Teachers’ perception of the use of Audio Visual materials in teaching
Though funding, equipment, lack of time, and knowledge are known obstacles to successful technology integration (Lam, 2000), a critical component in meeting teachers, critical component in meeting teachers, technology needs is responding to teacher’s beliefs toward technologies.
Hope (2007) wrote, “Teachers basically had to contend with two factors (with technology adoption); (a) the psychological effect of change and (b) learning to use microcomputer technology”. Understanding teachers’ beliefs towards technology play an essentials role in successful technology adoption. Previous studies employed a variety of methods and perspective to assess in-service teachers’ technology beliefs. These methods included: Likert-scale questionnaires (Ross, Hogaboam-Gray & Hannay, 2009) case study methodology (Ertmer, Gopalakrishnan, & Ross, 2001).
Teachers who participated in a two-year technology integration program improved their technology self-efficacy and their interest in learning more about how technology could impact the curriculum. Ross, Hogaboam-Gray, and Hannay (2009) reported that access to technologies increased teachers’ “opportunities for successful teaching experiences, thereby contributing to greater confidence in their instructional ability”. In addition, they also noted, “teachers who interpret their interactions with computers as indicative of high grow in self-confidence, regardless of their experience”.
Research also reveals that before teachers use technology for instruction, they must be personally convinced of its benefits and must see the utility of using a particular technology (Lam, 2000). Before technology is used in the classrooms, teachers focus attention upon their students. They want to know what impact it will have on students’ learning outcomes (e.g., Higgins & Moseley, 2001). Teachers use technology because it motivates students and offers a different mode of presentation. Instead of using computers for drill and practice, more confident teachers use technology as an instructional tool to enhance students’ learning (Lam, 2000).
Successful technology adoption in teachers’ classrooms is dependent upon school administrators providing an individualized, differentiated process of training and implementation (Gray, 2001). Glean (2007) commented, “Often districts rely upon a ‘one size fits all’ approach that meets the needs of only a few participants”. Teachers must see how technology fits within their localized classroom setting (Stein, Smith, & Silver, 2009). Teachers’ technology beliefs are influenced by their philosophy. Resistance to adopting new technologies stem from teachers’ existing teaching beliefs (Norton, McRobbie, & Cooper, 2000).
For technology adoption to be successful teachers must be willing to change their role in the classroom. When technology is used as a tool, the teacher becomes a facilitator and students take a proactive role in learning. Niederhauser and Stoddart (2001) noted a “consistent relationship between teachers’ perspectives about the instructional uses of computers and the types of software they used with their students”. Often, this change of teaching philosophy and methods focuses on learners-centered teaching and constructivist teaching practices (Rakes et. al, 2009).
In fact, Ertner, Gopalakrishnan, and Ross (2001) found that exemplary technology-using teachers exhibit more constructivist teaching practices. Successful integration of technology into teaching depends on transforming teachers’ belief and philosophy concurrently (Windschitl & Sahl, 2002).
Pros of Audio-Visual Materials
An old Chinese proverb goes like one picture had more worth than thousand words, indeed if teacher uses words along with pictures students are better able to grip the crux of the concept earlier. When an audio-visual aid is practiced by the teacher, there must be some benefits and advantages of using it. Some commonly known pros of using audio-visual materials are expressed in opinions of following scholars: Helps in comprehension by bringing the child in a direct contact with the concept and how it actually works in real life situations (Kinder, 2009).
Student is more attentive, motivated and interested as compared to that classroom session that is in function without the use of audio-visual materials (Sampath, Pannneerselvam and Santhan, 2008). Conceptualizing is clearer and concrete as the use of audiovisual materials appeals, activates and utilizes the five senses of individual student i.e. see, hear, touch, taste and smell (Prasad, 2005). While use of audio-visual materials provide freedom to the students i.e. students discuss, comment and express their opinion which they cannot while a typical teacher lecture is in progress; at the same time this discussion helps them in developing language other, then mother tongue, gaining confidence by probing and showing tolerance to opposite opinions (Doosuur and Sandra, 2013).
Using audio-visual materials improves teachers’ performance by saving time and energy. Prasad (2005) advocates that audio-visual materials provide basic means of planning, organizing and invigorating the curriculum. The basic aim of education must be to lead students towards self-learning and life long learning and this aim can be achieved through the use of audio-visual materials as it improves the learning capacities of individual students i.e. learning experience that is worth memorable (Singh, Sharma, Upadhya, 2008).
Retention rate of the students increases by the use of audiovisual materials (Prasad, 2005). Activity based learning leads to critical thinking, reasoning, creativity and the development of inquisitive mind which is the real aim of education. Audio-visual materials entail activity for teacher as well as for students that keep them attentive and motivate them to think and inquire resulting in deep comprehension about what is being taught (Mangal, 2008).
Handling and manipulating of audio-visual materials by students help them develop working habits. Use of audio-visual materials provides students with opportunities to think speak and interact without fear and hesitation with teacher and peers resulting in students’ personality development. Audio-visual materials help in maintaining the class discipline as every of the student is focused and attentive towards learning. When teacher lecture the students they get bored and start whispering that brings indiscipline in the classroom (Prasad, 2005).
Cons of Audio-Visual Materials
Using of audio-visual materials seems very essential in today’s education; individuals of 21st century belong to virtual age brackets. They experience video games, online learning and computerized programming ranging from classroom learning to every shopping mall. It is often experienced in daily life that children love to watch an educational movie than to read a book. To meet this end teacher incorporate audio-visual materials i.e. models, video presentation, power point slides show etc in the classroom sessions. But all these and other teaching materials carry along with them many disadvantages, therefore along with merits one must keep the demerits of using audio-visual materials in mind. By an effective and timely use of audio-visual materials one can better able to eliminate following deserting aspect of using audio-visual materials in classroom: While any specific audio-visual aid is in operation for say, Over Head projector; any technical problem may hit all of sudden. Projector bulb may burn out. Desired sound and color missed while using a multimedia or if using a Digital Video Disc (DVD) or Compact Disc (CD) they may not well-match your players. Therefore possibility of technical problems is higher (Prasad, 2005). Critiques believe that audio-visual materials carry high rate of attractiveness that results in child being diverted from desired path of learning and lost in recreation and fantasy (Mangal S, 2008). Most of the schools suffer budget constraints and as the fact is clear i.e. audio-visual materials are expensive; it is impossible to make adequate availability of such materials in every classroom.
Brown, Lewis and Harcleroad (2005) states that activity supplemented by audio-visual materials is completely mere waste of time and resources if choice of desired audio-visual materials is not possible. Suppose a teacher is to teach about specific culture of a particular area using a map is a waste full activity rather charts with pictures of traditional dresses, food and life style etc can be beneficial. Preparing audio-visual materials require substantial amount of time. Making your very own transparencies, slides, films, posters, charts or any other teaching aid is very time taking. While arranging them teacher totally overlooks the importance of developing clear and well-organized lesson plan (Sampath, Pannneerselvam and Santhan, 2008). Displaying too many of audio-visual materials simultaneously in a single class can be very confusing for students and even for teachers’ as well. Concepts can overlap and can lead to misunderstanding and poor retention (Sampath, Pannneerselvam and Santhan, 2008). Mangal (2008) describes that selection of appropriate audio-visual materials in relation with the age group of students is very rare. Often teachers are not aware about particular audiovisual materials that are most suitable for young kids, grown-ups and higher grade students. Teachers when use audio-visual materials overlook the aspect of explanation rather consider audio-visual materials as self-explanatory. But explanation at every level of learning is a must. Suppose if a diagram of heart is shown to the students and if it is wrongly labeled, instead of passing concrete concept it will lead to misinformation (Prasad, 2005). The human being is curious by nature so as student too. Students are always enthusiastic and eager to see, touch and hear new things. When a teacher chooses to supplement the lecture with audio-visual aid; managing the class happened to be very difficult task. Suppose if a teacher is to show model of atom then controlling the excitement of the students is must, and if not the teachers’ effort go in vain (Prasad, 2005). Using inappropriate audio-visual films creates aggression and develops destructive behaviors in students. A common practice at toddlers’ school is to use cartoon films. Childs’ adopt maximum of violence from those cartoon movies. Therefore the uses of such audio-visual materials are strongly criticized by psychologist and educationist (Kinder, 2009).
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