01 SES 02 C JS, The Role of ICT in the Context of School Improvement and Professional Development in an Era of Risk
Joint Symposium NW 01 and NW 16
Organizers of this symposium are Julia Gerick, Pierre Tulowitzki and Livia Rößler.
Rapid technological developments and the gaining importance of information and communication technologies (ICT) in all areas of professional and personal life are accompanied by new challenges, but also opportunities particularly in the area of education and training on different levels as well as for different stakeholders as teachers and school leaders (e.g. Voogt, Knezek, Christensen & Lai, 2018). In this context, questions about the role of ICT for school improvement and professional development arise, with ICT either being the medium or the content of school improvement and professional development (e.g. Tulowitzki & Gerick, 2018). The focus of this symposium is on dealing with such questions from the perspective of different educational stakeholders.
All contributions within this symposium present insights in current research with a national focus combined with implications for the European perspective. The link between all four papers is the question about the role of ICT in the context of school improvement and professional learning of school agents in times of change and an uncertain future.
The first contribution focuses on the perspective of school leaders in Germany on changes and challenges in the context of ICT for the organization of schools resulting from the digitization. The findings show that there is an increased need for professional development and professional learning on the part of school principals and schools as organizations, in order to not only cope with, but strive in a context that has been marked by digitization.
The second contribution deals with the value of a national learning platform for professional learning processes in the context of a school structure reform from the perspective of teachers in Austria. In particular, the paper discusses the role of virtual platform as supportive tool for teacher training.
The third contribution examines, against the background of processes of change, the well-being of school leaders in Germany and focuses on an ICT-supported intervention for professional development and professional learning with the aim of an evidence-based promotion of mental health of school leaders.
The fourth contribution looks at the importance of ICT as a tool for student feedback from a teacher perspective in the Netherlands. The use of ICT enables an efficient collection and processing of student perceptions of teaching quality with the aim of supporting professional learning and improvement of teachers.
The discussant debates the contributions against the background of a wider European perspective and lays out implications for school improvement and professional learning with ICT against the background of an uncertain future.
The theoretical framework of all contributions is rooted in models of school improvement, educational leadership and/or professional learning (e.g. Dalin, 1998; Fullan, 2008; Harris et al., 2013, Timperley, 2011), coupled with the notion of ICT as an innovation that can have sustaining as well as disruptive properties (Fagerberg, Mowery & Nelson, 2006; Rogers, 2003). We presume an impact of ICT on working practices of school leaders and teachers that has effects on the immediate context (school) as well as extended context (collaborating and supervising institutions). We furthermore assume a reciprocal relationship of influence between all actors involved and that professional learning plays a key role in this context.
Dalin, P. (1998). School Development - Theories and Strategies. London: Cassel. Fagerberg, J., Mowery, D. C., & Nelson, R. R. (Eds.). (2006). The Oxford Handbook of Innovation. New York: Oxford University Press. Fullan, M. (2008). From School Effectiveness to School Improvement - An Inevitable Conceptual Evolution. Journal Für Schulentwicklung (2), 64. Harris, A., Day, C., Hopkins, D., Hadfield, M., Hargreaves, A., & Chapman, C. (2013). Effective Leadership for School Improvement. Routledge. Rogers, E. M. (2003). Diffusion of Innovations (5th ed.). New York: Free Press. Timperley, H.S. (2011) Realizing the Power of Professional Learning. Maidenhead: Open University Press. Tulowitzki, P. & Gerick, J. (2018). Digitales Schulmanagement – Schulleitung und Schulentwicklung in einer digitalen Welt. In E. Zala-Mezö, J. Häbig & N. Strauss (Hrsg.), Dimensionen von Schulentwicklung. Verständnis, Veränderung und Vielfalt eines Phänomens (p. 205-224). Münster: Waxmann. Voogt, J., Knezek, G., Christensen, R. & Lai, K.-W. (Hrsg.). (2018). Second Handbook of Information Technology in Primary and Secondary Education (Springer International Handbooks of Education). Cham: Springer Nature; Springer.
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