Problem Based Learning and Teacher Technology Training

Problem Based Learning
and Teacher Technology Training
Problem Based Learning
and Teacher Technology Training
Problem Based Learning
and Teacher Technology Training
The Problem:
Teachers are not effectively using the
computer for web-based activities in
the classroom.
Many teachers don’t know how to:
Create activities for their students involving
the Internet
Use WebQuests
Use software to create web pages
Create technology projects
with educational objectives
Causes of the Problem:
(Shelton, 1996)
Perceived inadequacies in training
Lack of time for preparation
Limited access to computer
Lack of support
Additional Cause:
Resistance to
According to Becker,
(1999) teachers need to
be convinced of the
value of engaging
students in PBL.
The Answer:
Technology Training for Teachers
The Four T’s (Shelton & Jones, 1996)
 Time
 Training
 Technology (hardware & software)
 Teacher-type tasks
The Answer (Part 2)
Problem Based Learning
The strategy explained:
“Problem-Based Learning (PBL) is an instructional strategy
that promotes active learning.” (Samford University, 2000)
“PBL is any learning environment in which the problem drives
the learning. That is, before students learn some knowledge they
are given a problem. The problem is posed so that the students
discover that they need to learn some new knowledge before they
can solve the problem.” (Woods, 1996)
Characteristics of
 Learning is student centered.
 Learning occurs in small groups.
 Teachers are facilitators or guides.
 Problems form the organizing focus and stimulus for learning.
 Problems are a vehicle for the development of clinical
problem-solving skills.
 New information is acquired through self-directed learning.
Process of PBL
a problem.
Solve the
Organize what
Is known and identify
the nature of the problem.
Design a plan:
That solves
the problem
That identifies
needed resources.
Outcomes of PBL
Ability to find and use appropriate resources
Problem-solving skills
Self-directed learning skills
Critical thinking
Facility with computer
Ability to work on a team
Communication skills
Problem-Based Learning causes
a shift in roles (, 2001)
T ea cher a s coach
S tu d en t a s act ive
P ro b lem as in iti al
M od els/ coach es/fa d es
p ro b le m so lv er
ch alle n ge and
in :
m otiv ati o n
• A sking abo ut
• A cti v e p art ici p an t
• Ill -st ructu red
th in ki n g
• E n gage d
• A p peal s to h um an
• M on it o ri n g l ear n in g
• C o nstr u ct ing
d es ire f o r
• P rob in g /c h alle n ging
m eani n g
reso lu tio n /sta sis /
stud en ts
h ar m on y
• K eep in g pr o cess
• S ets u p n eed for and
m ov in g
co ntex t of l earni n g
•M on it o ri n g/ad ju sti n g
w hich f o llow s
levels o f ch all eng e
At PBL’s organizing center is
The Ill-Structured Problem
Complex in nature
Requires inquiry, information-gathering, and
Is changing and tentative
Has no simple, fixed, “right” solution
Our Study
Research Problem: Teachers are not effectively
using technology in the classroom.
Research Questions:
 What impact will instruction in website creation have upon
teacher utilization of technology in the classroom?
 What is the effect of instruction in website creation using a
PBL training strategy?
 How does the use of Dreamweaver software effect teacher
utilization of technology in the classroom?
Our Study
Purpose of the study: To explore whether providing
teachers with a simple format of training to create a
class website will impact upon their utilization of
technology in the classroom.
General population: Classroom teachers
employed by SCOE, Grades K-8
Sample: Volunteer teachers employed by
SCOE, Grades K-8
Survey: Administer pre- and post-surveys to
the subjects.
The Survey
A Likert scale questionnaire
Assesses teacher attitudes towards technology
Assesses teacher confidence in technology in
general, and web design, specifically
The Treatment
Three 3 hour sessions on web page design
Teaching strategies:
 Problem Based Learning
 Mini-lectures
 Demonstrations, modeling
 Online tutorials
The Treatment (continued)
The simulation:
 A letter from the Technology Director
 Participants in grade-level groups
 The assignment: to create a web page template to
be used by classroom teachers at a specific grade
Participants will demonstrate improvement in
computer skills and confidence after the
After a follow-up period, there will be an
increase in the use of the computer for webbased activities.
Problem-based learning
More Links
Dreamweaver tutorial and templates
WebQuest Page
Suggestions for future research:
 What would be the effect of using the PBL strategy along
with the spreadsheet or database tool in teacher technology
 Would there be a difference in effectiveness when comparing
elementary-school vs. high school teachers using the
approach in this study?
Problem Based Learning
Let’s try it!

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