This project utilized emerging technologies such as mobile broadband videoconferencing along with web-based software and materials (http://www.cyscience.com.au) to enhance the provision of science and mathematics in rural and remote schools in Northern Queensland. The paper tracks the role of technology in the development and implementation of the CY Science project. It will explore how technology enabled a successful classroom project to evolve into a regional program and beyond. It will look at technology as a creative tool for teachers as well as its benefits and shortcomings as a means of teacher professional development. The project involved the distribution of 202 inquiry based science kits and utilized different methods of accompanying professional development to over 60 schools, primarily across northern Australia. The findings of the SiMERR National Survey into Science, Maths and ICT education in rural and regional Australia concluded that “science teachers in provincial and remote areas indicated a significantly higher unmet need for a broad range of professional development activities than did those in provincial cities or metropolitan areas”. This study investigates and reports on the existing research literature, the perceived benefits of the project to teachers’ satisfaction with professional development and tracks the changes to classroom practice that teachers and key stakeholders attribute to participation in the project.
© Australian Computers in Education Conference 2010: Digital Diversity Conference, 2010