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Students as Technology Experts: A "Bottom-Up" Approach to Teacher Technology Development

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American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting,


The intent of this "bottom-up" project was to create a community of learners to facilitate the implementation of computer technologies in the elementary school curriculum. The participants were 6 graduate students and their professor, 10 teachers (grades 1-5), their students, and the librarian in a Professional Development School. Each week on "Tech Days" the students received training for one-half hour, with the graduate students and the professor providing training in computer applications. Second semester, in addition to "Tech Day" instruction, some students received extra intensive training to enable them to serve as "experts" in the classroom environment. University team members were responsible for planning activities with the teachers and librarian and providing after-school sessions for teachers. Study findings revealed both benefits and limitations to this approach. Benefits included increased motivation for teachers to learn about and use technology in their classrooms, changes in the attitudes and motivation of the students, and more independence and confidence in using technology. Limitations focused on logistics (number of available computers, time problems, inadequate staffing and funding). As a result of this "bottom-up" approach, teachers became more for frequent users of technology, and they began to use their students' expertise to increase their own computer skills. (Contains 16 references.) (ND)


Hruskocy, C., Ertmer, P.A., Johnson, T. & Cennamo, K.S. (1997). Students as Technology Experts: A "Bottom-Up" Approach to Teacher Technology Development. Presented at American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting 1997. Retrieved June 26, 2019 from .

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