Academic journal article Educational Technology & Society

Revisit the Effect of Teaching and Learning with Technology

Academic journal article Educational Technology & Society

Revisit the Effect of Teaching and Learning with Technology

Article excerpt

Introduction

Integrating technology into classroom teaching and learning has been an important issue in the last few decades. Several meta-analyses have been conducted to examine specific modes of instruction or educational practices that promote student learning and teaching with technology. Lou, Abrami, and d'Apollonia (2001), for example, examined the effects of small group versus individual instruction with technology and found that small-group learning had more positive effects than individual learning. Other meta-analyses in technology have examined topics such as the effectiveness of interactive distance education (Cavanaugh, 2001), the effect of computer-assisted instruction (CAI) on beginning readers (Blok, Oostdam, Otter, and Overmaat, 2002,) CAI in science education (Bayraktar, 2002),), and the effect of technology on reading performance in grades 6-8 (Moran, Ferdig, Pearson, Wardrop, & Blomeyer, 2008). A recent meta-analysis by Li and Ma (2010) investigated the influence of computer technology on mathematics achievement in K-12 classrooms from 46 studies and found a greater effect for elementary over secondary school students and that the technology effect was greater when constructivist approach was incorporated in the teaching and learning process (Li & Ma, 2010). A more comprehensive meta-analysis for the effect of technology on learning was conducted using a second-order meta-analytic technique involving 25 meta-analyses encompassing 1055 studies in a 40 year span (Tamim, Bernard, Borokhovski, Abrami, & Schmid, 2011). This study yielded a moderate effect size of .35

However, these recent reviews focused only on a particular issue (e.g. group size, CAI, or the general technology effect) and there is little information on what the effective strategies or appropriate approaches are in integrating and using technology in schools and classrooms. For example, Moran et al's study (2008) found very little research reported outcomes on strategy use and metacognition. Ma & Li's study (2010), on the other hand, reported a differential effect on constructivist approach versus traditional approach but no specific teaching strategies or instructional features were informed. Likewise, Tamim et al's study (2011), though very thorough and comprehensive, only included 2 moderator variables on grade level and purpose of technology use. As Ross, Morrison, and Lowther (2010) commented that "educational technology is not a homogeneous 'intervention' but a broad variety of modalities, tools, and strategies for learning. Its effectiveness, therefore, depends on how well it helps teachers and students achieve the desired instructional goals" (p. 19), in line with this statement, we aimed to explore what the effective practices are so that teachers and students can teach and learn effectively with technology.

Purpose of this study

The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of teaching and learning with technology on student outcomes in K-12 settings so as to inform instructional practices, by reviewing the experimental and quasi-experimental studies published between 1997 and 2011. Unlike prior syntheses, which may focus on a particular teaching practice, grade level, or subject area, we are interested in the overall effect and common technology characteristics, teaching strategies, and instructional features that benefit student learning and teaching across grade levels.

Specifically the meta-analysis intends to address the following research questions:

* What is the general magnitude and direction of the relationship between teaching and learning with technology and student outcomes?

* Are there specific technology characteristics, teaching strategies, and instructional features that affect teaching and learning with technology on student outcomes?

In the following section, we provided a brief review and rationale for the coding of variables based on technology characteristics, teaching strategies, and instructional features. …

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