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Survey Reveals National Trends in Digital Curriculum Implementation

Survey Reveals National Trends in Digital Curriculum Implementation

The results of the second annual Research & Context on the Shift to Digital Curriculum survey conducted by the Learning Counsel reveals important trends in the adoption of a digital curriculum in schools nationwide.

As more schools begin to adopt digital curriculums and schools with existing curriculums being to develop them, the goal of going digital has evolved over the past year.

According to the survey, the number one intention of districts in going digital this year is to “achieve greater instructor effectiveness” versus the number one intention last year, which was to increase student engagement.

The top five digital curriculum policy controls also reflect this trend of emphasizing instructor effectiveness versus student achievement. The Learning Counsel found these top five policy controls to be: 

1) providing technology training for teachers

2) advocating personalized paths of learning using resources

3) providing ongoing professional development opportunities for applying digital learning

4) advocating moving to more or all digital content

5) providing technology training for students

In other words, tech training for teachers and taking professional development opportunities online were found to be the top digital policy decisions for the nation’s districts this year.

The Learning Counsel’s CEO LeiLani Cauthen said in a statement that this increased focus on using tech to better train teachers and to avoid a “just give us anything to get started” approach to technology is an indication that schools are using a greater focus when it comes to digital curriculum implementation.

Indeed, 65 percent of districts this year are creating staffing positions to handle the expansion of digital resources.

Despite the positive findings, districts still face several common barriers when it comes to tech implementation.

The survey found the top five barriers to be:

1) instructional design/curriculum design professional development 

2) digital curriculum systems training

3) classroom pedagogy professional development 

4) inadequate budget to transition 

5) teacher device use training

According to Dr. David Kafitz, VP of School Relationships and Consulting at the Learning Counsel, districts and schools will need to continue to work on developing comprehensive strategies for their digital curriculum to avoid using technology in an unaligned and disorganized matter when faced with challenges.

Read more about the Learning Counsel here.

Article by Nicole Gorman, Education World Contributor

11/19/2015

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