Technology Integration Strategies

Excerpted from:

Robyler, M.D., Edwards, J., & Havriluk, M.A. (1997). Integrating educational technology into teaching. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice-Hall.

We integrate technology into instruction to address a specific instructional need:

­ Some draw on the unique characteristics of a technology resource to meet certain kinds of learning needs.
­ Some take advantage of a resources ability to substitute for materials lacking in a given en school or classroom.

The following are NOT justifications for technology integration, as they do not address a specific instructional need:

­ to make students technology literate
­ because technology is the wave of the future
­ because students should use technology every once in a while because it will be good for them.

We, as educators, must make a conscious effort to match technology resources to problems that educators cannot address in other, easier ways.

Technology Integration Strategies Based on Directed Instruction Models

1. Integration to remedy identified weaknesses
Motivating, effective instruction )often on a remedial basis ) in  basic knowledge or skills to prepare learners for higher order thinking skills (e.g., drill and practice)

2. Integration to promote fluency or automaticity of pre requisite skills

 Drill and Practice

 3. Integration to make learning efficient for highly motivated students

Instruction designed for self-directed, intrinsically motivated learners used to supplement classroom instruction (The 8th grader that has decided they want to into medicine in college and what starts off as a biology report turns into a personal quest for knowledge).

4. Integration to optimize scarce resources

Current Public school personnel and resources are not optimal.  Technology allows us to stretch our resources through the use of effective courseware

5. Integration to remove logistic hurdles

Technology that allows us to do things in the classroom better, faster, more easily (how word processing does not teach students how to write, but it does allow them to write and re-write much more quickly) (CAD software does not teach students how to design a house, but it does allow them to easily try out various designs and features to see what they look like before building models)

Integration Strategies Based On Constructivist Learning Models

1. Integration to generate motivation to learn
In at-risk and low interest topics, highly visual and interactive qualities of videodisk and multimedia resources have been shown to be valuable (e.g. the Adventures of Jasper Woodbury problem solving videodisks).

2. Integration to foster creativity (problem-solving in a non-threatening environment)

3. Integration to facilitate self-analysis and metacognition.

Environments that allow learner to think about how they think -- problem-solving courseware, Logo, and multimedia resources; word processing for reflective journals.

4. Integration to increase transfer of knowledge to problem solving

Problem-solving software to promote transfer in subjects where inert knowledge is frequently a problem (e.g. math and science).

5. Integration to foster group cooperation.

While schools can certainly teach cooperative work without technology resources, a growing body of evidence documents studentsÔ appreciation of cooperative work as both more motivating and easier to accomplish if it uses technology.