Pedagogical Beliefs & ICT Integration.

Ertmer’s (2005) article argues how teachers’ pedagogical beliefs may be correlated with their involvement of modern day technologies in the teaching and learning process. She believes that there has been little research to prove this statement which is why she felt the need to explain herself over a 16 page article to simply make her point. However, it is due to the lack of research in this specific area that we do not know for certain if teachers’ pedagogical beliefs impacts on their use of technology in the classroom. This makes her article seem a little immobile as the majority was spent recommending why and how teacher’s beliefs should be changed although it has not even been confirmed that their beliefs make any difference to the subject. Clearly, you can see Ertmer’s article was a little frustrating to read. She also explains that a teacher’s beliefs about pedagogy flow from their general beliefs yet their beliefs are not always connected with reality. She then continues to clarify the link between beliefs and practice and the way that people do not always act out of their beliefs therefore impacting on the way teacher’s become connected with the adoption of technology in the classroom. To me, this whole segment seemed to be irrelevant and never-ending as she is basically contradicting what her main point is. There is no proper evidence to prove her statement therefore she seems to be standing alone when making her point.

Brown (2005) expresses concern in his article for the intense push for ICT and changes in pedagogy in education. He alludes to the words of C.P Snow (cite Brown, 2005), “Technology is a queer thing. It brings you great gifts with one hand, and it stabs you in the back with the other”. This tells us that whilst technology used in schools is beneficial, it also has its downsides. However, Brown (2005) is not specifically against the use of ICT in schools and is not an advocate for anything with a “neo-conservative” nature. Rather, his agenda is to find out why ICT is so important within Australian schools.

Towards the end of the article, he makes the point that
“…most politicians and policy-makers appear to be enamored with the seductive appeal of what ICT can do for us and they give little or no attention to the unknown and potential negative effects of what new digital technology might do to us. The overriding impression is that teachers should be embracing ICT rather than critically thinking about the way in which the new pedagogy acts as a language of persuasion to legitimise someone else’s hegemonic agenda.” (Brown, 2005, p. 20)

This reminds me of the distribution of lap tops to every high school student. To be honest, it made me burn inside. Not because I missed out by a couple of years, but because I knew I didn’t need a lap top to get me through high school. Of course, I need my computer at home to assist me with research for class work and assignments, but I did not rely on one to sit beside me during lessons as a nasty temptation to distract me from doing my actual class work. Even during lectures, mature university students are using their lap tops to check status updates on Facebook and stalk friends’ photos from the drunken weekend before. ICT is clearly doing something bad to these students rather than for them. Consider me old fashioned or boring, but I still enjoy taking notes, highlighting and scribbling ideas onto a simple piece of paper. I better understand what I am learning by doing this. I refuse to conform to buying an iPhone or using a lap top at university because I honestly think it would be a distraction to my learning and would hurt me in the long run.

From a personal view, I think is important to embrace ICT and what it has to offer. However, like Brown (2005) suggests, those in the teaching profession should create a culture of “activism and reconceptualism” (p. 21) and ask themselves his suggested questions. That way, they are able to recognise what type of environment they want for their students and furthermore, the society they want to create outside of school.

Brown, M. (2005). The growth of enterprise pedagogy: How ICT policy is infected by neo-liberalism. Australian Educational Computing, 20(2), 16-22.
(Can be accessed through the UNDA Library Catalogue)

Ertmer, P. A. (2005). Teacher pedagogical beliefs: The final frontier in our quest for technology integration? Educational Technology Research & Development, 53(4), 25-39.
(Can be accessed through the UNDA Library Catalogue)

Teaching with Technology [Image] Retrieved April 8, 2011, from


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