Evaluating mobile apps for STEM education with in-service teachers

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2017
Tantu, Özlem
The purpose of the study was to investigate the perceptions of in-service teachers on mobile app evaluation for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) education. This multi-method research was carried out through interviews with 10 teachers from K-12 schools who were experienced in STEM education and versed in educational mobile app use. Participants included one high school physics teacher, five elementary science teachers, and four information and computer technology teachers from both private and public schools in different cities of Turkey in 2016-2017 Spring semester. Data sources of the study were structured interview questions and mobile app evaluation form included in the interview. The mobile app evaluation criteria of in-service teachers were examined coupled with how they perceived STEM education and how they utilized mobile app integration into STEM context to provide a holistic interpretation. As the results indicated, the in-service teachers most commonly emphasized interdisciplinarity and product v development while defining STEM education. They underlined different contributions of STEM education on students such as academic success, positive attitude, skill development, and motivation; contributions on teachers such as job satisfaction and professional development; and contributions on society such as raising individual profile needed, development, finding solutions to society problems and contributions on economy. Within STEM context, teachers reported utilizing mobile apps for assessment, content presentation, scientific measurements, content development, attraction and gamification. According to the in-service teachers, mobile app use positively impacts STEM education practices. They found previously suggested educational mobile app evaluation criteria significant within STEM context and they reported considering further features while selecting mobile apps for STEM education. These results allowed validation and refinement of the mobile app evaluation framework for STEM education and provided recommendations for both mobile learning and STEM education literature. 

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Citation Formats
Ö. Tantu, “Evaluating mobile apps for STEM education with in-service teachers,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2017.