An e-Classroom environment: a key lesson from case study research in New Zealand

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While computers have been utilised in various ways within general classroom environments for over 20 years, recent initiatives in New Zealand have focused on the use of this technology in a ‘saturated’ manner through the establishment of what have become known as ‘e-classroom’ or digital classroom environments. These classrooms make computers available to students in sufficient numbers so as to enable their use for all learning activities across the full range of curriculum areas. However, while research into the use of computers in general and special education contexts is yielding some tentatively promising outcomes (for example: ACOT, 1996, 1998; Blackmore, Hardcastle, Bamblett & Owens, 2003; Cleverley, 2004; Culp, Honey & Spielvogel, 2003; Iverson, 2001; Newhouse, 1999; Trinidad, MacNish, Aldridge, Fraser & Wood, 2001), research into the efficacy of computer-use in contexts such as an e-classroom, is virtually non-existent (Falloon, 2004). This paper outlines the key findings of an intensive 18-month study into the manner in which an e-classroom environment impacted upon the social, affective and cognitive development of a group of 33 year 5 and 6 students in New Zealand. It examines and discusses the background to the initiative, and how the establishment process and rationale promoted for its development impacted upon the ‘climate’ in which the classroom was developed, and how, in turn, this influenced the nature of the curriculum which was delivered within it. It also details the work processes of the students as revealed through the use of a unique data collection tool known as Camtasia, and describes how aspects such as workgroup organisation, software features, and access to key knowledge elements either positively or negatively influenced their progress towards planned learning goals.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSustainable communities and sustainable environments : envisioning a role for science, mathematics and technology education
Subtitle of host publicationproceedings of the Fourth International Conference on Science, Mathematics and Technology Education : Victoria, Canada, August 25-28, 2005
EditorsDarrell Fisher, David Zandvliet, Ian Gaynor, Rekha Koul
Place of PublicationPerth, W.A
PublisherCurtin University of Technology
Number of pages13
ISBN (Print)9781740674560
Publication statusPublished - 2005
Externally publishedYes
EventInternational Conference on Science, Mathematics and Technology Education (4th : 2005) - Victoria, Canada
Duration: 25 Aug 200528 Aug 2005
Conference number: 4th


ConferenceInternational Conference on Science, Mathematics and Technology Education (4th : 2005)


  • computers
  • technology
  • environment
  • e-classroom
  • impact
  • student
  • development


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