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INTEGRATING TECHNOLOGY FOR LEARNING



Technology has the potential to increase teaching and learning outcomes. Researchers claim that best practices associated with technology are associated with student-centered practices (e.g., collaborative, authentic, situated learning, problem-based work) (Hannafin, Hill, & Land, 1997; Jonassen, Howland, Moore, & Marra, 2003; Sandholtz, Ringstaff, & Dwyer, 1997). Although technology has the capacity to "make it quicker or easier to teach the same things in routine ways," it also makes it possible to "adopt new and arguably better approaches to instruction and/or change the content or context of learning, instruction, and assessment" (Lawless & Pellegrino, 2007, p. 581).


Culp, McMillan, Honey, and Mandinach (2005)* reviewed 20 years of educational technology policy and found technology described as the catalyst for change. Many reports present strong assertions that technology can catalyze various other changes in the content, methods, and overall quality of the teaching and learning process, most frequently, triggering changes away from lecture-driven instruction and toward constructivist, inquiry-oriented classrooms...


Although these reports also reference the importance of adequately trained and motivated teachers, they foreground the potential of the digital tools themselves to change the learning environment and the teaching process, making it more flexible, more engaging, and more challenging for students. Use of Educational Technology or ICTs in schools is a relatively new phenomenon and research shows that it can transform the learning spaces completely. Gathering facts, researching information, collating, calculating and manipulating data has become so much easier. Technology also provides opportunities to provide timely and constructive feedback to all stakeholders and more importantly, to students, who can then move towards self regulated learning.


*Culp, Katie McMillan, Margaret Honey, and Ellen Mandinach. "A retrospective on twenty years of education technology policy." Journal of Educational Computing Research 32.3 (2005): 279-307