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Exploring Learning Through Technology - Students' Results

Exploring Technology for Learning Social Studies iPad and E-text Pilot
by

JB Mahli

on 24 January 2013

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Transcript of Exploring Learning Through Technology - Students' Results

Exploring Technology for Learning Improved Student Learning

Beginning in February 2012, five secondary schools (Phase One) started the Social Studies iPad & E-text Pilot where each school, in cooperation with Education Services and the Learning Resources Services Department, purchased an iPad cart with a class set of 30 iPads and subscriptions to the Pearson Counterpoints 2nd edition E-text for Social Studies 11 students. Phase Two, representing six additional secondary schools, began the pilot in September 2012.

A key aspect of the pilot is the fact it is a grassroots initiative, driven and led by Social Studies teachers and department heads. Teachers felt the opportunity to incorporate technology with curriculum would greatly enhance collaborative inquiry, student engagement and also move instruction closer to practices of personalized learning. - What has been the impact of the pilot project on your learning in Social Studies 11?

- What are the implications of iPad and E-text for your future learning? Social Studies iPad & E-Text Pilot Relevant Background Exploring Technology
for Learning In consultation with the Social Studies Helping Teacher, an online survey was designed and developed to capture a snapshot involving impact in three broad areas:

(1) Improved student learning
(2) Enhanced student engagement; and
(3) Moving instruction closer to practices of personalized learning

In addition, open ended questions were asked about strengths, weaknesses of the pilot as well as suggestions for improvement

The survey was mailed to 23 participants with 12 responses. The small sample of students responded with examples and evidence of changes and differences observed within their classrooms. Increase Online Presence 45% of students expressed that to a varying extent the pilot project increased student blogging To what extent does the use of the iPad increase your blogging? Technology Increasing Creativity 66% of students expressed that to a varying extent the pilot project created opportunities for them to be more creative. To what extent is the pilot process creating opportunities for you to be more creative? Enhanced Opportunities to Improve Grade 65% of students expressed that to a varying extent the pilot project improved their letter grade in Social Studies 11. To what extent is the pilot improving your letter grade in Social Studies 11? Increasing Your Learning 74% of students expressed that to a varying extent the pilot project has improved/increased their learning in Social Studies. To what extent has your learning improved/increased in Social Studies because of the Pilot? Impact on Student Learning What is the impact on Student Learning? “With the iPads we were able to make our projects unique and beautiful. Since we had the iPad, we have the Internet at the touch of our fingers. Which allows us to answer any question with ease.”

"I understand the material a lot better in comparison to how I did in past grades."

"I have been able to create projects and presentations more effectively."

"It has been helpful when working on group projects through the use of the Google Drive App. The e-text can be useful but didn't have much of an impact on my learning."

"Makes it simpler to understand different concepts, in a much more efficient way of learning."

"It gives me easy access to the internet, which I only use for the questions and problems I have issues answering. Also, the apps that can be downloaded offer a lot of helpful information that goes a long with the Social 11 course."

"The iPad itself is useful because we can easily research for our projects at the same time. Usually, if we didn't have iPads we would have to work on the 'making' portion of our project at home. On the other hand the E-texts in my opinion is only useful when I needed to search up a specific topic or work, otherwise, I would prefer the standard book."

"It's annoying and I'd rather have worksheets." What are the impacts of the pilot process (utilization and opportunity of the iPad with E-text) on your feeling of engagement with the course, with your teacher, with others and the outside world? 2. Enhanced Student Engagement Describe how the pilot impacts the quality of the student experience? “We have a copy of our E-text and the ability to surf the internet, it allows us to have an engaging classroom discussion with our class."

"I think that the iPad has impacted our classroom engagement quite a bit. Now we do a lot more group work and even when we do individual work we are able to discuss it openly and freely."

"I am more focused and able to keep up with notes of reading because of it."

"Hasn't had a huge impact. Helps doing group work and enables teachers to post certain links and notes."

"The E-text and iPad is good to interact with other students and my teacher because it allows us to share files and edit projects at the same time. For example, the traditional PowerPoint would require us taking turns working on the project, but the Prezi app on the iPad allows us to work on the project at the same time so we are more productive. Also, our teachers pins all of our homework questions onto the e-text so when we log in at home it's there for us."

" It's easier to find the necessary information more quickly. i.e. page numbers, headings, etc. Describe how the pilot impacts the quality of the student experience? “We can get a lot done on our iPads because iPads aren't just a book there are a window to the whole world. Lets say I can't find something in the textbook then I could just open the browser and search the topic or I could compare answers from the internet and textbook."

"It's easier to explain what you're talking about. It also prevents confusion with projects. Each student has an assigned iPad, so no one is really allowed to delete anything off of someone else's iPad, and you don't have to worry about losing it. Unless you mistype something."

"The iPads occasionally become a distraction to some students as they do other things besides class work. E-text allows students to work at home or at school if they forgot their textbook which is convenient."

"I prefer class discussions rather than using the iPad." Impact on Student Engagement Take Ownership of their Own Learning 65% of students expressed that to a varying extent the pilot project enabled themselves to take ownership of their own learning. To what extent does the use of the iPad with the E-text enable you to take ownership of your learning? i.e. better note taking, highlighting Opportunities for Students to Understand their Own Learning 73% of students expressed that to a varying extent the pilot project created opportunities for students to understand their own learning. To what extent is the use of the iPad and E-text increasing your opportunity to better understand your own learning? Opportunities for Student and Teacher to Learn Together 65% of students expressed that to a varying extent the pilot project increased their opportunity to learn together with their teacher. To what extent does the use of the iPad and E-text increase your opportunity to learn together with your teacher? Increasing the Excitement of Learning 65% of students expressed that to a varying extent excitement to learn in class because of the iPad and E-text To what extent are you excited to learn in class because of the iPad and E-text? What are the implications of this pilot project on your sense of control over your own learning? 3. Personalized Learning for Students Increased Student Voice 65% of students expressed that to a varying extent the iPad project increased their opportunity to voice their opinion. To what extent is the use of the iPad with the E-text increasing your opportunity to voice your opinion? Remixing of Digital Work 82% of students expressed that to a varying extent the iPad project increased their opportunity to remix content to create digital work. To what extent is the use of the iPad with the E-text increasing your opportunity to remix content to create digital work? Promoting the Importance of Purposeful, Challenging Tasks 83% of students expressed that to a varying extent the iPad project promoted the importance of purposeful and challenging learning tasks. To what extent is the use of the iPad with the E-text promoting the importance of purposeful and challenging learning tasks? Exploring Ideas Through Essential Questions 91% of students expressed that to a varying extent the iPad project built a learning environment encouraging the exploration of ideas through questions. To what extent is the use of the iPad with the E-text building a learning environment encouraging the exploration of ideas through questions? Do you believe you have more control over your own learning? "Yes. I think I do have more control over my learning because now when we do our projects I have the option to do it absolutely anyway that I want. There really aren't any limitations to what I can or can't do."

"I believe that I have more control with my education when I use the iPads then without. For example, if I missed a class since I was absent. I can read the pages on my iPad at home to figure out what I missed. And I can do the assignment for what I've missed."

"YES I feel I am more able to get work done and boost my lettergrade at the same time."

"I do feel I have little more control over my learning. My teacher gives assignment where we have to use the iPads to teach ourselves a certain topic. Like during our World War I Unit. We had to use the WW1 app to teach ourselves about the war. It was fun, engaging, and I learned a lot, all because I taught myself everything using the iPad." Do you believe you have more control over your own learning? "Yes. I think using the iPad rather than writing notes down helps a lot more and makes it easier to learn ideas, visually especially."

"Yes, you are able to use the internet to expand on ideas and clarify uncertainties. The textbook no longer limits your learning."

"To some extent while reading the e-text if I come across a question, it is easier for me easily Google search is using the Safari App. This allows me to investigate and I learn more that way."

"I like how we are using many different techniques when it comes to projects and note-taking. I find it very useful being able to have the E-text at home. It makes things easier and you don't have to stress if you forgot your textbook at school."

"Yes I could highlight my own stuff and create my own notes. Also I could share my notes with my friends and help others just with this e-text."

"No. I find that they're a hassle to use and people don't take it seriously. I'd prefer handouts and using an actual textbook." Conclusion The teacher-led innovation placed the iPad and the E-text technology tools directly in the hands of the students and teachers. Simultaneously, teachers and students were learning technology.

Results of the online survey indicated there were positive changes in the way students experienced Social Studies 11. Social Studies iPad & E-text Pilot has begun to address the gap. Student Survey
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