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Teaching and learning with iPads for high school students with disabilities (CEC 2013 Presentation)
TEACHING AND LEARNING WITH IPADS FORHIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIESThe University of Texas at AustinMinwook Ok & Joan E. HughesCouncil of Exceptional Children (CEC) 2013
Background & Rationale• Technology-based instruction can support students withdisabilities to enhance their academiclearning, motivation, attention, on-time task andindependence (Bouck & Flanagan, 2009; Fitzgerald, Koury, & Mitchem, 2008;Woodward & Rieth, 1997)• iPads have gained popularity recently andresearchers, parents, teachers have demonstrated iPadscan be useful tools for teaching students with disabilities(Nirvi, 2011)• However, there is little empirical research investigating theeffects of using iPads in the teaching and learning ofstudents with disabilities; More research is required
Purpose & Research Question• To understand the recent phenomenon of iPadintegration into PK-12 schools, especially in aspecial education class• How do iPads support teaching and learning in amodified high school biology class?
Participants and Setting• A special educatoro 11 years teaching experience in special educationo Teaching a modified biology class• Four studentso 9th - 10th graderso 2 students with LD, 1 student with TBI, 1 student with CP• High school in an affluent suburban area in USo Serves 2,500 studentso 74% White, 11% Hispanic, 10% Asian, 4% Multi-Race, 1% African-Americans, 3% economically disadvantaged, 2% ELLo High achievement schoolo Invests heavily in digital technologies for classroomso 1:1 iPad initiative started in May 2011• A modified high school biology classroom
Research Design• Qualitative research design: Ethnography• Data collection• Field notes of weekly observation in classes• Formal teacher interview at the beginning and at the end ofsemester• Informal chats with the teacher• Duration• One academic semester (Feb-May in 2012)
Modified Biology Class• Teaching basic cellular chemistry (e.g., atoms, molecules, bondinganimal cells, cellular respiration, ATP production, classification system, humansystems, organization of life)• Duration: 45 minutes• Biology class can be difficult for students with disabilitiesbecause of difficult vocabularies and concepts• Designed to help students with disabilities to learn biology• Small group instruction class
Teaching and Pedagogy• Teachero Built personal rapport with her studentso Has passion about teaching students with disabilitieso Built classroom environment where students can feel safe; if they make mistakesthey are not going to be ridiculed. Safe place to try and learno Likes to integrate technology in her instruction• Mainly provided “Small group, direct instruction with class discussions”o A teacher opens PDF class notes on Smartboard, provides lectures onconcepts, fills out the blanks on the note, asks questions to students; students areasked to open the notes on their iPads and take notes followed by the teacher• Teacher believes iPads enhance more student-centered instruction andproject-based learning• Break down to smaller contents, Review contents, Re-teach ifneeded, Various materials (e.g., PDF class notes, textbooks, video, pictures)
Use of iPads in Teaching and Learning• Mainly rely on using PDF files (class notes, tests, test reviewmaterials) to take notes during class or work on tests ontheir iPads• E-mail communicationo Teacher sends class notes or test to studentso Students send homework/completed test to the teachero Teacher provides frequent feedbacko Teacher sends class notes to students who miss classo Student group work
Use of iPads in Teaching and Learning• Appso Screen Chomp: Whiteboard app - Formative assessmento Noterize: Note taking app- Personalized document (e.g., different color, handwriting)o Voice flash cards- Auditory scaffoldingo Edmodo: social secure learning network, class siteo Lab app (Toss-up): 3D coin-toss up for teaching gender probabilityo Dictionary, spell checker, calculatoro iMovie: Develop student projecto Facetime: Student group work• Web-browser use• Edmodo (a free social secure learning network for teachers and students)• E-mails• Search information
Assessment• At least two short quizzes per chapter, frequent pop-quizzes• Multiple choice, short answers, fill outblanks, vocabularies, open-ended questions• Assessment tools• Edmodo (Teacher uploads pop-quiz, test review, or announcement)• Noterize app (Open test file on the app to complete test forms)• Extra credit: Screen-chomp app (formative and summative assessment-students can create a short video to show their knowledge of contents)
Advantages• Mobility & Extended learning (learn anywhere & anytime)• Communication (send notes to students who missed class; enhance teacher-student/student-student interaction; increase feedback)• Engagement & Motivation• Organization• Collaboration (Facetime, Edmodo, e-mail)• Easy accommodation for individual students (e.g., largerfont, different color); No need to go to testing center (e.g., read aloudtest)• Independent study tool (providing scaffolding)• Builds Confidence
Barriers• Limited time for professional learning• Charging & Updating (going things slow down)• Limited Memory• No Flash capability (does not work with Smartbaord)• Distractions & off-task behavioro Classroom management: need to teach what is appropriate useo If parents asked to take their child’s iPads because of addiction orinappropriate use of iPads, the students cannot use iPads
School Support• Set up Wi-Fi• Professional learning (workshops, conference, training)• Provide teachers iTunes cards to purchase apps• Provide technical support• Support teachers to have enough time to be familiar withiPads; Minimal pushback
Limitations, Implications for Practice, Future research• iPads can be useful tools in teaching and learning for studentswith disabilities; more research is required to investigate howiPads can be effectively used to support students withdisabilities• School-district level support is important• Teachers need to teach students appropriate use of technology• Longitudinal study is required for deeper understanding• Various special education class settings (e.g., life skill, modified English)• Investigate effects of using iPads with younger students(elementary or middle school students)
References• Bouck, E. C., & Flanagan, S. (2009). Assistive technology andmathematics: What is there and where can we go inspecial education. Journal of Special Education Technology,24(2), 17-30.• Fitzgerald, G., Koury, K., & Mitchem, K. (2008). Research oncomputer-mediated instruction for students with highincidence disabilities. Journal of Educational ComputingResearch, 38(2), 201-233. doi: 10.2190/EC.38.2.e• Nirvi, S. (2011). Special education pupils find learning tool iniPad applications. Education Week, 30(22), 16-17.• Woodward, J., & Rieth, H. (1997). A historical review oftechnology research in special education. Review ofEducational Research, 67(4), 503-536. doi: 10.2307/1170519