INFLUENCE OF TEACHER CHARACTERISTICS ON INTEGRATION OF INFORMATION COMMUNICATION AND TECHNOLOGY IN TEACHING SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENTS
The main objective of this study was to investigate the influence of teacher characteristics on ICT integration in teaching in ICT Champion schools in Machakos Sub-county. The study was guided by the following objectives: to establish the influence of teacher’s demographic factors, teacher attitude teacher’s subject specialization, teacher’s level of training and teacher’s teaching experience on ICT integration on teaching in ICT champion schools in Machakos Sub –County. The study used mixed methods research design. A sample of 163teachers and 9 principals was selected. Teacher respondents were selected using Yamene (2000) formula whereby a population of 271 yielded a sample of 163 respondents. The principals were chosen purposively from the nine schools owing to the crucial role they play in implementation of ICT integration. The study used primary data that was collected using self-administered structured questionnaires and interview guide to teachers and principals respectively. Content validity of the instrument was ascertained through a pilot study. Reliability was ascertained by a test retest method. Quantitative data was analyzed using descriptive and inferential statistics with aid of the SPSS software. The influence of teacher characteristics on integration of ICT in teaching in public secondary schools was tested using Pearson’s chi-square test at five percent (0.05) level of significance. The study found that there was a statistically significant relationship between demographic factors, attitude and training in ICT programme especially power point presentation with integration of ICT in teaching because the p-value for chi-square test was a figure below 0.05.The null hypothesis for those objectives was rejected while on the other hand there was no significant relationship between teaching subjects and teaching experience because the p –value was a figure above 0.05 hence the null hypothesis for those objectives was accepted.The study recommended that the government should introduce compulsory computer training for teachers to equip them with ICT competencies and also sensitize the few with negative to deflect that negative attitude and embrace it.
CHAPTER ONE INTRODUCTION
Background to the Study
Incorporating Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in education is an essential matter for every country due to the tremendous changes occurring in the world. In fact, ICT is the instrument for rigorous advancement in this 21st century through which the world is connected (Alazzam, Bakar, Hamzah& Asimiran, 2012). According to The World Summit on the Information Society (2006), the main aim of introducing ICT under Ministry of Communication and Information Technology was to fight poverty and contribute towards realization of Sustainable Development Goals. ICT has impacted on the quality and quantity of teaching and learning in that it offers chances for distance education where students, academic and non-academic staff can communicate with each other conveniently whether during official or unofficial working.
It is necessary for citizens’ world over to gain ICT knowledge and skills so as to adapt the turbulent revolutionary universe. As an outcome of the ICT explosion, the world has become like a classroom and the universe is evident in the classroom (Alazzam et al., 2012). Through ICT, learners are comfortably linked to the rest of the universe and information can conveniently be accessed. However, according to Alazzan et al. (2012), classroom individually requires changes to address the new method for teaching and learning, hence teaching systems require to be altered and the part of teachers also need to be amended. Mukhari (2014) affirms that, in the new social dispensation, the teacher’s task is still to aid learners to develop their rightful skill also fulfill their ability for individual progress. The transformation because of the presence and dominance of ICT has resulted to a position where the teacher no longer is the main figure who imparts knowledge to the students but a facilitator of learning.
In the 1980s, developed countries made it compulsory for the education system to incorproate ICT to enahnce teaching and to addresss past disparities in schools (Bransford & Brown, 2000). Worldwide investment in ICT to improve teachign in
schools has been started by ost governments. Clear instance is United Kingdom, the government’s expenditure on educatioal ICT was £2.5bn in 2008-9 (Nut, 2010) in United States, the governmetn spend $6 billion on K-12 schools and $4.7 billion in higher education in 2009, and the New Zealand government spent $410 million for ICT infrastructure every year for its schools (Nut, 2010). The implication is that there is need for application of ICT integration in schools.
Regardless of all investments on ICT infrastructure, equipment and professional progress to improve education in most nations, Gulbahar (2007) claims that large educational investment has yielded insignificant evidence of ICT merging in teaching. The mismatch between the level of investment on ICT infrastructure and level of implementation has been attributed to two factors, namely the external and internal factors (Tedla 2012; Tay 2012; Sang, Valcle, Van braak& Tondeur ,2010)
External factors are deemed as the key obstacles and include issues related to ingress to the technologies (hardware, software and integration connectivity) without which it is quite impossible to mention about ICT combination. When the external factors are in place teachers may not automatically implement ICT integration since the decision concerning whether and how to utilize technology relies on their court (Ertmer, 2005). Chigona (2014) reiterated that the task of the teacher is of much significance in ensuring that ICT is utilized in educational institutions.
The inability to integrate in this context has been attributed to internal factors; teacher characteristics. Various surveys have been undertaken to investigate the external factors as compared to internal factors (Baek, Jung & Kim, 2008; Norton, McRobbie, & Cooper, 2000). Ertmer (2005) asserts that teachers have a great responsibility of deciding when and how to apply technologies for learning. Baylor and Ritchie (2002) observed that few teachers amalgamate ICT into teaching activities despite increased availability in ICT hardware,school associated support for ICT merging and a greater consciousness of teachers about the significance of educational ICT use.
There is a clear indication that teacher related variables are key internal determinants of technology integration (Becker,2000). This is a clear indication that there are other factors, other than availability of technological infrastructure that seem to contribute
to teachers’ successful technology ints on egrte lieagrtion. Teacher characteristics or concerns can be described as the feelings; thoughts and reactions teachers develop in regard to ICT integration in teaching (Hord, Rutherford, Huling, Austin & Hall, 1998). It implies that the decision on whether to integrate and when to integrate lies on an individual teacher.
The reviewed literature indicates that there is necessity to undertaking studies on teachers’ degree of ICT skills and their attitudes towards ICT but even on other factors accountable to have facilitated or hindered them from incorporating ICT in teaching. Research conducted in other parts of the country and in the global scene on merging of ICT in teaching, is only context-specific because of target population, sampling methods, research design limitations and might not imperatively be transferable to Machakos Sub-County context. Therefore, the need and urgency for a local probe to the factors influencing ICT integration to ICT champion schools in Machakos Sub-County.
Teacher characteristics in this context encompasses demographic factors (age, gender and level of education), attitude, subject specialization, extent of ICT training and teaching experience. Related literature reviewed depicted that age affects teachers’ successful adoption and utilization of the new technology in learning and teaching (UNESCO, 2014). Chemwei and Koech (2014) found that young teachers between the ages of 25-30 seem to have higher interest in ICT. The young teachers show great enthusiasm in the adoption and use of computers in their private and in public life and this enthusiasm dwindles with age (Kamau, 2014). The older generation of teachers experience challenges when using ICT in classrooms which is attributed to the supposedly usefulness and its perceived simplicity of use. (Guoyuan, 2010). This means these teachers for them to integrate ICT to teaching there is urgent need for training.
The gender digital divide was perceived as a worldwide emerging matter that could influence fruitful adoption and use of ICT in teaching (UNCTAD, 2014). In some developing countries; gender digital divide has been reported (Hennessy, Harrison &Wamakote, 2010). Senegal, being an African nation, women’s technological
literacy ratio is still quite low (38.7%) whilst men’s technological literacy rate was estimated at 61.8% in 2009 (UNESCO Institute of Lifelong Learning, 2014).This study reveals Kenyan status in respect to the influence of gender on integration of ICT in teaching.
In Bangladesh, teachers have taken long to embrace and utilize ICT for teaching because of short comings associated with teacher’s negativity towards ICT integration and rampant corruption in the education sector at top management. In Germany, ICT incorporation in pedagogy wasn’t comprehensively embraced in schools as a result of insufficient trained teachers for ICT integration in the respective subjects with a technology connotation. To enable the merging of ICT to be fruitful, teachers should be vested with skills and knowledge and most significantly, must have positive attitudes (International Education Studies, 2012).
According to Selwyn (2007) ancient computer were the domain in mathematics science and technology departments. The researcher further elaborates the computer is chiefly combined into their practice more than the others, therefore some subjects have ability of ownership while others are unfamiliar and suspicious to it. Marinas and Ditapat (2011) studied curriculum development in Philippines discovered that there is intensive training and orientation for supervisors and school teachers to make sure the curriculum enactment is performed productively. The researchers remarked that capacity development for teachers equip them with necessary professional expansion that equips them to tackle alterations successfully. Sahlberg (2010) stated that shortage of teachers progress programmes in Finnish republic influenced combination of ICT to the processes of learning and teaching.
Rastogi and Malhotra (2013) argues that, in order to gain positive outcomes of ICT in education, any education system of any country which is responsible for the implementation of the innovation should take cognizance of teacher development in ICT integration first so as to produce confident teachers in ICT incorporation in teaching students of 21st century digital age. The researcher consequently asserts that its only teachers who shape what go on in classroom. This underscores the need for teacher training in ICT integration in teaching so as to ensure appropriate blending of
the traditional pedagogy to the ultra-modern ICT inputs. The process of schooling must be envisaged at delivering what its suppose to for it to make room for providing an ideal learning community.
China had a slow start in its effort to integrate technologies into education owing to its slow economic development and lack of resources in most of the 20th century (Liu & Zhang, 2006). In 2001 Chinese government had an extensive curriculum reform whereby content related to ICTs was added to curriculum for each subject area (Sang et al 2010) MoE. Chinese government in addition to investing in ICT infrastructure has needed in preparation for pre-service teachers and to educate the in –service teachers to combine ICT into their classes, by presenting ICT literacy training teacher programmes the teacher education institutes, a practice which is not common in many African countries (Yuan, 2006). Consequently, ICT integration has made remarkable growth and achievement in both western rural areas of China and the developed regions (Zhao & Xu, 2010). In the sub-saharan region the teaching and learning in ICT application is perceived to be significant, the incorporation isn’t comprehensively utilized per the expectation and experience in the proper developed nations. Makgato (2012) convey that teachers don’t utilize ICTs because they are worried of current innovations and revamp and are technophobic although ICTs are available in their respective schools.
In addition to the earlier discussed characteristics, teaching experience plays an important role for productive combination of ICT in curriculum delivery. Deen- Swarray, Gillwald, and Morrell (2012) stated that, teachers with extensive teaching experience were aged and therefore demonstrated low self-efficacy in access and ease of use of ICT tools in classroom activities. It is not clear whether teacher’s teaching experience influence integration of ICT in teaching curriculum in Machakos sub- county. This study identifies the gap and provides the possible solution.
Its Kenya’s vision to be comprehensive developed nation by the 2030 and as such education in secondary schools is among the platforms that were explored to make sure preparation of skilled personnel. Secondary school curriculum needs to present innovation in teaching by ensuring its outcome is able to bring transformations to the
work environment. For viability of ICT integration strategies, the government together with relevant stakeholders have devised initiatives of integrating ICT for an improved education quality. For instance computer for schools – Kenya (CFSK) whose purpose is to offer Kenyan youth with ingress to current technology by computer donations to public secondary schools in Kenya, by 2013 CFSK had secured 50,000 computers to be distributed to approximately 3000 learning organizations among them Machakos Sub-County Schools (Reddick, 2010). The National ICT innovation and integration centre were set up in order to undertake technical sustenance for ICT infrastructure (Republic of Kenya, 2014). The government has also come up with Kenya National ICT Policy (2006) and the Kenya National ICT Master Plan 2013/14 – 2017/18 to led educational stakeholders in introducing ICT infrastructure in public secondary schools nationwide.
The background information indicates that Kenya has an ICT policy and legal framework of ICT integration in education. The teachers are faced with some challenges concerning the intergration of ICTs in management of education set. This has resulted to a slow pace of integration of ICT in schools inspite of governments’ promise and commitment in provision of computers to increase educational access, quality and equity and at the same time make learning relevant to the dynamic society. As such, the scholar in this study sought to carry out a study in the schools which have excellent and efficient ICT department by the virtue of the fact that they were provided computers by the Computer For Schools, Kenya courtesy of MoE ( Champion schools in ICT) in Machakos Sub-County as opposed to the other schools whereby some donot even have the computers and hence one has no moral authority to expect the teachers to integrate ICT in teaching.These schools were selected purposevely and its necessary to research on them because they all have computers and teachers are expected to utilize them for ICT integration in teaching. The idea is to get teachers responces concerning ICT integration to allow sound decision to be made by the education stakeholders.
The study is subsequently an inclusion to the on-going research attempts to determine the influence of teacher characteristics on incorporation of ICT in teaching in ICT champion schools in Kenya.
Statement of the Problem
The Kenyan government like many other governments globally has made a lot of efforts to introduce and equip public secondary schools with computers so as to ensure that teachers have paradigm shift from traditional approaches to teaching to digital instruction whereby issues of quality, relevance and equity are assured. The MoE through the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) has also interpreted the national ICT policy, prepared ICT curriculum and given it to schools for execution. Notwithstanding the endeavour made by the Kenyan government and all key education stakeholders, it has been indicated that the incorporation of ICT in secondary schools teaching has remained quite low in Kenya (Mwunda 2014).
Information from Machakos Sub- County education office states that ICT combination to teaching in the public secondary schools has continued to remain very low and so is the academic performance. The implication is therefore the National ICT policy on education (2006) has not been successful enacted as expected. It is in view of this backdrop that the researcher strived to investigate the teacher characteristics influencing teacher involvement in ICT integration in teaching in ICT champion schools in Machakos Sub- County.
To investigate influence of teacher characteristics on integration of ICT in teaching in computer champion schools in Machakos Sub- County.
The study was guided by the following research objectives:
i. To establish the influence of teacher’s demographic factors (age, gender and level of education) on ICT integration in teaching in ICT champion schools in Machakos sub-county.
ii. To determine the influence of teacher’s attitude on ICT integration in teaching in ICT champion schools in Machakos Sub County.
iii. To investigate the influence of teacher’s subject specialization on ICT integration in teaching in ICT champion Schools in Machakos Sub- County.
iv). To establish influence of teacher’s level of training on ICT integration in teaching in ICT champion schools in Machakos Sub - County.
v). To establish the influence of teacher’s experience in teaching on ICT integration in teaching in ICT champion schools in Machakos Sub –County.
Ho1: There is no statistically significant relationship between teacher’s demographic factors (age, gender and level of education) and ICT incorporation in teaching in ICT champion schools in Machakos sub-county.
Ho2: There is no statistically significant relationship between teacher’s attitude and ICT integration in teaching in ICT champion schools in Machakos Sub – County.
Ho3: There is no statistically significant relationship between teacher’s subject specialization and ICT integration in teaching in ICT champion schools in Machakos Sub –County.
Ho4: There is no statistically significant relationship between teacher’s Level of training and ICT integration in teaching in ICT champion schools in Machakos Sub-County.
Ho5: There is no statistically significant relationship between teacher’s years of teaching experience and ICT integration in teaching in ICT champion schools in Machakos Sub-County.
Significance of the Study
The outcome of this study would be essential to a number of education sector stakeholder. First; this study can be used by policymakers on the development of teacher programs to incorporate the actual utilization of ICT in teacher development program. The findings of the study would assist the ICT champion schools in
Machakos Sub- County in understanding teacher influence characteristics in the success of ICT integration in classrooms and come up with appropriate strategies to demystify the trend. Consequently the Board of Management in the same schools will utilize the findings to identify gaps in teacher development and address the situation appropriately.
The findings will also inform MOEST on how best to formulate, communicate and implement policies which would help teachers to be facilitators of knowledge in the 21st century rather than being the monopoly of knowledge and produce learners who can fit in the knowledge society. The findings will be useful to Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development in formulating and developing a curriculum that is in tandem with the recent level of digitization in education universally. The study will provide researchers and academicians with a basis upon which further studies on effectiveness of ICT integration in institutions of learning can be conducted. It will serve as a reference for researchers as they conduct studies in this and other related topics.
Limitations of Study
As Cohen, Manion and Morrison (2007) affirm, limitation is a factor that presents possible impediments to the study that might not be controlled by the researcher. The challenges likely to affect the study include: challenge in methodology since there is no sufficient or fully accepted method of research which could be used in every research, the researcher mitigated this by using methodological triangulation whereby both qualitative and quantitative methods con currently. In accessibility as the schools are far apart and some are not well served by all-weather roads and the researcher is a teacher who operates on a very busy work schedule. The researcher mitigated this challenge by engaging the service of a trained research assistant to aid in transmission and administration of questionnaires. Any difficulties of dishonest responses by respondents were dealt with by applying methodological triangulation technique. The challenge of noncooperation and non-response rate was mitigated by use of reconnaissance to acquaint with the environment and create rapport with the teachers and the principals. Random sampling for teachers in the study sample in the Sub
County was done to increase chances of reaching all respondents. The researcher assured the respondents utmost confidentiality, anonymity and sought informed consent whereby the respondents were not coerced and findings in the study were merely used for educational purposes.
Delimitations of Study
Cohen, Manion and Morrison (2007) define delimitation as the confined set by the researcher to mark the scope of the study. This study was delimited to the influence of teacher characteristics which include demographic aspects (age, gender and level of education), attitude, subject specialization, level of training and teaching experience on combination of ICT in teaching in ICT champion schools in Machakos Sub County. It was delimited to ICT champion schools only since it’s the area of interest, they are the ones funded by the MOE and installed with the relevant infrastructure and content for merging of ICT in teaching exercises. The respondents were teachers and principals in the ICT champion schools owing to the fact that they had access to computers as opposed to the other public and private schools some of which did not have computers. The study was also delimited to Machakos Sub-County since it was not possible to go to the whole of Machakos County due to time and financial implications.
Assumptions of the Study
Leedy and Ormrod (2010) posited that, assumptions are so basic that, without them, the research problem itself could not exist. Therefore the study was based on the assumptions that; data collection devices (questionnaires and interview) were effectual for this particular study because they were piloted to ensure validity and reliability, respondents answered the questionnaires genuinely because their anonymity and confidentiality was preserved, all the targeted schools were on session, teachers in all the schools were ready to be involved in the study as reconnaissance was done prior to actual data collection period, they voluntarily gave the correct information and that the sample size chosen was appropriate to represent the whole target population.
Definition of Significant Terms
Attitude: refers to a predisposition to answer favourably or unfavourably to an object, person, or event. It is the way teachers think and feels about ICT combination in teaching in ICT champion schools in Machakos Sub -County.
Gender: refers to culturally and socially constructed difference between men and women. It is a range of characteristics pertaining to, and differentiating between masculinity and femininity.
ICT Integration: alludes to the use of technology in communication, data processing and storage to impart knowledge and assist in teaching and learning in ICT champion schools in Machakos Sub -County.
ICT Champion School: refers to public secondary school which received computers courtesy of CFSK through the MOE in Machakos Sub -County.
Information Communication Technology: alludes to the physical device and software that connect several computer hard ware parts and transfer data from one physical location to the other
Demographic Factors: refers to personal characteristics that are used to collect and evaluate data on people in a given population.
Subject Specialization: it’s a strong subject matter background in one’s teaching subjects.
Teacher Characteristics: refer to feelings, thoughts and reactions teachers develop in regard to and innovation that is relevant to their job. These teacher characteristics are veiled and deeply entrenched in day to day activities (Ertmer 2005)
Teaching Experience: refers to the teachers’ knowledge or mastery of subject content gained with time through involvement in or exposure to it in ICT champion schools in Machakos Sub-County.
Teacher level of Education: refers to the professional knowledge of the teacher.
Pedagogy: it’s the study or science of ways and methods of teaching.
Outcome: it’s a measure of what is exhibited through an activity either verbally or nonverbally or in a written form/ knowledge and ability of functional, social and interaction norms that govern teaching.
Organization of the Study
The study was organized into six chapters; chapter one highlights the background to the study, statement of the problem, general objective of the study, specific objectives of the study, significance of the study, limitations of the study, delimitations of the study, assumptions of the study and definitions of significant terms. Chapter two deals with the literature review which is organized into sub- themes, summary of literature review, and conceptual frame work. Chapter three presents the research methodology which describe; the research design, target population, sample and sampling techniques, research instrument, validity of research and reliability of research instrument, data collection processes and data analysis methods and ethical considerations. Chapter four presents findings and presentation of research results while chapter five comprises of discussion and interpretation of research findings. Chapter six presents, conclusion and recommendations..