Content Tech: Using Technology with Classroom Instruction that Works

Content Tech
Ideas for Technology Use in the Classroom

We are familiar with Marzano’s research in Classroom Instruction that Works. In 2007, MCREL released a supporting book, Using Technology with Classroom Instruction that Works. What is terrific about this book is that it puts technology in the proper place – as a tool to support research-proven instructional strategies.

I’m going to take the next series of Content Tech posts to highlight the book, and discuss ways it can help us specifically in our setting here at Heim. I invite you to provide feedback and conversation through comments here or f2f discussion.

The introduction frames how technology fits in, by providing planning questions for instruction, instructional strategies that work, and then categories of technology available.

The four planning questions for instruction, and the associated Marzano strategies are:

  • What will students learn?
    • Setting objectives
  • Which strategies will provide evidence of student learning?
    • Providing feedback
    • Providing recognition
  • Which strategies will help students acquire and integrate learning?
    • Cues, questions and advance organizers
    • Nonlinguistic representation
    • Summarizing and note taking
    • Cooperative learning
    • Reinforcing effort
  • Which strategies will help students practice, review, and apply learning?
    • Identifying similarities and differences
    • Homework and practice
    • Generating and testing hypotheses

Note that 2 of the original 9 strategies have been split above in order for them to be addressed more specifically.

Technology to support the above questions/strategies have been broken into the following seven categories:

  • Word processing applications
  • Spreadsheet software
  • Organizing and brainstorming software
  • Multimedia
  • Data collection tools
  • Web resources
  • Communication software

The following matrix shows which categories of technology best support which strategies (click to enlarge):

I’ll be exploring each of the strategies and supporting technologies in coming weeks. What initial thoughts/comments do you have about looking at technology this way?

Image citations:

“Book Cover.” Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. 5 Nov.
2008 <>.

“Matrix.” Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. 5 Nov. 2008







5 responses to “Content Tech: Using Technology with Classroom Instruction that Works”

  1. Howard Pitler Avatar

    Our intent was to do exactly as you stated, show how technology is used to support sound instructional pedagogy. I am glad you liked the work.


  2. Michael Avatar

    Thank you for dropping by, Howard and thanks to you and your colleagues for the book. Its easy to get caught up in the newest technology, but at the end of the day its good teaching and learning that is most important.

  3. Matt Kuhn Avatar

    I am one of the coauthors of “Using Technology with Classroom Instruction that Works.” We love to see how technology continues to evolve and add to the body of work in the book. You can find more Tech-CITW resources at BTW, check out McREL’s blog at

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