Integrating Technology into Secondary Social Studies Curricula

Ronald G. Helms

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The study indicated that two social studies methods courses could infuse technological skills toward technology considerations. The author concludes that a generic technology course was not necessary for the students to learn technological skills.

Clearly the richness of the technology aspect of the methods courses required much more professor preparation planning and time, and also involved supplemental lessons taught by technologists. The ongoing demand of NCATE Program Reports, federal and state assessments, curricular redesign, and ongoing university course alignments require course and professor time as well.

Modern technology skills and instruction greatly exceed the expectations of those in the past decade. The author concludes that the social studies program of study should incorporate a specific high-level technology course; thus allowing for technology skills to be “infused” in the social studies methods courses.

While the author concludes that the technology infusion is successful, the time demands of current technology and program assessments lead the author to conclude that basic technology skills are best taught in an independent technology course and then finely tuned in the social studies methods course.



International Society for Technology in Education (1996). National educational technology standards. Eugene, OR.

Lee, J. K. (2008). Toward democracy: Social studies and TPCK. In the AACTE Committee on Innovation and Technology (Ed.), Handbook of technological pedagogical content knowledge (TPCK) for educators (pp. 129-144). New York: Routledge.

National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (1994). NCATE standards: Unit standards. Washington, D.C.

National Council for the Social Studies. (1971). Social Studies Curriculum Guidelines, Washington, DC: NCSS

National Council for the Social Studies. (2000). National standards for social studies teachers, Washington, DC: NCSS

Wright State University (n.d.). Conceptual Framework. Retrieved from

Wright State University (n.d.). Technology in the College of Education and Human Services.
Retrieved from

Appendix A

Some examples of candidate’s PowerPoint Lessons are located at

Candidates are encouraged to review and to borrow ideas in developing their own classroom lessons. Candidates’ lessons that illustrate state and NCSS standards may be viewed at

Candidate resource units are available at

Global education units are available at

Other aspects of globalization are available at

Candidate presentations on aspects of diversity are viewed at

Appendix B

Please complete the following survey by selecting one of the choices (indicating your best estimate of your skill or knowledge level) about each of the technology or social studies related indicators.

Survey Key:
A = Strongly Agree
B = Somewhat Agree
C = Neutral
D = Somewhat Disagree
E = Strongly Disagree

Part One: Technology Indicators

As an education student I currently have the following knowledge, skill or ability:

1. Solve common printing problems

2. Use advanced features of a word processor (tables, headers and footers, macros, table of contents, columns, etc.)

3. Copy a graphic from a Web site

4. Create and use bookmarks/favorites

5. Cut, copy, and paste text both within an application and between multiple open applications

6. Merge information from a database into a word processing document (mail merge)

7. Download and decompress files

8. Subscribe and unsubscribe from a mailing list (listserv)

9. Scan a document

10. Create a Web page

11. Create and maintain backups

12. Open a file from a floppy disk or a local or network hard drive; save a file to a floppy disk or

13. to a specific location on a local or network hard drive

14. Configure computer to connect with network

15. Reduce, enlarge, or crop a graphic and convert graphics from one file format to another

16. Format/initialize a disk

17. Setup computer system and connect peripheral devices

18. Record an audio file or digitize a video clip

19. Access a specific Web page (URL) and search the Web using a variety of tools

20. Install application software

21. Create an electronic presentation

22. Manage names and groups in an address book

23. Create, copy, move, rename, and delete folders

24. Send e-mail messages and send/receive attachments

25. Use formulas and/or functions in a spreadsheet

26. Create a graph from spreadsheet data

27. Allocate memory to an application (Mac only)

28. Start up and shut down the computer; open and close an application/program; insert and eject a removable disk (floppy disk, CD-ROM)

29. Create a report (query/find request) in a database and sort the results

30. Correct a locked-up computer

Part Two: Professional Preparation Performance Profile

As an education student I currently have the following knowledge, skill or ability:

32. Identify the benefits of technology to maximize student learning and facilitate higher order thinking skills

33. Differentiate between appropriate and inappropriate uses of technology for teaching and learning while using electronic resources to design and implement learning activities

34. Identify technology resources available in schools and analyze how accessibility to those resources affects planning for instruction

35. Identify, select, and use hardware and software technology resources specially designed for use by PK/12 students to meet specific teaching and learning objectives

36. Plan for the management of electronic instructional resources within a lesson design by identifying potential problems and planning for solutions

37. Identify specific technology applications and resources that maximize student learning, address learner needs, and affirm diversity

38. Design and teach technology-enriched learning activities that connect content standards with student technology standards and meet the diverse needs of students

39. Design and peer teach a lesson that meets content area standards and reflects the current best practices in teaching and learning with technology

40. Plan and teach student-centered learning activities and lessons in which students apply technology tools and resources

41. Research and evaluate the accuracy, relevance, appropriateness, comprehensiveness, and bias of electronic information resources to be used by students

42. Discuss technology-based assessment and evaluation strategies

43. Examine multiple strategies for evaluating technology-based student products and the processes used to create those products

44. Examine technology tools used to collect, analyze, interpret, represent, and communicate student performance data

45. Integrate technology-based assessment strategies and tools into plans for evaluating specific learning activities

46. Develop a portfolio of technology-based products from course work, including the related assessment tools

47. Identify and engage in technology-based opportunities for professional education and lifelong learning, including the use of distance education

48. Apply online and other technology resources to support problem solving and related decision making for maximizing student learning

49. Participate in online professional collaborations with peers and experts

50. Use technology productivity tools to complete required professional tasks

51. Identify technology-related legal and ethical issues, including copyright, privacy, and security of technology systems, data, and information

52. Examine acceptable use policies for the use of technology in schools, including strategies for addressing threats to security of technology systems, data, and information

53. Identify issues related to equitable access to technology in school, community, and home environments

54. Identify safety and health issues related to technology use in schools

55. Identify and use assistive technologies to meet the special physical needs of students.



helms photo

Ronald G. Helms, is a full professor, one of two national auditors for NCSS NCATE Program Reviews, a member of NCATE Board of Examiners, National Board for Professional Teacher Standards facilitator, and the Principal Investigator at Wright State University for a NBPTS institute. Helms is active with OCSS and NCSS for the past 45 years, and is currently serving on the Teacher of the Year Committee and the NCSS/NCATE Program Review Committee.

Correspondence can be sent to College of Education and Human Services, Wright State University, 321 Allyn Hall, Centerville, Ohio, 4549.



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Meridian: A K-12 School Computer Technologies Journal
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Volume 13, Issue 2, 2011
ISSN 1097-9778
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