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Educational Best Practices Research Celeste Wegner Liberty University Online

Running Head: EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY BEST PRACTICES RESEARCH Leadership and Administration in Education Technology Abstract Much disagreement exists in the field of educational leadership in the 21st century. With technology changing so rapidly much reorganization must take place in our schools to prepare leaders, administrators, teachers, parents and students to meet the demands and process of teaching and learning. Collaboration among all persons and all technical provisions must be involved in planning and implementing technology in our educational institutions. Key Words educational technology, leadership, collaboration, technology, practices


Every team needs a leader whether in business, sports, education, government, etc. Every leader must know what it means to be in a leadership position. This research is to determine the role of leadership in the area of educational technology in the K-12 school. Leadership is a process of influence and leaders must make a choice of how and to what end they will use their influence. Perhaps the greatest leader that ever lived was Jesus who demonstrated the principle of the servant leader (Blanchard & Hodges, 2005). Many have done research on technology leadership and how it affects teaching and learning. Technology in the School Technology has been in our schools since our forefathers introduced the hornbook. It moved on to mechanical pencils, ballpoint pens, then to handheld calculators, projectors, televisions, audio/video, etcetera and continues today with technologies that have advanced to areas that are almost beyond the comprehension of the human mind. As technology continues to advance in the unforeseeable future, educational institutions will require those in leadership positions who stay cognizant of these advances and their collaboration with teachers, parents, administrators and students. Schools must have those in a leadership position who are able to plan and develop the administrative computer systems and work with a team to involve teachers and students in the application of technology into the curriculum. The leader is in a position to inform, teach, demonstrate and assess the technology process and its effectiveness (Picciano, 2011). One disadvantage that schools face is that educational technology has yet to be defined. Educational technologies and instructional technology are used interchangeably. The question

Running Head: EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY BEST PRACTICES RESEARCH must be settled. Are they the same or different? As Patricia Davies states in her research, merely providing technology does not lead to changes in instructional approaches(Davies, 2010). Some schools look to the principal as the technology leader. With all the roles the principal must fill this may limit the time available for planning, developing and implementing technology into the instruction. The principal along with a technology leader should work in collaboration with the classroom teacher and students in order for technology to be used effectively. As each of these persons work together the input of each can do much to influence the sustainable, long-term, school-wide use that causes the technology changes to be implemented (Davies, 2010).

In an article by Scott McLeod with Hewlett Packard (HP) he refers to Leslie Wilson, President of the One-To-One Institute that our schools are moving at a snail-pace in reference to technology. She says technology leadership is possible and doable when provided with the proper leadership. McLeod lists the following tasks that the leader must display building the vision managing the change changing the culture staff development classroom management technical support communication input and monitoring sustaining change

Running Head: EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY BEST PRACTICES RESEARCH According to McLeod a collaboration of these tasks provide a successful technology program to the school. Technology can make a big difference in education when all stakeholders work together and agree on the importance of purpose and use. The technology leader should be someone who takes ownership and responsibility, has expertise and experience, and can inspire

others to change. The technology leader ensures that teachers and students technical needs are met. The principal is a key leader who enables change to impact success (McLeod, 2008).

Leadership in the Learner-Centered Classroom Our information society needs leaders who can effectively manage and lead the increasing amounts of information to solve problems and make decisions in the face of uncertainty. Todays students have grown up with technology. Technology is a part of their lives, thus to engage them in learning there has been an increased integration of technology into the K-12 classrooms. This integration requires that the leadership role is to provide professional development to put the focus on building teachers technical skills to prepare them to implement technology. According to this research one of the biggest barriers to technology usage in the classroom was the lack of knowledge or ways to integrate technology into learner-centered instruction. Teachers ranked the need for technology leadership as the greatest weakness in the professional development program. They felt the need to have a technology leader in the school full time to provide professional development. When teachers were provided with this training by a professional leader they could better prepare their students for the high stakes tests (An & Reigeluth, 2012).


When a comparison was done between technology in the corporate world and in education it was noted that those in the corporate world agree that leadership in technology was a major need to prepare students for the corporate world. As those in the study emphasized the function of any educational institutions structure, purpose, and goals is to satisfy the students needs. The responsibility of meeting these needs falls on educational leaders, educators and administrators. Leaders must address changes in technology and stay competitive with the changes. When the leaders stay current with change services can be added with a minimal interruption to the instructional technology environment. The authors of the National Educational Technology Plan suggest the need for more powerful and collaborative platforms. They advocate that students and educators can access internet devices to learn anytime and anywhere at reduced costs, if they have access to the necessary equipment. Strategic planning is the answer to effective learning (Gomes, 2011). Research shows that the best practices in educational technology begins with leadership. In the last century K-12 schools have been equipped with a thoughtful plan of the impact it will have on teaching and learning. Technology includes more than computers. It must be used in a way that enhances their understanding of academics and knowledge of the surrounding world. All stakeholders must be involved in the planning. Educational Practices in Technology According to Henry Bennett for a teacher librarian of technology to be effective there are 10 steps to follow: 1. Create a Vision Where you want to go and how technology will enhance the learning environment.


2. Involve All Stakeholders Everyone involved leaders, administration, teachers and students needs to have input into the goals of the plan. 3. Gather Data Gather as much data as possible. Inventory equipment, software and where it is located. Determine present level of use in classroom. Conduct site visits at other schools. 4. Review the Research (a) Effectiveness; (b) Extent of Use 5. Integrate Technology in to the Curriculum, Leadership, Access, Time, Cost, Training, Reform. 6. Commit to Professional Development Providing appropriate training is the key to effective use. 7. Ensure a Sound Infrastructure Appropriate resources must be available. 8. Allocate Appropriate Funding and Budget Bennett give an appropriate budget plan. 9. Plan for Ongoing Monitoring and Assessment. 10. Prepare For Tomorrow Remember the changes that have already taken place in technology and plan for changes that will take place in the future. Bennett advocates that when leaders follow this plan, technology will improve the teaching and learning (Bennett, 2003). A study done in a school in The Netherlands where seven standards were formulated, two specifically on technology. For the purpose of this research focus is on those two standards. (1) Pupils learn to make connections between functioning, design and use of materials in their environments and (2) they learn to design and evaluate technical problems (Rohaan, Taconis, & Jochems, 2012).


When high quality technology education is the goal, teachers must be prepared and trained. This includes subject matter knowledge, pedagogical matter knowledge and knowledge of context, the affective domain. The researcher explains each of these domains and says teachers attitudes toward technology most affects to what extent they will use it in their classrooms. Much emphasis must be put on training teachers and encouraging them as they incorporate technology into the everyday instruction. As these researchers Rohaan, Taconis, and Jochems emphasize much time should be spent on hands-on technology activities to increase teachers confidence in teaching technology. They ask the question, To what extent does teacher knowledge affect pupils? (Rohaan et al., 2012). In an article by David Riley an important question is posed Will the introductions of educational technologies significantly change curricula and pedagogical practice (Riley, 2007)? He answers this by presenting the fact that it has already changed with the introduction of the keyboard and screens. Pedagogical tactics have changed at the micro-level and macro-level. He expands on the work of Oliver and Price and their three-level analysis which states that expecting teachers to change in a single leap in unrealistic. This reminds technology leaders that change does not come easy or quickly. Riley gives three levels of change that must take place. The first level is technology-mediated interactions and takes hours for teachers to master. The second level is pedagogical level and takes weeks or months to put into practice effectively. The third level is change to curricula and teaching strategies that will become efficient over months and even years. Much research has been done on this practice. One researcher, Merlin Donald, has done extensive study on the origins of pedagogy, educational curricula, and the changes that modern educational technology has imposed on the educational process. He supports the threelevel change aforementioned and adds a fourth transition. He purposes the use of modern

Running Head: EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY BEST PRACTICES RESEARCH information and communication as an important tool in the theoretic culture. He gives the pros and cons of his four methods of transition (Riley, 2007). Riley quotes several other researchers who have expanded on Donalds four transitional stages. One concept is that of functional substitutions which involves teachers and students using online discussion, WebBlogs, Wikis, and multimedia depositories. He goes on to discuss functional delegation and functional innovation, and goes on to explain how these three functions align with the 3 Rs (Riley, 2007). Riley presents his views on how each of these researchers have brought to our attention how

changes are taking place in educational technology and how we will need to analyze the changes that can and will affect our use of technology in our schools. In a short article by Scott McLeod he gives 27 strategies for K-12 that technology leaders must teach students on how to develop deep technology infused knowledge to prepare them for future citizenship. These strategies make students aware of the safety, respectful behavior, and law when using technology (McLeod, 2008). Conclusion Research has been prevalent since technology was introduced into the field of education and will continue for as long as changes continue to take place. Hall, in our textbook, has given us a great resource for guiding the institution where we are in leadership position. His analysis of the three types of leadership has given us much to consider as we strive to be the kind of leader God would have us to be. Throughout the book as he has given us the steps to success we learn that we as leaders, have a great responsibility to those we lead and we can learn from them also. Leadership is one part influence and two parts responsibility: we must always take



responsibility for our contribution to problems that arise around us. This influence on others, when genuinely motivated by love, is essentially how God works through us. We can be successful in every area of life God places us, but if we fail in the relationship God gave us, we never became the being we could have been (Gongwer, 2010).



An, Y., & Reigeluth, C. (2012). Creating Technology-Enhanced, Learner-Centered Classrooms: K-12 Teachers' Beliefs, Perceptions, Barriers, and Support Needs . Journal of Digital Learning in Teacher Education, 28(2), 54-62. Bennett, H. (2003). Successful K-12 Technology Planning: Ten Essential Elements. Teacher Librarian, 31(1), 22-25. Blanchard, K. H., & Hodges, P. (2005). Lead like Jesus: lessons from the greatest leadership role model of all times. Nashville, TN: W Pub. Group. Davies, P. M. (2010). On school educational technology leadership. Management in Education, 24(2), 55-61. Retrieved September 24, 2013, from http://mie.sagepub.com.ezproxy.liberty.edu:2048/content/24/2/55 Gomes, W. (2011). Leadership in Educational Technology: Insights from the Corporate World. Journal of Leadership Studies, 4(4). Retrieved September 23, 2013, from http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com.ezproxy.liberty.edu:2048/doi/10.1002/jls.20195/pdf Gongwer, T. G. (2010). Lead-- for God's sake!. Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Pub.. Hall, D. (2008). The technology director's guide to leadership the power of great questions. Eugene, Or.: International Society for Technology in Education. McLeod, S. (2008). Educational Technology Leadership . Technology & Learning, 28(11). Retrieved September 23, 2013, from http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?id=GALE%7CA181952684&v=2.1&u=vic_liberty&it= r&p=AONE&sw=w&asid=3377c139f6e03df7b4fc40c553e4bbeb McLeod, S. (2012). 27 Talking Points About Internet Safety. Tech & Learning, 33(4), 54-56. Picciano, A. G. (2011). Educational leadership and planning for technology (5th ed.). Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Pearson.



Riley, D. (2007). Educational Technology and Practice: Types and Timescales of Change. Educational Technology & Society, 10(1), 85-93. Retrieved September 23, 2013, from http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.liberty.edu:2048/docview/1287041966 Rohaan, E. J., Taconis, R., & Jochems, W. M. (2012). Analysing teacher knowledge for technology education in primary schools. International Journal of Technology and Design Education, 22(3), 271-280. Retrieved September 23, 2013, from http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.liberty.edu:2048/docview/1030201163