TEACHERS ICT FACILITIES UTILIZATION AND STUDENTS ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE IN PUBLIC
Background to the study
The application of Information and Communications Technology (ICTs) in education has revolutionized teaching and learning. Students with diverse learning styles are able to maximize their learning potential when instructors use ICT to support their teachings. ICT enables the learners to be more independent, reflective and self-regulated in their learning process. In addition, ICT makes it possible to deliver virtual instruction to students outside the classroom. ICTs help students master materials and skills though it depends on the teacher’s instructional goal, students’ levels, instructional needs and available resources. Stephen, Technology teaching strategies are often based on cognitive view of teaching and learning. Teachers here are viewed as facilitators and collaborators with students as they learn, rather than as experts imparting knowledge. There also tend to be strong emphasis on the use of problem-solving and research skills as students take more active role in defining, developing their ideas. Areas teachers can use ICTs in their teaching are broad, as with most developments in technology, new tools and techniques are developed every day. Even though such teaching strategies are very expensive to come by, they are exciting. Examples of such facilities are the use of multimedia, C.D Rom, web-based instructions (WBI), the intelligent tutoring systems (ITS), Virtual reality (VR), Audio visual aid, computer-assisted instruction and a host of other recent development network. Stephen et al (2000). The impact of ICTs on learning is in relation to use of digital media, primarily computers and internet to facilitate teaching and learning. ICTs are the technologies used in conveying, manipulation and storage of data by electronic means. They provide powerful tools that may help in transforming the present isolated teacher-centered and text-bound classrooms into rich-student-focused, interactive knowledge environments. To meet these challenges, learning institutions must embrace the new technologies and appropriate ICT tools for learning. The direct link between ICT use and students’ study habits and academic performances have been the focus of extensive literature during the last two decades. Some of them help students with their learning by improving the communication between them and the instructors (Valasidou and Bousiou, 2005).
Leuven et al. (2004) stated that there is no evidence for a relationship between increased educational use of ICT and students’ performance. In fact, they find a consistently negative and marginally significant relationship between ICT use and some student achievement measures. In support to these, some students may use ICT to increase their leisure time and have less time to study. Online gaming and increased communication channels do not necessarily mean increased achievement. On the other hand, Abdulla, Al-Hawaj and Twizell (2008) stated that ICT has the potential to transform the nature of education, where and how learning takes place and the roles of students and teachers in the learning process. Karim and Hassan (2006) noted the exponential growth in digital information, which changes the way students perceive study and reading and in how printed materials are used to facilitate study. Based on the extended usage of ICTs in education the need appeared to unravel the myth that surrounds the use of information and communication technology (ICT) as an aid to teaching and learning, and the impact it has on students’ study habits and academic performance..
It is generally believed that ICTs can empower teachers and learners, promote change and foster the development of ‘21st century skills. There is widespread belief that ICTs can and will empower teachers and learners, transforming teaching and learning processes from being highly teacher-dominated to student-centered, and that this transformation will result in increased learning gains for students, creating and allowing for opportunities for learners to develop their creativity, problem-solving abilities, informational reasoning skills, communication skills, and other higher-order thinking skills. One of the enduring difficulties of technology use in education is that educational planners and technology advocates think of the technology first and then investigate the educational applications of this technology only later.
It is believed that specific uses of ICT can have positive effects on student achievement when ICTs are used appropriately to complement a teacher’s existing pedagogical philosophies. Computer Aided (or Assisted) Instruction (CAI), which refers generally to student self-study or tutorials on PCs, has been shown to slightly improve student test scores on some reading and math skills, although whether such improvement correlates to real improvement in student learning is debatable. ICTs are seen to be less effective (or ineffective) when the goals for their use are not clear. While such a statement would appear to be self-evident, the specific goals for ICT use in education are, in practice, often only very broadly or rather loosely defined.
Traditional, transmission-type pedagogies are seen as more effective in preparation for standardized testing, which tends to measure the results of such teaching practices, than are more ‘constructivist’ pedagogical styles In many studies, there may be a mismatch between the methods used to measure effects and the nature of the learning promoted by the specific uses of ICT. For example, some studies have looked only for improvements in traditional teaching and learning processes and knowledge mastery instead of looking for new processes and knowledge related to the use of ICTs. It may be that more useful analyses of the impact of ICT can only emerge when the methods used to measure achievement and outcomes are more closely related to the learning activities and processes promoted by the use of ICTs. Uses of ICTs for simulations and modeling in science and mathematics have been shown to be effective, as have word processing and communication software (e-mail) in the development of student language and communication skills.
The relationships between in-class student computer use, out of class student computer use and student achievement are unclear. However, students in developed countries reporting the greatest amount of computer use outside school are seen in some studies to have lower than average achievement (the presumption is that high computer use outside of school is disproportionately devoted to computer gaming). In studies that rely largely on self-reporting, most users feel that using ICTs make them more effective learners. ICTs have some relevant impacts on teachers and students. ICTs motivate teachers and students. There appears to be general consensus that both teachers and students feel ICT use greatly contributes to student motivation for learning. ICT access outside of school affects user confidence. Students who use a computer at home also use them in school more frequently and with more confidence than pupils who have no home access.
Placing computers in classrooms enables much greater use of ICTs for ‘higher order’ skills than placing computers in separate computer laboratories (indeed, fewer computers in classrooms may enable even more use than greater numbers of computers located in separate computer labs). Related to this is an increasing attention given to the use of laptops by both teachers and students (and in some places, ‘computers-on-wheels’), as well as, to a much lesser extent, to the use of personal digital assistants and other mobile devices are few successful models for the integration of student computer use at home or in other ‘informal settings’ outside of school facilities with use in school. The appropriate ages for introducing computers to students are hotly debated. On a general level, appropriate ages for student ICT use in general are unclear. However, it is clear that certain uses are more or less appropriate, given student ages and abilities. Emerging research cautions against widespread use at younger ages. ICTs can promote learner autonomy. Evidence exists that use of ICTs can increase learner autonomy for certain learners. Gender affects impact. Uses of ICTs in education in many cases may be affected by the gender of the learner.
The ‘pilot effect’ can be an important driver for positive impact. Dedicated ICT-related interventions in education that introduce a new tool for teaching and learning may show improvements merely because the efforts surrounding such interventions lead teachers and students to do Northrup (2001) indicated that as students’ level of interaction rises, their level of learning increases. Thus, students can easily interact with one another using the e-mail. Mail and chat can improve on their academic performance, thereby adding the use of computers and the internet to their study habits.
Statement Of The Problem
One of the major concerns of educationists has been how to make teaching and learning more effective andefficient in this era of digitalization. Current researches in education have shown that ICT possesses the potentialfor effective teaching and learning. Functional education involves training youths in such a way that they wouldbe independent, and contribute their own quota in national development.Preparing the new breed of teachers using newer technology involves the infusion of ICT into teacher educationprogramme. The practice has been that of preparing prospective teachers to take a computer literacy classseparate from the contents and methods they are used to. This approach has been a failure because; teachers intheir training have not been prepared on how to teach contents more effectively through proper infusion of ICTskills.
Considering the role and objectives of information communication Technology (ICT) in manpower building, in teaching and learning in the classrooms, most especially. Some teachers in the area under study are still unaware of the full use of ICT. This may be due to a large number of factors, such as poor awareness campaign on the significant of ICT, unstable power supply in most areas, low level of investment on ICT educational programme, attitude of the users, huge efforts and time spent on ICT facilities, high level of poverty and absence of computer interlay personnel, among other factors.
Objective of the study
The mainobjectives of this study is to investigate the effect of teacher’s utilization of ICT facilities and students’ academic performance in public schools in EtimEkpo local Government Area of AkwaIbom State
The specific objective is
- To ascertain the influence of teachers’ acquisition ICT knowledge on students’ academic performance
- To investigate the level availability of ICT facilities in public schools in EtimEkpo local Government Area
- To investigate the influence of ICT utilization by teachers on students’ academic performance
- To investigate the influence of school location on academic performance of students based on utilization of ICT facilities
- To what extent does teachers acquisition of ICT knowledge influence students academic performance?
- What are the level availability of ICT facilities in public schools in EtimEkpo local Government Area
- Does ICT utilization by teaches influence students academic performance
- Does school location influence on academic performance of students based on utilization of ICT facilities
Significance of the study
The study should be of great importance to the policy makers and secondary school management in helping them to appreciate the usefulness of ICT in learning so as to come up with policies that promote ICT in learning.
The findings and recommendations of the study should be of importance to secondary school teachers in EtimEkpo on the use of ICT to aid learning.
The researcher hopes that result of the study may be useful to future researchers with interest in examining further the effects of ICT on students learning. This should lead to the generation of new ideas for the better implementation of ICT into learning process.
Scope of the study
This study is on teachers ICT facilities utilization and students academic performance in Etim Expo local government area. Four secondary schools were used for the study, two secondary schools from urban area and two secondary schools for rural area.
Concept of ICT
ICT stands for information & communication technologies. ICT refers to technologies that provide access to information through communications. It is similar to information technology (IT). “But primarily focuses on communication technologies. This includes the internet, wireless network, cell phones & other communications medium”. In the past few decades information & communication technologies have provided to society with vast array of a new communication capabilities. “People can communicate in real time with others in different countries using technologies such as instant messaging, voice over IP and video conferencing, social networking websites like face book allow users from all over the world to remain in contact and communicate on a regular basis”. Modern information communication technologies have created a global village in which people communicate with others across the world as if they were living next door. “For this reason ICT is often studied in the context of how modern communication technologies affected society” (tech factor, January 04, 2010). ICT stands for information &ommunications technology is an umbrella term that includes any communication device, encompassing radio, television, cell phones, computer and network hardware, satellite systems and so on, as well as the various services &applicate with them such as video conferencing and distance learning. “ICT are often spoken of a particular context such as ICTs in education, health care, or libraries” (Margaret Rouse 2005). “ICT (information and communications technology or technologies) is an umbrella term that includes any communication device or application, encompassing: radio, television, cellular phones, computer and network hardware and software, satellite systems and so on, as well as the various services and applications associated with them, such as videoconferencing and distance learning”. ICT (information and communications technology – or technologies) is an umbrella term that includes any communication device or application, encompassing: radio, television, cellular phones, computer and network hardware and software, satellite systems and so on, as well as the various services and applications associated with them, such as videoconferencing and distance learning. “ICTs are often spoken of in a particular context, such as ICTs in education, health care, or libraries” (Abe &Adu, 2007).
Concerns over educational relevance and quality coexist with the imperative of expanding educationalopportunities to those made most vulnerable by globalization developing countries in general; low-incomegroups, girls and women, and low-skilled workers in particular. “Global changes also put pressure on all groups to constantly acquire and apply new skills”. The International Labor Organization defines the requirements for education and training in the new global economy simply as “basic education for all”, core work skills for all and “lifelong learning for all”. Information and communication technologies (ICTs) which include radio and television, as well as newer digital technologies such as computers and the Internet have been touted as potentially powerful enabling tools for educational change and reform. “When used appropriately, different ICTs are said to help expand access to education, strengthen the relevance of education to the increasingly digital workplace, and raise educational quality by, among others, helping make teaching and learning into an engaging, active process connected to real life”.
Information and Communication Technology (ICT) combines three comparative complementary concepts – which describe its desired meaning and area of coverage. Information is a message that is transmitted and received in the process of communication and these messages, ideas or feelings are shared by both the receiver and sender at the same time. Communication refers to any process in which people share the same information, ideas and feelings. It involves spoken and written words, body language, personal mannerisms and style (Okorie, 2010). Technology refers to the systematic application of the tools and art. In practice, communication cannot be effective if information is not accurately received by the target audience, the passage of information cannot be complete without the instruments of communication and feedback. Technology makes communication easier, faster and more effective. Today, information and communication technology uses a combination of computer, telecommunication, and information systems services and products. Hence, communication serves as a connection- link between the teacher and the learners for effective pedagogy to take place in the classroom. There are diverse meanings to ICT by different people depending on the context of its usage. Definition of ICT by some scholars differs: According to Uzoigwe (2001), ICT involves all technologies employed in order to facilitate the collection, storage, retrieval and communication of information by the fastest means. Anderson and Glen (2003) defined ICT as generally related to those technologies that are used for accessing, gathering, manipulating, and presenting or communicating information. The technologies could include hardware (e.g. computers and other devices); software applications; and connectivity (e.g. access to the internet, local networking infrastructure, video- conferencing). Information and Communication Technology, according to Oloruntegbe (2006), can be viewed in the following perspectives: As an object, what is learnt is dependent on the type of education and the level of learners. Objects include computer and accessories, internet access, satellite, on line-self learning packages, etc.
As an assisting tool: ICT here can be used to support teaching in content and methodology. It can equally be used to conduct research, collect data and communicate.
As a medium of teaching and learning: teachers can teach and equally learners can learn drills, simulations and educational networks.
As tool for organization and management. This relates to ICT being used to handle school records like time tabling, attendance register, fees collection, and examination registration and examination results.
According to Onuagha (2006), computer is an electronic technology device that accepts data and information (input), processes data according to instruction given by the user, search information use for teaching in the classroom, display the result in the way the user will understand and store the information. World Bank (2002) in Adokiye (2008) defined the concept of ICT as consisting of hardware, software, networks and media for collection, storage, processing, transmission and presentation of information (voice, data, text and images) for use by means of electronic devices. According to Alazliner and Kamaruzman (2009) ICT is the application of science in information handling. It is assumed that the use of conceptualized information technology in instructional delivery will enhance effective teaching-learning process to take place.
Bakac and Akbay (2011) describe information and communication technology as all types of technology that facilitate communication and the processing and transmission of information by electronic means (radio, television, telephone, computers, CD-Roms and the internet).
Hence, information communication technology can be defined in this study as a world of electronic and communication device that accepts data and information, creates, processes, stores, retrieves and disseminates them through internal and external networks technology. From the various definitions of authors above, it is clear that ICT is an indispensable tool that needs to be integrated by every classroom teacher into the teaching and learning process for efficient and effective service delivery and attaining best global practices.
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