Academic journal article Educational Technology & Society

An Investigation of Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge, Self-Confidence, and Perception of Pre-Service Middle School Mathematics Teachers towards Instructional Technologies

Academic journal article Educational Technology & Society

An Investigation of Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge, Self-Confidence, and Perception of Pre-Service Middle School Mathematics Teachers towards Instructional Technologies

Article excerpt

Introduction

Teachers are individuals who provide appropriate methods, techniques, and materials in the process of education either as the source of the information or as a guide during the teaching process (Yalin, 2000; [section]imcek, 2000). In today's world, technology has become an important part of teachers' knowledge base. Therefore, this makes the use of technology in education more frequent (Graham, Burgoyne, Cantrell, Smith, Clair, & Harris, 2009; Ozturk & Horzum, 2011).

Since the integration of technology has become crucial in education, the knowledge of teachers related to the use of technology has been centered at the heart of the research on educational technology. As it is defined previously, technological pedagogical content knowledge (TPACK) is the knowledge acquired by teachers in order to integrate technology in education while teaching content to the students (Schmidt, Baran, Thompson, Mishra, Koehler, & Shin, 2009). Although several studies have been conducted in the scope of TPACK, there is no obvious form of the technological knowledge that teachers should acquire and a strict method on how it should be acquired by teachers (Koehler & Mishra, 2005). Merely introducing the technology in educational process does not create a significant change on the integration of technology in education (Carr, Jonassen, Marra, & Litzinger, 1998). Therefore, how the technology can be integrated in education should be investigated in more detail since the knowledge of technology cannot be separated from the knowledge of teaching context in educational technology (Koehler & Mishra, 2005). In addition, it is recognized that the use of technology alone cannot create an effective improvement on the learning of students. Graham et al. (2009) emphasized that just the use of technology cannot get students to learn effectively. Rather, teachers should know how to use the instructional technology during the teaching process. Similarly, Clark (1985) highlighted the difference between "media" and "method of instruction." That is, mere the use of media cannot provide learning. It is a tool providing learning by the employment of appropriate methods and techniques while teaching mathematics. Therefore, the effective use of instructional technologies is more important than just acquisition of them for educational purposes.

Although technology has become available in the classrooms, the use of it has continued to be criticized because of some factors, such as teachers' use of technology infrequently and for knowledge transmission rather than the construction of knowledge (Clark, 1985; Gao, Choy, Wong, & Wu, 2009; Harris, Mishra, & Koehler, 2009; Ottenbreit-Leftwich, Glazewski, Newby, & Ertmer, 2010; Sang, Valcke, van Braak, & Tondeur, 2010). Therefore, those observations get the correct integration of technology more emphasized in education (Chai, Koh, Tsai, & Tan, 2011).

In Turkey, FATIH Project (The Project of Improving Opportunities and Instructional Technologies) has been conducted since 2010 in order to integrate technology into education across the country (The Office of Innovation and Educational Technologies, 2016). One of the key actors of this project is teachers. Therefore, ideas and competences of teachers toward technology integrated education is an important factor for the effectiveness of the project. For this reason, it is important to investigate the integration of technology in education from the perspectives of teachers. As researchers stated, there is a need to develop teacher education strategies in terms of teachers' effective integration of technology into their teaching (Koehler & Mishra, 2005).Thus, an effective professional teacher education program can be prepared in order to get teachers be oriented with instructional technologies (Karatac, 2014a). In order to develop strategies to integrate technology in education, it is crucial to investigate the views of teachers based on the integration of technology into teaching (Oksuz, Ak, & Uca, 2009). …

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