Ghent University (BELGIUM)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2018 Proceedings
Publication year: 2018
Pages: 37-44
ISBN: 978-84-697-9480-7
ISSN: 2340-1079
doi: 10.21125/inted.2018.1005
Conference name: 12th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 5-7 March, 2018
Location: Valencia, Spain
In the past decade, the use of tablet devices has seen an uptake in education. This is because in addition to its instrumental value – being lightweight and serving as an all-in-one-device – it can foster more active and learner-centred approaches. While short-term studies have begun examining the added value of these tools, tablets should be studied from a multi-stakeholder perspective and over a longer period of time. Unfortunately, such research remains lacking. In this research, we questioned the use of tablet devices in classes over a period of five years, as perceived by both students and teachers. Data collection took place in a school that has since 2012 replaced books with tablet devices in all classrooms in the entire organisation, and involved all teachers (N = 83) and students (N = 694). Four waves of data collection took place: a pre-adoption test in 2012, two follow-up measurements, and finally, a post-adoption test in 2016. The questionnaires were based on the instructional strategies typology of Hoogeveen and Winkels, which includes five different instructional strategies from more teacher-centred approaches. These include and range from presenting lectures using the tablets, to more learner-centred approaches such as tablet-based assignments, interactive exercises, game-based learning, and collaborative learning. In addition, the impact of individual-related and context- related teacher variables were included in the analysis. The results indicate a discrepancy between both teachers’ and students’ initial high expectations, and the actual use of these devices for learner-centred approaches. Moreover, results show that over the different data collection periods, time was significant for both teachers and students. For teachers, the results indicate that prior expectations about using tablets for more learner-centred approaches were, following a decline in follow-up studies, met after five years. For students, pre-adoption expectations related to the five instructional strategies were significantly higher, compared to the other three measurement moments. However, learner-centred approaches interaction, assignments, and collaboration were significantly higher in the post-adoption test, compared to the two follow-up measurements. Furthermore, a balance was found between the use of teacher-centred and learner-centred instructional strategies in the post-adoption test. Finally, the employed instructional strategies were influenced by individual-related and context-related teacher variables, such as teachers’ age and grade they taught. These results indicate that while high expectations about the didactical use of tablets were not met in follow-up measurements, and tablets were primarily used to support teacher-centred education, and that this pattern changed over time. Moreover, in the post-adoption test, the use of learner-centred approaches arose. These results provide meaningful insight into the dynamic evolution of tablet use over a longer time period, which is a requirement for research evaluating the didactical value of this tool.
Tablet devices, instructional strategies, contextual variables, longitudinal study.