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My Research

The aim of my research is to look at how ICT is used in mathematics classrooms. Several papers and reports have highlighted the fact that many schools are not making the best use of ICT at all levels of education. I will focus on classes in the middle years of the English education system (Y5 to Y9) as there is less constraint from public examinations, with the exception of Y6 SATs.

My objective is to find what might be possible constraints on improved use of ICT in lessons and to investigate what might be done to help increase its use. From initial reading there appears to be two strands, a problem within the physical structure of the department or school (lack of equipment or resources), or is it with teachers (including management at departmental or school level) interest and confidence in the use of ICT. One idea is to look at how ICT training is given to teachers as I might find that there is a difference in the attitude and confidence between teachers in-service and those undergoing ITT training. While I am still working in a secondary school I am looking at how students learn IT skills in their IT lessons and if this has a connection with their preferred learning style. I am currently working on different strands as I not only need to be doing a literature review but also building up resources such as questionnaires and different presentations for introducing software. This may seem to be a bit piece-meal but they will be pulled together so I can draw on my own information as well as published works. I have chosen to use Grid Algebra (published by ATM), GeoGebra and MSW Logo (both freeware) software and the TI-nspire handheld for the presentations as they cover different uses of ICT in the classroom. The choice of the two freeware programs eliminates the cost factor and also allows students to have access on home computers, Grid Algebra is a low cost program to assist in teaching of number and algebra while the TI-nspire is a more expensive option but removes the problem of booking a computer suite or boking laptops.

Work in progress shows the stage I am at with the formal writing.