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Peer Review

Teaching history with technology

by Tom Daccord


Overall Numeric Rating:

4.25 stars
Content Quality: 4.5 stars
Effectiveness: 4.5 stars
Ease of Use: 4.25 starsstar
Reviewed: Mar 31, 2013 by History Editorial Board
Overview: This website is a wonderful tool for new and veteran instructors who are seeking to add technology to their classrooms. The site provides a nearly comprehensive list of free technological tools that can be used by students and teachers alike in an educational setting, along with tutorials for using these tools.
Type of Material: Development tool, training material, learning object repository, tutorial
Recommended Uses: The lessons learned from this site can be used for in class work, lectures, or homework, by individuals, or teams. The tutorials on the site would best be used in-class or as homework.
Technical Requirements: Internet Explorer v.9
Identify Major Learning Goals: • Users will understand why using technology in the classroom is important. • Users will learn how to use technology in the classroom
Target Student Population: The target population includes ALL educators, from middle-school teachers to graduate level professors.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills: Users need to be able to navigate the Internet.

Evaluation and Observation

Content Quality

Rating: 4.5 stars
Strengths: This web site is incredibly thorough. It introduces teachers to all sorts of internet-based technology. It is very current with the latest technology and weekly additions of resources.
Concerns: It is only for teachers using technology in the classroom and only highlights specific technology. While thorough, it is not necessarily flexible.

Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool

Rating: 4.5 stars
Strengths: The resources provided as well as the explanations and rationales for their use make this an extremely effective teaching tool for educators seeking to learn more about adding technology to their classrooms.
Concerns: • It does not identify prerequisite knowledge, but assumes that all teachers are familiar with the various ways in which technology can be integrated. It describes software, but assumes that teachers know what the software is used for. This is a minor point, however. • While it is organized well, I am not sure that it progressively takes the teacher from one level of technology to the next. • It does include potential rubrics and guidelines for student assessment, but the teachers have to assess their success on their own.

Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty

Rating: 4.25 stars
Strengths: The website is easy to navigate, even with rudimentary computer skills.
Concerns: The website itself is simple, which is helpful for those just starting out, but it is also nothing visually stunning or visually memorable. It appears to have been created using a standard webpage template. This is great for users who know little about technology (which may be the point), but it also detracts a bit from the overall appeal of the site.