The purpose of this research was to understand how and why home educators are schooling their children using technology. First, I explore how home educators use technology for homeschooling. Second, I investigate how home educators see themselves as teachers when using technology. Several themes emerged from the data revealing that home educators believe technology enables them to provide high quality curriculum and individualized instruction and to create a constructive and engaging learning environment for their children. Data were collected by convenience sampling with a survey of 316 ( N = 316) home educators from 52 different territories, states, provinces, and countries across the globe, a nonrandom sample which is not representative of the entire homeschooling population. The quantitative data provide a specific picture of home education, reasons for homeschooling, and home educators’ perceptions of technology use in their homeschool. Qualitative data were obtained through open-ended questions on the questionnaire and through thirteen in-depth interviews with home educators from the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. Data analysis was inductive, using a constant comparative methodology to identify meanings and values held by homeschool parents providing an important part of the overall picture. The data in this study show that home educators use technology to evaluate and purchase curriculum, to deliver and supplement instruction, to offer what they see as an appropriate and personalized education, and to gain social, emotional, and professional support from other homeschoolers. Results of this study suggest that using technology to access a wide variety of curricula, to connect with and support fellow teachers, and to provide individualized instruction in an engaging environment might lead to better educational experiences for numerous students and teachers.
|Commitee:||Ng, Jennifer C., Rice, Suzanne, Rury, John L., White, Steven H., Zhao, Yong|
|School:||University of Kansas|
|Department:||Educational Leadership and Policy Studies|
|School Location:||United States -- Kansas|
|Source:||DAI-A 80/06(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Education, Educational technology|
|Keywords:||Education, Homeschoolers, Homeschooling, Parents, Teachers, Technology|
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