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Über dieses Buch

This book reports on a novel and comprehensive approach to the uptake of ICT in Schools. It focuses on key questions, pedagogically sound ways of introducing ICT, new technical artifacts supporting the approach, the evaluation in a large-scale validator, and future work. While many innovations in Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL) have emerged over the last two decades, the uptake of these innovations has not always been very successful, particularly in schools. The transition from proof of concept to integration into learning activities has been recognized as a bottleneck for quite some time. This major problem, which is affecting many TEL stakeholders, is the focus of this book which focuses on developing a more effective and efficient approach based on more than 2500 pilots in European classrooms.

Teachers, head teachers, and policy makers may benefit from reading how novel learning scenarios can be elaborated, adapted to a local context, and implemented in the classroom; how new technologies can support this process for teachers and their national/regional communities; how teachers and other stakeholders can be educated in such a re-engineering process; how the approach can be scaled up through MOOCs, ambassador schemes, and train-the-trainer programs; how future classroom labs can inspire teachers, head teachers, and policy makers; how teachers and, above all, learners can become more engaged in learning through the adoption of the iTEC approach.

Readers with a more technical focus may also be interested in the discussion of recommender systems, the flexible provision of resources and services, the deployment of the cloud in schools, and systems for composing technological support for lesson plans.

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Inhaltsverzeichnis

Frontmatter

Open Access

Chapter 1. Innovative Technologies for an Engaging Classroom (iTEC)

Abstract
The iTEC project developed a process that allows schools to rethink how they are currently using ICT, and which provides concrete guidance and tools to help them close what is being called the “mainstreaming gap”, where technology is not yet fully harnessed as a systemic part of everyday classroom practice that integrates learning both in and out of school. A key element in the approach is to bring together policy makers, researchers, technology suppliers and teachers to develop future classroom scenarios. These scenarios both engage and challenge schools to rethink their current practice and allow them to develop pedagogically advanced Learning Activities that enable a school to upscale its use of ICT and adapt to changing socio-economic conditions. A “Future Classroom Toolkit” has been produced to support wide-scale adoption of the iTEC approach to help schools to design innovative Learning Activities and carry out classroom pilots. This piloting has been carried out on a scale never before attempted in a pan-European project; over 2500 classrooms piloted Learning Activities based on the iTEC Future Classroom scenarios. It is increasingly clear from work in iTEC that the mainstreaming gap needs bottom-up as well as top-down actions, and particularly requires each school to be able to innovate with ICT and develop a sustainable change management process on its own terms and at its own pace.
Will J. R. Ellis, Roger Blamire, Frans Van Assche

Open Access

Chapter 2. Development of the Future Classroom Toolkit

Abstract
Key to iTEC was the need to empower teachers to facilitate positive and sustainable innovative classroom practices enhanced by digital technologies. Initially it was envisaged that experts would create challenging yet feasible scenarios that would be refined by stakeholders. From these scenarios, Learning Activities would be developed that would lead to innovation either pedagogically or technologically. Nevertheless, the complexity of defining innovation and the challenge of innovating within different contexts had been somewhat underestimated. As the nature of the project work became better understood, it became clear that stakeholders—particularly teachers—needed to be responsible for scenario creation in order to be able to assimilate innovative approaches into current practice. This chapter explains the evolution of this process from the creation of scenarios to the development of the Future Classroom Toolkit. Within this, it focuses on the role of maturity models to enable stakeholders to assess their current context and practice in terms of the level of innovation. In addition, it shows how the Future Classroom Toolkit can support and encourage stakeholders to take ownership of and augment their own innovative practices using digital technologies for the benefit of learners.
Sue Cranmer, Mary Ulicsak

Open Access

Chapter 3. Designing Edukata, a Participatory Design Model for Creating Learning Activities

Abstract
Closing gaps between visionary ideas and classroom practice was the key achievement of the design research and work of the iTEC project. The design activities were based on the traditions of Scandinavian participatory design, activity theory, service design, artistry, and a specific view on learning design. Within iTEC, the design research and work brought forward the concept of Learning Activities as a useful mode of communicating new ideas to teachers that provided both challenges and support for overcoming those challenges. Evaluation results showed that Learning Activities were extremely successful. This success led to the need to ensure the continuation of Learning Activity design and production beyond the project. The design approach for creating the Learning Activities was captured for educators in the Edukata toolkit. Radical simplification yielded a model that seems to be valuable for teachers even with small amounts of training. However, the full impact of this model and its applicability in the diverse school learning settings across Europe remains to be validated. In this article we present the design research process and one of its main results: the Edukata toolkit for teachers to design their own Learning Activities to bridge the gap between tie visionary ideas and classroom practice.
Tarmo Toikkanen, Anna Keune, Teemu Leinonen

Open Access

Chapter 4. The iTEC Technical Artefacts, Architecture and Educational Cloud

Abstract
This chapter introduces the technical artefacts of the iTEC project in the context of a cloud architecture. The rationale for the technology developed in the iTEC project follows from its overall aim to re-engineer the uptake of ICT in schools. To that end, iTEC focused (a) on some important barriers for the uptake of ICT such the effort that teachers must make in redesigning their teaching and finding the right resources for that, and (b) on enablers for the uptake of ICT, such as providing engaging experiences both for the learner and teacher. The technical innovations are centred around three themes: innovations in the support of learning design, innovations by using a-typical resources, and innovations in the integration and management of learning services and resources. Next this chapter presents the cloud architecture adopted by all technology providers, including a shared user management and control system, the shared data models and interoperability solutions. The technical artefacts and then further elaborated in the ensuing chapters.
Frans Van Assche, Luis Anido-Rifón, Jean-Noël Colin, David Griffiths, Bernd Simon

Open Access

Chapter 5. The Composer: Creating, Sharing and Facilitating Learning Designs

Abstract
Developing tools for sharing learning designs is a well-established, but still on-going endeavour in the technology-enhanced learning domain. However, to date tools supporting educational modelling languages have not achieved wide adoption in school practice. In this chapter we report on the design, implementation, and evaluation of a pedagogical tool referred to as the Composer. The Composer supports the composition of learning designs activities and has been developed according to design principles such as (a) interoperability between design-time and run-time systems based on the W3C Widget Standard, (b) inclusion of artefact types beyond content such as tools, people and events, (c) a user-friendly authoring environment. An evaluation of the proof-of-concept implementation suggests that the tool is easy-to-use and provides added value for teachers when it comes to reflecting about Learning Designs.
Bernd Simon, Michael Aram, Frans Van Assche, Luis Anido-Rifón, Manuel Caeiro-Rodríguez

Open Access

Chapter 6. Recommender Systems

Abstract
The purpose of this chapter is to describe a software system that allows for discovering non-traditional education resources such as software applications, events or people who may participate as experts in some Learning Activity. Selecting the more suitable educational resources to create learning activities in the classroom may be a challenging task for teachers in primary and secondary education because of the large amount of existing educational resources. The iTEC Scenario Development Environment (SDE), is a software application aimed at offering supporting services in the form of suggestions or recommendations oriented to assist teachers in their decision-making when selecting the most appropriate elements to deploy learning activities in a particular school. The recommender is based on an ontology that was developed in a collaborative way by a multi-disciplinary team of experts. Its data set is fed not only from entries that come from registrations made by human users—using tools from the iTEC Cloud—but also from software agents that perform web scraping, that is, automatic enrichment of the semantic data with additional information that come from web sources that are external to the project. Therefore, the recommender system takes into account contextual factors when calculating the relevance of every resource. The SDE defines an API that allows third-party clients to integrate its functionalities. This chapter presents two success stories that have benefited from the SDE to enhance educational authoring tools with semantic web-based recommendations.
Luis Anido-Rifón, Juan Santos-Gago, Manuel Caeiro-Rodríguez, Manuel Fernández-Iglesias, Rubén Míguez-Pérez, Agustin Cañas-Rodríguez, Victor Alonso-Rorís, Javier García-Alonso, Roberto Pérez-Rodríguez, Miguel Gómez-Carballa, Marcos Mouriño-García, Mario Manso-Vázquez, Martín Llamas-Nistal

Open Access

Chapter 7. Resources Beyond Content for Open Education

Abstract
While many innovations in Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL) have emerged over the last two decades, the uptake of these innovations has not always been very successful, particularly in schools. The transition from proof of concept to integration into learning activities has been recognized as a bottleneck for quite some time. This major problem, which is affecting many TEL stakeholders, is the focus of the 4-year iTEC project that is developing a comprehensive approach involving 15 ministries of education and is organizing a large scale validator with more than a thousand classrooms. This chapter reports on how the information provision on events of interest in learning as well as on persons that can contribute to learning activities, supports novel scenarios and is key for the introduction of open education in the K12 education.
Frans Van Assche, Victor Alvarez, Douglas Armendone, Joris Klerkx, Erik Duval

Open Access

Chapter 8. The iTEC Widget Store

Abstract
The iTEC project undertook the task of distributing resources and services for learning activities across a wide range of technological platforms in many different countries. Interoperability was achieved through the W3C widget specification and the Apache Wookie widget server. A connector framework was developed to enable widgets to be embedded in host platforms. In order to facilitate the discovery and deployment of widgets the iTEC Widget Store was developed and evaluated. This is an open source app store whose functionality is separated from the widgets which it serves. It was found that the adoption of W3C widgets beyond the project was very weak, and consequently there were few widgets available for inclusion in the Widget Store. Consequently a range of authoring functionality was made available in the Widget Store, enabling users to create their own widgets from online resources or local files. The Widget Store was also extended to enable it to handle LTI tools, including the management of authorisation keys.
David Griffiths, Kris Popat

Open Access

Chapter 9. The Impact and Potential of iTEC: Evidence from Large-Scale Validation in School Classrooms

Abstract
This chapter presents the evaluation findings from over 2500 classroom pilots of tools and resources designed to support the development of digital pedagogy. The iTEC approach is an innovative process to support scenario-led learning design. Data collection included surveys, interviews, and classroom observations from teachers, students, policy makers and other stakeholders. This chapter focuses on the impact of iTEC on digital pedagogy; 12 key findings are presented in relation to learning and learners, teaching and teachers, and the potential for system-wide adoption of the iTEC approach. These findings suggest that through participating in classroom pilots: students developed twenty-first century skills; students’ roles changed; there was a positive impact on students’ motivation; and students’ attainment was positively affected. Furthermore, through participating in the project teachers enhanced their digital pedagogy; became more enthusiastic about their pedagogical practices; increased their use of technology; and collaborated more. With refinement, the scenario-led design process could support mainstreaming of innovation. The library of scenarios, Learning Stories and Learning Activities was perceived to be a valuable output. Towards the end of the project there were growing signs of awareness and uptake, particularly in countries where the approach aligned closely with current policy direction. The chapter concludes with recommendations for policy-making, the management of teaching and learning, technology provision and research.
Cathy Lewin, Sarah McNicol

Backmatter

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