1st INTERNATIONAL BALKAN CONGRESS
I. ULUSLARARASI BALKAN KONGRESI
24th - 26th September 2012 / 24 - 26 Eylül 2012
Editors / Editörler
I. ULUSLARARASI BALKAN KONGRESI
24th - 26th September 2012 / 24 - 26 Eylül 2012
Editors / Editörler
Teachers and Interactive Technologies
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Yanka R. Totseva/Assoc. Prof. Dr. Vance S. Bojkov
Abstract: The interest in acquiring skills for using interactive technologies by teachers has increased rapidly in Bulgaria and Serbia for the past few years. Favourable preconditions were created by facilitating technology in schools. Also mass campaigns for computer literacy were conducted among teachers.
Usage of multimedia technology in learning process has raised a number of pedagogical issues, most of which have not yet received responses.
The interest of teachers is analysed in two ways – using and creating original multimedia products, and participation in training activities on topics related to interactive technologies.
The paper also analyses the most popular educational portal in Bulgaria known as the ‘Community Primary Education’. The authors evaluate the level of interest and present good practices in the use of interactive multimedia technologies by Bulgarian teachers and their involvement in paid forms of qualification activities.
Key words: teachers, interactive technologies, educational portals
Effective training is one in which students obtain new knowledge, play, form social skills, work individually and in groups and look forward to returning to the next session. Every person whose vocation is teaching, seeks options to make an ongoing activity (lecture, seminar, discussion) first attractive and impressive, then interesting, challenging, attractive and, of course, useful.
The concept of lifelong learning has emerged as one of the key ideas for the twenty-first century. It exceeds traditional distinction between basic and continuing education and faces the challenges of a rapidly changing world, as is justified by the need of people to learn to cope with new situations arising in their personal and working life. This need today is real and growing. The only way to satisfy it is for everyone to learn how to study effectively and productively.
Research on learning outcomes and learning in adults indicate that more than three days you can remember: 10% of what is read; 20% of what is heard; 30% of what is seen; 50% of what is seen and heard; 70% of what is said; 90% of what is done if they used interactive methods and / or multimedia program.
Interactive methods require partnerships, dialogue type communication (based on pre-specified arrangements and procedures) among the students, between students and interactive media, between the learner/student and teacher. (Гюрова и др., 2006: 44)
Distinctive features of interactive methods are:
- Intensive communication between students in the school group (class) as well as between teacher and student - building a positive atmosphere of mutual acceptance and trust;
- Frequent change of activities;
- Emotional intensity of the process - focusing on feelings, not only on rational understanding and processing information;
- Reflection on their activities and behavior and the process of interaction;
- Feedback. (Цветанска, 2006: 18)
The interest in acquiring skills for using interactive technologies by teachers has increased rapidly in Bulgaria and in Serbia for the past few years. Favorable preconditions were created 4-5 years ago as technology facilities in schools were improved and mass campaigns for computer literacy among teachers were conducted.
Since the beginning of change, teachers have expressed special interest towards the multimedia technology that can be defined as modern information technology that allows you to combine text, sound, speech, pictures, computer graphics, video and animation. It is a combination of audio and video technology, united by interactive software.
When talking about interactive technologies in Bulgaria, most of the teachers understand primarily multimedia technologies.
Dimensions of the didactic use of these technologies and their impact on effectiveness and efficiency of the educational process, however, are serious issues for both researchers and teachers. Unfortunately we cannot give definite and supported by empirical research answers of the issues mentioned above. It is however indisputable fact that teachers and students are increasingly interested in multimedia technologies both during schooling, but also in their spare time.
Multimedia educational programs have significant advantages over traditional training and technical aids and devices, but their use raises some very serious questions that have not yet been answered:
- What is the relationship between a teacher, a student and a computer program?
- What is the optimal distribution of functions between the teacher and the computer?
- How to combine traditional learning with multimedia?
- What is the role of the teacher in constructing multimedia products?
- Are we giving up the traditional static visual devices and start to use only computer and multimedia technologies?
- Are teachers prepared to cope with the new information environment and their new roles in the classroom?
- The teachers must to be only users, or are expected to be creators?
Along with these questions we can’t overlook, however, some objective facts and disadvantages – still too expensive hardware (equipments) that not every school can afford to buy with its budget if it is not provided by a project; lower computer culture by teachers; difficulty of designing multimedia products – need to work in a team of many specialists and hence their high price.
The use of educational software in training for the purposes of visualization in the near future will increase.
Modern multimedia information technologies create opportunities for full and complete acceptance of new and unknown knowledge and skills, without causing difficulties for the learners who are able to control and select the format and type of information which they received, depending on their personal resources and preferences.
Another key element in multimedia is interactivity. Many media do not allow the audience to control the course of information and thus be more actively involved in this kind of "dialogue". The linear presentation is the result of the desire of the compiler to "approximate" the entire audience, which has its weaknesses as a situation where the student works "in person" with a computer and can be expected to place some control, to influence the course of flow of information to become a participant in the event, to relive it - either with the keyboard, mouse or other input device is radically different and more desirable. This is interactivity, which is intrinsically inherent in multimedia. Therefore quality multimedia products rely primarily on user activity - to choose the method of operation, adopt one or another option, even wrong and fix it, go back and learn additional information about a question and an answer, and why not additional motivational incentives, etc.
Interactivity is a key element in multimedia presentation that is most often made by teachers and used in the training.
Bulgarian Teachers and interactive technologies
All Bulgarian teachers were invited to participate in organized by the Ministry of Education and Science short-term courses in computer literacy for free. Decision of the Council of Ministers № 81 of 09.02.2005 has approved the National Strategy for ICT in Bulgarian schools and the Plan for the introduction of ICT in Bulgarian schools in 2005-2007, and then the work continued on the National Program "Information and communication technologies (ICT) in schools."
3173 computer labs were equipped in schools throughout the country. There is a broadband Internet connection in 1050 schools, local area networks to access resources on the Internet and distance learning opportunities.
The equipment and the teacher training made possible a change in the educational environment in the classroom where the teacher as a bearer of new knowledge could now benefit from the opportunities of computer information and communication technologies. Many teachers take up this challenge and began using technology in education to achieve different didactic goals.
One of the most popular educational portals is http://www.teacher.bg. It was created with the support of Microsoft and reflects the views of the teachers from the network of teacher innovators. The registered portal users can find a wide range of resources - news conferences and events, educational presentations, drafts of plan lessons, multimedia software and library of legal documents, video lessons, parties, shows, concerts and other school events. It has a forum for exchange of views and sharing of experiences and best practices. To enrich the computer culture of teachers the site has a virtual school which offers free online training on the latest technologies, methods and programs for introducing e-learning content in the classroom. Training is conducted by predefined topics and speakers include professors from leading Bulgarian schools, approved as leading specialists in the field of electronic content as well as experts in various technologies. Virtual learning is organized within the framework of the working week, repeating themes regularly to cover all willing to go through the training. The training is free for all registered users that completed a full profile on the site. It certainly is innovative and unique for Bulgaria. The initiative aims to contribute and to increase the motivation and the qualification of Bulgarian teachers to actively use new information and communication technologies in their daily work with students, and their personal career.
Good opportunity to find some answers gives us a blog called "Community Education", which can be found at: http://bglog.net/Obrazovanie/. The blog is created and maintained by BlogHau Consulting. This is a company focused its activities in development and maintenance of the First Bulgarian portal BgLOG.net, but in practice is the result of free creativity of the Bulgarian teachers.
This text will focus on the community, "Primary education", which can be found at: http://bglog.net/nachobrazovanie/ , and will try to determine the impact of Internet-based educational resources upon the creative approach of the teacher-innovators, working with interactive computer technology in the primary school.
The first publications in this community were made in early 2008. Their total number to 27. 08. 2012 is over 12 000 and responses to them are over 84 200. The registered users are approximately 9 250.
This community is much more active than other teacher communities not only in terms of number of users, but also in number of publications and comments.
The community blog "Primary education" has statistics on active users, the most popular posts, recent comments, the most discussed publications, publications with a maximum rating, and also read, discussed, and a maximum active rating authors. It allows you to search by keyword or label, but also maintains an archive of all publications.
Each publication is presented by the author's name (nickname) and the date. Every user can see the number of reads and the number of comments. Publications can be seen as useful or not and so formed their rating.
Registration is quick and easy and gives access to resources, but also the right to publish both the comments and opinions as well as presenting for debate author’s multimedia products and/or share freely distributed on the network.
It is noteworthy that some users have registered with real name and surname, other only with personal name, and others with a nickname. From the comments it becomes clear that part of registered with nicknames, are familiar to others who turn to them using their personal real names.
The main topics to be discussed are related to direct employment of teachers in individual subjects. They share their experiences or seek help with when face difficulties. Many publications have more categories and keywords to help you find the necessary information from other user-teachers.
In addition to sharing experiences and ideas, users offer to their colleague multimedia products, which are created from themselves by them or can be found for free in the network. So in fact this blog builds a rich pool of Internet-based resources. Part of the materials is protected and cannot be modified, but can be used while others - are not protected.
Participants offered several types of materials:
• Syllabus of lessons
• Presentations that can be used in lessons in combination with other methods
• Scenarios for celebrations
• Methodological studies on specific topics that can be implemented in one or more consecutive lessons
• Distribution of topics in optional subjects
• Links to products, software, interesting materials, prepared presentations and more.
Some of the materials are presented directly in the blog itself, but other links are for download. The first applies to copyrighted materials, but some of them are hosted in another place and the path to these materials is shown.
Most read and discussed are publications concerning methodical problems in curriculum on the Bulgarian language and literature, mathematics, science and nature. Overall, the tone of comments is positive and constructive-critical. In rare cases there is controversy or disagreement on the discussed topics.
Very often admiration and gratitude for providing multimedia product are expressed. Some teachers share their experiences of using materials taken from the database of the blog. Others write that they expect the moment to take advantage of them. Emotional reactions are loaded with positive energy, expressed support and give a high evaluation of proposals.
From didactic point of view, it is worth to consider the risk of use of materials and presentations made from somebody else's, that could lead to the multiplication of certain methodological models and structures that are not always adequate to level of preparation, interests and current capabilities of young students.
It is important to know that there is a small core of active writing authors and commentators and the vast majority of users, who only read. It is important to be noted that, for less than a week, some materials are read by more than 1000 users.
Furthermore, in virtual reality, blog users participate in various forums and initiatives engaged in social interpersonal communication.
Communication that started over the Internet has become the basis for meetings and personal contacts. Professional affiliation, shared common interests and desire for creative work become the basis for the formation of virtual and possibly start a real community of teachers who have the ambition to change the style of work in school using innovative interactive technology.
Multimedia technologies are the most attractive part of developed and approved by teachers in technology education. The review of blog "Primary education" gives us reason to be optimistic about the reality of change happening in the IT environment in the classrooms in Bulgaria.
Serbian Teachers and interactive technologies
Serbia has a Strategy for the Development of Education in 2020, which occupies the central issues related to information technology.
Currently Serbia has about 12,500 practitioners in the area of information and communication technology, and according to the strategy in 2020 their number should be 50,000. To achieve these objectives schools work very active. All schools have access to the Internet. Every single school regardless of whether it is primary or secondary is equipped with computer labs. Computer science is taught as an optional subject from 5 to grade 8 and obligatory in all four high school grades.
Teachers in Serbia are using a range of information and communication technologies, but mostly multimedia. In every school there are computers and multimedia projectors. Unfortunately, older teachers avoid the use of new technologies, because they don’t feel confident and lack technical skills to create and use educational resources.
In Serbia, there are many educational portals, which are designed to help teachers. Among the most popular we can mention:
- www.shop.skolarac.net – digital bookstore for electronic books, supplies and equipment;
- www.edu-soft.rs is an educational site with many features and over 2,000 links. A huge variety of models of global and operational plans, methodological guidance plan syllabus and preparatory materials for classes, a large amount of worksheets, tests, multimedia presentations, audio and video materials, many scenarios for holidays and creative ideas, examples of good practice can be found there;
- www.enastavnik.com is an educational portal that offers curriculum for different types of schools, a wide range of educational services, presentations, tests, manuals, e-books;
- www.moodle.abakus.edu.rs is an educational portal for professional development of teachers through e-courses;
- www.otvorenaskola.mpn.gov.rs is a portal created by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development of Republic of Serbia. It's called "Open School" and its purpose is to improve the school practice by sharing best practices and sharing of pedagogical situations effectively held in class. The portal allows teachers to provide educational materials to the site and present them on "Open School". Materials and examples of good practice are expected to contribute to improving the quality of the educational process and to enrich the work of teachers in classrooms using ICT. On this portal are published interactive teaching materials lesson activities, workshops and seminars that teachers have visited and to help other teachers with new ideas to improve the quality of education and to be active participants in the process of innovating the teaching practice;
- www.ceo.edu.rs is the website of the Institute to assess the quality of education and upbringing. This is one professional institution with professional attitude towards education successfully conducted development educational policy of the National Council of the Republic of Serbia that shall promptly meet the expectations of schools and carries out a full consultation with all stakeholders in the education system;
- www.zuov.gov.rs/novisajt2012/index.html is the site of the Institute for promotion of education and upbringing. It was created in 2004 to solve problems of monitoring, evaluating, securing and improving the quality and development of the Serbian education system. Institute carried out development, consulting and research in pre-school, primary and secondary education and training, and other activities in line with its status and educational legislation. Institute for the promotion of education and upbringing is involved in preparing the regulations of the education and upbringing of the competence of the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development, the National Council for Education and the Council for special education and adult education. On his site outlines plans, curricula and courses, which reflect the state education policy;
- www.portal.ceo.edu.rs/ is a portal for teachers who emphasise on educational standards. All visitors to this site can see the complete list of standards and sample tasks that check the compliance with the standards. To use the resources you need to register, which allows full access to the materials;
- www.e-pismen.rs portal is aimed at improving support for teachers to use information technology. It created the project "Online training arrived in our city ..." The project provides free, accredited by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development of Republic of Serbia 24 hour online seminar "Electronic School for Beginners” – creating distance learning courses through Internet aimed at training teachers to create educational content on the Internet using the Moodle platform. Activities for the workshop require participants to have a computer with internet access and a web browser – a program for viewing Internet content (Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, Google Chrome). To participate in the workshop you need to have sufficient computer literacy, complete the questionnaire and send a cover letter;
- www.aemdl.com is an educational portal with materials in pedagogy, math, literature, social sciences, linguistics, computer science, business;
- www.klikdoznanja.edu.rs is an educational portal with a rich database of different options for training activities, seminars, conferences, didactic materials. There are links to many educational resources. Materials are available in different subjects, as well as on issues of pedagogy, psychology and andragogy. There are links to educational blogs, webinars, forums, libraries, utility programs, manuals, electronic encyclopaedias’, samples of administrative records for school purposes, competitions for teachers and students;
- www.uchaportal.com is in the early stages of development and presentation according to the team of creators. Here you can find information targeted to support and monitor the activities of the participants in accredited programs: ‘Web portals for preparation and implementation of training’ and ‘How to use interactive educational software”. All participants in these programs can teach online, asking subjects to be included in discussions by meeting and so continue to be active after the end of training. Continuous team is in a contact with the participants, enrich the topics and provides/offers help. The goal is all participants in the program to participate in a virtual community whose goal is to destroy the temporal and spatial constraints. Since 2011 this portal is enriched by “Teach-school” which allows using of accredited online programs for special improvements on the topic “How to use interactive educational software”. Furthermore, e-seminars, the site can be found curious e-courses and teaching materials for young people, students, teachers, special school staff, directors and all those who in any way participate in the realization of educational process;
- www.e-studije.com is an educational portal that has existed since 2011, following the contemporary training requirements for its creators, who are a group of teachers, present their knowledge and experience in education as preparing electronic courses, which may be involved in any time and from any place. The courses are in the field of multimedia production, graphic design, mailing and banking technology and telecommunications;
- www.oet.etspupin.edu.rs is a specialized educational portal for teachers who teach fundamentals of electrical engineering.
Summary and conclusions of the experiences in the two neighboring countries:
In early 2005 Bulgaria has developed a National Strategy and Action Plan for Introducing ICT in Bulgarian Schools for 2005-2007, and then work has continued under the National Programme "Information and communications technologies (ICT) in school";
As part of the implementation of activities under these strategic documents the vast majority of Bulgarian teachers participated in short courses on computer literacy and use of educational software;
Serbia has developed its strategy later, but it has a clear long-term objectives and parameters at the national level;
Interest in the use of interactive computer-based instructional technology is constantly increasing in both countries, as evidenced by the many educational portals that offer online training, resources, forums for sharing, exchange of best practices and educational software;
In both countries there is resistance on the part of the older teachers in the use of interactive methods and information technologies;
For educational portals, it is noteworthy that the Bulgarian Blog "Education" is a space for sharing among teachers and administrators and have no restrictive features. Perhaps this is part of the reason for its immense popularity and attendance;
Educational portals in Serbia and in Bulgaria are developed by teachers, as well as initiatives triggered by project activities, and also a part of the state education policy.
With confidence we can say that the teachers in the two Balkan countries have many opportunities to use the Internet-based educational resources to improve the quality of teaching and learning in schools in line with modern educational paradigm for the preparation of a new type of people able to orient in terms of the globalization of information and communication streams.
Raising the qualifications of teachers in Bulgaria and Serbia for interactive methods and educational software.
The review and analysis of educational portals in both countries reveal potential opportunities to use interactive educational resources, but whether it will benefit teachers depends primarily on them.
The interest of teachers to interactive technologies depends also on what kind of training and specialization is included.
Among the factors that determine the readiness of teachers to work with interactive learning technologies can point to: the level of information and computer literacy, availability of appropriate educational programs and products, striving for self-improvement and motivation on innovation.
Ordinance on conditions for qualification of teaching staff in the education system and procedures for obtaining professional qualifications is force in Bulgaria since 1997. And recent changes to it were made in 1999.
In Art. 6. says that "The qualification of teaching staff is to: 1. to match the social practice, the needs of the education system and the level of professional competence of the teaching staff, 2. enable to meet the professional interests of the teaching staff and their professional development. "(Наредба, 1997: 1).
The Ordinance defines three areas of qualification: "1. Methodology of Teaching; 2. Theory of education, didactics, pedagogical and age psychology, special education; 3. Management of education."(Наредба, 1997: 5)
The Ordinance limits the overall objectives and areas, and provides opportunities to qualification points in new skills and competencies such as the use of information and communication technologies in the educational process, but does not explicitly prescribe that.
Three Departments have the right to issue certificates obtained professional degrees – Department for Information Qualification and Lifelong Learning in Varna, which is part of Konstantin Preslavsky University of Shumen, Department for information and in-service teacher training in Stara Zagora which is part of the Trakia University, Department for Information and In-Service Training of Teachers in Sofia, which is part of the Sofia University "St. Kliment Ohridski ".
A review of the websites of the three Departments allows us to bring the courses and topics related to teachers' ability to acquire or improve their skills in the field of interactive technologies:
Department for Information Qualification and Lifelong Learning in Varna offers the following courses:
1. "Interactive models for the development of personal and social skills in kindergarten." Course for nursery teachers to be familiar with interactive models to develop personal and social skills in kindergarten and improve their didactic and psychological knowledge to construct their own educational models (programs and technologies), based on the principles of interactivity and the development of individual potential of child's personality.
2. "Using interactive technology Envision – a computer mouse a lot." The course is for teachers from different disciplines and provides knowledge, skills and methodological guidelines for the use of the software Envision.
3. "Using the interactive whiteboard in teaching – Technological and methodological guidelines." The course is for teachers from different disciplines and provides knowledge, skills and methodological guidelines for using the interactive whiteboard in the preparation and implementation of the lesson. Teachers learn the skills to use the basic tools of the software, working with finished products, acquire skills for a new approach to the development of the lesson. Development of lesson models.
4. "Development of web-pages." This course is for teachers of computer science and information technology, and offers a presentation of HTML and CSS to develop web-pages and consideration of specialized editors for web-design. Teachers acquire theoretical and practical knowledge and skills to develop web-pages and methodological guidelines for teaching modules in school.
5. "Programming PHP". This course is for teachers of informatics and information technologies and offers a presentation of the PHP language for developing web-based applications, as well as consideration of specialized environments for web-programming. Teachers acquire theoretical and practical knowledge and skills to develop web-based applications and interactive web-sites based on language PHP, and methodological guidelines for teaching modules in school.
There are also two courses for professional qualification "Teacher of Informatics and Information Technologies" and qualification "Teacher of ICT".
Department for information and in-service teacher training in Stara Zagora offers the following courses:
1. "Informatics and Information Technology and its application in education" for mathematics, physics, chemistry, engineering and other disciplines, which upon completion receive additional qualification "Teacher of Informatics and Information Technologies."
2. "Modern information and communication technologies in the educational process" is a course for teachers of all disciplines interested in the use of modern ICT in the learning process. The aim is to provide conditions for mastering the basics of information technology and on this basis to allow teachers to apply them in their direct employment. Subjects covered included basic psycho-pedagogical and methodological issues related to the management of the learning process. Specialized module provides studying computer systems and operating environments and their application in modern school environment. Addressed are options for integrated use of various electronic resources. There are also elective courses related to general and private methodological problems.
3. "Information Technology 1–4" qualification form is intended for primary teachers. The aim is to provide basic training required for teaching elective and optional information technology in elementary school. The modules included the curriculum of the Ministry of Education. The contents are considered intermodal different programming environments suitable for elementary school. Students acquire knowledge and skills for various applications of information technology in education – development and application of electronic test technology for interactive whiteboard - ONFINITY CM2, LUIDIA eBeam, and methodological options for use in academic subjects. Successful graduates receive additional qualification "Teacher of Information Technology 1–4 Class."
4. "Interactive methods and techniques" is a training course for teachers of various degrees, which aims are to improve the teaching practice of teachers through access to the latest trends in conducting interactive training.
Department offers short courses (8 or 16 hours) with the application of information and communication technologies:
5. "Use of Electronic Resources in Education" for teachers of all grades. The course provides innovative digital technologies and electronic resources, capable of application in all grades and all subjects. Emphasis is placed on the possibilities of using interactive whiteboard – ONFINITY CM2, LUIDIA eBeam, computer laboratories for science education, Classmate PC and specialized software Classroom Management.
6. "Technologies for use with an interactive whiteboard – ONFINITY CM2, LUIDIA eBeam." This course is for teachers who have basic computer skills. Presents major opportunities and methodological solutions using an interactive whiteboard to learn Excel, English for children with animations and replays (English with Training), Practical English Grammar (with translation in Bulgarian language) and others.
7. "ICT for management of student class" is for teachers who have basic computer skills. Introduces the basic parameters developed by INTEL Classmate PC program and Classroom Management.
8. "Working with microcomputer laboratory NOVA 5000" for teachers teaching subjects of area “Natural Sciences and Ecology" and "Mathematics and Informatics". The course considers the application of NOVA 5000 science education, mathematics, computer science and information technology. Teachers are familiar with the technical characteristics of the microcomputer laboratory and principles of working with her. There are hours of practice setting and calibration of the sensors and conducting experiments on different subjects.
9. "Development and application of an electronic training course" for teachers who have basic computer skills. Includes: Introduction to the nature, problems and trends in e-learning; Designing a course for EC; Conceptual model; Modelling of course – content, objectives, learning paths, monitoring and evaluation; Diagnosis through a series of tasks designed in Course Lab; Modelling of complex teaching units.
10. "Use of electronic resources in science education" is designed for teachers teaching subjects of area “Natural Sciences and Ecology” and “Mathematics and Informatics”. The course builds on the formulas for the European reference framework of key competences in science and mathematics. Emphasis is placed on the possibilities of using some modern electronic resources for teaching the subjects of area “Natural Sciences and Ecology”.
11. "Formation of basic skills database" is for teachers who have basic computer skills and presents the main features, activities and resources for the implementation of ACCESS and maintenance of databases. Examples are considered related to ASM and some administrative activities at school.
12. "Preparation of teaching materials in WORD training in various disciplines" is for teachers who have basic computer skills. It offers theoretical and practical training to form the structural elements of the document in WORD.
13. "Preparation of teaching materials with EXCEL training in various disciplines" is for teachers who have basic computer skills. Offers theoretical and practical training to prepare tabular data and its graphical interpretation. Students gain skills in working with different types of data, use formulas and built-in functions of EXCEL to build databases and more. Present ideas for preparing training materials for IT training in the disciplines of Natural cycles, for administrative activities and more.
14. "Technology development and use of presentations for training in various disciplines" again for teachers who have basic computer skills. This course has a practical orientation and forms skills for designing and creating multimedia presentations using a variety of data objects (text, pictures, drawings, diagrams, tables, videos, and music files) for different types of learning lessons. Present ideas to implement interactivity in learning through the use of computer presentations.
15. "Application of Information Technology in teaching children with special educational needs" is a resource for teachers from different disciplines (subject areas) and levels who are interested in the issues. The course includes theoretical and practical training on the use of information technology to improve access to education and facilitate the education of children and pupils with disabilities. Through practical training and skills are formed to work with embedded operating system tools Windows, supporting access to computer systems and skills development of electronic learning materials for carrying out various tasks and teaching situations.
16. "Digital technologies in education" is for teachers of all grades. Give the variants using specialized programs (Windows Movie Maker and others.) For training and technology and techniques using digital equipment in educational process. They develop competencies for teachers to prepare materials with modern digital audio, video, animation, charts, drawings, diagrams and videos.
Department for Information and In-Service Training of Teachers in Sofia offers the widest variety of courses and subjects:
1. "Interactive learning techniques" for teaching staff interested in the issue. Includes: Typology and Classification of interactive techniques, Traditional and little known but effective interactive techniques, Suggestopedically techniques, Personal pedagogical techniques, Demonstration of successful interactive techniques.
2. "Suggestopedically interactive teaching techniques in preventing information overload students.”
3. "Innovation, interactive methods and information and communication technologies in the educational process" for school teachers and principals of kindergartens.
3. "Interactive methods in educational fields "Bulgarian Language” and "Natural World” in kindergarten."
4. "Using interactive board in the educational process" is a course that is offered separately for teachers in kindergarten and in primary school
5. "Development of multimedia and interactive presentations" is a course that is offered separately for teachers in kindergarten and in primary school. Includes: Pre-treatment and preparation of multimedia – images, audio and video. Raster image processing with graphics editor GIMP. Create interactive presentations with PowerPoint.
6. "Development of educational presentations" is available separately for teachers in kindergarten and in primary school with basic knowledge of computing.
7. "Using Web 2.0 tools in foreign language education" is for French teacher with interest and experience in the application of ICT in education.
7. "Online games on foreign language learning" involves the presentation of Web 2.0 and its potential for French teacher.
8. "Innovative educational technology in the teaching of French."
9. "Application of information technology in teaching history and civilization in the secondary stage of basic education."
10. "Using Web 2.0 tools in the teaching of history and civilization."
11. "Interactive techniques for teaching history and civilization."
12. "Development of a multimedia learning objects of philosophical cycle."
13. "Active learning using digital tools in humanities subjects."
14. "The interactive approach to learning."
15. "Information and communication technologies for civic education."
16. "Information Technology in Art teaching."
17. "The computer in the teaching of Art."
For teachers of all subjects, with basic computer skills and a desire to grow in the field of computer and information technologies are available:
18. "Using the interactive whiteboard in the learning process."
19. "Development of websites."
20. "Development of multimedia learning content – audio and video"
21. "Development of multimedia learning content – animation."
22. "Digital photography and image processing."
23. "Editors, computer graphics and animation."
24. "ICT in education – the computer as a tool for training and presentations."
25. "Application educational software – word processing, presentations, multimedia and the Internet."
26. "ICT in education – multimedia, internet, antivirus protection, and telecommunications."
27. "ICT in pre-school and primary education."
28. "Information technology – computer presentations."
29. "Information technology – EXCEL."
30. "Information technology - WORD."
31. "Operating System LINUX."
32. "Web-based Educational ICT for development of Geographic culture."
33. "Project-based Learning ICT for development of Geographic culture."
34. "Project-based learning in Physics and Astronomy using ICT."
35. "Presentation Technology in teaching Physics."
36. "Practical training for designing lessons using ICT in the professional “Agriculture.”
37. "Presentation of a lesson in a subject specific professional field of” Engineering and Geodesy" using PowerPoint."
38. "Technology development and use of presentations for the course of the light industry."
39. "Application of ICT in education in vocational training in the" Transport and Energy."
Proposed courses and curriculum give us a very broad picture of the current situation on the training activities offered by the three state institutions that can issue certificates to acquire professional qualifications. Bulgarian teachers, however, may seek other education providers such as private companies for educational activities certified by the National Agency for Vocational Education and Training.
A good example might be the work of RAABE Bulgaria Publishing Ltd, launched in 1996. RAABE Bulgaria is a member of the Klett group, which is one of the famous publishing houses in Europe. Klett Group has 71 branches in 16 countries with approximately 20 of them are located in Germany. All group members provide their customers with products mainly from the areas: education, taxes and accounting, law and management and public administration.
There are topics for teacher training in 13 different areas: Education Management; Educational Psychology; Practical workshops for primary teachers; Working with gifted children; Aggression and dependencies; Working with interactive boards. Lessons with digital content; Interactive teaching methods; Children with SEN and learning difficulties; Working in a multicultural environment; Tests; Seminars for vocational schools; Specialized workshops; Training.
In the field of interactive technology available topics are:
· Application of ICT in education;
· One computer - many mice. Working with the program Microsoft Mischief;
· Project-based learning in primary and secondary school;
· Work with Interactive boards;
· Development of web pages;
· Preparation for creating electronic lessons;
· Organizing a comprehensive educational process.
In the field оf interactive teaching methods:
· Development, deployment and use of interactive forms and methods in the educational process;
· Interactive learning as an innovative approach to education.
Work with interactive boards. Lessons with digital content include the following questions:
• How to present electronic lesson
• How to develop electronic content for a lesson
• How to organize the entire educational process
• How to work with interactive whiteboard
Workshops for primary teachers:
· Interactive techniques for learning in primary school
· Preparation of multimedia lessons in primary school
The total number of seminars for teachers that took place in 2011 was 305, with 8614 participants. Topics are related to interactive technology - interactive board, multimedia lessons, lessons with electronic content are most popular, along perhaps with topics for children with special educational needs. The second rank preferences topics are related to Classroom Management and Aggressive behaviour.
In 2011 the publisher has organized 36 seminars on interactive technologies, which are involved - 996 teachers.
The greatest interest was towards the work with an interactive whiteboard. 23 courses were conducted in which participated more than 600 teachers from across the country.
In Serbia since 2005 an Ordinance for continuing professional development and acquisition of title teacher educator and professional associate is in force. It defines the main objectives and the ways to achieve them. The Ordinance says: "The continuing professional development of teachers, educators and specialists is aiming at:
1) Training for greater autonomy in planning and conducting education, youth work, care and professional services;
2) Acquisition of knowledge and innovation that support continuous professional development and progress of the work;
3) Development and improvement in:
(1) The organization of educational work,
(2) Monitoring the progress and achievements of children and students
(3) Cooperation in education communication;
4) Consideration of personal characteristics and needs of the child and children depending on their age;
5) Development of skills and abilities to participate in a team and communicate effectively to the development and promotion of a climate of understanding and respect;
6) The development and preparedness training for constant process of self-assessment, monitoring and improving their own practice;
7) Training and monitoring the implementation of educational technology;
8) Training for parents who are considered partners in achieving the goals of education and achieving mutual cooperation;
9) Ability to work with the community;
10) Ability to share experiences and promote the profession;
11) Acquisition of knowledge and development of skills and abilities to deal with the administration and management of kindergartens, primary and secondary schools and boarding schools. "(Rules, 2005:1-2)
Two of the priorities offer advanced skills in the field of educational communication and educational technology.
Under the Ordinance, teachers need to regularly participate in training courses organized by the Ministry of Education, Regional education centers, Special schools, which train and award qualifications to teachers. Great interest in the recent years is shown towards courses for teachers of informatics. For example: Faculty of Electronic Engineering of the University of Nish has organized dozens of such courses, and currently is applying for financial support from the European Commission for a project related to improving the quality of pre-service and in-service training of teachers in computer science.
The Strategy for the Development of Serbia in 2020 says that "in recent years there have been actions to equip schools with computers (e.g. Ministry of Telecommunications and Information Society has organized a campaign and donated computers to schools in the academic year 2008/2009), many schools, especially in disadvantaged areas, still do not have computers, no Internet connection, and the students have no computers at their homes." (Стратегия, 2012: 57)
The strategy making recommendations that can improve the quality of teacher training is needed "to take advantage of information and communication technologies and other forms of online learning (e-conference, themed blogs, discussion forums, electronic testing, etc.) and should be able to explore the conditions for the use of some forms of distance learning." (Стратегия, 2012: 69). Attention is drawn to the need for training in using active learning methods and information and communication technologies. (Стратегия, 2012: 69-70).
In both countries among the priority areas for professional development related to the development of education are: communication skills, strengthening the capacity of professional staff, particularly in the area of innovative teaching methods and management of schools, the use of information and communication technologies.
Гюрова, В. и др. (2006) Интерактивността в учебния процес (или за рибаря, рибките и риболова). София
Департамент за информация и повишаване на квалификацията на учителите – Стара Загора http://dipku-sz.net/
Департамент за информация и усъвършенстване на учители – София http://www.diuu.bg/
Департамент за информация, квалификация и продължаващо образование – Варна http://www.ittd.acad.bg/
Наредба № 5 за условията за повишаване квалификацията на педагогическите кадри в системата на народната просвета и реда за придобиване на професионално-квалификационни степени. Държавен вестник, 6/1997 г., попр., 8/1997 г., доп., 73/1997 г., изм. и доп., 101/1999.
Правилник о сталном стручном усавршавању и стицању звања наставника, васпитача и стручних сарадника. (2005), Службени гласник РС, бр. 14/04 и 56/05
Стратегија развоја образовања у Србији до 2020. године (2012) http://www.mpn.gov.rs
Цветанска, С. (2006) Спорни и безспорни тези за интерактивните методи в началното училище – Начално образование, № 6