Using EnvisionIT to Teach Information Technology Skills
What is the evidence base?
This is an evidence-based practice for students with disabilities including students with intellectual disabilities and students with learning disabilities based on two methodologically sound group experimental studies with random assignment across 395 participants.
Where is the best place to find out how to do this practice?
EnvisionIT is a free curriculum. The curriculum and teacher resources are available at https://nisonger.osu.edu/research/envision-it/what-is-envisionit/
With whom was it implemented?
- Students with, or at-risk for, disabilities (2 studies, N = 395)
- 40 students with ID
- 91 students with LD
- 26 students with ADHD
- 17 students with AU
- 7 students with ED
- 2 students with S/L
- 32 “other disability”
- 180 students at-risk for disabilities
- Ages ranged from 14–18 (9th–12th grade)
- Males (n = 86), females (n = 67), not specified (n = 242)
- White (n = 139)
- “some minority status” (e.g., African American/Latinx, n = 11)
- None reported (n = 242)
What is the practice?
EnvisionIT has been defined as a curriculum focused on informational technology that integrates reading, writing, and technology content. It also includes instruction on (a) use of Internet to explore careers, complete age-appropriate transition assessments, and develop self-directed transition plans, and (b) how to complete online job and college applications” (Izzo et al., 2010, pp. 96-97).
The EnvisionIT curriculum is designed to teach fundamental 21st century skills to students with and without disabilities in four areas: transition planning/career readiness, information technology (IT) literacy, reading/writing, financial literacy. Activities leading up to the compilation of a Transition Portfolio include:
- Completing online learning and transition assessments
- Researching careers and postsecondary programs
- Developing a resume and cover letter
- Writing a personal statement and career narrative
- Completing employment and college applications
In the studies used to establish the evidence base for using EnvisionIT to teach information technology skills included using the EnvisionIT curriculum with 12 units. Implementation varied with some teachers implementing the curriculum every day for a 48-minute period in semester-long classes and others using an integrated schedule of a full week per month or a few days per week in full-year classes (Izzo et al., 2010). The EnvisionIT curriculum was delivered via an online course management system, Schoology and was designed to engage students in transition assessment and planning activities, while teaching reading and digital literacy skills to efficiently use the Internet to navigate educational, college, and career websites as students are taught to utilize specific key reading strategies (e.g., concept mapping, skimming and scanning, compare and contrast, summarizing; Lombardi et al., 2017). Information technology literacy increased for the intervention groups in both studies.
Where has it been implemented?
- Special and regular education classrooms (n = 2 studies)
How does this practice relate to Common Core Standards?
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.11-12.6: Production and Distribution of Writing – Use technology, including the Internet, to produce, publish, and update individual or shared writing products in response to ongoing feedback, including new arguments or information.
How does this practice relate to the Common Career Technical Core?
- Act as a responsible and contributing citizen and employee. Career-ready individuals understand the obligations and responsibilities of being a member of a community, and they demonstrate this understanding every day through their interactions with others. They are conscientious of the impacts of their decisions on others and the environment around them. They think about the near-term and long-term consequences of their actions and seek to act in ways that contribute to the betterment of their teams, families, community and workplace. They are reliable and consistent in going beyond the minimum expectation and in participating in activities that serve the greater good.
- Communicate clearly, effectively and with reason. Career-ready individuals communicate thoughts, ideas and action plans with clarity, whether using written, verbal and/ or visual methods. They communicate in the workplace with clarity and purpose to make maximum use of their own and others’ time. They are excellent writers; they master conventions, word choice and organization and use effective tone and presentation skills to articulate ideas. They are skilled at interacting with others; they are active listeners and speak clearly and with purpose. Career-ready individuals think about the audience for their communication and prepare accordingly to ensure the desired outcome.
References used to establish this evidence base:
Lombardi, A. R., Izzo, M. V., Rifenbark, G. G., Murray, A., Buck, A., Monahan, J., & Gelbar, N. (2017). The impact of an online transition curriculum on secondary student reading: A multilevel examination. Career Development and Transition for Exceptional Individuals, 40(1), 15–24. https://doi.org/10.1177/2165143416681287
Izzo, M. V., Yurick, A., Nagaraja, H. N., & Novak, J. A. (2010). Effects of a 21st-century curriculum on students’ information technology and transition skills. Career Development for Exceptional Individuals, 33(2), 95–105. https://doi.org/10.1177/0885728810369348