Davis, Edward J.
Hare, Dwight R.
Date of Degree
Dissertation - Open Access
Doctor of Philosophy
College of Education
Department of Instructional Systems, Leadership and Workforce Development
Technology has become pervasive in society and classrooms today. However, studies show that most teachers are not yet comfortable integrating technology into their repertoire of instructional strategies (Education Week, 2005). National reports and standards documents have recognized that technology proficiency is essential for all students (International Society for Technology in Education, 2000; No Child Left Behind, 2002; U.S. Department of Education, 2004). Teacher instruction is a critical factor in maximizing the potential that educational technology has to impact student achievement. The purpose of this study was to determine how an exemplary elementary teacher uses technology to improve student learning and why she has chosen to integrate technology into her classroom instruction in the ways she has. A single-case design was used in this qualitative study. The researcher was the instrument used in the collection of data. Purposeful sampling was used in the selection of the study's participant, an exemplary elementary teacher who utilizes technology in her classroom. The participant in this research study was a certified elementary teacher. Her elementary principal and a school district administrator were also interviewed to provide additional perspectives to the case study. Personal interviews, observations, and document analysis were used to collect data. The findings of this study included examples of how the participating teacher used technology in her classroom. These findings included ways that she integrated technology into daily activities across of wide variety of curriculum content areas, and ways the classroom environment was designed to encourage interaction, communication, and cooperation as students worked on instructional activities that incorporated technology. The barriers of professional development, access, support, and time did not hamper the participating teacher's ability to integrate technology. Technology was used daily in the participating teacher's classroom for enhancing student work, easing the teacher's management and planning tasks, and communicating with parents and other faculty members. Additionally, I found that the participating teacher was motivated to use technology by several factors. Administrative support, the teacher's personal use of technology, and student engagement and motivation served as factors as to why the participating teacher integrated technology into her daily classroom instruction. Recommendations included: (a) incorporating educational technology into a variety of undergraduate teacher education courses, (b) including a variety of instructional strategies for integrating technology in methods courses of preservice teacher education programs, (c) studying further how to effectively reduce the most-noted barriers to technology integration - lack of professional development, access, support, and time, (d) requiring candidates in educational administration graduate programs to take an educational technology course, and (e) conducted further study to determine the link between the use of technology in a teacher's personal life and any increased classroom technology integration.
Ball, Kameron Conner, "Plugged In: A Case Study of an Exemplary Technology-Using Teacher" (2006). Theses and Dissertations MSU. 3552.