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Increasing Computer Use in Early Childhood Teacher Education: The Case of a "Computer Muddler"

, Cleveland State University, United States

Abstract

Teacher educators with average computer skills are important for efforts to infuse technology into teaching, because of the large numbers of such faculty and their importance as convincing models of technology use in teaching. This paper examines the case of one urban early childhood teacher educator with average computer skills, and his increasing infusion of computers in early childhood courses over two-and-a-half years. Factors that obstructed and supported these changes are described, including factors related to a PT3 grant, and the teacher educator’s teaching efficacy beliefs (outcome expectancies and efficacy expectancies). Persistent obstacles included his negative outcome expectancies—concerns about the developmental appropriateness of using computers with young children. One factor supporting change was the teacher educator’s reinterpretation of his efficacy expectancies regarding computer use in teaching. His new conception of “teaching efficacy with computers” de-emphasized his individual competence and emphasized the importance of thinking about succeeding in computer use with help. This reconceptualization of efficacy in teaching with computers may be especially important for teacher educators with only average computer skills. Implications for supporting teacher educators’ computer use in teaching are described, with specific attention to teacher efficacy beliefs.

Citation

Wheatley, K. Increasing Computer Use in Early Childhood Teacher Education: The Case of a "Computer Muddler". Retrieved April 6, 2020 from .

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