INTEGRATE SELECTED WEB 2.0 TOOLS (SKYPE) INTO COLLEGE MATHEMATICS CURRICULUM TO ENHANCE STUDENT’S LEARNING / PERFORMANCE IN MATHEMATICS.
Background of the study
Information and communication technologies (ICT) have grown increasingly universal, powerful, and adaptable. These had change the world we live in and how we learn to live. Since the introduction of ICT in education, schools now face new social, cultural and pedagogical phenomena. Teachers are now faced with challenges in term of their technical abilities, knowledge and experience. ICT creates new possibilities, dilemmas, and directions and encourages teachers to harness the new opportunities that ICT offers to make teaching and learning more meaningful and rewarding. The ability to utilize ICT has become the literacy for the 21st century. ICT can change teaching and learning by being a source of knowledge, a medium for transmitting content, and an interactive resource furthering dialogue and creative exploration. (Cuban, 2001), ICT is thus considered to be both the cause of change and a major means of achieving it.
National Centre for Education and Statistics (NCES) 2005, further highlight that despite considerable investment, ICT implementation advances at a slower rate than expected in the educational systems of many countries.
Furthermore, despite the growing body of evidence supporting the influence of ICT on learning processes, its impact on the teacher and students, tapping this tremendous resource largely depends on how the teacher use ICT(mills et al, 2003).
Current discussions among technology advocates suggest that web 2.0 application have tremendous potential to transform student’s learning. (NCES, 2010) recent survey show that web 2.0 tools such as Facebook, MySpace, Wikis and Blogs are part of nearly every student’s home life. (Consortium for School Networking 2009).
IESD 2009, gave high expectation but little use, expert are renewing calls to do qualitative and situated research on web 2.0 in the classroom to understand better how this new network technologies and social media might play out and be harnessed for students learning (Greenhow et al, 2009).
This study explores teachers view on factors affecting their use of information and communication technology (ICT) in the classroom and how these views reflect changes in the teacher’s education beliefs and actual classroom.
Therefore, the study focus on this in the context of a classroom which integrates technology based information rich tasks with the school curriculum.
Web 2.0 tools is creating a new kind of participatory medium that is ideal for supporting multiple modes of learning (Brown et al, 2008) tools such as Wikis, Blogs, Skype, Podcast, Slide wares etc., enables students to create, apply, share their knowledge in an authentic fashion and contributing to global community of internet user.
Bush et al (2011), highlight that web 2.0 tools are not specifically developed for mathematics education but can be adopted for the purpose.
Web 2.0 tools which are social networking or media is promoted by several prominent organizations. In its principle and standard for school mathematics, the national council of teachers of mathematics (NCTM), 2000 promotes the technology principle that states “technology is essential in teaching and learning mathematics”. It influences the mathematics that is taught and enhances student learning. As internet services grow and develop, web 2.0 tools are also able to influence the curriculum enhance learning.
NCTM warns that “Technology is not a panacea”. It can be used well or poorly like an other teaching tools. It is most important that teacher develop their web 2.0 tools skill on their own or through formal professional development in order to effectively use these new tools.
Today the ubiquitous technology is a collection of new generation web-based tools and businesses that form a participatory web. Many of these tools are free; many are social in nature and promote self-expression. Many allow multiple users to participate by editing, commenting and polishing a document collaborative rather than working alone.
Another perspective that justifies the use of web 2.0 tools in mathematics education is Bloom’s Revised Taxonomy (Krathwohl, 2002).
The highest level is “creating” which involves “putting elements together to form a novel coherent whole or make an original product. Page 215 of the above text also states that it encourage students to create mathematical products with web 2.0 tools and sharing them with the world is a modern and authentic way to incorporate the highest level of Bloom’s Taxonomy.
Web 2.0 is a collaborative web development platform that fosters the development of participatory web application. This application allows the user to add, control and share information, interactively, simultaneously and interoperable through a browser from anywhere with an internet connection.
The advantage of web 2.0 technologies and their accessibility using computers and handheld cellular devices has held to a radical change in the life style of the young students in Nigeria and worldwide. Young spent more time using computer, internet and mobile devices than any other age group. Web 2.0 tools and its application has become an integral part of student’s life.
When student arrives in high school, colleges and the university having multitasking operation skills in blogging, broadcasting, tweeting and other web 2.0 applications due to their inclination to the web 2.0 technologies mathematics instruction in the traditional statistics mode might be sufficient to meet their needs.
In an online classroom, collaborative learning can take the form of discussion among the whole class or within smaller groups. This constructivism offers promising new approach to teaching, since constructivism and socio – culturalism are the element of the two most dominant cognition theories that have been applied to mathematics teaching online learning. One method of motivation is to use technology to engage students inside and outside the classroom. Web 2.0 based collaborative environment student and teachers become self – motivated to engage themselves inside and outside the classroom.
Interactive features of web 2.0 tools motivate participants to spend more time and share their creativity to a broader audience that might be possible in a regular classroom.
Types of web 2.0 tools
There are lots of tools under web 2.0, to mention few:
4. Slide ware
6. Social bookmarking
This website is usually maintained by an individual with regular entries of commentary, description of event or other materials such as graphics or video.
This is a series of digital media files which are distributed over the internet using syndication feeds for playback on potable media players and computer; it enables students and teachers to share information with anyone at anytime. An absent student can download the recorded podcast.
It is a collection of web pages designed to enable anyone to contribute or modify content such as the well known Wikipedia.
This is software that exists only on slide colourful, fancy PowerPoint driven presentation. It can be through projector or via sharing online.
This is a software program that allows users to make video conference calls or discussion over the internet.
This is a website with the primary use of storing bookmarks online which allows access to the same researching and working on a dissertation. This site is used to keep track of all the online source material and commentaries.
It is a free social networking and micro blogging service that allows to send “updates” or “tweets” (text – based posts), to the website (twitter) via short message service on a cell phone allowing instant messaging on facebook.
History of web 2.0
Web 2.0 is a term that describes the changing trends in the use of worldwide web technology and web design that aim to enhance creativity, secure information, sharing increased collaboration and improve the functionality of the web as we know it (web 1.0). These have led to the development and evolution of web – based communities and hosted services such as social networking sites (Facebook, MySpace), Video-sharing sites (Youtube), Wikis, and Blogs.
The term “web 2.0” was first in January 1999 by Darcy DiNucci, a consultant on electronic information design (information architecture). In article “fragment”, the web known now which loads into a browser window in essentially static, screenful is only an embryo of the web to come.
When Palm increase was introducing its first web – capable personal digital assistant superting web access with WAP, DiNucci saw the web “fragmenting” into a future that extended far beyond the browser / PC combination. It was identified with her mission of the web future focused on how the basic information structure and hyper linking mechanism introduced by HTTP would be used by a variety of devices and platforms. As such, her use of “2.0” designation refers to a next version of the web that does not directly related to the terms currently used. Web 2.0 did not surface until 2002. John Robb wrote “what is web 2.0?” it is a system that breaks the old model of centralized websites and moves the power of the web / internet to the desktop. Web 2.0 began its popularity in 2004, when O’Reilly media and Media live hosted the first world conference.
Web 2.0 was initially championed by bloggers and technology journalists culminating in the 2006 Time Magazine person of the year. Time settled the masses of users who were participating in content creation on social networks, blogs, Wikis and media sharing sites.
One of the most significant differences between web 2.0 and the traditional World Wide Web (www.retroactively referred to as web 1.0) is greater collaboration among internet users, social nature of the web 2.0 is another major difference.
From the history, web 2.0 is about revolutionary new ways of creating, collaborating, editing and sharing user generated content online. It’s also about ease of use. There is no need to download a program since the application is web – based. These tools are wonderful for teachers to increase their productivity.
Web 2.0 tools can be categorized into four types of tools namely:
b) Video tools
c) Mobile tools
d) Collaboration / Community tools
Web 2.0 tools website typically include some of the following features:
Ease of finding information through keyword searching.
Guides to important pieces of information. The best pages are most frequently link to.
The ability to create constantly updating content that is co – created by users.
Categorization of content by creating tags that are simply one word descriptions to facilitate searching and avoid having to fit into rigid, pre – made categories.
Automation of pattern matching for customization by using algorithms (i.e. Amazon.com recommendation).
The use of RSS (real simple syndication) technology to create a subscription model which notifies users of any content changes.
Statement of the problem
Many attempts have been to improve learning of mathematics in Nigeria. Prominent among these is effort of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM). University, College of Education, Federal and State government have not only develop innovative mathematics curricula but have also organize conference, workshop and seminars aimed at facilitating the teaching and learning of mathematics with advancement in technology e.g. online teaching method in Mathematics.
In as much as mathematics is a compulsory subject in secondary education curriculum, the main concern of this study is to try to test the conventional method of teaching which the normal classroom method is and that of a technological tools e.g. Web 2.0 tools technology and analyze the performance of the two variables stated above.
Purpose of study
The purpose of this study is to integrate educational technology application e.g. Web 2.0 technology tools into the teaching of mathematic curriculum and to map out the effectiveness of selected web 2.0 technology tools over the normal conventional classroom method of teaching and learning process.
The following research questions were raised to guide the study.
1) Is there any significant difference in the performance of student taught using conventional method and selected web 2.0 tools before the treatment?
2) Is there any significant difference in the performance of students taught using selected web 2.0 tools and those taught using conventional method after the treatment?
3) Is there any significant difference in the performance of male and female students exposed to selected web 2.0 tools method of teaching?
Based on the research questions raised for this study, the following hypotheses were formulated;
1. There is no significant difference in the performance of the students taught using selected web 2.0 tools and students taught using the conventional method before treatment.
2. There is no significant difference between the students taught using selected web 2.0 tools and students taught using conventional method after treatment.
3. There is no significant difference in the performing of male and female students exposed to web 2.0 tools method of teaching.
Significant of study
This study serves to analyze the integration of selected web 2.0 tools in the teaching and learning NCE mathematics.
The result of this study will lead future developer of the curriculum in making necessary amendment to mathematics curriculum.
There are lots of technological – based tools that can be use in the teaching method but this research is focusing on selected web 2.0 tools being integrated into the teaching of NCE mathematics (curriculum) to enhance student learning ability.