The impact of synchronous inter-networked teacher training in ICT integration.
This research aimed to provide fresh perspectives and experiences in technology-based learning, in an endeavour to produce new knowledge that would further inform the literature on the utilisation of technology in education. The Case Study research (Merriam, 1988) attempted to develop an understanding of the change in pre-service teacher trainees' pedagogical practices in the integration of ICT in learning environments during a 12-week undergraduate course where synchronous networked tasks were developed and implemented. The contributions by the trainees (n=16) to the process of the iterative task design, post-task discussions, and commentaries on a Bulletin Board System, provided insights to the research question regarding changing beliefs and the impact of synchronous networking in affecting such change. This qualitative data was supported by quantitative data in the form of weekly surveys that situated synchronous and asynchronous task activities and cognitive outcomes (Knipe & Lee, 2002). In summary, the research highlighted a development of academic competencies (Morrison & Collins, 1996) considered appropriate for informed ICT integration; namely, generic, epistemic and declarative competencies. In addition, after taking into consideration the competencies developed during this Case Study, a framework consisting of four key elements, namely, the communication, the task, the learning and the technology, was drawn. It is thus anticipated that the competencies and the framework contribute new knowledge to the literature on technology in education on how best facilitate the 'informed' integration of ICT (Towndrow & Vallance, 2004) by teachers to support 'good' learning (Goodyear, 2001).