Academic journal article International Education Studies

Assessing Pre-Service English as a Foreign Language Teachers' Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge

Academic journal article International Education Studies

Assessing Pre-Service English as a Foreign Language Teachers' Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge

Article excerpt

Abstract

The present research aimed to assess pre-service English as a foreign language teachers' technological pedagogical content knowledge. A total of 76 undergraduate students enrolled in an English language teaching (ELT) program at a major state university in Turkey were recruited in the study and were asked to anonymously complete the Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge Scale and answered some open-ended questions. The findings revealed a highly developed knowledge of TPACK (Mean > 3.5; 81%). Gender differences were found to be significant with respect to Technological Knowledge (TK) and Pedagogical Knowledge (PK) dimensions with females proportionally having higher TPACK development. The findings of qualitative data analysis also revealed that compared with cooperating teachers, faculty members in the department used more TPACK in a classroom lesson. Thus, these findings contribute to understanding the nature and development of TPACK based instruction among pre-service English teachers, suggesting that the integration of content, pedagogy and technological knowledge into the existing teacher education paradigm and fostering technologically-rich environment for language learners will contribute to quality learning and teaching.

Keywords: pre-service English teachers, teacher education, technological pedagogical content knowledge, TPACK

1. Introduction

Turkey has recently identified and emphasized the use of Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) as an important instructional tool within schools across the country (Ministry of National Education [MoNE], 2010) in line with the significant educational reform efforts being made by the EU countries (European Commission, 2003). Since English language teaching (ELT) is one of the subject areas in which ICT plays a crucial role, ELT teachers are required to enter classrooms with the knowledge and skills necessary to plan and implement quality lessons using technology to support curriculum objectives in the 21st century. This means that language teachers who want to utilize and integrate technology into their teaching must be competent in not only content and pedagogy but the potential of technology as well. Thus, the Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge (TPACK) model has been introduced to describe an integrated conceptual framework for the knowledge base that teachers must possess to effectively teach with technology in classroom settings (Mishra & Koehler, 2006).

TPACK builds on Schulman's (1987) conceptualization of pedagogical content knowledge (PCK) regarded as an important feature to the teacher's profession. Many transformational technological developments have occurred since the advent of the PCK framework at a time when ICT tools like computers were just making an appearance in schools. Due to many developments in ICT over the last decade, teacher education programs must train the 21st century teachers in a way that enables them to possess skills and experience as well as the knowledge required to effectively integrate technology into their teaching (Alayyar, Fisser, & Voogt, 2012; Jamieson-Proctor, Finger, & Albion, 2010; Koehler, Mishra, & Yahya, 2007; Mishra & Koehler, 2006). Mishra and Koehler (2006) designed the TPACK framework to explain the dynamic relationships among content knowledge, pedagogical knowledge, and technology knowledge. This framework now forms the crucial knowledge base of the 21st century teacher's profession (Figure 1).

The three major components of teacher knowledge in this framework consist of content knowledge (CK), pedagogical knowledge (PK), and technology knowledge (TK). Equally important are the significant interactions between and among these three types of knowledge. These comprise pedagogical content knowledge (PCK), technological content knowledge (TCK), technological pedagogical knowledge (TPK), and technological pedagogical content knowledge (TPACK) (Koehler & Mishra, 2005, 2008, 2009; Mishra & Koehler, 2006). …

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