Creating Their Own Blend: Teachers Connect Online ICT Professional Development to Their Local Contexts
Tuesday, March 3 2:45 PM-3:45 PM Location: Meeting Room 6
Abstract: Teacher professional development in ICT is best situated in local contexts where teachers benefit from ongoing support; however this creates challenges for elective distance study. This paper explores the experiences of New Zealand teachers studying for a graduate diploma in ICT from the perspectives of variation theory and the social learning embedded in communities of practice. It highlights how teachers situate their learning in their daily practice and interact with colleagues, creating their own blend of online and face-to-face learning. While authentic participation is an integral part of workplace learning this aspect is often overlooked in blended learning and professional development discussions. Institutions offering online professional development programs for teachers would benefit from adopting a thoughtfully designed blend of mode and environment incorporating virtual and real interaction, and study and real work to support teachers’ learning.