Sunday, 6 October 2013

even more bibliography entries

Emerson, J. (2013). The Effect on using iPad to Enhance Sight Word Acquisition of Students with Autism. Rowan University. Retrieved from

This study looks at the sight word acquisition and what effect the use of an iPad has on this. There is information relating to the instruction for phonics, information about phonics instruction for individuals, computer-assisted instruction for phonics and then looks at iPads as an instructional tool.
The case study is based on the use of iPads used for sight word acquisition and looks at four autistic children with different individual needs. Testing is completed before and after to determine whether the iPad effects the learning.

This study is the most closely aligned with my own research topic. The results from the case study show an increase result from the before and after testing which had been completed.
The information within the study shows the differences in instruction between teaching phonics to children with and without ASD and then also with the use of computers. This makes the connections clear to see and understand.

Wendt, O. (2012) The Places We'll Go: Innovative Web App Helps Children with Autism. Case in Point, Vol 10 (5) pg 24-25 retrieved from

This article looks at the use of web applications and how it boosts communication ability for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. It looks at Augmentative and Alternative communication (ADD) interventions and the use of Speech Generating Devices (SGD) and the benefit on children that have delayed learning. There is also information relating to the creation of applications; Applications are not all created equal and some of them ignore some of the common traits that children with Autism have.

I really enjoyed reading this article. It went into the information deep enough to allow the reader to develop a clear understanding of what it is trying to tell you but not so far that you are overwhelmed with information. It was straight to the point and had many key points that fit with my own research topic. The point about the applications not all being equal was a valid point that I have not come across in other articles.

Butterfly Effect Editorial Staff, 2011. iPads: Communicating Across the Autism Chasm. retrieved from

This artice looks at applications designed for people living with Autism. It outlines the positive effect that the use of technology and devices have; They:
  • Reply primarily on visual cues, which are much more effective than auditory cues for individuals with Autism
  • Provide as much time as needed for those with processing delays
  • Don't object to endless repetition, as they are nonjudgmental, infinitely patient, and don't hold grudges
  • Provide the specific types of stimulation that attract rather than overwhelm individuals with Autism
  • Offer large measures of predictability and consistency, compared to the unpredictable nature of human responses
  • Do not send conflicting social interaction cues that are a staple of typical human communication
  • Place the user in control
The article also provides information about what some function specific programs allow the user to do and that the use of applications has been shown to support or improve:

  • Cognitive development
  • Language skill mastery
  • Academic performance
  • Behavioral changes
  • Abilities to cope with transition and change
  • Social interaction
  • Choice-making skills
  • Facial recognition and the reading of human expression

The use of applications are endless, this article only highlights a few of them but the information that it does provide gives parents, teachers and specialists a huge pool of information to look through and consider when planning for the individual needs of the autistic child. The information here is very informative to anyone looking at application use.

Short, J., Labine, S., Bruner, J., Cardoso, C. & Trick C. (n.d.) Benefits of Technology in Special Education retrieved from,d.dGI


This study looks at the use of technology within education for students with disabilities. Researchers looked at the effects that technology has on education and concluded that certain aspects of technology does improve the educational achievement of students that have disabilities.  Following this a case study was completed with the focus on students using PCs or iPads to to determine whether it enhanced the learning experience. The study showed that yes the research supported the data from the case study.

Seeing the connection between the huge amount of research that was completed and the results from the case study was very informative. Their are clear links between the research and the results which would determine that the authors had a successful case study. The mix of using computers, flash cards and iDevices within the case study shows an interesting mix between the three different learning tools.

Autism. (2013, October 5). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 02:13, October 7, 2013, from

The information that wikipedia has on Autism is amazing. It includes information about:

  • What it is
  • What the characteristics are with in-depth information on these
  • Causes of Autism
  • Mechanisms
  • Diagnosis
  • Screening
  • Management
  • Prognosis
  • Epidemiology
  • History
It also has external links for other resources that have more information about autism.

This is a good place for anyone that is interested about autism to start. It gives the reader the benefit of a huge amount of information in the one place to gain a good understanding about the disorder as well as what someone who has it encounters on a regular basis. Very useful information.

4th Learning Reflection

Wow, course nearly done and dusted. It is amazing how fast time flies when you are busy; sometimes you have to stop and take a breather to make sure your not missing anything!

The course has been full on! But I have thoroughly enjoyed it. When I decided to start my postgraduate papers I went and had a look at all the options. There was really no decision in what I chose to focus on; ICT is an ever-changing invention that seems to just keep getting bigger and bigger. The way the learning has been scaffolded has made this full on course manageable and given a good sequence of activities which has allowed me to stay on top of everything.

My ICT knowledge coming into the course was minimal. I knew the basics for using digital technologies and although wanting to learn more I never really made the time to do so. Because of this the first thing I learnt was how to be a blogger! When I was on placements I was always worried that I would be asked to update the blog or put something on the blog, this won't happen now -well I won't have anymore placements now that I have my degree; but also because I know how to blog. I have learnt how to create links, add pictures and videos to my blog as well as create labels so that everyone else in the course can see the new knowledge that like them I am gaining.

After this the new knowledge kept on coming. I felt like I was struggling with my understanding but when sitting down to complete an e-activity or reflection I realised how much I was actually learning and my understanding was increasing with each activity.

What I enjoyed the most would have to be the SP4Ed learning in the mOOC. I felt drawn in from day one of the learning. The final activity where I was looking at the future scenarios I was also looking at the past, at what has already happened and at what is happening now. The theory relates to practice and has done for a long time, From when Shell used scenario planning to now and well into the future. It is an effective tool for looking at what could happen in years to come.

 I have just finished writing my research paper, ready to proof read and spell check before submitting in the morning. I always wondered what motivated people to write articles and research papers; My father writes a lot of them and it didn't really make much sense to me but I guess in a way it is people teaching others what they know.

I am still questioning my understanding of eLPF, I understood the eMM really well and could make links to it however I feel I need to look into eLPF a bit more, gain some new knowledge about it and increase my understanding. Is this feeling because I haven't been teaching in a school other than placements but I have been a full time university student for over 4 years? Definitely something that I will look into as I start working next year (thinking positively that I get a job).

A big thank you to everyone in the course, having feedback from all of you and the ability to ready your posts and reflections has been a great informative part of the course; and of course to Wayne and Niki for running a very effective and well scaffolded course.

For the last reflection I leave you with this quote:

The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled.  
                                                     - Plutarch

more bibliography entries

Tunney, R., & Ryan, M. (2012). Can iDevices help teaching assistants support pupils with ASD? Journal of Assistive Technologies, 6(3), 182-191. retrieved from

This research shows how idevices can be used to assist Teacher Aides when working with ASD children. It looks at how the devices can support the current learning style or be used instead of the normal learning style.
When completing the case study the TAs met on a regular basis and gave feedback.
Six dominant themes came up which are directly related to TAs, these were 

1. Supporting the curriculum
2. Managing pupil anxieties and behaviour
3. Increasing pupils' engagement 
4. Rewarding positive behaviours 
5. Developing communication and social skills 
6. Challenges in introducing iDevices

The use of idevices by the TAs within these themes is detailed and includes pros and cons.
The research has highlights practical and and implementation considerations that need to be looked at.

This research has a lot of valuable information hidden within it. The research is based on Teacher Aides using the idevices but the common themes across the TAs that were part of the study are also ones in which the classroom teacher will have. There are some good links to my research topic and implementation considerations would tie in with choosing the appropriate change model.

Bölte, S., Golan, O., Goodwin, M.., Zwaigenbaum, L. (2010) What can innovative technologies do for autism spectrum disorders?Autism, Vol 14(3), May 2010, 155-159. doi: 10.1177/1362361310365028

This article looks at the use of technology for Autistic children. It looks at how technology is used to help with treatment strategies and enhance the lives of those living with ASD. The article is part of a special issue which focuses on autism and technology. It summarises findings from presentations that were at the International Meeting for Autism Research (IMFAR).

The findings that are looked at in this article are:

  • Transfer of emotion recognition skills acquired through computer-based training into daily life. 
  • Whether adolescents with higher functioning ASD (n= 10) experience virtual realities in different ways to typically developing peers (TD; n= 14), and if virtual realities can accurately simulate ecologically-valid social situations.
  • Efficacy of computer-assisted instruction for students with ASD 
  • Usage of toy construction via tangible user interfaces to support social interaction. 
  • Findings obtained with a new diagnostic tool for the acoustic analysis of prosody in ASD that measures focal stress and vocalimitation.
This article has some very interesting information in relation to the use of technology for ASD children. Some of the different aspects are irrelevant to my question relating to learning applications however the one which focuses on computer-assisted instruction will be useful when completing my research article.

Kay, S. (2012). CAN TOUCH SCREEN TABLETS HELP CHILDREN WITH AUTISM?. Exceptional Parent, 42(11), 38.  retrieved from

This article looks at the use of touch screen devices and whether they are beneficial for use with children that have autism spectrum disorder. It highlights some key problems which the children could face if they haven't developed the motor skills required to use a touch screen, addresses the aggression found in some children with ASD and puts emphasis on establishing that the use of a tablet would be beneficial to their child.

 The article is quite small and a lot of it is based on the authors opinion as stated in the abstract. The author offers some valid points for consideration when implementing the use of learning applications and devices and briefly touches on the requirements that would need to be looked at if the change is going to take place. Overall the article has helped me to open my eyes and look at a few other avenues within my research before completing my own research paper.

Bascand, G. (2012). Household Use of Information and Communication Technology, Statistics New Zealand. Retrieved from

The statistics shown are based on the use of information and communication technology. It has statistics relating to households and their internet usage,connections and the devices which are being used to connect to the internet. It also shows some statistics on how individuals are using the internet.

The statistics for the year 2012 show the increase in technology usage within New Zealand. The devices used to connect to and use the internet has changed from mostly computers to laptops and handheld computers being the most popular way to access the internet. This links to my research question on a small scale. The information about the use of devices and laptops being popular links to the devices required for the use of learning applications. Overall very interesting statistics when you look at the comparison to the usage in 2009.

Shah, N. (2011). Special Ed. Pupils Find Learning Tool In iPad Applications. (cover story). Education Week, 30(22), 1-17. retrieved from

This article looks at how learning applications can be used within the classroom with iPads as a learning tool for children with Autism as well as other disabilities. The article looks at some specific children with disabilities and how the use of learning applications on iPads has improved their learning. It also looks at how the device impacts other aspects within the children's lives.

  • Performance
  • Communication Skills
  • Self Esteem
This article has a lot of good information and has clear connections between the students and the usage of learning applications.There are comments by teachers in relation to these students and the article shares how the students used to be before the use of devices with learning applications to how they are since the change took place.
The article also links these achievements to specific applications that the children have been using within the classroom.


Sunday, 8 September 2013

3rd Learning reflection

Well, Another week down and I am feeling a lot more confident as time goes by.

This week I learnt about e-Learning Maturity Model (eMM) and e-Learning Planning Framework (eLPF). I only had to choose the one which was best suited to my context (eLPF) however I started doing the readings for eMM by mistake and found it extremely interesting so I completed an intuitive assessment based on a distance course which I completed a few years ago. It was quite amazing looking at the course based on the assessment scale,it highlighted many things in which I had not considered when I was taking the course and although the assessment was completed on my own knowledge it was still very intriguing to look into. I know the course has been restructured since I completed it so I question as to where it would now sit on the eMM if I was to look at the new structured course and then complete another intuitive assessment.

After I had completed this I did the e-activities related to eLPF, as this framework is more suited to my context. Again when looking at the readings I found myself thinking through how things were within the school I did the assessment on. I decided it would be quite interesting to go and spend a day at Lowmoor School to see first hand how they are using technologies within the teaching and learning. I think as some technologies are a new thing and is still being implemented within the education sector there will be many schools out there that are going to be sitting around the engaging stage. The implementation of these technologies are not going to happen overnight as as I have also learnt by looking at CBAM and LAT that the implementation of new technologies needs to follow model and it can take many years to implement even one small change. As schools are utilising technologies more and more they will continue to move along the framework to the 'Empowering' stage.

When doing these readings and activities I thought about the planning framework in not only the school I did the assessment on but also another couple of schools in which I have spent a bit of time in. I never really thought about the differences in the way technologies are used within the different schools so my eyes are definitely a bit more open then they were.

At the start of this course I felt like a fish out of water, I was floundering and uncertain on which direction to take and whether I was doing things right. I am extremely thankful that the lecturers for the course have been fantastic so far and given some extremely useful constructive criticism where needed to give guidance to the essay which will soon be due.

Saturday, 7 September 2013

eLPF school evaluation

I am completing an evaluation of a school using the e-learning planning framework. (eLPF)
For this evaluation I will be looking at a state contributing primary school based in one of the major cities of New Zealand.
My overall judgement is that the school is currently sitting at the "engaging" stage of the eLPF framework.

Leadership and strategic direction:

I have placed this school in the engage stage. The school vision talks about how ICT is used to support the school curriculum. Senior management and staff within the school mentor others on the use of technologies to enhance the teaching and learning. cybersafety is briefly touched on and the needs of the children sometimes informs the strategic plan.

Professional learning:

Teachers within the school are very good at trialing and reflecting on ICT in action, they are heading towards the impact of e-Learning on identified learning needs. There is a supportive culture throughout the whole school in relation to e-Learning. The e-Learning throughout the school is getting better as teachers are continuing their professional development by attending additional courses for implementing ICT more effectively within the classroom, there is support to allow the teachers to ask questions and personalise the use of ICT for learning purposes.

Beyond the classroom:

Technologies are being used to engage with the community however this is minimal. There is a school facebook page and class blogs that are used to engage with the community but these are often not updated and irregularly checked for comments.

Technologies and Infrastructure:

The school has a lot of access to reliable ICT resources, each class a a mixture of resources and classrooms are able to use the equipment from other rooms if required. There is an extremely well managed system in place to improve organisational efficiency. The school network environment is currently being developed so that the it suits the needs of the school and the community.
Teaching and Learning:

 The use of ICT is used across most curriculum areas within the classroom. E-Learning resources are appropriate for the required needs of the learning. There is a growing awareness about digital citizenship amongst students. Technologies are being trialed for their uses in relation to diverse students and if effective are being utilised to help with the learning. The school uses technologies as tools of reflection. Students are freely able to use the technology to share and reflect on their learning.


Ministry of Education (n.d.) The e-Learning planning framework retrieved from


This evaluation was conducted as a personal learning exercise to gain understanding of the eLPF and my evaluation of the school was restricted to public documentation and personal knowledge without detailed insights into all organisational processes.

Friday, 6 September 2013

eMM Intuitive Assessment

I am conducting an intuitive assessment of the processes L1, L2 and L3 based on my knowledge of the course restricted to the delivery dimension. I have selected an undergraduate course where there is a choice to study on campus or by distance, I will be using the distance option for my assessment. This course is delivered by a university within New Zealand.

I will be using the eMM capability assessment scale of: Not Adequate (NA); Partially Adequate (PA); Largely Adequate (LA); or Fully Adequate (FA)

L1. Learning objectives are apparent in the design and implementation of courses.

PA - Formally stated learning objectives provided to a limited extent,either as narrative descriptions of the course outcomes or only in documentation provided after enrolment.
LA - Most, but not all, assessments and learning activities contain explicit linkages to course learning objectives or restate learning objectives using different wording.

PA - Learning objectives linked implicitly, incompletely or inconsistently during design and development to wider programme or institutional objectives.
LA - Learning objectives address student outcomes other than recall in most but not all courses.
PA - Learning objectives linked implicitly, incompletely or inconsistently during course workload and assessment design and development.

L2. Students are provided with mechanisms for interaction with teaching staff and other students. 

PA - Interaction between staff and students provided only through a limited or informal mechanism or only through face to face contact.
FA - Course documentation contains clear and consistently presented lists of teaching staff email addresses repeated in suitable places.
LA - Technical support is provided to students to assist them in making effective use of the available communication channels, but support is not actively promoted or provided to all students.

L3. Student skill development for e-learning is provided.

LA - The relationships between course components and activities are conveyed to students explicitly, but only for some components or courses, or in an unnecessarily different way between courses.
LA - Formal opportunities for students to practice with e-learning technologies and pedagogies provided after commencement of courses, or only cover some technologies and pedagogies or some courses.
PA - E-learning skills support and training is provided informally and depends on the teaching staff skills and availability.
PA - Course activities provide limited, inconsistent or informal feedback opportunities beyond the marks assigned for assessed work.

Value Judgement:

This assessment is based on my memory of a course. This course was completed a few years ago and I know that the course has been altered but I have not looked into the new details. This assessment is based on what I remember from when I completed the course and therefore should not be taken as a reliable analysis.

This eMM intuitive assessment is based on limited knowledge and personal experience of the course from only my perspective. It was completed as a course activity for EDEM630 and is not a valid assessment.

Resource used:
Marshall, S. (2007). E-Learning Maturity Model: Process descriptions [draft report]. Retrieved from

Tuesday, 27 August 2013

2 more bibliography resources

Sherry, L., & Gibson, D. (2002). The path to teacher leadership in educational technology. Contemporary Issues in Technology and Teacher Education

This looks at Learning/Adoption Trajectory (LAT).  It has a series of four stages which are used to learn to use instructional technology (IT).

a)      Teacher as the learner. This is the information gathering stage where the teachers learn the knowledge and skills necessary for performing instructional tasks using technology.

b)      Teacher as the adopter. This is the stage where the teacher progresses through personal and task management concern whilst experimenting with the technology within the classroom.

c)       Teacher as co-learner. This is where the teacher focuses on developing a clear relationship between technology and the curriculum.

d)      Teacher as reaffirmer or rejecter. This is when the teacher develops a greater awareness of outcomes and begins to create new ways to observe and assess impact of the technology.

Once the four stages have been used the teacher will then move onto the stage: Teacher as leader. This is where the teacher is experienced and expands their role to become an active researcher, also to share improvements and teach new members.

This looks like a useful model however I don’t think it will fit with my research topic very well. It is based more on the teacher using the technology within a whole class environment rather then for specific students within the classroom.

Ronnie H. Shroff, R.H., Deneen, C.C. and Ng, E.M.W. (2011). Analysis of the technology acceptance model in examining students’ behavioural intention to use an e-portfolio system, Australasian Journal of Educational Technology. 2011, 27(4), 600-618.

This looks at the Technology acceptance model (TAM) and how it is used for the adoption of e-portfolio use, It looks at the perceived usefulness and ease of use followed by the attitude towards use and the behavioural intention towards usage.

I think this model would be a useful one when looking at the use of learning games for ASD children, The ease of use and the usefulness are important aspects to have when introducing a new technology. This model would help to look at the attitudes and behaviours from introducing the new technology.

Thursday, 15 August 2013

Reflection 2

Well, time has gone so quickly!

Its funny how we take things for granted. Yesterday I discovered I was unable to access learn, uni databases, student web and all other online areas that required a password to get into. This got very quickly sorted with a password reset and I was able to continue working on my assignments again. However today when I tried to log in I encountered the same unable to log in problems. Ringing the IT help desk gave me no answers and a really long wait for the problem to be solved (4.5hrs)
I rang them in the end and discovered that my account had been terminated however they could not tell me why as they didn't know.

Anyway now that I can get back into everything again I can continue to work on assignment 1.1 since I have just completed assignment 1.2 and am getting ready to upload it. I am feeling quite good right now :) With scenario planning fresh in my mind the decision to complete that first was a pretty easy one to make.

It was quite interesting being a part of a mOOC, something I had never done before. I did find it extremely hard to keep within the time frames for some of the tasks and on occasion spent well over the 1-2 hours a day reading and researching information. (highly addictive)

Sunday, 11 August 2013

Schools: Destroying our environment!

Gone are the days where schools are attended by all children, where there is government funding for schools and where children get multiple interactions with the teacher and their peers.

Today we have none of that, with the government constantly losing money, the decision to stop funding in the education sector was made. Majority of schools could not survive without the funding and the now empty buildings that used to be filled with children's chatter and laughter are only being  used by poorer families that are trying to give their children some type of education by using old textbooks and anything else they can find that was left behind in the classrooms.

However some schools did survive, they turned into privitised schools with enormous tuition fees, large sized classrooms and huge amounts of technology. The children that are wealthy enough to go to these schools have the newest technology and learning tools as soon as they are released. There are no concerns about the amount of children within each class as all the children work at their own speed as determined by the new computer technology. This technology keeps track of how well the student is learning and plans their learning for the following day based on the days achievements.Technology is now used for everything within the school day and the children are beginning to rely on the technology for all aspects within their lives. Due to the increase in technology the way the children are taught has changed significantly. You will not find a pen and paper within the class, children don't have textbooks and the library is now online with all books available to be read online by multiple people at one time.

In order to maintain the cost of the new privitised schooling the schools have had to constantly upgrade their technology used within the classrooms. Parents want to see their children learning to their full potential and with the price they are paying for their children to be able to learn old technology just won't do. The schools employed techno-teachers to find the best technology from around the world and obtain it for use within the school. When the new technology arrives the old gets disposed of as soon as the new is installed.

With the rate of technological advance the stream of new technologies entering the different privitised schools is extremely high, due to this the rate of technological equipment being disposed of is skyrocketing, the demand for old technology is low as everyone wants the next best thing, so it just starts to pile up. Recyclers of the technological waste centers work hard to keep the levels of waste at a minimum but it quickly becomes hard to do and the waste starts to pile up and affect the environment that we live in.

Schools are being warned that if they continue their technological ways then not only are they making our children reliant on technology but that they will also continue to destroy the environment around them.

By Jennifer Bourne