About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 6491-6500
Publication year: 2017
ISBN: 978-84-697-6957-7
ISSN: 2340-1095
doi: 10.21125/iceri.2017.1673

Conference name: 10th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 16-18 November, 2017
Location: Seville, Spain

WHAT TEACHERS SHOULD ASK OF EDUCATIONAL SOFTWARE: IDENTIFYING THE INTEGRAL DIGITAL VALUES

B. Sjödén

Halmstad University and Lund University (SWEDEN)
This paper addresses teachers' critical knowledge needs for assessing the learning potential of educational software, from a cognitive perspective. In contrast to many other approaches, which assume knowledge of the whole pedagogical context for analyzing the educational value of a tool, the present study focuses on functional aspects of the software application as a stand-alone educational tool, independent of human teacher interactions. A typical example of such software in the classroom are so-called “educational apps” run on tablets, which allow students to work more or less independently in order to achieve certain learning goals. This study made use of a large pool of examples of different apps, focused on early math and literacy skills, collected from previous reviews and ICT workshops with teachers over several years. A critical point for the present analysis is that such software often have clearly identifiable features and functions that either support or hinder learning, depending on how they are implemented in the digital medium. Because the educational value of these types of features, such as multimodality or automated feedback, are unique to digital technologies (they do not appear in traditional or “analogue” education material such as textbooks) I refer to them as the “Integral Digital Values” (IDV).

Here, different IDV are discussed and sorted under three main headings:
(i) Representation - how the software deals with representing the learning content in different modalities (i.e. what the student can see on screen in terms of visual, verbal, auditory information),
(ii) Interactivity - how the student-software interaction works in terms of generating meaningful actions and feedback (i.e. what the student can or cannot do with the content), and
(iii) Social Agency - how the software presents the student's social position by enabling and promoting different roles or approaches to the learning tasks (e.g. by using digital characters and different student/peer/mentor roles).

Authentic examples of using different software applications in the classroom, including a pilot study, serve to illustrate how an understanding of IDV relating to, particularly, representation and interactivity can help avoiding pedagogical pitfalls with educational software, while social agency appear as an underused IDV with great pedagogical potential. Further, the role of identifying IDV for existing evaluation rubrics of educational apps and related theoretical frameworks, such as teachers’ TPACK, is discussed.
@InProceedings{SJODEN2017WHA,
author = {Sj{\"{o}}d{\'{e}}n, B.},
title = {WHAT TEACHERS SHOULD ASK OF EDUCATIONAL SOFTWARE: IDENTIFYING THE INTEGRAL DIGITAL VALUES},
series = {10th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation},
booktitle = {ICERI2017 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-697-6957-7},
issn = {2340-1095},
doi = {10.21125/iceri.2017.1673},
url = {http://dx.doi.org/10.21125/iceri.2017.1673},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Seville, Spain},
month = {16-18 November, 2017},
year = {2017},
pages = {6491-6500}}
TY - CONF
AU - B. Sjödén
TI - WHAT TEACHERS SHOULD ASK OF EDUCATIONAL SOFTWARE: IDENTIFYING THE INTEGRAL DIGITAL VALUES
SN - 978-84-697-6957-7/2340-1095
DO - 10.21125/iceri.2017.1673
PY - 2017
Y1 - 16-18 November, 2017
CI - Seville, Spain
JO - 10th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
JA - ICERI2017 Proceedings
SP - 6491
EP - 6500
ER -
B. Sjödén (2017) WHAT TEACHERS SHOULD ASK OF EDUCATIONAL SOFTWARE: IDENTIFYING THE INTEGRAL DIGITAL VALUES, ICERI2017 Proceedings, pp. 6491-6500.
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