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Collins, A., & Halverson, R. (2010). The second educational revolution: rethinking education in the age of technology. Journal Of Computer Assisted Learning, 26(1), 18-27. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2729.2009.00339.x

The article “The second educational revolution: rethinking education in the age of technology” is drawn from the book Rethinking Education in the Age of Technology. Authors Collins and Halverson summarize various challenges and prospects that emanate from the appropriation of digital technology into educational practice and general learning. In the study conducted by the Collins and Halverson, they found that tensions existed between conventional models of schooling and the affordances of digital media. The tension arose due to the promise of technologies to formulate a novel system of education. Thus, the findings of the study conducted by the authors pointed to the fact that new technology brings about significant change, but also critical challenges. With this finding in mind, Collins and Halverson exhort their audience to seek a coherent model for the future of education, that is, conventional models of schooling that are consistent with technology in the current technological age.

This article is vital to my research as it expounds on the underlying issues of traditional teaching methods amid a profoundly technological era. In as much as technology has made learning science easier given the ability of students and teachers to demonstrate various laws practically with the help of technological gadgets, challenges threaten to limit the ability of technology to be fully incorporated into learning science.

Such challenges including scarcity of skilled manpower in the form of educators who can teach the students science using technology and the dilution of seriousness that traditional models of schooling commanded will be used in my research. It is for this reason that schools are still skeptical of a fully technological model of schooling with limits being placed to ensure that students still learn science in the traditional way despite it being a technological age.

Holzer, H., & Baum, S. (2017). Making college work. Brookings Institution Press.

According to Holzer and Baum, too many students in the United States who are disadvantaged do not finish their coursework in various institutions of higher learning with any college credential. Another group of disadvantaged college students in the United States earn certificates or degrees that have meager labor market value. The studies conducted by Holzer and Baum as laid out in the book reveal that large numbers of disadvantaged students in the United States struggle to pay for college and university with some incurring huge debts that they find difficult to repay afterwards. The authors attribute these problems of college education and its rewards on the students themselves, that is, financial pressures and academic preparation. Moreover, the problems of college educations is also attributed to the low-income families that the disadvantaged students come from that make them attend institutions of higher learning that are disproportionately underfunded and register weak performance incentives. A student that learns under such conditions ends up getting unsatisfactory outcomes.

The reason for choosing the work of Holzer and Baum for my research is that the book provides viable solutions to making college education work that render the help provided by technology even more relevant in college context. Examples of these solutions include better academic supports or financial aid and targeting individual students. The authors go on to provide other solutions such as more structured paths through the curriculum that are aimed at institutional reforms and stronger linkages between the coursework in schools and the labor market.

Given that students coming from disadvantaged backgrounds face a lot of hurdles in college, I will use this book to show how technology makes their learning easier while offering a clear and concise means of assessment. Such students want to make sure that the immense effort they put in getting college education yields tangible results. Technology offers them a fair assessment of their progress and prospects.

Luckin, R., Clark, W., Garnett, F., Whitworth, A., Akass, J., & Cook, J. et al. (2011). Learner-Generated Contexts: A Framework to Support the Effective Use of Technology for Learning.

Luckin et al. state in the book Learner-Generated Contexts: A Framework to Support the Effective Use of Technology for Learning  that the swift development of technologies has made it possible for people all over the world to access resources and data in their environment, share information in discordant multimedia formats, as well as, post and track their lives without the limits of space and time.  Based on this understanding, the authors present the idea of Learner-Generated Contexts as a potential platform through which the efficient utilization of technology to espouse learning might be engendered and supported. The authors focus specifically on the theoretical grounding for contemplation of Learner-Generated Contexts as an organizing principle and framework-based model for the purpose of designing learning, as well as, as a means of shedding light on how institutional practices might foster or inhibit their development. Therefore, Luckin et al. offer a model for the learning and teaching processes founded on the Russian concept of “obuchenie,” as well as, a reconsideration of pedagogic design based on an inclusive model known as the “PAH continuum.”

This book is of extreme importance to my research as it does not focus solely on the agenda of technology, but explores issues that deal with the potentials and affordances of a vast array of technologies in learning and teaching.

This book can be used to show how in as much as technology has helped various institutions teach and learn science, there have been problems that relate to user-specific technology. This is to mean that the technology turns out to be irrelevant or incoherent to a specific class of students or education system. It is for this reason that Luckin et al. provide a solution referred to as Learner-Generated Contexts that bridges the gap between different users of the same technology for learning and teaching.

Means, B. (2010). Technology and Education Change. Journal Of Research On Technology In Education, 42(3), 285-307. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/15391523.2010.10782552

In this article, Means explored technology implementation practices that are related to student learning gains. The study conducted by the author involved observations and interviews with staff at discordant schools, that is, schools where teachers utilizing mathematics or reading software with their students achieved below-average gains and schools where software-using teachers registered above-average gains. The findings of the study reiterated the prominence of school practices in the areas of teacher collaboration and principal support around the use of software, as well as, teacher practices with regard to the utilization of software-generated student performance data and classroom management. With this in mind, Means noted that competition for instructional time and instructional coherence presented challenges to teachers when it came to using mathematics or reading software to help students attain better grades in different subjects including science.

This article contributes to my research by exploring the challenges that teachers and schools face in implementing software in their curriculum. Means compares schools where the use of mathematics or reading software results in above-average student gains and schools where the outcome of software implementation is below-average student gains.

This comparison is vital as it enables the reader to have a clear perspective of what works and what does not work when it comes to using technology to foster learning of science. Means reiterates the point put forward by Luckin et al. that the problem is not the implementation of technology in schools for learning and teaching, but the relevance or coherence of that technology to the students, teachers and schools settings. This is why teachers are competing for instructional time; a problem that can be solved through better management of the classrooms and software-generated student performance data.

Mitchell, M., & Jolley, J. (2013). Research design explained. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.

This book by Mitchell and Jolley focuses on two goals. The first goal is to help students assess the external, internal and construct validity of studies. The second goal is help students write a formidable research proposal. To achieve these goals the authors utilize different methods. For instance, Mitchell and Jolley utilize many vivid examples, particularly for concepts with which students face trouble such as statistical