What is technology planning? According to The Guidebook for Developing an Effective Technology Plan, technology planning is essentially creating a mission for how technology will be used in the future, it also provides a structure for reflection and long term goal setting of technology use within schools.
The National Educational Technology Plan 2010 provides a framework with guiding questions and suggested stakeholders within the process. It gives a clear starting point and direction for which an ongoing process of reflection and goal setting should occur to develop a cohesive technology plan.
I feel that having a 5 year plan in which vision is present for the long term is good. However, somewhere within the plan there needs to be flexibility to realize that technologies that can be beneficial in the classroom are evolving and changing at a rapid pace. For example, I Pads were not around 5 years ago yet this technology is making a huge impact in some educational environments. If a district had to wait 5 years prior to exploring this technology, or others like it, as an option because their plan was too limiting it would be a travesty. I can see See’s point of view that five years can be too long, however, there needs to be long term vision as well as short term vision about where technology and its educational application is headed in schools.
I believe when the author said “effective technology plans focus on applications, not technology.” He is referring to the knowing how and why we are using a specific application rather than technology for the sake of technology. I agree with him on this statement for the following reasons: When clear thought isn’t present in technology implementation, as far as how will a device or program be used to create educational opportunities and or develop certain 21st century learning skills, then it may not utilized by staff as effectively as it might be. Also it isn’t enough to just order or provide the technology, training needs to be given to staff on emerging or newly introduced technology. There needs to be a system by which this occurs in place prior to deploying devices.
I have had very limited experiences with technology use planning. Last year, my school district had a technology audit. I was involved in that process in which I was interviewed about what common technologies were used in the classroom and to what extent. During this process I discovered a lot about my own personal teaching style in comparison to my peers. I also learned about how technology differed from one building to the next in my school district. Out of this technology audit, I found myself on a technology task force to determine what a 21st century classroom should look like. While on this task force, we prioritized as a staff, what was important to us and what we would like to see improved in order to move forward.
Resources reviewed in creating this post as follows:
Graduate Students at Mississippi State University, & Anderson, D. L. (n.d.). Guidebook for Developing an Effective Instructional Technology Plan. Retrieved from http://www.nctp.com/downloads/guidebook.pdf
See, J. (n.d.). National Center for Technology Planning: Developing Effective Technology Plans. National Center for Technology Planning. Retrieved April 16, 2012, from http://www.nctp.com/html/john_see.cfm