Proposed Research Topic:
Change and the implementation of a web 2.0 tool in a writing program.
As part of another course (EDEM627 E-learning and pedagogy: effective strategies for the classroom) I reviewed international research investigating web 2.0 tools when implemented into writing programs. I then planned and implemented a mini action research project which involved Voice Thread and the writing program. This was the first time the students had used Voice Thread. Increasing the achievement levels in the area of writing is the goal of many teachers and it is of great interest. Engaging students often leads to an increase of learning.
Learning the theories of change and then applying to the above context will be a great way to then think through how I will implement change into my classroom teaching to make it as smooth and effective as possible.
There are many peer reviewed journal articles that research the interaction between motivation, Web 2.0 tools and writing with evidence to show that use of Web 2.0 tools does increase motivation and engagement of students with some links to increased achievement in the area of writing. Articles were published in The Reading Teacher, Journal of Information Systems Education, Educational Research Review, Australasian Journal of Educational Technology, to name a few.
Some of the journals that I read raised the point that technology for technology's sake was of little or no value and that the tool chosen should be the best fit for the activity, learning outcomes and needs of the students. This has also been discussed in depth in Technology, Pedagogy and Content Knowledge (TPACK) articles. Another issue is that the links between web 2.0 tools and increased achievement levels have some evidence, but require more robust research.
This topic fits locally, nationally and internationally. Research in this area is happening on the international level. Increasing student achievement is of local and national importance. It is the goal of teachers and schools.
This topic is a current issue. While increasing student achievement has been an focus for many, many years (probably since the beginning of education!), the use of Web 2.0 tools to influence that achievement is a recent development as the technology has been created and improved.
This is my initial research topic and I am very aware that it will continue to develop and change.