Thursday, April 23, 2015

EdTech for SD Teachers Podcast - Episode 26: What's my Motivation for Learning?

This week, I discuss a model of intrinsic motivation and how the proper use of technology can support intrinsic motivation for learning. Here are the four main elements of the taxonomy of intrinsic motivations:

  • Control
  • Challenge 
  • Curiousity
  • Contextualization

Malone, T. W., & Lepper, M. R. (1987). Making learning fun: A taxonomy of intrinsic motivations for learning. In R. E. Snow & J. F. Marshall (Eds.), Aptitude, learning, and instruction (Vol. 3, pp. 223–253). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

How to Make Education More Like Web 2.0 (and 3.0)

In a previous post, I discussed Web 2.0 and Learning 2.0. One way to characterize the changes that have occured in our society is by looking through the lens of the web 2.0 (and web 3.0) movement. Our society has become more:

• Content-creation oriented
• Personalized
• Connected
• Open
• Mobile

In the previous post, I asked whether education has kept up with these types of societal changes. In this post, I answer this question. This post is an excerpt from my book, Educational Technology for Teachers

The answer is that education remains behind in many of these areas even today (Mott & Wiley, 2013; Wiley, 2006). Students must meet in a classroom (tethered, not mobile) to do the learning. They are often required to work independently and quietly on individual assignments (closed, not open). Student classrooms are often closed off from and separate from other classrooms and people (isolated, not connected). Students must all learn the same subject matter at the same time and often in the same way (generic, not personalized).

Education can match Information Age trends by providing learning experiences that are open, connected, mobile, personalized and content-creation oriented. More opportunities for student communication and collaboration (connected, open) on projects (content-creation) that students find meaningful (personalization) can be provided. Students could be given some choices in what they learn, or how they go about learning (personalization). Students could also be given opportunities to connect with students from other classrooms, states and even countries using available communication technologies (connected). Teachers can find additional ways to get students to become more active participants in their own learning process (personalization). The web 2.0 (and web 3.0) values of our society in the Information Age have made it so that students expect a more student-centered learning experience.


  • Mott, J., & Wiley, D. (2013). Open for learning: The CMS and the open learning network. In Education, 15(2). Retrieved from
  • Wiley, D. (2006). Secretary of Education’s Commission on the Future of Higher Education. Panel on Innovative Teaching and Learning Strategies, Seattle, WA.
  • Thursday, April 16, 2015

    EdTech for SD Teachers Podcast - Episode 25: Advancing Technology for Learning using the SAMR Model

    This week, My students discuss four different technologies and how they might be used on the four different levels of the SAMR model.  Here are the four levels of the SAMR model:

    • Substitution
    • Augmentation
    • Modification
    • Redefinition

    Here are the four different tools:

    Tuesday, April 14, 2015

    Web 2.0 and Learning 2.0

    Another way to view technology use in education comes from the world of the Internet. Tim O'Reilly first coined the term “web 2.0” as a way to describe how the web has evolved over time to become more social, personal and functional (O’Reilly & Batelle, 2009; O’Reilly, 2005). Web 2.0 sites take advantage of the collective intelligence of many people by allowing users to contribute their knowledge and generate content (O’Reilly & Batelle, 2009). Some exemplary web 2.0 sites include Facebook, Amazon, EBay, Wikipedia and Craigslist. Can you imagine how boring these sites would be if there were no users who generated any content? What would your Facebook news feed look like if none of your friends or family ever posted there? This post is an excerpt from my book, Educational Technology for Teachers.

    The power of web 2.0 lies in collecting and taking advantage of contributions from a wide variety of users (O’Reilly & Batelle, 2009). Technological innovations change quickly, and because of this, the "web 2.0" term is already dated. The next generation of web applications and services has even been named "web 3.0," which is a term used to describe the more responsive and intelligent applications and services that continue to emerge as the collective intelligence based on contributions from multiple people is harnessed (O’Reilly & Batelle, 2009).

    Some researchers interested in education have taken advantage of the web 2.0 label to advance the parallel idea of “learning 2.0” (Alexander, 2006; Brown & Adler, 2008; Mott & Wiley, 2013; Wiley, 2006). Wiley (2006) argues that the changes that characterize web 2.0 are also occurring in society overall. For example, with the advent of digital technologies such as web 2.0 applications that allow easy access to and sharing of information, society has become more open and sharing, whether the sharing involves software, media resources, ideas, or other information (Wiley, 2006). We have also become more mobile, accessing information and communicating whenever and wherever we want to.

    Our society is also more connected (Wiley, 2006). Social networking applications have allowed us to stay connected with friends and relatives all around the world to share ideas and information. This sharing of ideas and information is one of the most important changes that has resulted from the Internet and web 2.0 technologies (Brown & Adler, 2008).

    Along with technological advances, we have come to expect a more personalized experience (Wiley, 2006). The website for our favorite news network customizes content to our preferences and features our friends in a Facebook application on the front page. Our favorite online retailers provide us with personalized suggestions based on our past purchases. When we do an Internet search we only want answers that relate to our personal question, and we get these answers very quickly.

    Our web 2.0 (and web 3.0) world allows almost anyone to participate easily in content creation activities (Wiley, 2006). Since the advent of web 2.0 technologies, those with access to the Internet have shared ideas, thoughts and information using online discussion forums, blogs, wikis, videos, podcasts and a variety of other media. The amount of information that has been produced and made freely available is greater than it has been in any other time in history (Dragland, 2013).

    In summary, our society has become more:

    • Content-creation oriented
    • Personalized
    • Connected
    • Open
    • Mobile

    But has education kept up with these societal changes?


    • Alexander, B. (2006). Web 2.0: A new wave of innovation for teaching and learning? Educause Review, 41(2), 32–44.
    • Brown, J. S., & Adler, R. P. (2008). Open education, the long tail, and learning 2.0. Educause review, 43(1), 16–20.
    • Dragland, A. (2013). Big Data, for better or worse: 90% of world’s data generated over last two years. SINTEF. Retrieved November 19, 2013, from
    • Mott, J., & Wiley, D. (2013). Open for learning: The CMS and the open learning network. In Education, 15(2). Retrieved from
    • O’Reilly, T. (2005). What is web 2.0? Retrieved November 22, 2013, from 40
    • O’Reilly, T., & Batelle, J. (2009). Web squared: Web 2.0 five years on. Retrieved November 21, 2013, from
    • Wiley, D. (2006). Secretary of Education’s Commission on the Future of Higher Education. Panel on Innovative Teaching and Learning Strategies, Seattle, WA.

    Thursday, April 9, 2015

    EdTech for SD Teachers Podcast - Episode 24: Improve Your Teaching Voice

    This week, I talk about the importance of making your voice sound engaging when teaching. This post comes mainly from a section of my book, Educational Technology for Teachers. I also share the four main elements of voice and tell how to practice varying them. The four main elements of voice are:

  • Pitch
  • Tone
  • Volume
  • Rate

  • Tuesday, April 7, 2015

    Media and technology don't directly influence learning: But use them anyway!

    An interesting tenet of instructional/educational technology is that media doesn't influence learning. In other words, the different types of media (and technology) that you implement for learning won't in and of themselves change the amount of learning that happens. Instead, it is the instructional/learning methods that you implement that affect whether students learn. Richard Clark first suggested this idea long ago, but it seems to have held true over many years (see Clark, 1994). A vast number of studies, for instance have shown no significant difference between learning gains from online and face to face classes that use the same learning methods (Russell, 2001).

    So if media and technology don't influence learning, then what does? The greatest influences on learning come from the learning methods employed (independent of the media and technologies used). Some possible learning methods that can lead to the greatest learning gains include making sure that students' mental models are activated, that students see a demonstration of how to do things, that students are able to get enough practice completing activities and that they can take what is learned and integrate it into their daily lives (Merrill, 2002; Francom & Gardner, 2014).

    So if media and technology don't influence learning, then why do we use them? Why do we take the time to get out the laptops and iPads if they won't necessarily lead to better learning outcomes. One compelling argument is that these technological tools are a part of our life, and thus should be a part of our school life as well. If education is going to prepare students to thrive in the 21st century, they must know how to take advantage of current tools and ideas. To me, this argument is a more than adequate reason to integrate media and technology into learning, but there are also other compelling reasons.

    The connection between technology and learning is not a direct one, but I believe there is a more indirect connection that is important. I believe that the existence of technological tools and resources allows for new methods of teaching and learning that were not previously possible (see Kozma, 1994; Puentedura, 2010).  So, because of technology and media tools, teachers can more often implement quality teaching and learning methods. For instance, without technology and media tools, many project-based learning activities aren't as easy to design or implement. Information literacy activities were not as efficient before internet database searches. These types of learning activities can be implemented more often in a classroom that has the necessary technology and media tools, therefore learning outcomes can be improved. And that is a very compelling reason to implement technology into teaching and learning!

    Clark, R. E. (1994). Media will never influence learning. Educational Technology Research and Development, 42(2), 21–29.
    Francom, G. M., & Gardner, J. L. (2014). What is Task-Centered Learning? TechTrends, 58(5), 27–35.
    Kozma, R. (1994). Will media influence learning? Reframing the debate. Educational Technology Research and Development, 42(2), 7–19. 
    Merrill, M. D. (2002). First principles of instruction. Educational Technology Research and Development, 50(3), 43–59.
    Puentedura, R. (2010). SAMR and TPCK: intro to advanced practice. Retrieved February, 12, 2013.
    Russell, T. L. (2001). The no significant difference phenomenon: a comparative research annotated bibliography on technology for distance education : as reported in 355 research reports, summaries and papers. Raleigh, NC: North Carolina State University.

    Thursday, April 2, 2015

    EdTech for SD Teachers Podcast - Episode 23: Teachers Share their Favorite Digital Media Apps and Websites

    This week, South Dakota Teachers share their favorite websites and apps that relate to digital media. These websites and apps allow teachers to create media projects.  The teachers also share some examples of how they use these websites and apps for learning activities. Here are the websites and apps discussed in this podcast:

  • Garage Band - iPad app
  • iMovie - iPad app
  • Weebly
  • Wix
  • Google Sites
  • PicMonkey