Nature of the engagement activity/project

The Integrated Schools ICT Development and Improvement Project

This project aims at the promotion of more effective ICT school usage for management, administration as well as
introducing ICTs for teaching and learning. It is designed to allow schools (teachers and learners) to identify and act on
problems they identify related to ICT usage.

During meetings of the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University’s Centre for Educational Research Technology and
Innovation (CERTI) throughout 2007, teachers and principals who are part of the Science Mathematics Information in
Schools (SMIS) and Hermann Ohlthaver Trust project, voiced their concerns and needs related to computers, e.g. the
Internet has to be introduced to teachers and learners, but teachers do not have access  to the Internet, nor do they
know how to introduce the Internet, or how to implement Internet or related strategies in teaching and learning.
As a result of the above, the following aims emerged:
*  To develop a strategy (Cyberhunts) to introduce the participating teachers to the Internet in
     an integrative manner.

* To establish what the problems, concerns and barriers are that mitigate against the
      implementation and integration of the Cyberhunts as an ICT learning and teaching strategy
     and how the identified barriers can be addressed.

*  To establish, on a continuous basis, how participants experienced the professional training
      development process used to prepare them for Cyberhunt implementation in order to
      address teacher needs during the process with a view to make any necessary changes and to
      assist with future planning and teacher development-training sessions.

*  To ascertain whether the Cyberhunt approach can address the critical outcomes of the South
    African National Curriculum Statement.

*  To establish to what extent the Cyberhunt approach can enhance motivation and interest in
    teachers as well as collaboration

It was also envisaged that the research findings would make a contribution towards computer technology integration
within the curriculum at the participating schools and that the participating teachers would serve to inform the
debate and contribute to future teacher development programs related to ICT. These outcomes were sought, as it has
been argued that Cyberhunts have the potential to address the development of the critical outcomes that form the
basis of Outcomes Based Education (OBE) as indicated in Curriculum 2005 (1997), the Revised National Curriculum
Statement (Department of Education, 2002), the Paper on e-Learning (Department of Education, 2004) and the current
National Curriculum Statement (NCS) in South Africa.

The project is linked to all four of the NMMU engagement categories (Click here to view the table).

Please note:

It should be emphasized that the activities and categories are often linked, interdependent, synergistic and
integrated, but for purposes of providing a diagrammatic representation of the NMMU Engagement Conceptual
Framework they are separated (Click here to view the table).

Department of Education [DOE] (1997). Curriculum 2005: Lifelong Learning for the 21st Century - A User's Guide.
Retrieved March 31, 2002 from

Department of Education [DOE] (2002). Strategy for Information and Communication Technology in Education [SICTE].
Department of Education and Department of Communications 22 January 2002 Retrieved March 3, 2002 from

Department of Education [DOE] (2003). Transforming Learning and Teaching through Information and Communication
Technologies. (Draft White Paper on e-Education of September 2003). Retrieved February, 22, 2008 from

Department of Education [DOE] (2004). Transforming Learning and Teaching through Information and Communication
Technologies. (Draft White Paper on e-Education, Government Gazette, 246 August 2004): Gazetted Version.
Retrieved February, 25, 2008 from

Lawless, K.A., & Pellegrino, J.W. (2007). Professional Development in Integrating Technology Into Teaching and
Learning: Knows, Unknows, and Ways to Pursue Better Questions and Answers. Review of Educational
Research, 77(4), 575-614. Retrieved June 25, 2009 from

Watson, G. (2001). Models of Information Technology Teacher Professional Development that Engage with Teachers’
Hearts and Minds. Journal of Information Technology for Teacher Education, 10 (1and2), 179-191.