Realising the vision of technology integration: a case study of K-12 private schools in the United Arab Emirates

Mahmoud, Kheder (2022) Realising the vision of technology integration: a case study of K-12 private schools in the United Arab Emirates. [Thesis (PhD/Research)]

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Heralded by the release of government policies such as Vision 2021, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has joined the worldwide impetus for the integration of Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) into K-12 education as a central plank of reforms to its economy and education system. This presents challenges for schools in both public and private sectors in the UAE as they strive to adhere to national government and local education authority guidelines and standards for educational innovation, and as they respond to the challenges of the global Covid19 pandemic. Whilst the UAE Government has invested heavily to support technology integration in public schools, private schools must fund their own technology integration initiatives. In a context of strong growth in the private K-12 sector and reported high teacher turnover rates, private school leadership faces particular challenges related to decision-making about investment in suitable technologies and support systems, including teachers’ professional development.

This research therefore, sought to study the situation in private K-12 schools and, specifically, the challenges that educators in UAE’s private schools face as they integrate technology in response to Vision 2021 by answering these research questions: (i) What is the policy context for technology integration in the UAE private school sector , and what do private sector education policies at system and school levels tell us about the key factors influencing technology integration in schools and curricula? (ii) What are school teachers and administrators’ experiences
of and perceptions about the integration of technology in UAE private schools, including reported challenges and enablers? (iii) How do UAE K-12 private school teachers learn to integrate technology into their educational practice?

Various theoretical and conceptual frameworks for technology integration in schools were examined to guide this study; however, Kozma’s (2003a) framework of
innovative pedagogical practices that use technology, adapted to suit the study’s geographical and cultural context and to accommodate key findings from current
research, was determined to provide the best fit for the elucidation of contributing factors that may influence schools’ and educators’ capacity to implement desired
changes in their classrooms. A blended instrumental-intrinsic approach to case study research (Stake, 2003) was adopted, whereby the researcher was equally interested in understanding the specific features and characteristics of the case of technology integration in the private K-12 school sector in the UAE and in illuminating issues
related to educators’ perspectives and experiences of integrating technology into their teaching. Sources of qualitative data for the case study included structured
interviews with ten educators from nine K-12 private schools across three UAE Emirates, and selected education policies at international, national and school system
levels. Correlation of the findings from the policy analysis with the interview findings supported in-depth analysis of the phenomenon under study (Bowen, 2009).

The findings of this study provide contributions to theoretical, methodological, policy and practice knowledge. The study’s conceptual framework makes a contribution to knowledge in the scholarship of technology integration in K-12 education. The findings will inform UAE private sector educators and policymakers alike, providing guidance regarding critical success factors for effective technology integration in private schools. An implementation framework for technology integration in UAE private sector K-12 schools is presented to guide the implementation of technology integration in existing and new private schools planned for the UAE.

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Item Type: Thesis (PhD/Research)
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Doctor of Education
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts - School of Education (1 Jul 2019 -)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts - School of Education (1 Jul 2019 -)
Supervisors: Arden, Catherine; Danaher, Patrick
Date Deposited: 09 Mar 2022 02:21
Last Modified: 12 Apr 2022 05:56
Uncontrolled Keywords: educational change, ICT, innovation, national education policy, private schools, professional development, teachers, technology, technology integration, UAE
Fields of Research (2020): 39 EDUCATION > 3902 Education policy, sociology and philosophy > 390201 Education policy
39 EDUCATION > 3904 Specialist studies in education > 390405 Educational technology and computing
39 EDUCATION > 3903 Education systems > 390307 Teacher education and professional development of educators
39 EDUCATION > 3901 Curriculum and pedagogy > 390102 Curriculum and pedagogy theory and development
39 EDUCATION > 3903 Education systems > 390305 Professional education and training

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