Technology in Learning
This grant program from the Office of Academic Improvement supports the creation of community learning centers to provide academic enrichment opportunities during non-school hours for children, particularly students who attend high-poverty and low-performing schools.
This program helps students meet state and local student standards in core academic subjects, such as reading and math. It offers students a broad array of enrichment activities that can complement their regular academic programs, and offers literacy and other educational services to the families of participating children.
Implementation Principles for Technology
In a DOE Challenge grant, Barbara Means and her colleagues at SRI cited vital implementation principles for the role of technology in facilitating school reform:
- Time must be devoted to developing a unifying vision;
- Good curricular content must precede technology design;
- Technology should be used across subject matters and classrooms;
- Adequate technology access is needed for all students;
- Easily accessible technical support is critical;
- Teachers need time to learn to use technology and to incorporate it into their curricular goals;
- The project must provide opportunities for teachers to collaborate with peers;
- The system should provide rewards and recognition for exemplary technology-supported activities; and
- Technology has its greatest impacts when placed in the hands of students.
Means, et al conducted a very comprehensive study over a range of projects, looking at the benefits of computer technology for students. Teachers reported that technology enhanced their efforts by:
- adding to the students'perception that their work is authentic and important;
- increasing the complexity with which students can deal successfully;
- dramatically enhancing student motivation and self-esteem;
- making obvious the need for longer blocks of time for projects;
- creating a multiplicity of roles, leading to student specialization in different aspects of technology use;
- instigating greater collaboration with students helping peers and sometimes their teachers; and
- giving teachers additional impetus to take on a coaching and advisory role.
SRI's Center for Technology in Learning (CTL) is researching how to improve student learning, enhance teaching effectiveness, develop meaningful assessments, and evaluate program impacts in preschool, K–12 schools, community colleges, and informal settings such as museums. Check out their recent projects.
The National Science Foundation is sponsoring Technology Enhanced Learning in Science, a large-scale collaborative effort involving high schools and colleges and universities. It supports applied research, conducts internships for graduate students, and online and traditional curricular resources.
Pew Research Center offers thoughtful reports, online presentations and latest findings about the impact of the Internet on American life.
Meet Barbara Means, Ph.D., author of Implementation Principles for Technology and director of the Center for Technology in Learning at SRI International. She is an educational psychologist whose research focuses on ways in which technology can support students' learning of advanced skills and the revitalization of classrooms and schools.