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AVAILABILITY AND UTILIZATION OF INFORMATION COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY FACILITIES IN YAGBA WEST PUBLIC SECONDARY SCHOOLS, KOGI STATE

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DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATIONAL MANAGEMENT

Abstract

This study examined the availability and utilization of information communication technology facilities in Yagba West Local Government Area, Kogi State. The study further examined whether there are enough ICT facilities made available and whether they are properly utilized in public secondary schools in Yagba West Local Government Area, Kogi State.The research design employed for the study was a descriptive survey method Multi-stage sampling technique of purposive, simple random and proportionate sampling technique was used for the study. A purposive sampling technique was used in selecting 10 public secondary schools in Yagba West Local Government Area, Kogi State.

A proportionate sampling technique was used to distribute the 100 respondents evenly across the selected secondary school based on their population. The instrument used for the study was a researcher-structured Questionnaire. The instrument was validated by two experts in the Department of Educational Management and tested for reliability using spilt half method and Spearman brown rank order was used to analyze the instrument. Three hypotheses were tested at 0.05 significance level. The postulated hypotheses were tested with the use of chi-square (χ2) All the hypotheses were rejected.

It was concluded that; the level of availability of ICT facilities in public secondary schools in Yagba West LGA was low, while the level of utilization of ICT facilities in public secondary schools in Yagba West LGA was low and that there was no significant difference in the availability of ICT facilities in public secondary schools in Yagba West Local Government Area based on class and there is no significant difference in the utilization of ICT facilities in Yagba West Local Government Area, Kogi State based on gender.

CHAPTER ONE

Introduction

1.1       Background of the Study

The advent of Information Communication Technology (ICT) has become an instrumental tool for global transformation. ICT has become the rave of the moment in global socio-economic affairs. It has become so important that every country, organization or institution no matter how highly or lowly placed, strive to identify and embrace it. The world presently is knowledge-driven and the information age has taken centre stage in virtually everything. The position of ICT in education and the world, in general, cannot be undermined. Contemporary businesses are facilitated through the use of telephones, fax machines, and computer communication networks through the Internet. This development has given birth to modern e-commerce, e-government, e-medicine, e-banking and education among others (Brakel&Chisenga, 2000).  Brandele (2006) opined that ICT is a revolution that involves the use of computers, the internet and other telecommunication technology in all aspects of human endeavour. It can therefore be said that ICT is concerned with sharing and having access to data with ease. ICT is regarded as the superhighway through which information is transmitted and shared by people all over the world. According to Jimoh (2007), ICT is defined as the handling and processing of information (texts, images, graphs, instructions etc) for use, by means of electronic and communication devices such as computers, cameras, and telephones. Ofodu (2007) opined that ICT is seen as electronic or computerized devices, assisted by human and interactive materials that can be used for a wide range of teaching and learning as well as for personal use. ICT could therefore be viewed as a process of sharing information using all kinds of electronic devices, a standard that includes all technologies for the manipulation and communication of information. Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) are electronic technologies used for information storage and retrieval. The emergence of ICT has brought about great development that is partly determined by the ability to establish a synergistic interaction between technological innovation and human values (Al-Ansari, 2006). The swift rate at which ICT evolved since the mid-20th century, the convergence and the pervading of ICT, gives a strong role in development and globalization. Information and Communication Technology have a significant influence on all areas of human activity (Brakel and Chisenga, 2003).

The history of ICT originates from humble beginnings, which include the abacus.  The abacus is thought to have been originally invented 3000 years before the birth of Christ. Early versions of the calculator were gradually replacing this primitive method of mathematics in 1624 Wilhelm Schickard built the first four-function calculator clock at the University of Heidelberg, thus heralding a new era.  Mechanical versions of the calculator followed in the years to come. The 1st general purpose computer was designed by Charles Babbage around the year 1833.  In 1855, George and EdvardScheutz built a practical model based on Babbage’s original designs.  The 1st electronic calculator (named the Z1) is built by Konrad Zuse in 1931.  In the year 1940 at Bell Labs, the Complex Number Calculator was tested and then demonstrated.  This is thought to have been the first digital (pulse wave rather than analogue wave run) computer (Perry, 2009).

Quickly approaching the computers that we use today, 1971 was the year that the Intel Corporation released the 1st microprocessor (the Intel 4004.)  The PC as we know it today was created by IBM and released in 1981.  Apple introduces its’ PC alternative, the Macintosh, in 1984.  The World Wide Web is developed by Tim Lee in 1991, and CERN also creates the 1st Web Server.  The Pentium chip is included in PCs for the first time in 1993 signaling the end of the 486.  Once a difficult problem, now an integral part of all industries, ICT has become accepted due to huge benefits for businesses that if ignored would become massive disadvantages in the competitive marketplace.  E-mail with its time-saving cost effective nature was unused ten years ago, but now most businesses panic if their Internet connection stops working.  Computers have replaced the traditional system of typewriters which were unforgiving if you made a mistake.  Filing space has been reduced with computerized records taking up the space of a PC instead of several cabinets.  These benefits and others have helped ICT become embedded in today’s industries (Perry, 2009).

ICTs are playing an important role in organizations and in society’s ability to produce access, adopt and apply information (Aribisala, 2006). They are however being heralded as the tools for the post-industrial age and the foundations for the knowledge economy due to their ability to facilitate the transfer and acquisition of knowledge. The usage of ICT has brought about rapid teleological, social, political and economic transformation, which has eventuated in a network society organized around ICT (Yusuf, 2005). The author opined that ICT is an integral part of educational administration as its application makes institutions more efficient and productive, thereby engendering a variety of tools to enhance and facilitate teachers’ pedagogical activities. Emphasizing the significance of the use of ICT in Schools, Olorunsola (2007) opined that through ICT, educational needs and requirements have been met; it changes the needs of education as well as the potential processes. Message can be communicated through e-mail, telex or telephones, most especially mobile ones. ICT has flourished in almost all sectors and education is not an exemption, ICT is used to maximize educational potential and is widely used as a teaching and learning tool. In Distance Learning, for example, ICT has expanded the potential for interaction between Distance learner instructors/tutors, and fellow learners and has aided the learning process. One of the factors affecting Distance Learners’ satisfaction with Distance Education is the amount of interaction that occurs between instructors, course content and distance learners (the interactive learning triangle of D.E). Since training is perceived to be beneficial, the opportunities and diversity of training on ICT usage must be given priority. The various ICT facilities used in the teaching-learning process in schools according to Balogun (2002), Babajide&Bolaji (2003), Bryers (2004), Bandele (2006) and Ofodu (2007) include; radio, television, computers, overhead projectors, optical fibres, fax machines, CD-Rom, Internet, electronic notice board, slides, digital multimedia, video/VCD machine and so on. According to Ajayi (2008), the use of ICT facilities involves various methods which include systematized feedback systems computer-based operation/network, video conferencing and audio conferencing, internet/worldwide websites and computer-assisted instruction. It must however be stressed that the effective use of the various method of ICT in teaching learning depends on the availability of these facilities and teachers’ competence in using them.

Rapid developments in ICT and e-learning in recent years have resulted in significant changes in the way the world operates and communicates. This in turn has had an impact on educational needs, both in terms of the content and delivery of educational services, and there has been increasing pressure on decision-makers to acquire new technologies. At the same time, forms of ICTs are multiplying with an increasing array of ICT/e-learning options for decision-makers to choose from when integrating ICT into education. Faced with this situation, policymakers in many countries thought that simply equipping schools with personal computers and trained teachers, in their use would prepare pupils for the demand of the 21st century. We know, however, that simply providing access to ICT is not going to radically change the education system for the better. An overall view of what education should be seeking to achieve is needed in order for ICT to be utilized to put emphasis on their full potential within the education system. Decision-makers and policymakers need to formulate appropriate policies based on their specific situation and educational goals. They are focusing on the meaningful integration of ICTs such as radio, television, and DVD into teaching and learning processes (UNESCO, 2011).

In research, ICT provides opportunities for schools to communicate with one another through e-mail, mailing lists, chat rooms, and so on. It also provides quicker and easier access to more extensive and current information, as well as complex calculations. Furthermore, it provides research with a steady avenue for the dissemination of research reports and findings, (Yusuf & Onasanya, 2004). Learning through ICT entails the development of nationally relevant context software for school use. The national policy on telecommunication was a key step in the development of the infrastructural base for ICT. In 2002, the Federal Government approved the Nigeria National Policy for Information Technology (IT) and followed this up with the establishment of the National Technology Development Agencies (NITDA), which was charged with the implementation of the policy, (Ajayi, 2002).

1.2       Statement of the Problem

The major hindrance facing the educational system in Nigeria is how to ameliorate or enhance the declining factor in student learning outcomes. Teaching and Learning processes in Nigerian secondary schools have not been so controlled even when teachers claimed that they are conscious of the benefits of ICT usage in the classroom (Okoro, 2008; Olulube&Ubogu, 2009; Adeyemo, 2010; Ugwoke, 2011). Lack of teachers to use ICT facilities in classroom teaching and learning may hinder the critical thinking skills of the students in self-directed learning, teamwork, collaborating and effective communication.

Empirically, (Dawes, 2001 and Becta, 2004) in their study titled “Issues in Teaching Using ICT ”. The result indicates that a barrier that prevents teachers from using ICTs in schools is a lack of confidence. The issue of lack of confidence was seen in most teachers as they are not certain and they are fearful to make use of ICTs in the class. Also Beggs (2000) in his study on Influences and Barriers to the adoption of Instructional Technology. The findings of the study revealed that teachers’ fear of failure caused a lack of confidence in teachers to make use of ICT facilities in the classroom. On the other hand, Balanskat, Blamire and Kefala (2006) in their study titled A review of studies on ICT impact in schools. The study revealed that many teachers that were not skillful in using ICT feel anxious about using it in front of a class of children who perhaps know more than they do.

Another barrier, which is directly related to teachers’ confidence as opined by (Becta 2004; Newhouse 2002; Pelgrum 2001 and Al-Oteaw 2002) in their study on obstacles to the Integration of ICT in Education, is teachers’ competence in integrating ICT into pedagogical practice. The authors revealed that many teachers lack the knowledge and skills to use computers and other technologies and were not enthusiastic about the changes and integration of supplementary learning associated with bringing computers into their teaching practices. Other barriers include resistance to change and negative attitudes, lack of time, lack of effective training, lack of technical support, lack of accessibilities such as internet service, erratic electricity power supply and poor maintenance of ICT facilities among others.

Since the availability and utilization of ICT is a factor enhancing teaching and learning processes worldwide, this study, therefore, observed the adequacy of ICT facilities and assesses the level of teachers’ and students’ utilization of ICT in teaching and learning processes in order to improve students’ ability and potentials towards qualitative learning achievement in Secondary Schools. However, this researcher will help in identifying the problems associated with the provision of information communication technology (ICT) facilities in Public Secondary Schools in Yagba West, Kogi State; and it will also reveal the level of availability, utilization of information communication technology (ICT) and its usage in Public Secondary Schools in Yagba West, Kogi State.

1.3       Objectives of the Study

The main purpose of this study is to examine the availability and utilization of ICT facilities in Public Secondary Schools in Yagba West, Kogi State. Specifically, this study strives to find out:

  • the level of availability of ICT facilities in Public Secondary Schools in Yagba West, Kogi State;
  • the level of utilization of ICT facilities in Public Secondary Schools in Yagba West, Kogi State;
  • the relationship between the availability and utilization of ICT facilities in Public Secondary Schools in Yagba West, Kogi State.

1.4       Research Questions          

The following research questions were raised to guide the study:

  • What is the level of availability of ICT facilities in Public Secondary Schools in Yagba West, Kogi State?
  • What is the level of utilization of ICT facilities in Public Secondary Schools in Yagba West, Kogi State?
  • What is the relationship between the availability and utilization of ICT facilities in Public Secondary Schools in Yagba West, Kogi State?

1.5       Research Hypotheses                                                                                                                 

The following research hypotheses were formulated in the study:

  • H01: There is no significant relationship in the availability of ICT facilities in Public Secondary Schools in Yagba West, Kogi State based on class.                                                               
  • H02: There is no relationship difference in utilization of ICT facilities in Public Secondary Schools in Yagba West, Kogi State based on gender.

1.6       Significance of the Study

This research work would be of great importance to school administrators, teachers, secondary school students, curriculum planners and developers, and future researchers. The findings of the study will be of advantage to the administrators of secondary schools to be acquainted with the state of ICT facilities for teachers’ use for instructional development purposes, whether they are sufficient or not. Findings from this study will have implications for teachers in secondary schools to incorporate training in ICT-assisted strategy in their pursuit of professionalism. The finding of this study would be of great benefit to students in public secondary schools of Kogi State because they will begin to interact with technology in the learning process.

Finally, the findings will be beneficial to researchers by adding to the pool of information that already exists in this area. Researchers can therefore fall back on information gathered in this research work by replicating this study in another setting.

1.7       Scope of the Study                                                                                                   

The study was conducted to examine the availability and utilization of ICT facilities in Yagba West L.G.A Public Secondary Schools, Kogi State. This study concentrated on ICT resource availability (includes products that store, process, transmit, convert, duplicate, or receive electronic information) and utilization in Public Secondary Schools of Kogi State. This study explicitly focused on whether ICT resources were utilized and if teachers used them for instructional development purposes. The population of this study comprises 10 students from Public Secondary School Yagba West, Kogi State. Random sampling technique would be used to select 10 Public Schools out of all Secondary Schools in Yagba West L.G.A. The sample would be drawn from the whole school. QuestionnaireAvailability and utilization of information and communication technology facilities questionnaire (AUICTFQ) would be used to collect data from the respondents while data collected would be analyzed using mean deviation, standard deviation and t-test.

1.8       Limitations of the Study

The study on the “Availability and Utilization of Information Communication Technology (ICT) Facilities in Yagba West Public Secondary Schools, Kogi State” may encounter several limitations that could impact the findings and conclusions. Here are some of the possible limitations:

Sample Size and Representativeness: The study’s sample size might be limited due to time, budget, or other resource constraints, potentially affecting the generalizability of the results to other schools in Yagba West or beyond. If the selected schools do not adequately represent the entire population of public secondary schools in the region, the findings might lack broader applicability.

Data Collection Method: The reliance on self-reported data from teachers, students, or school administrators could introduce response bias. People might provide socially desirable answers, leading to inaccuracies in the reported availability and utilization of ICT facilities. Additionally, the study’s design might not capture the full extent of ICT use, as it may not account for hidden or less observable patterns of utilization.

Technological Infrastructure: The study’s findings might be affected by the technological infrastructure available in the selected schools. Some schools might have better or more advanced ICT facilities than others, leading to discrepancies in the reported utilization levels. Moreover, the study may not address the challenges arising from inadequate infrastructure that could impact the effective utilization of ICT facilities.

Teacher Competence: The study may not thoroughly assess the teachers’ competence in using ICT facilities. Even if the schools have access to these resources, teachers’ varying degrees of proficiency in integrating technology into their teaching practices can significantly influence utilization rates.

Timeframe: The study’s timeframe could be a limitation if it is too short to capture seasonal variations or long-term trends in ICT facility availability and utilization. It may also fail to consider changes that occurred before or after the study period.

1.9       Operational Definition of Terms

The following terms are defined as used in this study:

  • Utilization: This refers to the effective and efficient use of interconnected devices such as computers, web communication technology, projector, scanner, printer etc. to improve teaching and learning processes in Kogi State Secondary Schools.
  • Availability: This refers to the quality of being able to be used or obtained in order to achieve the aim and objective of teaching and learning in public secondary schools in Yagba West Kogi state.
  • Information and Communication Technology (ICT): This refers to the interconnection of devices or interconnectedness of technologies which is used to improve teaching and learning processes.
  • Public Secondary Schools: These are Secondary Schools owned, managed and controlled by the government.

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