Defense Date


Graduation Date

Spring 5-8-2020


Immediate Access

Submission Type


Degree Name



Instructional Technology (EdDIT)


School of Education

Committee Chair

David Carbonara

Committee Member

Melissa Boston

Committee Member

Ellen Gawalt


TPACK, SAMR, Barriers, technology, pedagogy


National statistics show that there are increases in access and availability of computers, and technology, in both the classroom and students’ personal lives (Culp et al. 2005, Hoffman & Ramirez, 2018). However, Tas (2017) and Wachira and Kenngwee (2010) posit that there is stagnation, even declines in certain cases, of the integration of instructional technologies in delivering student center learning in the classroom. This decline is even more prevalent in the science classroom (Vickrey, Golick, & Stains, 2018). Teachers face many challenges in the classroom; especially when technology integration is considered (Blackburn, 2016). This study seeks to determine which conditions exist to create this decline and stagnation, and offer practical solutions to overcome them.

A qualitative study was implemented to determine what training educators receive to deliver science content using technology, and also examine what activities and tools are being used in the secondary science classroom. The greater Pittsburgh and Allegheny County educational district was selected for this study. Results were examined through the lens of the Technological Pedagogical and Content Knowledge (TPACK) paradigm and Substitution Augmentation Modification Redefinition (SAMR) model, with focus on student centered learning (SCL) activities.

An initial survey was completed by 51 teachers, and six teachers were selected for follow up interviews as a part of this study. Those teacher represent both high and low implementers of technology in their classroom, based on their self-reported used of technology. Technology was found to be used on a daily basis on each of these classrooms, however, it was found that no pedagogical training was given to any of the teachers before implementing new technology. True TPACK was only found in two teachers, with daily use of SCL being found in each classroom. No correlation was suggested by increased SCL activities and TPACK, as teachers were employing many SCL activities without TPACK. Only two of the teachers studied offered tasks on the higher levels of SAMR, modification and redefinition.

Three major themes emerged from this study: 1) positive views of technology with no pedagogical training, 2) favorable views of SCL with daily classroom integration, 3) and lack of district or administrative support. Barriers were found in three categories of SCL: pragmatic, pedagogical, and technological.

This study shows that teachers want to use technology, and see it as valued tool. It was discovered that teachers are not being given the tools they need to created technology infused classrooms that represent true TPACK.