ERIC Number: ED449118
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2000-Oct
Reference Count: N/A
Evaluating Technology-Based Curriculum Materials. ERIC Digest.
Reed, Diane S.; McNergney, Robert F.
Technology alone will not improve educational quality, but when integrated with curriculum and instruction, it is a powerful tool. This digest reviews how educators can evaluate technology-based curriculum materials for use in classrooms. Authenticity is key to evaluating technology-based curriculum materials. To promote authenticity, learning assessment tools should pull students in desirable directions. Constructivist language permeates the technology literature. Technology can help teachers and students become co-learners who collaboratively construct knowledge. In evaluating curriculum materials, curriculum evaluators should prepare their own assessment criteria tailored to the planned instructional context. An important distinction in evaluating digital content is whether a product emphasizes open-ended exploration or drill-and-practice. When integrated effectively into the curriculum, digital content lets students seek and manipulate digital information in collaborative, creative, and engaging ways. Evaluators must consider the hardware and software requirements of the curriculum, whether teachers have ready access to them, and how much training teachers need. The primary goal of technology assessment is measuring student engagement as demonstrated by observable performances. Students are most likely to perform in desirable ways when engaged in realistic, worthwhile tasks. No curriculum can be effective without high quality, ongoing professional development. (Contains 15 references.) (SM)
Descriptors: Constructivism (Learning), Content Analysis, Curriculum Evaluation, Educational Technology, Elementary Secondary Education, Evaluation Methods, Performance Based Assessment, Student Evaluation
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Publication Type: ERIC Publications; ERIC Digests in Full Text
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: ERIC Clearinghouse on Teaching and Teacher Education, Washington, DC.