A significant success in education technology implementation has been achieved, as evident from the articles on flipped classroom, social media, education technology integration and implementation in the past few months. With the confidence that technology can make a considerable impact on schools and students, three research organizations - The Greaves Group, The Hayes Connection and One-to-One Institute - established Project RED: Revolutionizing Education.
We take a glance of Project Red which conducted a national study of technology in education aimed at student achievement and financial implications based on approximately 1,000 schools and produced a replicable plan for introduction of successful education technology into the classroom, improvement of student performance, and generation of cost benefits. Project Red produced these informative findings and is working to transform them, “From Research to Results”.
This exciting research endeavor developed 11 success measures for students in all grades and students in high schools, and 22 independent measures and incorporated them into a survey tool that was the main theme of the project’s effort to identify and prioritize the factors that make some U.S. K-12 education technology implementations perform significantly better than others. The first large-scale national research study of Project Red held in 2010 produced 7 key findings enumerated below:
1. Nine key implementation factors most strongly linked to education success
- Intervention classes: Education technology integration is done into every intervention class period.
- Change in leadership management by principal: Leaders provide time for professional teacher learning and collaboration at least monthly.
- Online collaboration: Students use technology daily for online collaboration (games/simulations and social media).
- Core subjects: Education technology integration is done into core curriculum on a weekly basis or more frequently.
- Online formative assessments: Determining assessments are done at least weekly.
- Student-computer ratio: Lower student-computer ratios improve outcomes.
- Virtual field trips: With more frequent use, virtual trips are more powerful. The best schools perform them at least monthly.
- Search engines: Students use search engines daily. (like Instagrok, Wolfram Alpha, SweetSearch and others)
- Principal training: Principals are trained in teacher buy-in, best practices, and technology-transformed learning.
2. Properly implemented technology in education saves money
Respondents reported that technology contributes to cost reductions and productivity improvements - the better the education technology implementation, the more positive is the impact.
3. 1:1 Schools employing key implementation factors outperform all schools and other 1:1 schools.
Results demonstrated that with continuous access to a computing device to all the students, better academic achievement and financial benefits are realized, and more so with proper education technology implementation. You can see the stats in the graph here.
4. The principal’s ability to lead change is vital, and change must be modeled and championed at the principal level.
Analysis showed that the principal is one of the most important variables in a school, across all 11 education success measures, which undoubtedly reveals that change in leadership training for principals involved in large-scale education technology implementation is vital.
5. Technology-transformed intervention improves learning
Project RED demonstrated that technology-transformed interventions in ELL, Title I, special education and reading intervention are the top-model predictors of superior high-stakes test scores, drop out rate decline, course completion and better discipline. No other independent variable proved to be the top-model predictor for more than one education achievement measure.
6. Online collaboration enhances learning productivity and student engagement
Collaboration among students has long been felt as an important aspect in improving student achievement as revealed from the study. View the stats in the graph here.
7. Daily use of technology delivers the best return on investment (ROI)
Daily usage of technology is a top-five indicator of better discipline, better attendance and improved college attendance.
Subsequent through this research and working to bring forth an alteration inspired by their findings, Project RED has launched the Project RED Community and is encouraging schools to join and share their successful education technology implementation tales if they desire. They are currently roaming the country delivering “Project Red Institutes” where educators can learn how to influence these results in their schools. Finally, they are also delivering free webinars and have been able to archive most of them that was delivered beforehand. So, if you have a desire to learn more about their results and recommendations, you can do that now.