Technology can have a significant and positive impact in the classroom. But there’s a dilemma: Teachers not only need to get the technology into their classroom but they also need to learn to how effectively use it.

This is the challenge that WSU graduate student Mykala Anglin has embraced. She is determined to create content specifically designed to teach educators how to successfully use technology in the classroom.

Anglin’s advocacy for technology literacy is why she has been awarded the 2019 Ferrucci Distinguished Educator Award from the Washington State University’s College of Education.

“There is so much about technology that teachers can benefit from, the challenging part is figuring out how to access these materials and learning how to utilize them in a classroom setting,” said Anglin, who is expected to graduate this spring with a master’s degree in special education.

The missing link

Last spring Anglin enrolled in Don McMahon’s Assistive Technology (AT) course. In this class, she had the opportunity to enhance her skills in technology to reach a more diverse population of learners.

She credits McMahon for teaching her a few different methods of learning, such as how some students are audible learners, some learn from hands-on material, and other students benefit from learning technologically.

“This new world of Augmented and Virtual reality, iPads, and HoloLenses could be the missing piece that educators, and students specifically, deserve to learn from effectively,” said Anglin, who currently is working full-time in McMahon’s lab.

She developed a passion for this when she realized there was a link between technology and education and the Universal Design for Learning.

“Implementing technology is a great way to engage students in a new way and to allow for new research to come through in the field of education,” she said.

“With this scholarship I am looking forward to having an expertise in AT and outreach,” she said. “This way, when I do become a full time educator, I will be able to assist in creating a community of educators who are also knowledgeable in the field of technology.”

The Ferrucci Award

The Ferrucci award is named for Dr. Vitt and Mary Ferrucci. It is a salaried summer sabbatical, of up to six weeks, on the WSU Pullman campus. It is given each year to one outstanding K-12 science, mathematics, or technology teacher. Recipients of this award receive paid travel, lodging, and project expenses as well as a stipend.