Integrating new technology in the language classroom : innovative teacher identities

Valentyn, Gail (2019-12)

Thesis (MA)--Stellenbosch University, 2019.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: This study reports on the recorded narratives of language teachers' giving their observations and experience of using new technologies in language classrooms. There is limited research on South African language teacher identities and their experiences in using new technologies to enhance their own teaching as well as the learning experience of those they teach. The objective of this study is to investigate the approaches to teaching with new technologies and how these shapes the professional identity of language teachers who relate well to new technologies and have been judged to introduce them effectively in language teaching. Also, it considers how engagement with new technology in the classroom impacts teacher identities. The Western Cape Education Department is deploying new technology to create an enabling environment at the schools under its auspices. These technologies are to be used for teaching and learning. In spite of the availability of technology in the Western Cape, there appears to be very few teachers who actively use the technologies innovatively. This study takes a qualitative approach, using mixed methods of data collection, making use of questionnaires and semi-structured interviews. The interviews generated narratives of five teachers. Their self-reported experiences are used to determine how each participating teacher's identity, particularly in using technology successfully, is constructed. The teachers selected as participants have received awards and/or have been acknowledged by their peers as innovative for integrating technology and pedagogy. A range of factors and elements links the teacher identity and the innovative use of technology for teaching and learning. One of the major elements that emerged in the study was that to integrate technology and pedagogy innovatively for the benefit of the student, a teacher should crucially be passionate, caring and driven. Further, the researcher found that innovative teachers are not deterred by inhibiting factors to use technologies in engaging their students and enhancing teaching and learning. Student focused teaching and learning inspires teachers to use technologies innovatively in developing the kinds of skills the 21st century demands of their students and in preparing them for the future world of work. Teachers can be mentored to use technology innovatively, but the mentee has to take ownership of the implementation and practise of integrating technology and pedagogy innovatively for teaching and learning. The researcher found that good practises can be taught, modelled and learnt but that developing internal and intrinsic motivators is much more complex and challenging.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Hierdie tesis lewer verslag oor die narratiewe van taalonderwysers wat hulle waarneming en ervaring verwoord het rakende die gebruik van nuwe tegnologieë in taalonderrig. Daar is tot op datum min navorsing oor die professionele identiteit van Suid Afrikaanse onderwysers soos dit saamhang met hulle ervaring in die gebruik van nuwe tegnologie wat aangewend word om hulle eie onderwys asook die leerervaring van leerders in hulle klaskamers, te verryk. Hierdie studie het ten doel om benaderings tot onderrig wat nuwe tegnologie aanwend te ondersoek, en beoog tegelykertyd om vas te stel hoe die professionele identiteit van taalonderwysers wat nuwe tegnologie positief aanwend, daardeur gevorm word. Die onderwysers wat hier deelneem, het almal spesiale erkenning gekry vir hulle effektiewe gebruik van tegnologie in taalonderrig. Die tesis oorweeg dus hoe bewuste gebruik van tegnologie in die klaskamer op deelnemers se onderwyser-identiteit ‘n impak het. Die Wes-Kaapse Onderwys Departement het begin met die uitrol van nuwe tegnologie ten einde ‘n bemagtigende omgewing te skep in die skole wat onder dié departement se toesig val. Die tegnologie wat hulle beskikbaar stel, word in onderrig en leer aangewend. Ten spyte van die beskikbaarheid van gevorderde onderrigtegnologie in die Wes-Kaap, blyk dit dat ‘n baie klein getal onderwysers die tegnologie aktief en innoverend gebruik. Hierdie is kwalitatiewe navorsing wat verskillende data-insamelings-metodes, spesifiek vraelyste vir algemene inligting en semi-gestruktureerde onderhoude, gebruik. Die onderhoude het narratiewe van vyf onderwysers help genereer. Hulle self-gerapporteerde ervaring is nagegaan om vas te stel hoe elke deelnemende onderwyser se identiteit, spesifiek in die suksesvolle gebruik van tegnologie, gekonstrueer is. Die onderwysers wat vir deelname geselekteer is, het almal van hulle eweknieë toekennings en/of ander vorme van erkenning ontvang vir hoe hulle tegnologie innoverend met onderwyspraktyk geïntegreer het. Verskeie faktore en elemente verbind onderwysersidentiteit aan die innoverende gebruik van tegnologie in onderrig en leer. Uit hierdie studie blyk dat integrasie van tegnologie en onderwyspraktyk tot studente se voordeel, grootliks afhanklik is van die passie, sorgsaamheid en gedrewenheid van die onderwyser. Verder het die navorser gevind dat innoverende onderwysers nie teruggehou word deur inhiberende faktore wat hulle of hulle studente se aanwending van tegnologie strem nie. Studentgesentreerde onderrig en leer inspireer hierdie onderwysers om tegnologie innoverend te gebruik in die ontwikkeling van die soort vaardighede wat die 21ste eeu van studente vereis in hulle voorbereiding op die werkomgewing wat vir hulle wag. Dit is moontlik om onderwysers te mentor sodat hulle tegnologie in die klaskamer begin omhels, maar die leerder-onderwyser moet ook eienaarskap neem in die implementering van praktyke wat tegnologie en onderrigmetodes op vernuwende wyse integreer. Die navorser het bevind dat goeie praktyke onderrig, gemodelleer en aangeleer kan word, maar inherente en intrinsieke motivering wat meer kompleks is, bied ‘n groter uitdaging.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/107229
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