Journal of Science Education and Technology

, Volume 17, Issue 1, pp 82–99 | Cite as

Teacher Learning of Technology Enhanced Formative Assessment



This study examined the integration of technology enhanced formative assessment (FA) into teachers’ practice. Participants were high school physics teachers interested in improving their use of a classroom response system (CRS) to promote FA. Data were collected using interviews, direct classroom observations, and collaborative discussions. The physics teachers engaged in collaborative action research (AR) to learn how to use FA and CRS to promote student and teacher learning. Data were analyzed using open coding, cross-case analysis, and content analysis. Results from data analysis allowed researchers to construct a model for knowledge skills necessary for the integration of technology enhanced FA into teachers’ practice. The model is as a set of four technologies: hardware and software; methods for constructing FA items; pedagogical methods; and curriculum integration. The model is grounded in the idea that teachers must develop these respective technologies as they interact with the CRS (i.e., hardware and software, item construction) and their existing practice (i.e., pedagogical methods, curriculum). Implications are that for teachers to make FA an integral part of their practice using CRS, they must: 1) engage in the four technologies; 2) understand the nature of FA; and 3) collaborate with other interested teachers through AR.


Formative assessment Classroom response system Technology Physics education 


  1. Adelman N, Donnelly MB, Dove T, Tiffany-Morales J, Wayne A, Zucker A (2002) The integrated studies of educational technology: professional development and teachers’ use of technology (No. SRI Project P10474). SRI International, Menlo ParkGoogle Scholar
  2. AHD (1992) American heritage dictionary of the English language, 3rd edn. Houghton Mifflin Company, BostonGoogle Scholar
  3. Atkin JM, Black PJ, Coffey JE (eds) (2001) Classroom assessment and the National Science Education Standards. National Research Council, National Academy Press, Washington DCGoogle Scholar
  4. Becker HJ (2001, April). How are teachers using computers in instruction? Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, Seattle, WAGoogle Scholar
  5. Bell B, Cowie B (2001) The characteristics of formative assessment in science education. Sci Educ 85:536–553CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Black PJ, Wiliam D (1998a). Inside the black box: raising standards through classroom assessment. Phi Delta Kappan 80(2):139–148Google Scholar
  7. Black PJ, Wiliam D (1998b) Assessment and classroom learning. Assess Educ 5:7–74CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Bransford J, Brown A, Cocking R (eds) (1999) How people learn: brain, mind, experience, and school. National Academy Press, WashingtonGoogle Scholar
  9. Camp C, Clement J (1994) Preconceptions in mechanics: lessons dealing with students’ conceptual difficulties. Kendall/Hunt, DubuqueGoogle Scholar
  10. Capobianco BM (2007) Science teachers’ attempts at integrating feminist pedagogy through collaborative action research. J Res Sci Teach 44(1):1–32CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Capobianco BM, Feldman A (2006) Promoting quality for teacher action research: lessons learned from science teachers’ action research. Educ Act Res 14(4):497–512CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Clandinin DJ, Connelly F (1992) Teacher as curriculum maker. In: Jackson P (ed) Handbook of research on curriculum. Macmillan Publishing Company, NY, pp 363–401Google Scholar
  13. Cuban L, Kirkpatrick H, Peck C (2001) High access and low use of technologies in high school classrooms: explaining an apparent paradox. Am Educ Res J 38(4):813–834CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Dun A, Feldman A, Rearick M (2000) Teaching and learning with computers in schools: the development of instructional technology pedagogical content knowledge. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association, New Orleans, LAGoogle Scholar
  15. Ertmer PA (1999) Addressing first- and second-order barriers to change: strategies for technology integration. Educ Tech Res Dev 47(4):47–61CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Feldman A (1993) Promoting equitable collaboration between university researchers and school teachers. Int J Qual Stud Educ 6(4):341–357CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Feldman A (1994) Erzberger’s dilemma: validity in action research and science teachers’ need to know. Sci Educ 78(1):83–101CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Feldman A (1995) The institutionalization of action research: the California “100 Schools”. In: Noffke S, Stevenson R (eds) Educational action research: becoming practically critical. Teachers College Press, NY, pp 180–196Google Scholar
  19. Feldman A (1996) Enhancing the practice of physics teachers: mechanisms for the generation and sharing of knowledge and understanding in collaborative action research. J Res Sci Teach 33(5):513–540CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Feldman A (1999) The role of conversation in collaborative action research. Educ Act Res 7(1):125–144CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Feldman A (2000) Decision making in the practical domain: a model of practical conceptual change. Sci Educ 84(5):606–623CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Feldman A (2002) Existential approaches to action research. Educ Act Res 10(2):233–252CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Feldman A, Capobianco B (2000) Action research in science education. ERIC Digest. ERIC Clearinghouse for Science, Mathematics, and Environmental Education, ColumbusGoogle Scholar
  24. Feldman A, Minstrell J (2000) Action research as a research methodology for the study of the teaching and learning of science. In: Kelly E, Lesh R (eds) Handbook of research design in mathematics and science education. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, MahwahGoogle Scholar
  25. Fetterman DM (1989) Ethnography step by step. Sage Publications, Newbury ParkGoogle Scholar
  26. Fies C, Marshall J (2006) Classroom response systems: a review of the literature. J Sci Educ Technol 15(1):101–109CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Gerace WJ, Mestre JP, Dufresne RJ, Leonard WJ (1997) Assessing-to-learn: formative assessment materials for high school. University of Massachusetts, Amherst Google Scholar
  28. Glickman CD, Gordon SP, Ross-Gordon JM (2002) Supervision and instructional leadership. Allyn & Bacon, Needham HeightsGoogle Scholar
  29. Hollingsworth S (1994) Teacher research and urban literacy education lessons and conversations in a feminist key. Teachers College Press, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  30. Jacobsen M, Clifford P, Friesen S (2002, June 24–29) New ways of preparing teachers for technology integration. Paper presented at the ED-MEDIA 2002 World Conference on Educational Multimedia, Hypermedia, and Telecommunications, Denver, COGoogle Scholar
  31. James M, Black P, McCormick R, Pedder D, Wiliam D (2006) Learning how to learn, in classrooms: aims, design and analysis. Res Paper Educ 21(2):101–118CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Kropf A, Cunha M, Hugenin E, Emery C, Venemen V, Rappold A (2001, July 23:2001) A FAAR look at improving physics education: formative assessment action research. Paper presented at the summer meeting of the American Association of Physics Teachers, Rochester, NYGoogle Scholar
  33. Kropf A, Emery C, Venemen V (2003, March 2003) Formative assessment action research: Using technology to increase student learning. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the National Science Teachers Association, Philadelphia, PAGoogle Scholar
  34. Leonard W, Dufresne R, Gerace W (1999) Minds on physics. KendallHunt, DubuqueGoogle Scholar
  35. Marshall C, Rossman GB (2006) Designing qualitative research, 4th edn. Sage Publications, Thousand OaksGoogle Scholar
  36. Mestre JP, Dufresne RJ, Gerace WJ, Hardiman PT (1988) Hierarchical problem solving as a means of promoting expertise. Paper presented at the tenth annual conference of the Cognitive Science SocietyGoogle Scholar
  37. Mestre JP, Dufresne RJ, Gerace WJ, Hardiman PT, Tougher JS (1993) Promoting skilled problem solving behavior among beginning physics students. J Res Sci Teach 30:303–317CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Miles M, Huberman M (1994) Qualitative data analysis, 2nd edn. Sage Publications, Thousand OaksGoogle Scholar
  39. Schön D (1983) The reflective practitioner. Basic Books, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  40. Steinberg MS, Wainwright CL (2002) Using models to teach electricity—the CASTLE Project. Phys Teach 31(6):353–357CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Strauss A, Corbin J (1990) Basics of qualitative research: grounded theory procedures and techniques. Sage Publications, Newbury ParkGoogle Scholar
  42. Vygotsky LS (1978) Mind and society: the development of higher mental processes. Harvard University Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
  43. Yin R (1989) Case study research: design and methods. Sage publications, Newbury ParkGoogle Scholar
  44. Zucker A, Dove T, McGhee R (2000) Effective teacher professional development in the uses of technology. J Interact Instruct Dev 12(4):25Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Teacher Education and Curriculum StudiesUniversity of MassachusettsAmherstUSA
  2. 2.Department of Curriculum and InstructionPurdue UniversityWest LafayetteUSA

Personalised recommendations