Koehler, Mishra, Hershey & Peruski (2004 as cited in Koehler & Mishra, 2005) introduced TPACK to describe the complex interplay between technology, content and pedagogy. Koehler & Mishra (2005) contend that TPACK reflects an approach to teaching that considers the complex and multi-dimensional relationships between the three knowledge domains by treating them in an epistemologically and conceptually integrated manner. The authors further contend that approaches to technology integration that fail to consider these relationships are largely ineffective. They therefore propose an approach incorporating these relationships called Learning technology by design. This a constructivist approach that sees knowledge as situated in action and determined by individual-environmental interactions (Brown, Collins, & Duguid, 1989; Gibson, 1986; Roschelle, & Clancey, 1992; Young, 1993 as cited in Koehler & Mishra, 2005). Designing learning activities does not therefore respect boundaries but involves interweaving the three knowledge components.
Roblyer and Doering (2014) highlight that computer technology has been evolving since the mid-20th century but it was the commercialisation of the Worldwide Web in the 1990s that foreshadowed the transformational impact of technology on education. TPACK reflects an approach by educators to model the integration of technology in education (Koehler & Misra, 2005). Newhouse (2015) proposes an alternative approach that focuses on how technology influences learning environment attributes. He cites Biagi & Loi (2013), Bransford, Brown & Cocking (2000) and DeCorte (1994) to posit the importance of the complex links between technology and learning outcomes mediated by learning environment attributes. This approach is more contextually situated than TPACK and may therefore be more conceptually helpful to some teachers.
Cherner & Smith (2016) expressed some concern about TPACK in that its original version was not sufficiently detailed nor based on the work of previous scholars and that it was not centred on student learning but teacher knowledge. The authors posit a reframed TPACK focused on context rather than content and that focuses on students.
Koehler & Mishra’s (2005) contention that approaches to technology integration that fail to consider the relationships between content, technology and pedagogy are largely ineffective may need to be challenged. Teaching and learning evidently require structure but a central theme of constructivism is represented by Bruner’s theory (1973 as cited in Roblyer & Doering, 2014, p.57) that children should explore alternatives and recognise relationships between ideas to better understand and remember those ideas. Bruner’s theory suggests that there should be opportunities for students to work with technology with minimal pedagogic structure to see if and how they use the technology to learn. This is in a sense what November (2009) suggests in terms of trusting students to work with technology and develop knowledge in ways that we, as teachers, had not conceived.
Koehler & Mishra’s TPACK (2005) represents an elegant model to help design lessons and integrate technology. As a teacher with limited technological knowledge TPACK is a reminder that technological knowledge must be a major focus of my further pedagogic development.
Cherner, T., & Smith, D. (2016). Reconceptualizing TPACK to Meet the Needs of Twenty-First-Century Education, The New Educator, 1-21. Retrieved January 20th, 2017 from CSU Library.
Koehler, M., & Mishra, P. (2005). What happens when teachers design educational technology? The development of technological pedagogical and content knowledge. Journal of Educational Computing Science, Vol 32(2), 131-152. Retrieved December 31st, 2016 from CSU Library.
Newhouse, C. (2015). Measuring the meaningful use of ICT in schools: learning environments attributes approach. International Journal of Technology Enhanced Learning, Vol. 7(4), 310-323. Retrieved January 14th, 2017 from CSU Library.
November, A. [November Learning]. (2009). Myths and opportunities: Technology in the classroom [Video]. Retrieved from https://vimeo.com/3930740
Okojie, M., Olinzock, A., & Okojie-Boulder, T. (2006). The Pedagogy of Technology Integration. Journal of Technology Studies, Vol. 32(2), 66-71. Retrieved December 20th, 2016 from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ847571.
Roblyer, M., & Doering, A.H. (2014). Integrating educational technology into teaching: Sixth Edition. Essex, UK: Pearson Education.