Volume 9 Issue 3 
English/Language Arts Education
Online Dialog: A Tool to Support Preservice Teacher Candidates’ Understanding of Literacy Teaching and Practice
One of the challenges of teacher education is to train preservice teachers to deliver a wide range of literacy skills to a diverse population. This article describes a mixed methods research study into preservice undergraduate literacy methods courses. This research examined how online, asynchronously conducted discussions influenced and impacted preservice teachers’ literacy understanding. Providing many opportunities for supportive and interactive online dialog enabled the preservice teachers to develop a richer base of literacy learning knowledge. Specifically, the study demonstrated how asynchronously conducted discussions supported preservice teachers in acquiring and refining the content and pedagogical knowledge needed to teach literacy.
A Comparison Study of Web-Based and Traditional Instruction on Preservice Teachers’ Knowledge of Fractions
This study investigated the comparative efficiency of Web-based instruction (WBI) and traditional teaching methods on preservice teachers’ fraction knowledge. Students’ knowledge of fractions was measured using a Fraction Knowledge Test. The test consisted of 32 items and was administered as pre- and posttests to a total of 42 preservice teachers in two intact classes at the same university. One of the classes was randomly assigned as the experimental group (n = 21) and was given WBI. The other class was assigned as a control group (n = 21) and was given traditional instruction. Analysis of covariance was used to determine treatment effects on students’ knowledge of fractions when the pretest result was used as a covariate. The analysis of results showed a statistically significant difference between the experimental and the control groups’ posttest mean scores in favor of the experimental group.
Meeting the Needs of Middle Grade Science Learners Through Pedagogical and Technological Intervention
This mixed methods study examined the effects of inserting laptops and science technology tools in middle school environments. Working together with a local university, middle school science teaching faculty members wrote and aligned curricula, explored relevant science education literature, tested lessons with summer school students, and prepared evaluation measures for their year-long implementation of laptops, probeware, and other scientific hardware and software. This quasi-experimental study revealed differences in student achievement, responses to pedagogy, and effectiveness of tools implemented by teachers over the course of the year. Implications are discussed for the effectiveness of laptops in science, as well as future studies identifying differences in instructional practices associated with technology tools.
Social Studies Education
GeoThentic: Designing and Assessing With Technology, Pedagogy, and Content Knowledge
GeoThentic, an online teaching and learning environment, focuses on engaging teachers and learners in solving real-world geography problems through use of geospatial technologies. The design of GeoThentic is grounded on the technology, pedagogy, and content knowledge (TPACK) framework as a metacognitive tool. This paper describes how the TPACK framework has informed the authors’ design endeavors and how a set of assessment models within GeoThentic can be used to assess teachers’ TPACK.
Investment vs. Return: Outcomes of Special Education Technology Research in Literacy for Students with Mild Disabilities
This article presents a review of the research on technology integration in the area of literacy for individuals with mild disabilities. It describes relevant legislation, including how special education technology is impacted by the No Child Left Behind Act (2001). Included studies focus on research in the core content areas of reading and written language most likely to impact inclusive classrooms. In the area of reading, research has investigated such technologies as the use of computer-assisted instruction and text-to-speech synthesis in reading instruction. Written language research in special education technology has studied the use of word processors, text-to-speech synthesis, word prediction, and spelling and grammar checkers.
On the Outs: Learning Styles, Resistance to Change, and Teacher Retention
This study examined the relationship between learning style, level of resistance to change, and teacher retention in schools implementing an intensive schoolwide technology and media integration model. Researchers found that teachers with ST (sensing-thinking) and SF (sensing-feeling) learning style preferences, as described by the Myers-Briggs Type Inventory, had higher levels of resistance to change. Teachers with the ST learning style were also three times more likely to leave their schools, compared to teachers with other learning style preferences. Implications for policy and practice are discussed. In particular, teachers with the ST learning style preference may require additional support to enable them to adapt to changes within the dynamic environment of a school undergoing an intensive technology reform effort.