KNOWLEDGE ACCESSIBILITY AND USE OF INFORMATION COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY (ICT) AMONG STUDENTS AND TEACHERS
1.1 Background of the study
People over time have devised various techniques for communicating their thoughts, needs and desires to others. In early civilized times, people achieved adequate communication through speech and written messages. Communication in teaching and learning situation were mainly done using a teacher-centered education system in the past few years (Adeyinka, Adedeji, Majekodunmi, Adika & Adeyinka, 2011) when the conventional way of teaching was the order of the day. The teacher was seen as the sole source of knowledge and the students were “mere receipients” of his/her information. Chalk and talk methods were used in delivering lectures to students and pupils in schools.
The emergence of information communication technology (ICT) has affected all aspects of life (Nadira, Kamal & Banu, 2010). ICT has become an indispensable part of our contemporary world. No wonder the use of such terms as e-nursing, e-commerce, ebanking, e-medicine, e-government, e-learning and e-education just to mention but a few, to show how such aspects of life revolve round technology. ICT materials are adapted to carry out some routine activities in almost every aspect of life. ICT includes any equipment or interconnect system of equipment that is used in the automatic acquisition, storage, manipulation, management, movement, control, display, switching, interchange, transmission or reception of data or information resources (National Information Technology Policy, 2010). This policy equally sees ICT as computers, ancillary equipment, software and firmware (Hardware) and similar procedures, services (including support services) and related resources.
To the Federal Ministry of Education (2010) ICT means all equipment, tools (inclusive of traditional technologies of radio, video and television to the newer technologies of computers, hardware, firmware, etc) as well as the methods, practices, processes, procedures, concepts and principles that come into play in the conduct of the information communication activities. Globally, the emergence of ICT has stimulated rapid development in all sectors of the economy, especially in the socio-cultural and political spheres of life (Akanbi, 2005, in Olatokun, 2009). Ajayi (2003) noted that ICT is redefining the way almost everything is done and is a ready tool for all strata of the society. Danner (2013) stated that ICT has transformed the world into a large global connected community and play an increasingly important role in people’s lives.
Previous studies like those of (Idowu, Cornford & Bastin, 2008) and (kambi, 2005) have highlighted advantages and disadvantages that nations, institutions and industrial sectors would face if they did not position themselves to harness and implement ICTs as tools for leveraging their activities in the emerging global economy. In educational sector, ICT has been continuously linked to higher efficiency, higher productivity, and higher educational outcomes, including quality of cognitive, creative and innovative outcomes (Adeosun, 2010). ICT is often perceived as a catalyst for change, change in learning approaches and in access to information (Watson, 2005) and can help by providing alternative possibilities for education (Casal, 2007, in Danner 2013). For both social and economic reasons students will need computer and communication technology skills to live successfully in a knowledge-based society (Danner, 2013). The knowledge, access and use of ICT are becoming integral part of education in many parts of the globe (Ololube, 2006).
To Danner (2013) education is the first and best key area for ICT application. Use of different ICT has become inevitable for students in learning. By using modern ICT, students and teachers can retrieve required information within a short time. Use of ICT has the potential to become cost-effective as it offers greater flexibility regarding time and location of teaching and learning, (UNESCO 2003). ICT also provides greater flexibility to adapt teaching and learning to meet the learners’ cognitive and learning styles. ICT offers the learners the opportunity to work at their own pace. Betts (2011) affirmed that ICT can enhance the quality of learning where its use is tailored to lesson objectives and the needs of the learners. The use of ICT in teaching is a relevant and functional way of providing education to learners that will assist in imbibing in them the required capacity for the world of work. Very few jobs today do not require the use of skills in technology, collaboration, teamwork and information, all these can be acquired through teaching and learning with technology.
ICT fundamentally changes the way we live, learn and work. On the other hand, there are documented hindrances to using ICT in spite of its numerous benefits to both teachers and students. The factors hindering both teachers’ and students’ readiness and confidence in using ICT include teacher’s lack of expertise with ICT, lack of confidence in using ICT by both teachers and students. Other factors include; insufficient knowledge of appropriate software and insufficient knowledge and skills on how to use ICT equipment, lack of knowledge of how to evaluate the use and the role played by ICT in teaching and learning is also another factor hindering use of ICT by both teachers and students (UNESCO, 2012). Ofodu, 2007 in (Ajayi, Ekundayo & Haastrup, 2009) enumerated ICT tools used by both teachers and students to include; computers specifically; internet, telephone, digital camera, and overhead projector. Other ICT materials include; compact disc-read only memory (CD-ROM), teleconferencing, audio-cassette tapes and video tapes, interactive television, electronic board, optical fibres, electronic notice board, slides, radio among others.
Teachers and students turn to ICT for various reasons such as removing distance from education and making knowledge more accessible to all. Development of a lifelong learning culture and the capacity to empower learners by providing them with multiple pathways that offer choices and channels to meet their education and training needs (UNESCO, 2003) is another reason why people use ICT. ICT is cost-effective as it offers greater flexibility regarding time and location of training delivery. ICT also provides greater flexibility to adapt teaching and learning to meet learners’ cognitive and learning styles. Teachers and nursing students have the obligation to know, access and use various instructional aids including modern ICT tools during their course of teaching and learning. This is because ICT is redefining the way almost everything is done and is a ready tool for all strata of society including education.
ICT is changing the way people teach and learn, thereby offering new alternatives to the traditional classroom methods of teaching and learning. Teachers and students who are unaware of existing ICT may lose an important opportunity to make use of the positive features (cheap, safe, effective and accessible) of ICT as well as teach and learn accordingly. Teachers and students may not be able to harness all the benefits of ICT in Nigeria.
Ofodu (2007) noted that Nigeria is a nation with constant power outage and poor infrastructural material supply in every stratum; her institutions of learning are not exempted as well. There may be lack of general information, access or misinformation about ICT used by both teachers and students during teaching and learning. The knowledge, access and use of ICT during teaching and learning of nursing sciences are unknown. Studies carried out in Nigeria on ICT use were among the Reproductive Health Workers (Wole &Olufunke, 2009), ICT use in Nigerian Secondary Schools (Ajayi, Ekundayo & Haastrup, 2009). Adetimirin (2012), ICT literacy among undergraduates in Nigerian universities and Wole & Olufunke, (2009), provided information on Information on ICT use among Reproductive Health Care Workers (RHWs). The present study was conceived based on the fact that to the researcher’s best knowledge there has not been any study done on ICT knowledge, access and use among teachers and students in the Department of Nursing Sciences, University of Nigeria Enugu Campus (UNEC).
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The National Policy on ICT in Education and Framework launched in 2010 presents a holistic and broad vision for ICT integration in the education sector in Nigeria. This policy moves beyond a basic technology literacy approach. Rather, the policy focuses on leveraging technology to transform the roles of the teacher and the learner in the classroom. In developed countries, the use of ICT by teachers and students in education has been widely studied and documented especially the positive influence of ICT in education (Kay, 2006; Mur-ray, Nuttall & Mitchell, 2008). Studies have also been conducted on the use of ICT by teachers and students in teaching and learning in developed countries where the use of ICT has advanced, and where there are resources and materials to maintain them (Adeyinka, Adedeji, Majekodunmi, Adika & Adeyinka,2011). Very few studies have been carried out in Nigeria on the use of ICT in education (Ololube, 2006). These studies were limited to attitude and competence in the use of computers by academic and non-academic staff in Nigerian higher institutions. Unfortunately there were limited documented studies on knowledge, accessibility and use of ICT in education generally in Nigeria, and none was found in relation to nurse educators’ and student nurses’ knowledge, accessibility and use of ICT in Nursing Education.
1.3 OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY
The specific objectives of this study were to:
1. Ascertain students’ and teachers’ knowledge of ICT in Department of Nursing UNEC.
2. Determine accessibility to ICT among nursing students and teachers of Department of Nursing UNEC.
3. Investigate students’ and teachers’ use of ICT Department of Nursing UNEC.
4. To determine the constraining factors to use of ICT as perceived by students and teachers.
1.4 RESEARCH HYPOTHESES
HO: There is no significant difference in the knowledge of ICT between students and teachers
HI: There is significant difference in the knowledge of ICT between students and teachers.
HO: There is no significant difference in the use of different ICT types among students at different level of study.
HI: There is significant difference in the use of different ICT types among students at different level of study.
1.5 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The findings will reveal whether both teachers and students actually understand what ICT means, whether they have access to ICT and also to what use they put ICT tools. This will help in academic decisions and review of teaching and learning process where necessary. Teachers will utilize the information from the study to plan teaching-learning activities to include softwares, hardwares and programmes to make teaching and learning easier, faster and learner centered. The findings will as well provide data for student’s and teacher’s individual decision making. To the authorities; especially Departmental and the University administrators, the findings will serve as a guide to design appropriate in-service training programmes to update teacher’s skills in ICT as well as integrating ICT into curriculum for students; to enhance their knowledge and use of ICT in relation to teaching and learning. To the stakeholders, it will give them insight on the activities of the Department in terms of ICT in the Department and plan programmes according to determined needs.
1.6 SCOPE AND LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
The study is delimited to determining the knowledge, access and use of ICT. It is also delimited to undergraduate students and teaching staff of the Department of Nursing Sciences, University Nigeria Enugu Campus. The researcher encounters some constrain which limited the scope of the study;
AVAILABILITY OF RESEARCH MATERIAL: The research material available to the researcher is insufficient, thereby limiting the study.
TIME: The time frame allocated to the study does not enhance wider coverage as the researcher has to combine other academic activities and examinations with the study.
1.7 DEFINITION OF TERMS
Information Communication Technology (ICT): Refers to hardwares, softwares and programmes that affect academic and non-academic activities of both students and teachers.
ICT knowledge: This refers to the undergraduate students and teachers ability to identify correctly the types and benefits of ICT. ICT knowledge also means ability to possess formal information about ICT.
ICT Accessibility: Accessibility to ICT in this study refers to students’ and teachers’ ability to possess or hire ICT materials and willingness and capacity to take advantage of the available ICT services. ICT accessibility is measured by items 14 -21 in the accessibility subscale of Information Communication Technology questionnaire (AICTQ).
ICT use: Refers to performing academic and non-academic activities using ICT. ICT use is measured by items 22 – 32 in the use subscale of Information Communication Technology questionnaire (UICTQ).