An assessment of computer and ICT skills among secondary school teachers in Ota Ogun State.

Author:Oyeronke, Adebayo
Position::Information and Communication Technology - Report
 
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INTRODUCTION

Organizations of all types and sizes, including schools, have recognized that the usage of computers in the work environment is important as it presents with unprecedented challenges that helps individuals to acquire an inquiring, critical and creative mind to capitalize on the opportunities driven by the explosive growth of information, knowledge and technology. (Kumar, Rose and D'Silva, 2008).

Today, improved communication technology has made time and space less complex. It could be observed that this modern age is the age of information explosion in which an average individual wants to explore the information system. Thus, the ability for timely acquisition, utilization, communication and retrieval of relevant and accurate information has become an important attribute for better teaching-learning process (Adebayo, 2008)

Abolade and Yusuf (2005) described Information and communication technologies as essential tools in any educational system. They have the potentials of being used to meet the learning needs of individual students, promote equality of educational opportunities; offer high quality learning materials, increase self-efficacy and independence of learning among students, and improve teachers' professional development. Apanpa and

Lawal(2009) opined that the use of technology, and knowing how technology can support student learning have become essential skills for professional teachers in today's world.

Adebayo(2008) asserted that the functions of teaching in education process is considered paramount especially when we consider teaching and learning process as the acquisition of knowledge and skills by individuals to enable him become useful member of the society.

Teachers are the primary agents of educational innovation therefore; ICT skills among secondary school teachers should be seen as an invaluable prerequisite that would help facilitate the teaching and learning procedure in this modern age of information explosion.

The main objective of information technology for teaching and learning according to Idowu (2001) is to facilitate a faster and better comprehension and appreciation of the subject matter in such a way as to obtain the maximum possible output from the teaching and learning process. Nwachukwu (2005) opined that with the changes in the forms, formats, and expressions of information, the process of access, storage, transmission and reproduction have witnessed new media technology, it is therefore of paramount importance for teachers to adapt themselves to new roles and skills in order to cope with the impending changes. Satharasinghe( 2003) posited that use of computers can revolutionize teaching and learning and could bring advances that would improve education dramatically;

Jegede (2008) opined that ICT is now recognized as an essential ingredient for creating 21st century learning environment but Lau and Sim (2008 ) reported that despite the apparent benefits of the use of ICT for educational purpose, studies showed that in many cases, the learning potential of ICT is deprived as many teachers are still not fully ICT literate.

Mutula and Mutula(2007) asserted that there is a digital divide which refers to the widening imbalance of access to ICT's between communities and countries which creates an imbalance for equitable access to quality education in an electronic age. They further opined that schools are being seen as very important institutions for bridging the digital divide in society because they represent focal points where many children from different communities converge for learning purposes. Though Servon (2002) argued that the technology gap should not be defined narrowly as a problem of access. Training and content, should be included as other dimensions of the digital divide so that policy makers and programs to narrow the digital divide would not lose their focus. It is therefore of paramount importance for teacher preparatory institutions to aim at developing in teachers ICT pedagogical competencies that will ensure that these teachers help the country to cross over to the positive side of the digital divide and keep pace on the...

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