An Evidence-based Practice Approach to Practicum Supervision Using New Information Management Technology

Year: 2001

Author: Carter, David

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

The roles of supervisors; their responsibilities and the nature and forms of communication between university supervisor, school co-operating teacher and student teacher, appear to be central to feelings of isolation and disconnectedness encountered by student teachers engaged on field experience in schools. In this study, new information management and communication technologies were used to support collaborative approaches to practicum supervision in a 'borderless' manner. In the learning environments created by extensive information and communications technology use, the generation and utilisation of information by student teachers and their supervisors was monitored and evaluated. It was found that by exploiting the technological convergence of a new Instructional Management Information System (IMIS), configured to support practicum experiences in an integrative fashion, the experiences of participants in the supervisory triad was enriched and the channels for professional discourse enlarged. For the technology tools to be optimally effective, however, each member of the triad required more specialised training than was anticipated at the outset, in the use of new information management tools, applied specifically to serve the ends of practicum supervision. Difficulties in developing an appropriate electronic infrastructure for full implementation of the ICT employed in the schools settings will also be reported.