Effects of inservice training on the technology practices and attitudes of physical education teachers
Rebecca Jo Berkowitz, The Ohio State University, United States
The Ohio State University . Awarded
Technology has become an essential tool for acquiring information and completing daily tasks in business and education. In education teachers are expected to facilitate students' learning of new technology and learning with technology, yet most teachers do not have the skills and knowledge to do so effectively. The training of teachers in technology has not been a major focus of the technology revolution occurring within our public and private schools. In 1997, the Panel on Educational Technology recommended to the President of the United States that attention must be given to the professional development of teachers. The contention was that without the provision of professional development opportunities the investment that has been made with hardware, infrastructure, software, and content will be wasted. In 1995, the Office of Technology Assessment (OTA) of the U.S. Department of Education suggested that teachers need to be trained so that they know “what the technologies can do, to learn how to operate them, and to experiment with ways to best apply them in their classrooms” (p. 2). It has been suggested that teachers' attitudes toward technology might be influenced by their knowledge and skills of various types of technology as well as their experiences with the technology. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to provide inservice technology training for physical education teachers and to determine the impact of this training on teachers' attitudes toward technology, and the use of various technologies, in their planning and teaching. Teachers attitudes toward computers and other technology hardware (e.g., heart rate monitors) were measured using the PENIATT questionnaire (Berkowitz, 1998). Their attitudes were measured in accordance with four sub-scales; usefulness, anxiety, confidence, and liking. Post inservice attitudes did not change significantly, however they did have higher mean scores on each sub-scale and total attitude scale for both computer and other technology hardware on the post-training questionnaire. Teachers used technology primarily to communicate with others; colleagues, administrators, and parents. Technology was also used for management tasks, student learning experiences, and teaching. Technology was used for planning and assessment of students the least. Three factors seemed to influence teachers use of technology: time, access to equipment, and support. Teachers need more time during their workday to use and experiment with technology. They need to have access to equipment upon their return from training so they can practice and experiment with what they have learned. Teachers need support from colleagues as well as administrators in order to become technology users. These teachers needed continued opportunities to further their technology skills so that they can begin to apply them within their gymnasiums and thus impact student learning.
Berkowitz, R.J. Effects of inservice training on the technology practices and attitudes of physical education teachers. Ph.D. thesis, The Ohio State University.
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