Innovative pedagogical practice with ICT in three Nordic countries – differences and similarities

Three Nordic countries, Denmark, Finland and Norway, participated in the IEA SITES 2006 study. All the three countries have launched huge policy and investment programmes to promote digital literacy and readiness for the information age. In relation to the remarkable Finnish Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) results, it is interesting to see if the Finnish school system may be better suited to ground and contextualize pedagogical practice with Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) than the Danish and Norwegian counterparts. One main difference is that the Finnish system seems to anchor decisions about and interpretations on how ICT should be utilized stronger at the local level than the two other systems. One of the general goals in the policy programmes is to get teachers to innovate with ICT in the classrooms. The Second Information Technology in Education Study (SITES) 2006 indicators for two innovative pedagogical orientations, lifelong learning orientation and connectedness are utilized to compare teachers from the three nations. The main findings is that Finnish teachers are either not differing or they are scoring significantly lower on the two indicators than teachers from Denmark or Norway. The exception is Finnish science teachers who are more inclined towards using ICT in lifelong learning practices than their Danish and Norwegian counterparts. Generally, the Finnish teachers seem to be more autonomous in their pedagogical choices but may also be more conservative than the Danish and Norwegian teachers in making use of ICT.

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