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Area Assignment of Expertise and Technology Integration Experience For the first two years of my career, I taught ninth through twelfth grade students in a resource science classroom. During that time, I also taught adaptive physical education. In my third year of teaching, I moved to an alternative education campus. There, I taught all core academic contents to sixth through twelfth grade students, some special and some regular education, who had been placed at that campus as a result of some sort of disciplinary infraction. The last three years that I spent teaching was in a different disciplinary alternative education placement campus. This time I was teaching sixth through twelfth grade students math and science. In addition, I spent a great deal of time working with students who had been identified as emotionally disturbed, training them in appropriate social behaviors. Unfortunately, the integration of technology was virtually non-existent in special education classrooms in the district that I spent the first three years of teaching. When I moved to Houston, things improved dramatically. I have had an opportunity to integrate the use of data projectors, Smartboards, Smart Airliner Slates and Mimios into the everyday classroom experience for my students. Whether they were completing a virtual dissection or measuring and categorizing angles, my students classroom was kinesthetic and collaborative. Once introduced to the tools, I could not pry them out of the students hands. When studying area, they took digital pictures of the cinder block walls, ceiling tiles and cafeterias tile floor which were later imported into the Smartboard
software for manipulation and calculations; and integrated into a multimedia project for display of the finished product. I am currently working as an Instructional Technology Specialist (ITS) on a middle school campus, which services sixth through eighth grade students. Technology integration into core academic curriculum is my job. This is accomplished by collaborating with middle school ITSs from across the district to create units of instruction which model the appropriate use of technology in the classroom, training content specific teachers in instructional uses of specific software to enhance the learning experience, and training teachers to use the hardware available in a way that facilitates high order thinking skills.
Understanding Performance Technology Human Performance Technology uses a wide range of interventions that are drawn from many other disciplines including, behavioral psychology, instructional systems design, organizational development, and human resources management. As such, it stresses a rigorous analysis of present and desired levels of performance, identifies the causes for the performance gap, offers a wide range of interventions with which to improve performance, guides the change management process, and evaluates the results. Taken one word at a time, a description of this performance improvement strategy emerges.
Human: the individuals and groups that make up our organizations. Performance: activities and measurable outcomes.
Technology: a systematic and systemic approach to solve practical problems (Wikipedia, 2006, paragraph 1, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_Performance_Technology). In other words, Performance Technology seeks to align the worker with the work
to be done in the workplace in order to produce the desired end result (Addison, 2003, paragraph 5, http://www.ispi.org/publications/pitocs/piFeb2003/Addison_Four.pdf).
Performance Technology Defined Human Performance Technology is an engineering approach to attaining desired accomplishments from human performers by determining gaps in performance and designing cost effective and efficient interventions (Armed Forces Chapter of the International Society for Performance Improvement, 2006, paragraph 1, http://www.afcispi.org/hptprimer.htm). Human Performance Technology is also defined as the valued result of the work of the people working within a system. And therefore Human Performance Technology consists of those principles and applications that are concerned with improving the impact of any and all factors that affect those results (Tosti, 2006, paragraph 6, http://www.bptrends.com/publicationfiles/02%2D06%20WP %20HPT%20%2D%20Tosti%2Epdf). Performance is the learners ability to use and apply the new capabilities gained (Molenda, 2004, paragraphs 22-24, http://www.indiana.edu/~molpage/Definition%20of%20ET_classS05.pdf).
Relationship Between Instructional Design and Performance Technology
Instructional Design and Performance Technology run parallel with one another. Wikipedia, an online encyclopedia, defines instructional design as the analysis of learning needs and systemic development of instruction (Wikipedia, 2006, paragraph 2, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intrinsic_motivation). Instructional Design, regardless of the model employed, pulls from the same resources as Performance Technology. Instructional Design and Performance Technology both are systematic processes put in place to drive desired results. Both processes include: Identifying a problem to be worked through Stating desired outcomes Identifying environmental or human variables which could affect outcome Selection of applications / tools to utilize during implementation Execution of the design Analysis of effectiveness
(Addison, 2003, paragraph 5, http://www.ispi.org/publications/pitocs/piFeb2003/Addison_Four.pdf). Both processes require the designer to begin with the end in mind. They must think and act systematically in order to create an instructional unit / lesson which will produce the desired outcome in the learner. Project Method Project-based learning is an instructional model which almost completely shifts the focus of the learning environment from teacher to student-centered. The activities engaged in, in this type of model span a greater length time, of are cross-curricular, are more complex, and allow the student to work autonomously. The projects are typically
centered on a challenging question and require the student to investigate further, make decisions and arrive at conclusions which mirror realistic scenarios. There is an emphasis on cooperative learning, rather than isolated questioning. The learner is encouraged to create their own understanding through debate, questioning, making predictions, and collecting and analyzing data (Petrosino, 2006, paragraph 1-3, Petrosino, A. J. (2006). Project based learning. Retrieved October 12, 2006, from Houghton Mifflin College Web site: http://college.hmco.com/education/resources/res_project/students/c2007/background.ht ml#Benefits). Role Playing Role playing is an instructional model in which learners assume the roles of others for the purpose of gaining perspective into anothers point of view. Role play allows the learner to think creatively and critically about the values, attitudes and environment of the character in the role being assumed. Role playing is a studentcentered, collaborative process which facilitates higher order thinking skills and provides a motivation for students to engage in aspects of learning which are extremely difficult to initiate in pencil-paper tasks. Students can be involved in the role play in a variety of ways which include developing a script, providing constructive criticism, and performing the action (Calgary Health Region, 2006, paragraphs 1-6, http://www.teachingsexualhealth.ca/pages/lessonplans/roleplay.html). Problem-Based Learning PBL is a learner-centered educational method. In PBL learners are progressively given more and more responsibility for their own education and become increasingly
independent of the teacher for their education. PBL produces independent learners who can continue to learn on their own in life and in their chosen careers. The responsibility of the teacher in PBL is to provide the educational materials and guidance that facilitate learning (PBLI, 2006, paragraph 1, http://www.pbli.org/pbl/pbl.htm). Problem-based learning places the student in an active role in their own learning experience. Learners construct increasingly broader bases of knowledge by being challenged to be problem solvers and individuals who habitually think outside the box. The problem-based learning model presents students with a problem set, then student work-groups analyze the problem, research, discuss, analyze, and produce tentative explanations, solutions, or recommendations (Wheeling Jesuit University, 2005, paragraph 10-11, http://www.cotf.edu/ete/teacher/teacherout.html).
Collaborative Method Chosen for Implementation Constructivism plays the largest role in my philosophy. The Constructivist theory supports learning which is active, constructive and collaborative. Learners are responsible for the results of their efforts. They are called upon to construct new meanings by combining new and previously existing knowledge. Collaboration with peers and teachers in relevant and authentic environments is necessary. Learners are encouraged to exploit other students skills and knowledge in a positive manner in order to expand their own knowledge base. This type of environment is most conducive to the discovery of new knowledge by the students I worked with. Keeping that in mind, any of the three types of collaborative learning mentioned previously has strong support in my classroom. All three require learning environments
which are conducive to student-centered collaboration. I feel that Problem-Based learning provides a greater increase in student achievement long term, because it gently forces the learner to become increasingly more responsible for their own learning. This will potentially carry the student into higher education with an attitude of self-initiation, creating a successful lifelong learner.
Addison, R. M. (February, 2003). Performance technology landscape. Performance Improvement, 42, Retrieved October 11, 2006, from http://www.ispi.org/publications/pitocs/piFeb2003/Addison_Four.pdf. Armed Forces Chapter of the International Society for Performance Improvement, (May 15, 2006). Human Performance Technology (HPT) Primer. Retrieved October 10, 2006, from Armed Forces Chapter of ISPI Web site: http://www.afcispi.org/hptprimer.htm. Calgary Health Region, (2006). Role play strategies. Retrieved October 9, 2006, from teachingsexualhealth.ca Web site: http://www.teachingsexualhealth.ca/pages/lessonplans/roleplay.html. Molenda, M. (June 1, 2004). The definition of educational technology. Retrieved October 11, 2006, from Dr. Molenda's Publications Web site: http://www.indiana.edu/~molpage/Definition%20of%20ET_classS05.pdf. PBLI, (2006). Problem based learning initiative - southern illinois university school of medicine pbl page. Retrieved October 16, 2006, from Problem Based Learning Initiative Web site: http://www.pbli.org/pbl/pbl.htm. Petrosino, A. J. (2006). Project based learning. Retrieved October 12, 2006, from Houghton Mifflin College Web site: http://college.hmco.com/education/resources/ res_project/students/c2007/background.html#Benefits. Tosti, D. (February, 2006). Human Performance Technology. Business Process Trends, Retrieved October 10, 2006, from
http://www.bptrends.com/publicationfiles/02%2D06%20WP%20HPT%20%2D %20Tosti%2Epdf. Wheeling Jesuit University, (April 28, 2005). ETE teacher pages. Retrieved October 16, 2006, from Exploring the Environment Web site: http://www.cotf.edu/ete/teacher/teacherout.html. Wikipedia, Human performance technology. (2006). In Wikipedia [Web]. World Wide Web: Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. Retrieved October 10, 2006, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_Performance_Technology. Wikipedia, Instructional design. (2006). In Wikipedia [Web]. World Wide Web: Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. Retrieved September 20, 2006, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instructional_design.
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