Virtual School Meanderings

March 5, 2015

SITE 2015 – Research Panel on Professional Development and Teacher Preparation for K-12 Online and Blended Settings

The twenty-second session, and the final one for day three of blogging, at the 2015 annual conference of the Society for Information Technology and Teacher Education related to K-12 online learning that I am blogging is:

Research Panel on Professional Development and Teacher Preparation for K-12 Online and Blended Settings

  1. Scott Petri, Los Angeles Unified School District, United States
  2. Keryn Pratt, University of Otago, New Zealand
  3. Susan Poyo, Franciscan University of Steubenville, United States
  4. Kathy McVey, Franciscan University of Steubenville, United States
  5. Mary Lucille Smith, Franciscan University of Steubenville, United States

Thursday, March 5 4:15-5:15 PM in Amazon H View on map

<Presentation: Paper #44226>
Amazon H Thursday, Mar 05 2015 04:15PM-05:15PM

This panel will bring together leading experts to explore the research related to teaching roles in K-12 online and blended classrooms. Scott Petri will discuss how MOOCs can be used as a mechanism for providing professional development for teachers in online and blended settings. Keryn Pratt will report on a how teachers are being preparing in New Zealand to support students at a distance and will highlight areas for improvement. Susan Poyo, Mary K. McVey, Mary Lucille Smith, and Tiffany Boury will discuss a new direction one teacher preparation program is taking to support teacher candidates in the development of pedagogy knowledge, content knowledge, and technology necessary for successful online instruction. Finally, Margie Johnson will discuss a qualitative descriptive case study used to explore the factors influencing the use of My HUB, an asynchronous professional development portal, and to identify the features district teachers perceived as useful for improving their teaching.

Scott was the first panelist and was talking about massive open online courses (MOOCs) and the innovative teacher.  Scott conducted a study that used an adapted Entrepreneurial Orientation instrument with approximately 700 teachers.  This was Scott’s dissertation, and he didn’t really describe what he found or what he did – but I did a quick Google search and you can read it for yourself at  Scott then transitioned to discussing the MOOCs that he has been working with.  You can see the genesis of his presentation at

The second group of panelists were Susan, Mary and Mary from Steubenville.  Their session focused on the following research question: “What knowledge, skills, and dispositions do pre-service teachers need to effectively instruct in virtual settings?”  The university is in close proximity to two cyber charter schools – one in PA and one in OH – that they have worked quite closely with on a Master’s in Education program and that relationship was expanded to include a virtual school field experience that was between six and seven weeks in length.  The rest of the session included a bunch of quotes through the lens of Falloon’s framework – both positive and negative – from the student teachers about their experiences with the virtual school field experience around topics such as communication of information, student engagement, etc..  Their second partnership, which focused a little closer to the above mentioned research question, was focused on three student teachers that were working with Buckeye Online School for Success (BOSS).  From this partnership, they found that there was a need for the field experience to prepare student teachers to troubleshoot technology, monitor engagement, assess student learning, among others.

The final panelist in this session was Keryn, who was presenting about teacher education and blended learning in New Zealand. Keryn began with some background on the Kiwi context, and then the background to the Virtual Learning Network and the various e-learning clusters.  Her actual study focused on 22 of the providers of teacher education, three of whom responded and only one of them answered all of the questions (Keryn’s own institution).  In this response, there was some awareness of online learning in primary and secondary schools, they believed that it could be effective, they felt that awareness and experience in online learning could be somewhat important, but they had no organized mechanisms to provide any awareness or experience.  To provide some more substance to her presentation, Keryn surveyed the websites of the various secondary teacher preparation programs.  She found that none of them mentioned any kind of online or blended field experience.  Some mentioned blended learning or digital learning or e-learning in their materials, but it was often more in a buzzword kind of marketing way.  There were a couple of institutions that delivered portions of their program online, which at least allowed students to gain experience in online learning from the learner perspective.

1 Comment »

  1. Reblogged this on Petridishing and commented:
    Thanks for summarizing my presentation, Michael.

    Comment by scottmpetri — March 8, 2015 @ 9:07 am | Reply

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