About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 5503-5508
Publication year: 2011
ISBN: 978-84-614-7423-3
ISSN: 2340-1079

Conference name: 5th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 7-9 March, 2011
Location: Valencia, Spain

TEACHERS IN THE DIGITAL AGE: DESIGN AND VALIDATION OF A SOCIAL NETWORK INTERFACE

E. Lisbôa, C. Coutinho

Universidade do Minho (PORTUGAL)
This paper is part of a wider research project whose main goal is to explore new approaches to teacher education and professional development that emerge from the Web 2.0 educational paradigm. At a time where the aims and goals of educational systems are questioned and the need to prepare students for lifelong learning is considered a priority, the educational policies consider new possibilities and alternatives for the conventional teacher training programs. In fact, the power of Web 2.0 technologies, namely the social network software that allow people to interact and exchange ideas, experiences and knowledge are powerful tools that emerge as environments where in-service teachers are able to personalize their own professional development and to develop technological skills and competencies that can be easily transferred to the real classrooms.
According to Ferreira (s/d.) the use of technologies won´t solve all educational problems and concerns, but if wisely used with clear educational objectives are able to change the pedagogical scenarios and the traditional relationship established between students, teachers and knowledge. However, for that to happen we need technological skilled teachers who are prepared to use the technologies as cognitive tools that promote collaboration, knowledge construction and sharing in the social web.
Those criteria are considered as good practices and are seen by most educational policies as a framework for the XXI century classrooms. However, research shows that ICT teacher training programs are the key factor for an effective integration of the technologies in the classroom and that the mobilization of teachers to the learning society is the main area where all efforts must concentrate. For Simão et al. (2009) pre and inservice teacher trining programs are the two main pillars for and effective professional development of teachers that promote changes in the curriculum and innovate the educational practices.
In order to investigate whether the social networks could configure as virtual spaces for the professional development of teachers a social nework named PROEDI – Professores na Era Digital (Teachers for the Digital Age) in the huge brasilien north state of Maranhão (331.983,293 kum2 de area, 6.424.340 inhabitants). The idea is to develop and manage a learning community of teachers who are interested in promoting their technological skills by means of sharing experiences and concerns and having access to learning resources, software and training experiences inside the community.
The Ning Social network was chosen among all other social sofware avaiable on the Web. In fact, compared do other social software available Ning Works in the logic of a platform giving the administrator more options in terms of the formats of the media to allocate. On the other hand, Ning is the network more used y the academic community and so is considered as less social and more professional that her rivals.
In this paper we present the network created, justifying the theoretical principles that were taken into account regarding both technical and pedagogical levels considering the potential users of the environment. A primary version of the prototype was send to four experts for evaluation; three more concerned with issues of design and usability of the interface and one more dedicated to navigation issues and organization of the areas of contents of the homepage.
@InProceedings{LISBOA2011TEA,
author = {Lisb{\^{o}}a, E. and Coutinho, C.},
title = {TEACHERS IN THE DIGITAL AGE: DESIGN AND VALIDATION OF A SOCIAL NETWORK INTERFACE},
series = {5th International Technology, Education and Development Conference},
booktitle = {INTED2011 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-614-7423-3},
issn = {2340-1079},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Valencia, Spain},
month = {7-9 March, 2011},
year = {2011},
pages = {5503-5508}}
TY - CONF
AU - E. Lisbôa AU - C. Coutinho
TI - TEACHERS IN THE DIGITAL AGE: DESIGN AND VALIDATION OF A SOCIAL NETWORK INTERFACE
SN - 978-84-614-7423-3/2340-1079
PY - 2011
Y1 - 7-9 March, 2011
CI - Valencia, Spain
JO - 5th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
JA - INTED2011 Proceedings
SP - 5503
EP - 5508
ER -
E. Lisbôa, C. Coutinho (2011) TEACHERS IN THE DIGITAL AGE: DESIGN AND VALIDATION OF A SOCIAL NETWORK INTERFACE, INTED2011 Proceedings, pp. 5503-5508.
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