Date of Award

Spring 2020

Document Type

Open Access Dissertation


Educational Studies

First Advisor

Michael Grant


The purpose of this action research was to evaluate the impact of a situated coaching model for participating teachers at an elementary school. This study focused on three research questions: (1) how do participants experience a situated coaching model for technology professional development? (2) how does a situated coaching model affect participants’ digital learning environment scores? and (3) how does a situated coaching model impact participants’ perception of barriers to implementing a digital learning environment?

This study situated a coach in an elementary school to work with four teachers over a six-week period in modeling, co-planning, co-teaching, and observing classroom lessons while providing feedback. Data were collected through semi-structured interviews before and after the intervention, reflection journals maintained by participants during the coaching relationship, and classroom observations postintervention.

Data were compared using a convergent parallel mixed methods approach. Qualitative data were analyzed using inductive analysis techniques to arrive at themes. Quantitative data were analyzed through descriptive statistics. Six themes emerged from the data: (a) changes in attitudes toward technology, (b) barriers to integration, (c) changes in instructional practices and thinking, (d) effective characteristics of this situated coaching intervention and impactful coaching activities, (e) participants’ preparedness for fostering a digital learning environment as described by the ELEOT, and (f) unquantified progress.

Findings indicate participants perceived situated coaching as an effective form of professional development due to specific characteristics (e.g., extended duration, responsiveness to needs, active learning experiences, coherence) and activities (e.g., modeling, co-teaching, and collaborating). Observed frequency of student technology use for gathering/using/evaluating information increased; observed frequencies of use for the other two ELEOT Digital Learning Environment indicators did not change. This model helped participants overcome barriers of a lack of support and a lack of confidence, but was not able to remove barriers of time, classroom management concerns related to technology use, and outside expectations. Implications of findings for technology professional development and for future research are discussed. Limitations of this study included aspects of the study design, the participant population, and the possible influence of my dual role of researcher and school administrator.