Source: Teaching and Teacher Education, Volume 34, (2013), p. 122-129
(Reviewed by the Portal Team)
The purpose of this study is to investigate the effects of multimedia case-based learning on pre-service teachers’ knowledge integration related to using technologies in practice.
The participants were 78 students who were enrolled in a teacher preparation course, ‘Educational Methods and Educational Technology’, in a private university located in Seoul, South Korea in Spring 2011. They were provided with interventions that included either video cases or no cases.
The video cases used for this study were video clips showing classroom practice. Two selected video clips introduced ICT preparation stages. After the introduction, the clip showed real classroom teaching with technology. Pre-service teachers could learn how to use technologies appropriately in different phases of a lesson and reflect on various aspects of technology use. At the end of each video clip, interviews from children who had taken part in the lesson were provided.
ANCOVAs were performed to compare two groups’ TPACK scores representing technological, pedagogical and content knowledge, and their integration.
The results of this study show that learning with video cases was beneficial to both individual knowledge acquisition and knowledge integration. The students who were provided with video cases reported more enhanced perceived understanding of both technological knowledge and pedagogical knowledge. Also, they reported better perceived understanding of technological pedagogical knowledge than did the students who were provided with learning without cases. Since video cases included contextual information that becomes the base for the case teachers’ pedagogical decision-making when they use technology, pre-service teachers could observe and analyze these decision-making processes and model expert teachers’ successful teaching practices. Through these observing and analyzing opportunities, pre-service teachers could integrate their individual knowledge about technology and pedagogy within specific contexts.
However, the video case group and the no-case group did not show any differences in their understanding of technological content knowledge and technological, pedagogical content knowledge. These results imply that even though students have content knowledge of their subject, they cannot integrate that knowledge effectively with technology knowledge and pedagogical knowledge, if they are not provided with opportunities to see technology use modeled in content-specific contexts. The cases provided in this study were related to geography and earth science content, but participants comprised very few geography education majors and no earth science majors. However, a majority of the students who participated in the study were not provided content-specific cases and could not integrate these three knowledge elements regardless of the type of intervention provided.
The segregation of content knowledge learning and educational methods learning in teacher preparation programs potentially prevents knowledge from being integrated in a way that can reflect context-specific uses of educational methods. Thus, in the educational methods courses, it is a challenge to provide subject-specific pedagogical approaches or technology uses. The disconnection between technological and pedagogical knowledge could be overcome by applying multimedia case-based approach within the methods courses as discussed above. However, the problem of lacking of content-area relevance cannot be solved by applying a certain instructional intervention within current methods courses but might be overcome by reforming teacher preparation program in away that can incorporate all three aspects of technological, pedagogical and content knowledge.
Multimedia case-based learning is unique in that it provides knowledge integration opportunities in pre-service teacher education. In the teacher preparation system, pre-service teachers have limited opportunity to practice teaching and receive little chance to observe experienced teachers’ practice. Thus, a multimedia case-based approach can benefit pre-service teachers in terms of integrating their knowledge by observing and analyzing other teachers’ use of technologies.
Furthermore, the authors argue that since pre-service teachers need integrative knowledge about technology uses that is pedagogically appropriate and can work in subject-specific contexts, educational methods courses should be integrated into the curriculum of each subject.