Examining the Quality of Technology Implementation in STEM Classrooms: Demonstration of an Evaluative Framework
Technology applications aligned with science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) workplace practices can engage students in real-world pursuits but also present dramatic challenges for classroom implementation. We examined the impact of teacher professional development focused on incorporating these workplace technologies in the classroom. Because existing measures primarily use only presence or type of technology as proxies for implementation quality, we developed an expanded framework that incorporated (a) the type of technology used; (b) the degree of alignment to STEM practices; (c) the use of student-centered pedagogical practices; and (d) the degree of relevance to real-world contexts. While our framework successfully described the variation in technology implementation in our study group, we found no statistically significant difference between teachers with and without extensive training on STEM workplace technologies. Our results provide evidence that the framework captures quality of technology use and point to the need for additional research on effective teacher education around technology applications.