Document Type



Doctor of Philosophy


Education, Educational Leadership & Policy Studies

Date of Defense


Graduate Advisor

Matthew Davis


Thomasina Hassler


Keith Miller

Carl Hoagland


The purpose of this study is to assess the intersection of teachers in urban public schools’ digital beliefs and with their technology practices in the classroom, especially in classrooms where most students are students of color. It examines some subtopics of the primary research question, including what beliefs tech-savvy teachers hold about how technology should be used in classrooms, whether teachers use technology to empower students and encourage creativity, whether teachers integrate students’ self-created digital identities in a classroom setting, and how school- or district-level expectations and support regarding technology integration into classroom settings impact teachers’ implementation and students’ experiences. Examining these aspects of technology in the classroom and teachers’ beliefs sheds light on what training may facilitate student-centered technology use, and what may currently be standing in the way of effective implementation. This is a first step in ensuring that aspects of real-life scenarios are being considered in the research that informs policy and that inspires future research topics via the case study methodology.