Do Danish teachers use computers the most in Europe?January 5, 2008
A somewhat ‘old’ report from August 2006 made the news when The Danish Ministry of Education (UVM) on December 26th 2007 made a press release about results from the Benchmarking Access and Use of ICT in European Schools 2006 – Head Teacher and Classroom Teacher Surveys in 27 European Countries.
What strikes me, is the fact that the press release – bearing the title “Danish teachers use computers most in class in Europe” (my translation) – seems to ignore this highly interesting paragraph from the report:
“There are significant variations in the intensity of ICT use in schools across Europe. Extreme values are reached in the UK where 38% of those teachers using computers in class use it in more than 50% of the lessons. Interestingly, in those countries known for rather low ICT usage in schools, teachers using computers in class do so rather frequently and intensively. The high figures for using ICT in more than half of their lessons in Hungary (27%), Poland (24%), Greece (22%), and Portugal (19%) can be used to illustrate this.
Interestingly, teachers in countries like Sweden, Finland, Denmark, the Netherlands etc do not belong to the (very) intensive ICT users in class.”
(Source: 1 Executive Summary and Conclusion, page 21: http://ec.europa.eu/information_society/eeurope/i2010/docs/studies/final_report_3.pdf)
Well, more stuff to reflect upon… Is it how much the teachers use the computers or how they use them, that is most interesting? It would be more interesting to seek answers to questions like how do Danish teachers use and make the most of computers in the course of teaching, and in which ways do teachers’ use of computers influence the students’ learning possibilities? The statement in itself that teachers use computers more or less doesn’t tell us whether their ways of using computers are appropriate.
A few examples (in Danish) of how the information from the press release quickly spread throughout various media:
Folkeskolen: “Danske lærere er gode til at bruge computere i undervisningen” see http://www.folkeskolen.dk/ObjectShow.aspx?ObjectId=50527, 3rd January, 2008, 12.34 PM. (Title in English: “Danish teachers are good at using computers in class” – my translation)
CEDI: “Danske lærere bruger computeren mest i undervisningen i Europa” see http://www.cedi.dk/visNyhed.aspx?ID=5992, 4th January, 2008. (Title in English: “Danish teachers use the computer the most in class in Europe” – my translation)
It- og Telestyrelsen: “Danske lærere i front med it i undervisningen” see http://www.it-borger.dk/den-nye-it-verden/nyheder/danske-lerere-i-front-med-it-i-undervisningen, 4th January, 2008. (Title in English: “Danish teachers are in front with ICT in class” – my translation)
In two of the titles, as well as in the press release from the Danish Ministry of Education, high amounts of ICT use translates into being good and being in front. In other words, once again, the equation becomes: the more ICT use = the better and the more being in front. Most ICT use = being best and being in the top.
UVM Press release (in Danish): “Danske lærere bruger computere mest i undervisningen i Europa” see http://www.uvm.dk/07/danske_laerere_bruger.htm?menuid=6410, 26th December, 2007.
The report: “Benchmarking Access and Use of ICT in European Schools 2006 – Final report from Head Teacher and Classroom Teacher Surveys in 27 European Countries” see http://ec.europa.eu/information_society/eeurope/i2010/docs/studies/final_report_3.pdf, Final August 2006.
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