1 Universidade Aberta - Open University; LE@D (PORTUGAL)
2 UID-FCT4372, LE@D, Laboratory of Distance Education and eLearning (PORTUGAL)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN21 Proceedings
Publication year: 2021
Pages: 3643-3648
ISBN: 978-84-09-31267-2
ISSN: 2340-1117
doi: 10.21125/edulearn.2021.0767
Conference name: 13th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 5-6 July, 2021
Location: Online Conference
The adoption of educational practices that favor digital competencies are closely connected to the vision of a 21st century pupil, as a member of a networked society who can analyze and communicate, a requirement as current as urgent. Accordingly, we perceive that the teacher should have a role of both catalyzing agent and guidance in the teaching/learning processes, thus presenting their students rich, pragmatic, and necessary experiences, so as to help them becoming active citizens.

With the adoption of emergency remote learning, mandated by the quarantine, we witnessed that part of the teaching community was involved in an elearning experience without the adequate preparation. Even though it was undoubtedly a hard and complex process, it also showed great endeavors in overcoming the difficulties associated to such a change.

In the diagnostic phase of our teacher training project, it was evidenced that among those difficulties, that the teachers felt and faced, the major ones were related to the unfamiliarity of elearning tools, the lack of access to a stable network, and the lack of online working habits. In this context, our project was thought as contributing to provide an answer to the needs of training that many teachers revealed, in the framework of the working agenda of the Regional Secretary of Education, namely focusing in qualifying the Azorean teachers, a priority even more acute during the pandemic response to COVID-19.

The continuous teacher training project we describe is part of an ongoing research study within the master degree in the Pedagogy of Elearning, at the Universidade Aberta (Open University Portugal), and is hosted by one of the R&D Units of that Higher Education Institution, the Laboratory of Distance Education and eLearning (LE@D). So, bearing that purpose in mind, we present the theoretical framework that sustain our project design. Afterwards, and by adopting a specific methodology, we explain the design and planning of a training course aimed for teachers of Portuguese middle and high school, working in the island of São Miguel, in the Azores, with the specific goal of integrating the use of Microsoft Teams in their teaching practices.

Ultimately, we hope to be addressing the teachers’ professional development, in a collaborative and inclusive training environment, supporting them to tackle not only the technical and technological aspects, but also the pedagogical challenges imposed by elearning scenarios, including (but not exclusive to) those of emergency remote teaching and learning.
Teacher qualification, Project of Educational and Pedagogical intervention, Middle and High school teaching, Microsoft Teams, Blended learning.