Teaching practices, whether intended or not, privilege and marginalize particular groups of people. Inequality in education reflects inequality in society. The different ways in which technology is used may bolster or reinforce social inequities (Araque, Maiden, Bravo, Estrada, Evans, Hubchik, Kirby & Reddy, 2013). The digital usage divide (Warschauer, 2003; Warschauer & Matuchniak, 2010) positions technology usage as an influencer on social divides through educational, social, political, cultural, linguistic, economic and institutional contexts (Araque et al., 2013; Gherardi, 2016; Selwyn, 2010; Warschauer, 2011a). Thus, technology usage is not neutral, and, conceptualizing the digital divides as social divides is powerful for equity work in education. As educators, and more importantly as humans, the ways in which we co-construct this world we belong to begs for us to take up an active role in improving it. This dissertation situates technology use in elementary education as simultaneously a social issue and social opportunity. The phenomenon under investigation, pursuing more equitable technology integration, was explored using post-intentional phenomenology methodology (Vagle, 2018) as it was produced, provoked and took shape. I designed and facilitated a professional learning cohort for six elementary educators, across four schools and three school districts. Professional learning cohort experiences centered on topics such as: digital divide; digital usage divide; participatory technology integration; race, social class and gender in the classroom; anti-bias education, technology use for social justice; and technology integration beliefs and practices. Participants gathered for three cohort meetings, engaged in a 1:1 conversational interview and informal interview follow-ups between November 2017 and May 2018. I used an iterative process to analyze across and through phenomenological materials (i.e. cohort artifacts, interview audio/video/transcripts, participant follow-up and a post-reflexivity journal), theory and post-reflexions. As with all equity focused work, there is a never-done-ness nature to the constant interrogation of, and the relationships with, equity social issues within technology integration practices. To this end, I offer three vivid illuminations (findings), with respect to the pursuit of more equitable technology integration: unOthering, questioning societal implications and achieving homeostasis. Concluding thoughts and productive speculations of this dissertation invite you as readers, as scholars and as educators to engage with three social issue → social opportunity conceptions: 1. Wobble [within the Technology Integration Ecosystem]; 2. Be Profoundly Present [in the Entanglements]; and 3. [Temper] Being and Becoming. In each, plausible possibilities for the fields of learning technologies, elementary education and/or teacher education are shared as means of social change towards a more just future. In which case, I conclude opportunities for social change dwells not within the technology tools themselves, but in the relationships among people, social systems and usage of these tools to represent and produce more equitable ways of knowing and being.
University of Minnesota Ph.D. dissertation.August 2018. Major: Education, Curriculum and Instruction. Advisors: Cassandra Scharber (Co-Advisor), Mark Vagle (Co-Advisor). 1 computer file (PDF); xii, 278 pages.
Pursuing More Equitable Technology Integration in Elementary Education: Post-Intentional Phenomenological Research Productions and Provocations.
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