James Cernansky

Date Approved


Embargo Period


Document Type


Degree Name

Ed.D. Educational Leadership


Educational Leadership


College of Education

First Advisor

Sudeck, Maria


Web-based instruction; High school teachers--Attitudes; Tablet computers


Elementary and Middle and Secondary Education Administration


The mental model shift of high school teachers regarding instructional methods related to online instructional tools was examined in this ethnographic study. The actual change in instructional techniques was also examined. Ethnographic research design was employed using teacher interviews, teacher survey, classroom observations, and lesson plan examination. The study took place at a comprehensive public high school in the mid-Atlantic region with approximately 1900 students and 200 staff members. The researcher found that a positive mental model change did occur after one year of a one-to-one iPad initiative. Teachers reported that they used online instructional tools to motivate their students with relevant and contemporary lessons. During observations the researcher found that teachers did, in fact, use the online instructional tools that they discussed in the interviews and surveys. Teachers were, however, concerned about the rigor of using online instructional tools in their instructional methods. The researcher concluded that there was a positive mental model change related to online instructional tools and that teachers utilized more online instructional methods after the implementation of the one-to-one iPad initiative.