Evaluation of GirlTECH:

Outcomes and elements for success

Julie Foertsch & Baine B. Alexander LEAD Center, Univ. of Wisconsin-Madison


Methodology || Immediate Outcomes || Long-term Outcomes || Value Ratings || Guidelines

Methodology of the evaluation:

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Immediate outcomes of the GirlTECH workshop:

When asked to rate their satisfaction with the workshop on a 4-point scale, 84% of survey respondents gave it the highest rating of "extremely satisfied" and the remaining 16% gave it the second-highest rating of "satisfied."

All of the interviewees and focus group participants spoke highly of the workshop and the value of the Internet training they received there, though some felt the workshop should be longer or that it should place more emphasis on integrating pre-existing Internet materials into the curriculum.

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Long-term outcomes of GirlTECH:

1. More-varied and more frequent use of computers as instructional tools.

While many participants were already using computers in their classrooms before the workshop, computer use after the workshop became more varied and more frequent:

Changes in how participants used computers in the classroom
Uses of computers in educational settings Before After Change
Used for writing/word processing 18 21 +3
Used as an instructional tool 18 20 +2
Communicated with colleagues 14 21 +7
Prepared lesson plans 13 17 +4
Used for bookkeeping 10 13 +3
Found lesson plans/ideas on the Internet 9 17 +8
Found info about teacher enhancement programs/grants 5 17 +12
Other 5 9 +4
Never used/minimally used a computer 1 0 -1


Changes in frequency of use of computers as instructional tools.

How frequently computers are used as instructional tools Before After Change
Less than once per month 3 0 -3
Once per month 2 1 -1
Once every two weeks 2 0 -2
Once a week 1 0 -1
2-3 times a week 2 3 +1
Almost daily 10 16 +6


2. Considerable success in achieving the objectives of computer-based instruction


Degree to which participants achieved the objectives of the computer-based instruction in their courses
Objectives to be achieved achieved or made good progress still a major barrier Mean rating*
Motivating students during activities/instruction100%0%1.33
Keeping students on task and engaged in assigned activity100%0%1.39
Ensuring equitable computer access between students89%6%1.56
Giving students a sense of competence and achievement95%0%1.63
Integrating network activities into the curriculum61%6%2.00
Finding age-appropriate instructional materials68%0%2.11
Having sufficient time to complete activities during classes58%17%2.44
Finding enough time to prepare activities33%33%2.80
*Rating scale: 1=achieved the objective, 2=made good progress, 3=made some progress, 4=still a major barrier

3. Effects on participants' schools.

About a quarter of the participants reported having a tangible impact on the technological acceptance and knowledge of teachers in their school or on their school's commitment to technology. These effects included:


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Participants' value ratings of various aspects of GirlTECH

Aspects of the workshop Mean rating of value*
Internet/network training1.11
Receiving an email address at Rice University1.17
Email discussion group with other participants1.39
The leverage provided by the connection with Rice 1.41
Web production training1.44
Working/meeting other teachers1.50
Technical assistance by Rice staff1.56
Talks by Dr. Tapia about gender/ethnicity issues2.47
Talks by industry people2.78
Talks by graduate students3.00
*Value scale: 1= extremely valuable, 2=valuable, 3=somewhat valuable, 4=not valuable

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Seven guidelines for a successful K-12 teacher enhancement program
on Internet-based instruction and computational science awareness: