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Characteristics of Effective Computer In-Service Programs

Stecher, Brian M.; Solorzano, Ronald W.
Publication Year:
Report Number:
ETS Research Report
Document Type:
Page Count:
Subject/Key Words:
Computer Science Education, Inservice Teacher Education, Program Effectiveness, Program Evaluation, Teacher Education


This study sought to describe effective computer in-service programs and to identify the components that contributed to their effectiveness. An Advisory Committee identified eight school districts from accross the country that appeared to be providing outstanding computer training for teachers. Case studies of these eight model districts were conducted in which computer coordinators, trainers, and teachers were observed. The data analysis focused on five issues. First, the outcomes of the in-service classes werre examined, including the knowledge and skills acquired by teachers concerning computers, their use of computers in instruction, and the impact of computer use on stu- dents. This information helped to establish the degree to which the eight districts provided models of good computer in-service training. Second, the in-service delivery systems were described, and effective instructional practices were identified. Third, teacher characteristics were examined, and relationships between teacher characteristics and outcomes were explored. Organizational context was the fourth issue to be reviewed, and a number of context variables were identified that were related to program effectiveness. Finally, a few unanticipated factors that helped to explain in-service results were identified. (80pp.)

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