Create an interactive learning experience for every classroom or office!

Posts tagged ‘research’

Interactive Whiteboards and Student Achievement- Positive Results

Today I’d like to share a study I found that explores the effects of teachers’ use of interactive whiteboards on students’ reading/language arts and mathematics performance.  The complete results are pretty lengthy so I’m only posting a few of the sections… the entire study can be found here.  It’s pretty interesting!  Take a look!

Interactive Whiteboards and Student Achievement

Karen Swan-University of Illinois at Springfield

Abstract:

This study explored the effects of teachers’ use of interactive whiteboards on students’ reading/language arts and mathematics performance. Reading/language arts and mathematics achievement test scores of all students in the third through eighth grades in a small urban school district in northern Ohio were compared between students whose teachers used interactive whiteboards for instruction and those whose teachers did not. A statistically significant but not meaningful positive main effect of whiteboard use on mathematics achievement was found. A statistically significant main effect on reading achievement was not found, although the reading/language arts scores of students whose teachers used whiteboards were slightly higher than those of students whose teachers did not use them. In addition, statistically significant and meaningful interactions between whiteboard use and grade levels were found, leading to a more careful look at differences in the ways teachers employed whiteboards in their instruction. A within-group comparison of such usage between teachers whose students scored above the mean on standardized tests and those whose students scored at or below the mean revealed that teachers of high-scoring students used interactive whiteboards more frequently and in more creative and constructivist ways than did teachers whose students performed at or below the mean. The results suggest that the use of interactive whiteboards can enhance student learning of mathematics and reading/language arts when teachers use them in a manner that takes advantage of their unique capabilities.

Introduction:

Interactive whiteboards are a relatively new instructional technology that is being used in many schools as a replacement for the traditional chalk and blackboard. Many educators see these electronic boards as a versatile digital tool that can help them in increasing student achievement levels. The research reported on in this chapter takes a look at a small city school district in Ohio (United States) that has invested heavily in interactive whiteboards in the hope that their integration in its classrooms will improve student scores on the mandatory state achievement tests. More specifically, the objective of this study was to explore the effects of teachers’ use of interactive whiteboards on student performance in mathematics and reading/language arts.

Discussion:  

The results of this exploratory study show a small statistical difference in achievement between students whose teachers used interactive whiteboards for reading/language arts and mathematics instruction and students whose teachers did not use them. The overall differences were quite small and not really meaningful, and are statistically significant only in mathematics. However, statistically significant and meaningful differences between groups were found at specific grade levels – at the fourth and fifth grade levels in mathematics, and at the fifth and eighth grade levels in reading/language arts. These differences,combined with significant interactions between grade level and whiteboard use, prompted us to explore the possibility that differences in the ways in which teachers used interactive whiteboards made a difference in their effectiveness. The results of these comparisons suggest that they do.When teachers were grouped by their students’ mathematics and reading/language arts performance on the state achievement tests, teachers whose students scored above the district mean on one or both assessments were found to use the whiteboards more frequently (almost every day) than the teachers whose students scored at or below the means on these tests. More importantly, the teachers of high-achieving students used their whiteboards qualitatively differently from teachers in the comparison group.Teachers in the former group used whiteboards in a more student-centered manner and primarily to support the visualization of concepts, while teachers in the latter group used whiteboards in a more teacher-centered manner and primarily for presentation and motivation purposes. Thus it may be that certain kinds of teaching strategies resonate more with the particular affordances of interactive whiteboards to better enhance learning.

Conclusion:

This study explored the effects of teachers’ uses of interactive whiteboards on student performance in reading/language arts and mathematics. Reading/language arts and mathematics achievement test scores of all students in the third through eighth grades in a small urban school district in northern Ohio were compared between students whose teachers used interactive whiteboards for instruction and those whose teachers did not. Statistically significant and meaningful interactions between whiteboard use and grade levels were found, leading to a more careful look at differences in the ways in which whiteboard-using teachers employed them in their instruction. A within-group comparison of such usage between teachers whose students scored above the mean on standardized tests and those whose students scored at or below the mean revealed that the teachers of high-scoring students used interactive whiteboards more frequently and in more creative and constructivist ways than did teachers whose students performed at or below the mean. In sum, the results from our study show that the use of interactive whiteboards can make a difference in academic achievement, but that such a difference seems dependent on how teachers use them. As more and more classrooms, schools, and school districts are acquiring digital technologies like interactive whiteboards, this is perhaps our most important finding. For teachers and schools to make good use of what can be a considerable investment, effective uses of interactive whiteboards should be more thoroughly and robustly explored.