Enhancement or Transformation? A Case Study of Preservice Teachers’ Use of Instructional Technology

March, 2017

Source: Contemporary Issues in Technology and Teacher Education, 17(2), 268-290. 2017
(Reviewed by the Portal Team)

This article describes a case study that analyzed how preservice English and social studies teachers used instructional technology (IT) during their internship.

This study took place at a comprehensive, public university with a liberal arts focus located in the southeastern United States.
The participants were eight preservice English teachers and seven preservice social studies teachers who were enrolled in the university’s Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) program during the 2015-2016 school year.

The authors collected three types of data that included (a) The participants’ lesson plans; (b) observation notes of the participants’ instruction; and (c) a technology questionnaire completed by the participants.

The authors used the Substitution, Augmentation, Modification, Redefinition (SAMR) framework as a guide for analyzing the ways preservice English and social studies teachers used technology.

The results reveal that the English preservice teachers more commonly used IT for Augmentation; whereas, the social studies preservice teachers used IT more for Substitution. The findings indicated that English preservice teachers were working at SAMR’s Substitution level when using an online timer to help pace their lesson. The English preservice teachers were working at the Augmentation level when using Google Classroom to assign and collect work from students, or accessing videos from YouTube.
However, the social studies preservice teachers' use of a brief PowerPoint-enhanced lecture to begin class was classified as being on the Substitution level; whereas, their uses of Google Drive, EdPuzzle, Quizzes, Popplet, and Kahoot were recorded at the Augmentation level.
The authors argue that the participants were most comfortable incorporating technology at the Substitution and Augmentation levels. When they used IT at the Modification level, it was primarily related to assignments that required collaboration and research.

The authors conclude that the participants were able to use IT for different purposes. However, they tended to use it mostly at SAMR’s Substitution and Augmentation levels.
The authors found that although the IT enhanced the participants' efficiency, it seldom transformed their instruction.

Finally, the authors indicate that as the pre service teachers were mostly using IT as a replacement for paper-and-pencil tasks, it demonstrated that they are capable of using IT to develop advanced skills in students, but that type of instruction was infrequent.

The authors suggest that teachers educators can help facilitate that shift regarding preservice teachers’ IT usage by modeling methods for using it at SAMR’s Modification and Redefinition levels.
The authors also recommend that preservice teachers can learn frameworks such as SAMR while they are completing their initial teacher education program to analyze their use of IT. Therefore, preservice teachers will have a foundation for making informed decisions about how they and their students are using IT.

Updated: Sep. 13, 2018