, submission should contain a separate page listing the book(s) title, publisher, year published, ISBN number, price of book(s) (paperback and/or hardback, depending on format reviewed), and number of pages.

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