I've been asking myself this question "Does using ICT increase student achievement?" for a very long time. When I did my first assignment for this course on Digital Story Telling I came across no conclusive evidence in answering this question. All I could find was anecdotal evidence from teachers' observations in the material that I reviewed. The common themes that I found out was that Digital Story Telling promoted student engagement, increased motivation, enabled students to take ownership and responsibility for their own learning and encouraged collaboration and reflection among students.
Questions lie: How do you measure these aspects.
I believe there are so many variables that need to be taken into consideration. There needs to be a distinction between whether it is the change of teaching practice that is making the difference or whether it is the tools that make the difference.
From my own experience with using ICT's in my programme over the years and integrating E-Learning into my classroom practice these are some of the variables that I've found out:
* The tools are a novelty for students, they may not have used them at school before so it is a whole new experience for them
* It is hands on learning-great for those who are tactile kinesthetic learners
* Due to it's newness attitudes seem to be positive
* It's a move away from traditional teaching approaches
* It's interactive
* Prior knowledge and skills can be utilized
I'm glad this week's study guide has some readings to do with the above question. I look forward to exploring this question further.