Representations and uses of digital technology in primary school teaching: a comparative study between two French overseas collectivities in the South Pacific.
Keywords:comparative education, digital technology, social representations, primary school teachers
The aim of this descriptive, qualitative study was to collect the representations and feelings concerning the use of digital technology in the education of teachers and educational consultants in two French overseas territories, French Polynesia and New Caledonia. As this is an exploratory study, we did not formulate hypotheses, but rather sought information regarding expectations regarding differences and trends in perceptions and practices according to (1) the territory, (2) the status and (3) the gender of the individuals interviewed.
The results indicated that (1) social representations associated with digital technology are almost identical in the two territories, a similarity most likely linked to the influence of French educational directives on local policies regarding digital technology in schools; (2) the duties carried out by the interviewees seem to influence the representations and discourses: the teachers are concerned by the use of digital technology in the classroom versus the educational consultants by training issues; (3) the discourse appears to be gendered: the men’s discourse is centred on digital tools, the women’s discourse is centred on the pupil and the contribution of digital technology (difficulties and advantages).
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