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ERIC Number: ED519194
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 314
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1242-2421-3
Exploring Student Practices, Teacher Perspectives, and Complex Learning with Web 2.0 Technologies: A Socio-Constructivist Approach
Fahser-Herro, Danielle C.
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, The University of Wisconsin - Madison
The increasing gap between students at-home and in-school use of the Internet has been widely documented by researchers across many disciplines. After reviewing literature suggesting (1) students' online practices outside of school are significantly social, meaningful, and markedly different than opportunities afforded in school, and (2) research determining teacher attitudes and perspectives towards technology matter, I posed research questions aimed at investigating student practices and teacher perspectives when given opportunities to learn with Web 2.0 technologies. This study describes a multi-case study in two contextually similar eighth grade classrooms in the Midwest employing an integrated technology curriculum, modeled after the theory of Lev Vygotsky, designed to encourage socio-constructivist practices. Findings suggest student practices were intensely social in online and face to face mediums. The social context of the course in an environment of scaffolded instruction with Most Knowledgeable Others in student's Zone of Proximal Development (ZPD) played a substantial role in building cognitive development. The combination of the tools, research-design cycle, and socio-constructivist framework proved successful in terms of high-level learning, satisfaction, and feelings of value by teachers and students. Within the nine week course, students understood how to use blogs, wikis, podcasts, and social bookmarks, and suggested they would use the tools in their academic future. Teachers viewed Web 2.0 tools and student practices with the tools valuable enough to consider changing their practice to extend incorporating the tools and method of implementation to colleagues and other courses. They regarded the content and model of instruction as important, but believed the Web 2.0 tools held the potential to enhance teaching and learning opportunities. They felt flexibility in adapting emergent technologies vs. teaching standardized technology tools, and using a model of "teachers-as-facilitators," are instrumental in providing a basis for high-level learning. This study concludes that educators augmenting instruction to simulate social media practices used by adolescents, within the context of a research-design cycle, may facilitate high-level learning. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Grade 8
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A