Thesis

The use of interactive whiteboard technology for effective teaching from 6th to 8th grades including comparison between U.S. and Saudi teachers

This thesis addresses the effective use of interactive whiteboards (IWBs) in
 the classroom. To this end, primary research (surveys, interviews, class observations) was
 gathered from middle school teachers and students in the U.S., as well as from Saudi
 teachers. Specifically, the research answers two main questions: What are the best
 strategies/practices for teaching with the IWB? To what extent do IWBs increase student
 participation and performance? In addition, U.S. and Saudi teachers were compared to
 determine any differences in their use of the IWB. Since Saudi teachers are not as
 experienced as their U.S. counterparts, the intention is to support them in using the IWB
 more effectively.
 Overall, it appears that the IWB is a significant improvement over the
 traditional blackboard. Both teachers and students surveyed agreed that the IWB
 increases student participation. Whether the IWB increases student performance as well,
 is not clear. The effectiveness of the IWB depends on the creativity of the teacher. Most
 teachers only use the IWB to show videos and PowerPoint presentations. The best
 teachers get students to interact with the IWB by using the other features available. It is
 very important that teachers get formal training in the use of the IWB; of the U.S.
 teachers surveyed, only 10% had formal training.
 While the IWB is an improvement over the traditional blackboard, a newer
 technology, the eBeam, which can transform any writing surface into an IWB, appears to
 be a better alternative. It can do everything the IWB does but is less expensive, easier to
 use, and has fewer technical problems

This thesis addresses the effective use of interactive whiteboards (IWBs) in the classroom. To this end, primary research (surveys, interviews, class observations) was gathered from middle school teachers and students in the U.S., as well as from Saudi teachers. Specifically, the research answers two main questions: What are the best strategies/practices for teaching with the IWB? To what extent do IWBs increase student participation and performance? In addition, U.S. and Saudi teachers were compared to determine any differences in their use of the IWB. Since Saudi teachers are not as experienced as their U.S. counterparts, the intention is to support them in using the IWB more effectively. Overall, it appears that the IWB is a significant improvement over the traditional blackboard. Both teachers and students surveyed agreed that the IWB increases student participation. Whether the IWB increases student performance as well, is not clear. The effectiveness of the IWB depends on the creativity of the teacher. Most teachers only use the IWB to show videos and PowerPoint presentations. The best teachers get students to interact with the IWB by using the other features available. It is very important that teachers get formal training in the use of the IWB; of the U.S. teachers surveyed, only 10% had formal training. While the IWB is an improvement over the traditional blackboard, a newer technology, the eBeam, which can transform any writing surface into an IWB, appears to be a better alternative. It can do everything the IWB does but is less expensive, easier to use, and has fewer technical problems

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