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Teaching with Technology: Applications of Collaborative Online Learning Units to Improve 21st Century Skills for All

, , , University of Oregon, United States ; , Georgia Southern University, United States

JCMST Volume 36, Number 4, ISSN 0731-9258 Publisher: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE), Waynesville, NC USA


Inquiry-based learning methods, coupled with advanced technology, hold promise for closing the science literacy gap for English learners (ELs) and students with learning difficulties (SWLDs). Project ESCOLAR (Etext Supports for Collaborative Online Learning and Academic Reading) created collaborative online learning units for middle school science to meet the needs of ELs, SWLDs, and general education students. In a randomized controlled trial with 1,174 students, 28 teachers implemented one of two online units in their classrooms after completing a Web-based professional development course. Results showed that treatment condition students, including ELs and SWLDs, significantly improved science knowledge compared to controls; ELs’ gains indicated a knowledge gap reduction compared to general education students. Findings suggest that quality science curriculum and effective technology practices can help all students learn science and prepare for future global scientific challenges.


Terrazas-Arellanes, F., Strycker, L., Walden, E. & Gallard, A. (2017). Teaching with Technology: Applications of Collaborative Online Learning Units to Improve 21st Century Skills for All. Journal of Computers in Mathematics and Science Teaching, 36(4), 375-386. Waynesville, NC USA: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE). Retrieved February 19, 2019 from .

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