Technology Package for Student Learning Empowerment: Mathematics Courseware for Tablet PC

Advanced Science and Technology Institute (ASTI) and Science Education Institute (SEI)


Organization Type: Government | Category: Internet for Development

Project Summary

This project seeks to contribute to the improved delivery of educational content especially in the primary education, and consequently, to the improvement of the quality of Philippine education. By utilizing efficient and affordable innovations in ICT, the students can adapt to new ways of learning in this information age.

The courseware is composed of ten lessons in mathematics with 16 activities, fixing skills, and evaluation that involves animated interactivities, which is a fun way to engage pupils in learning. The development of the program involved local but highly-skilled talents like graphic artists and programmers. The project also provided the necessary required units of tablet computers for its pilot testing. The pilot testing involved deploying the tablet computers to ten selected schools in the country. Various metrics was used to measure the effectiveness of using tablet computers as a learning tool. A steering committee, composed of key representatives from the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), Department of Education (DepEd), Science Education Institute (DOST-SEI), Advanced Science and Technology Institute (DOST-ASTI), National Institute of Science and Mathematics Education, and a consultant from the Ateneo de Manila University, was created for the pilot testing. The committee identified the ten elementary schools from different parts of the country to be involved in the pilot testing. Specifically, Grade 1 pupils from these schools were the target participants for the pilot testing. The project also provided training to teachers as part of the pilot test deployment and first-level support for deployed units. Moreover, the project adopts a stakeholder approach and shall hold consultative dialogues with various stakeholders, including the Department of Education (DepEd), Science Education institute (SEI), and local electronics designers and manufacturers, for the optimum design and list of specifications of the learning tool suitable for basic education. The project ensures that the bill of materials results to an affordable device.


The Philippine lags behind many other countries in terms of math (and science) expertise, as shown by our students' dismal scores in international and national surveys; for instance, in the Trends in International Math and Sciences Study (TIMSS) since the mid-1990s. Students' scores have increased slightly from 2006 to 2009, according to Department of Education (DepEd) data, but the plethora of remedial classes in schools and colleges may belie this claim.

At the same time, global information technologies have been growing at a fast pace, from gigantic ponderous machines in the 1940s to the sleek miniature powerful phones and tablets that can fit in the palm of our hands. Along with rapid advances in hardware have appeared numerous software applications, initially for military and academic purposes (such as electronic mail) to ubiquitous social media used primarily for pleasure and contact by the general public (such as Facebook and Twitter).

Inevitably, hardware and software have also been retrofitted to fit the needs of education, from open-source codes to open universities; from Powerpoint in presentations to iPads in the classroom. Commercial software, including games, have burgeoned, from well-trusted pioneers such as Jumpstart and Reader Rabbit, to—right now—practically every Juan and Juana who wants to cash in on the urgent need of parents to equip their kids with the most up-to-date educational techniques; the pressing requirements of schools who perennially lack well-trained and well-qualified teachers; the intense hunger of students for lessons that are presented not just in a proper way, but also in an entertaining manner.

Many psychologists and educators have warned against what they deem as the increasing computerization of learning, but then again, several experts say that children (particularly those who do not respond to traditional methods of instruction) learn concepts better with the aid of technology. Learning cannot all be relegated to the computer, but neither can we ignore the possible positive effects of well-designed educational software, given the pressing need to ensure that students learn math (and science) in many meaningful way as possible.

--Excerpt from the Introduction written by Dr. Queena N. Lee-Chua in the Final Report of the project.

The project was born out of the need to uplift the Filipino students' imagination, creativity, and interest in science and mathematics education using modern technology, reaching farther than before and bringing learning to a new level. The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Secretary Mario Montejo recognizes this need, thus he has tasked a Working Group to do the math courseware (done by Filipinos), and to pilot the material, to see if it can make an impact on student learning.


This project nominated to the ISIF Asia award because…

The project should win the award because it uses innovative and sustainable technology and other resources to uplift the quality of education in the Philippines. It employed local talents for the benefits of the marginalized sector and made narrower the technological divide that separates the can-affords and the have-nots.



This project seeks to contribute to the improved delivery of educational content especially in the primary education, and consequently, to the improvement of the quality of Philippine education. By utilizing efficient and affordable innovations in ICT, the students can adapt to new ways of learning in this information age. Specifically, the aims of the project are:

1. To develop material to supplement math teaching and learning in the classroom, based on the concepts in the DepEd's Basic Education curriculum (which was in place when we started the project ; but we also made sure it would be compatible with the proposed Kindergarten to Year 12 curriculum);

2. To test lesson material with various public school students across the country, revise whatever needs correction, and do recommendations in that regard;

3. To train teachers, as needed, to utilize the courseware to maximize its instructional potential;

4. To distribute the courseware (with corresponding hardware units) all over the country, if and once everything is deemed satisfactory.

5. To recommend further steps for future directions based on the results of the project.

Technical details and contribution to innovation

The project used Adobe Flash and the open source FlashDevelop for the software and the Coby touchscreen tablet for the hardware.


The most relevant activities conducted during the course of the project are:

1. Development of the 16 courseware modules (10 math Lessons).

2. Pilot Testing of the courseware on the procured tablet PCs.

3. Statistical analysis and presentation of the pilot testing.

4. Teachers Training.


The most relevant outcomes achieved by the project is the recommendation based on the pilot study with regards to the courseware and tablet PC and their implementation to the various schools in the country. Another outcome of the project is the cooperation among units like the Science Education Institute (SEI) that financed and oversaw the project; the Advanced Science and Technology Institute (ASTI) that provided the hardware and software production skills needed for the project; the Department of Education (DepEd) that made possible the pilot testing of the material in various schools; the National Institute of Science and Mathematics Education (NISMED) that wrote the lesson scripts; and the invaluable support and services of DOST Undersecretary Fortunato dela Peña, DepEd Undersecretary Yolanda Quijano, and Dr. Queena Lee-Chua of Ateneo de Manila University.

Publications and dissemination efforts

Distribution of flyers and conducting and exhibit during media events (like the National Science and Technology Week 2012), and press releases were availed of to disseminate information regarding the project

Awards and distinctions

ADOC (APEC Digital Opportunity Center) International Award for the e-Nutrition project; National Invention Contest and Exhibits (NICE) Award


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