Narrow and transmissive use of technology in the classroom

In this article QUINT researchers Marte Blikstad-Balas and Kirsti Klette investigate how teachers use digital technology in everday instruction.

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Drawing on 178 video-recorded lessons from 47 lower-secondary classrooms with high technological infrastructure in Norway, the present study sheds light on how and for what purposes teachers use technology in their everyday instruction, providing important insights into what kind of digital literacy practices students experience in a classroom context.

Key findings are that teachers’ implementation and uptake of technology in everyday instruction was narrow and limited. Despite good access and high national ambitions for the development of students’ digital competence, teachers’ uptake of the available digital technology was very often limited to supporting traditional teacher-centered practices, with low student participation, suggesting that information and communications technology (ICT) was used for traditional transmissive pedagogy. Teachers’ discourse around ICT in class was practical and technical, rather than conceptual. Further, students’ use of technology mainly revolved around writing digital texts, individually, not the promising pedagogical practices associated with ICT in previous research.

These findings show that the implementation of digital technology and the development of digital competence in schools require far more than an ambitious curriculum and a basic digital infrastructure. Structures at a national level are not enough, and there is an urgent need for professional development at the local level to increase the instructional repertoire and the didactical motivation of teachers in relation to digital technology.

Full information

Blikstad-Balas, M. & Klette, K. "Still a long way to go - Narrow and transmissive use of technology in the classroom", Nordic Journal of Digital Literacy 01/2020, p.55 -68.


Tags: digital literacy, teaching with ICT, video observation, technology uptake, lower-secondary school
Published May 5, 2020 2:23 PM - Last modified May 12, 2020 10:46 AM