Research on use of CBIs - Irish - Drumcondra Education Centre - Interactive Whiteboards

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Research on use of CBIs - Irish

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CBI Interactive Whiteboard Project - DEC, ICS, CESI

(In case you arrive at this page via an Internet Search, click here to get to the CBI Project Homepage)

PDST (formerly NCTE) has an Advice Sheet at (accessed May 2015)

Why use an Interactive Whiteboard? What does the Research tell us?

Follow this link to read a Qualitative Report on our CBI Project (this is a 57 KB PDF file)...our Research Partner has noted

  • Improved Lessson Planning
  • More Varied, Creative and Engaging Classrooms
  • A change in the traditional approach to teaching
  • Better and more meaningful ICT integration

Follow this link to read what our Irish Project Teachers have said about using the CBIs

On 3rd Decemeber 2007, we held a Project Symposium at which a number of papers/findings were presented. Follow the link to CBIsymposium2007.pdf (6 Mb) to learn more. Bridget Somekh also presented at this symposium - read her more detailed British-based report at

Follw this link to read what has the Ennis Study told us?

Follw this link to read research observations by one of the teachers in the Project AWthesis2006.doc (24 KB, .doc file)

Catherine Byrne had written a paper "The Use of the Interactive Whiteboard in the Teaching of Mathematics in the Primary School Curriculum" ...this had been on the site - I cannot locate this now but note other and more recent 'whiteboard' links on associated with Keith Johnston, Dr Sara Hennessy (her 2013 presentation is available at - 15 Mb pptx)

In relation to a Post-Primary Maths class that I visited, I noted:

  • Plotting Points - fun-based learning
  • A 'game' is better than doing it in the copies
  • They like to share out the 'goes'
  • Using a Teachnet resource for plotting points
  • Straight lines with Intellipen (this is a feature of the Cambridge-Hitachi board)
  • Changing the Colour is very important
  • So much faster and neater (e.g. Bar Charts)

Follow this link to read Becta's review of the Research Literature. Becta no longer exists so I am glad to have garnered the relevant points at the time!

My notes from workshops attended at BETT 2006 (the notes are in .doc format):

My notes from David O'Grady's 'IWB Literature Review' Presentation, Citywest, 2010 are at DOGrady_LiteratureReview2010.pdf

Despite the changing economic situation, schools continue to invest in CBIs. Perhaps much of this investment is through the fund-raising efforts of parents? As with all initiatives, the role of the Leader/Principal is hugely significant. The region of schools served by Drumcondra Education Centre is not untypical (indeed, it may have a higher number of schools with Disadvantaged Status than others) and I have watched the penetration of CBIs in those schools:

  • In 2005, NCTE estimated there were CBIs in 3% of schools (source: NCTE Census of infrastruture
  • In 2007, nearly 15% of Druncondra schools had invested in CBIs
  • At the beginning of 2008, 25% of Drumcondra schools were using CBIs
  • By the end of 2008, at least 35% of Drumcondra schools are using CBIs
  • I no longer have direct access to the 'Drumondra Schools' but I have kept a watching brief over this area! So I can add that ...By October 2010, at least 45% of Drumcondra Schools are using IWBs. At Post-Primary Level, this would include at least 40% while at Primary Level this would include at least 47% of schools. The '45%' figure mirrors exactly that mentioned by Simon Lewis in his (then) article at (link has since changed or been removed)
  • Lord David Puttman (in his Keynote address at the Irish Teaching and Learning Festival, CityWest, Oct 15th 2010) referenced the following: 43% of Irish Classrooms now have an IWB, which is well ahead of the European average; 7,200 boards were purchased in the last 12 months alone, which represents 20% of Irish Classrooms
  • According to statistics presented by David O'Grady (Mary Immaculate College) at the Irish Teaching and Learning Festival (CityWest, Dublin, 16th Oct 2010) Ireland in 2009 ranked in Fourth place (after U.K., Denmark and Netherlands) in terms of Classroom Penetration of IWBs ..having not featured at all in 2008. David's statistics were drawn from 'Analysing the Future of Classroom Display Technology - July 2010' by FutureSource Consulting - see
  • The question now is not "How many schools are using IWBs?" but "How many schools have IWBs in most or all of the classroooms?". This is a significant techology shift which, if supported and integrated, can represent a significant shift in pedagogy
  • As of end of November 2010, I can attest to the fact that (at least) 54% of Northside Schools have installed IWBs
  • Simon Lewis at (dated 13 June 2012) estimates that "85-90% of classrooms in Ireland have a projector or full IWB set up" a figure with which I would agree

Policy: What is the view on IWBs from 'the official side'? What has Minsiter Hanafin said ..What has Minister O'Keefe not said?? Read my review of the evidence gathered in this pdf document CBIpolicy2009.pdf

Interactive??? In what ways can we (as Teachers) make our whiteboard activity 'interactive'? I have prepared advice regarding the interactions for SMART, ActivStudio and ActivPrimary ...follow these links for SMART, ActivStudio, and ActivPrimary. Please note that these documents refer to the technical interactions supported by the respective whiteboard software. However, the key underlying principle is that when used effectively and appropriately, whiteboards can support the interactive classroom ...use CBIs as you would any other tool ...use directed teaching where appropriate ...don't overuse any one approach ...manage the learning ...use collaborative learning approaches where appropriate. While the Data Projector can be a window into the 'real world' CBIs can be a doorway ...use whiteboards so that your students can see and manipulate virtual objects and concepts. The interactive whiteboard is the collaborative work surface where you and your class together create 'learning artefacts'.


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