Supporting ICT based pedagogies in science in rural school settings

Recent research has demonstrated a significant disadvantage for rural teachers in a variety of aspects of ICT use. This context provides a backdrop for two professional learning programs designed to support ICT-based pedagogies in teaching science in Victorian rural primary and secondary schools. In both programs the school-based workshops initiated a community of learners supported with online web-presence. One program used an intensive five-day workshop focused on developing teachers’ knowledge, pedagogical expertise and leadership skills in embedding ICT into classroom practice. The second program provided a one-day workshop focused on integrating ICT skills in teaching science. Factors that affected the uptake of ICT included the considerable diversity in ICT availability and use, teacher competence, lack of support in schools, and online support. To redress rural disadvantage in ICT use, school commitment and focused leadership were identified as central to programs that supported and developed teacher skills and pedagogies over time.

Peter Hubber
Gail Chittleborough
Coral Campbell
Wendy Jobling
Russell Tytler
© Australian Educational Computing, 2010