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TPACK: Technology, Pedagogy and Content Knowledge, a best practice guide

27 May

Recently I was introduced to this best practice concept by Marlo Gaddis,

Marlo Gaddis

Marlo Gaddis, Director of Instructional Technology at Winston Salem Forsyth County Schools

who will be joining the District as the new Coordinator of 21st Century Learning. Ms. Gaddis, in her tenure as Director of Instructional Technology for the Winston-Salem Forsyth County Schools, has partnered with two professors at the School of Education at the College of William & Mary, Professor Judi Harris

Professor Judi Harris

& Professor Mark Hofer.

Professor Mark Hofer

TPACK is an acronym that stands for Technology, Pedagogy and Content Knowledge. (Link to SlideRocket presentation by Ms. Gaddis)

The idea to combine teaching with technology and content knowledge by offering just in time training in technology as well as technology resources is a fresh take on the standard staff professional development in which information or training takes place separate from the point of need which often leaves teachers on their own to think how they could integrate a new technology or Web 2.0 tool into their lessons. TPACK is really just in time information or training on a technology tool the teacher may wish to use from a list of several easily accessible resources, which are tied to standards and curriculum strands. Professors Harris and Hofer have created a Wiki to share information. Their wiki has lots of great materials and in particular reviewing their presentations is helpful and informative. Their wiki is licensed under Creative Commons for no-derivative-works-non-commercial use, as are all contributions to the wiki. 

According to Ms. Gaddis her staff taught, and taught staff development for teachers but little technology integration was occurring until she and her department began to adopt TPACK. 

The following is from this publication found on the wiki:

Instructional Planning Activity Types as Vehicles for Curriculum-Based TPACK Development
Judi Harris & Mark Hofer
School of Education
College of William & Mary in Virginia, United States
“Successful technology integration is rooted in curriculum content and students’ content-related learning processes primarily, and secondarily in savvy use of educational technologies. When integrating educational technologies into instruction, teachers’ planning must occur at the nexus of standards-based curriculum requirements, effective pedagogical practices, and available technologies’ affordances and constraints.”

This is an interesting article that discusses the basis for TPACK as these professors explain here, with the Figure (Visual Model) by Koehler & Mishra, 2008 :

“The specialized, highly applied knowledge that supports content-based technology integration is known as “technological pedagogical content knowledge,” abbreviated TPCK or TPACK (Koehler & Mishra 2008). TPACK is the intersection of teachers’ knowledge of curriculum content, general pedagogies, and technologies (see Fig. 1). It is an extension of Shulman’s (1986) pedagogical content knowledge—the specialized knowledge required to teach differently within different content areas–which revolutionized our understanding of teacher knowledge and its development.”

Interesting reading and clearly a best practice to aim for in the delivery of instructional technology.

Sonja

 

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