Moving toward a staff development model for computer learning

Jo Arnold Frame, Fordham University


Our society is in transition from an Industrial Age to an Information Age. Inherent in the transition are powerful forces that are changing the economic, political, and social structures. The computer provides an effective vehicle for the education system to respond to these changes and to prepare citizens for the restructuring of the Technological Age. Because teachers have received little education in the use of technology, staff development is a critical factor in computer instructional implementation. Staff development can provide a vehicle for training teachers to integrate computers into instruction, but few studies have focused on increasing the individual teacher's computer use. The purpose of this study is to investigate a current model of computer training, the Connecticut Institutes of Teaching and Learning, 1989-90, to determine whether the institutes would decrease participants' concerns and increase their level of instructional computer use. A case study of two institutes is presented: Bridging the Gap--Computers and Manipulatives and Using Appleworks as an Instructional and Management Tool. Five other workshops are also explored. Participants completed a questionnaire which included 35 Concerns-Based Adoption Model qualifying statements and additional questions regarding types and frequency of computer use. This questionnaire was administered before each institute began and several months later at a follow-up session. Results were compared and analyzed by the two researchers involved in this study. On-site visits were made to the institutes, classroom instruction was observed, and interviews were conducted. The findings revealed that these participants experienced intense levels of awareness, informational, and personal concerns prior to each workshop; these concerns decreased. Participants' profiles changed from nonuser to inexperienced user. Computer use increased in mechanical level applications. A meaningful connection emerged between comfort, feeling of competency, and use of the computer. This study indicated that structural constraints such as lack of time, lack of appropriate vehicles to facilitate learning and experimenting, and need for collaboration and continuing education impede computer use. This dissertation proposes a transitional model for teacher learning in technology that combines Industrial Age training with Information Age education. Staff development must assist the teachers in the restructuring necessary to implement computers into instruction.

Subject Area

School administration|Teacher education|Educational software|Adult education|Continuing education

Recommended Citation

Frame, Jo Arnold, "Moving toward a staff development model for computer learning" (1991). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI9123117.