DISCUSSING DIGITAL MEDIA AND OPENING EYES FOR CONSTRUCTIVIST LEARNING CHANCES: A QUALITATIVE-EMPIRICAL STUDY ABOUT PRE-SERVICE TEACHERS BELIEFS AND A META-COGNITIVE REFLECTION TOOL FOR EDUCATION
Technische Universität Dortmund (GERMANY)
About this paper:
Conference name: 11th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 12-14 November, 2018
Location: Seville, Spain
Abstract:Understanding, reflecting and influencing teachers’ beliefs about digital media in school seems to be a challenge for 21-century pre-service teacher education worldwide (Wintshitl & al. 2002; Ertmer & al. 2012; Tømte 2015; Kontovourki & al. 2017). Integrating digital media into class requires a change of technical acting habits, but also of didactical practices (Paratore & al. 2016), and the "problem seems to be how to diffuse innovations in both technology and education at the same time" (Admiraal & al. 2016, p. 57). Teachers’ beliefs can be described as relatively critical to change (Shulman 1989) since up to the present beliefs seem to be somehow "private matter" and are not explicitly addressed in teachers’ education, may be due to the academic view of 'absence of value judgment' (Max Weber). However, they become more and more object of research, and they seem to be relevant if not sufficient to explain teachers’ actual digital practice in class. As internationally demanded (Erstad 2015; Admiraal et al. 2016), it needs more qualitative data to comment on the development of teachers’ beliefs during their time of professional experience within teacher education. For our study, we asked students within their subject related didactic course (German literature course) to comment on their present attitude towards digitality and its use in school. As part of a students' first years lecture on children-and-youth literature and media, we tried to evaluate their beliefs regarding digital media as part of their already efficacious 'folk pedagogy' (Bruner 1996) that influences their pedagogical beliefs without being "in the conscious of espousers" (Belland 2008, p. 355).
The coming-up teachers’ beliefs here are part of their media habitus (Blömeke 2000, Kommer 2010, Kommer 2013, Biermann 2009) and influential even on their media pedagogical or media educational habitus (Friedrichs-Liesenkötter 2015). Besides a semi-standardized evaluation based on questionnaires with 244 students of 1-2nd years German literature students, we asked a couple of the participating students for a group interview.
The content analysis of the transcript comments shows that in the very beginning of the discussion an opinion leader starts with critical remarks towards digital media. At first, most of the students agreed with that position, but then they slowly began to consider positive, somewhat constructivist aspects. During the discussion of about 40 minutes, it becomes apparent that the group considers more student-oriented and less cognitivist positions in their statements. For a presumed and lasting effect of that development (Kanaya & al. 2005), we will implement our study as a teaching tool for students’ teacher training in our subjects’ curriculum. All courses dealing with digital media use will start and end with a questionnaire and selected group interviews. At the end of their masters' education students will be reflecting on their and their colleagues' development. The current paper explains the theory, the structure of the curriculum and the first results of the initial group discussion at the beginning of the bachelor studies at the Technical University of Dortmund.
Keywords: Digital media, teachers' beliefs, teacher education, media habitus, ITC skills, pre-service teacher education, reflection in education.