Home > Standard 5: Evaluation > EDTECH 541: Final Thoughts

EDTECH 541: Final Thoughts

I can hardly believe that the semester has come to a close already.  Then, I look back at all we’ve done, and I think there couldn’t have been time for it all.  I have learned so much in this class, but I think the one idea that I will rely upon the most is the idea of assessing the relative advantage of using technology in the classroom.  I am a firm believer in the fact that technology must have a purpose; otherwise, technology becomes time for students to play on the computer.  Assessing the advantages of using technology is an important way to ensure that the technology is both appropriate and effective to meet course objectives. Ed and Tech

I appreciate the fact that we discussed challenges to technology integration as well.  One thing I have noticed about being in a Master’s program in education is that many people want to focus only on the positive.  Unfortunately, that’s an unrealistic viewpoint as we are working with humans and with human children in particular.  Challenges and problems are going to occur whether we want them to or not.  If we are prepared for those problems, then we are also prepared to solve the problems.  So, in considering arguments against and problems with technology integration, I am far more prepared for how to overcome the challenges in my own career.

I work in a highly competitive, nationally ranked preparatory school.  I find that my teaching theory is a blend of constructivism and cognitive theory.  My students are often so highly performing that I need to let them learn through discovery and inquiry-based assignments.  They often learn more when figuring things out for themselves with guidance from me rather than lectures from me.  Through my coursework in EDTECH 541, I have located many wonderful technology resources that can support my goals in guiding my students to a deeper relationship with English Literature and critical thinking.  I have also learned to better assess the advantages of using technology in my classroom.

My work in this course and in my MET program demonstrates mastery of the AECT standards through careful design, development, and utilization of both technology and strategies to use technology effectively.  These standards provide a baseline for me to consider all aspects of technology use and integration from initial needs assessments to learner considerations to development and assessment after technology is used and integrated.  This course in particular helped me to consider learner characteristics and the ways that technology can better support the learner regardless of their needs or content area.

I find that I am more open to integrating technology that at first doesn’t seem to relate to my content area.  I am better prepared to make a case to my administration about the importance and the benefit of technology in my classroom.  I have actually used several of the assignments I created for EDTECH 541 in my current literature classes, so I am putting my learning immediately into practice.  I am increasingly more aware of the fact that learning is a social practice, and I am encouraging the social aspects of learning through group work, which is supported by technology.  I can honestly say that I have learned as much or more in this course than I have in any other throughout my MET program.

Self-Assessment:

I worked very hard on this course.  I often put in far more than 9 hours of work weekly.  As a result, I feel that my blogging efforts merit an outstanding grade.  When I review my blog posts, I see that they are rich in content and relate to my life as a teacher.  I used quite a few resources in my posts and relied heavily upon the course textbook to support the points I made in my blog posts.  As a full time student and teacher, I am so busy with life that I often didn’t post my blog early in the module, but I did always get it posted before the deadline and did have frequent responses from classmates.  I always replied to two other students trying to ask questions about their posts to increase the depth of their points with my own.  I feel that my work merits the following grade:

Content 70/70

Readings and Resources 20/20

Timeliness 18/20

Responses to other students 30/30

Total 138/140

I want to thank my fellow students for the incredible work they did this semester.  The blogs helped me to see the perspectives of other students as well as view the work of others.  I think looking at the work of other students helps to challenge me to perform better, and I plan to make peer assessment a larger portion of my classroom as a result!

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