PCK and TPACK

Shulman (1986) defined pedagogical content knowledge (PCK) as blended pedagogy and subject matter knowledge for effective teaching. PCK requires educators who are knowledgeable about their subjects and who can teach those subjects in a clear and effective manner utilizing their previously accumulated instructional experience. Mishra and Koehler (2007) extended Shulman’s concept of PCK by introducing technology, an aspect that has become a crucial part of modern education. Educators practice teaching in highly complex, dynamic classroom settings (Leinhardt & Greeno, 1986) that require them to shift and evolve their understanding regularly. Thus, effective teaching depends on integrated knowledge from different areas: knowledge of student understanding and learning, knowledge of subject matter, and further, knowledge of technology. TPCK incorporates all the teaching elements educators need to understand to create an effective technology-enhanced learning environment for different types of learners.

One example of TPCK in a beginner programming class can be the use of Scratch. Scratch is a graphically oriented programming tool that can alleviate the steep learning curve or fear of programming as a beginner. Also, it helps learners understand difficult programming concepts easily.

References:

Leinhardt, G., & Greeno, J.G. (1986). The cognitive skill of teaching. Journal of Educational Psychology, 78(2), 75-95.

Mishra, P., & Koehler, M. (2007). Technological pedagogical content knowledge (TPCK): Confronting the wicked problems of teaching with technology. In C. Crawford et al. (Eds.), Proceedings of Society for Information Technology and Teacher Education International Conference 2007 (pp. 2214-2226). Chesapeake, VA: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education.

Shulman, L.S. (1986). Those who understand: Knowledge growth in teaching. Educational Researcher, 15(2), 4 -14.

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