Academic journal article Educational Technology & Society

Jordanian Pre-Service Teachers' and Technology Integration: A Human Resource Development Approach

Academic journal article Educational Technology & Society

Jordanian Pre-Service Teachers' and Technology Integration: A Human Resource Development Approach

Article excerpt

Introduction

In recent years, the use of computer technology in education has gained global acceptance. Computer technology is widely used as an instructional tool in almost every teaching-learning setting and its use is continuing to expand (Hogarty, Lang, & Kromrey, 2003). There is a general belief that technology integration in the curriculum may result in improvement of classroom instruction (Libscomb & Doppen, 2004) and ultimately may provide students with the needed skills to survive and compete in the twenty-first century digital society (Norris, Sullivan, Poirot, & Soloway, 2003). Further, it may improve students' learning (Mills & Tincher, 2003); critical thinking skills (Harris, 2002); and achievement, motivation, and attitudes (Waxman, Lin, & Michko, 2003).

Technology can provide powerful tools for students' learning, but its value depends upon how effectively school teachers use it to support instruction in the classroom (Fulton, Glenn, & Valdez, 2004). One promising area of research involves the study of technology integration in the classroom by pre-service teachers. Pre-service teachers are viewed as the transmitters of up-to-date knowledge and can effectively link theory into practice. The ability of pre-service teachers to integrate technology into the curriculum is needed to guarantee their future success and the success of their students. To this end, many teacher-education programs are concerned with how to properly provide pre-service teachers with the technology-related attitudes and skills needed to integrate technology into classroom practices (Wilson, 2003). It is well documented in the literature that the teacher-education courses that expose preservice teachers to technology play a major role in pre-service teachers' overall use of technology and may assist them in learning to integrate technology into their future classroom practice (Collier, Weinburgh, & Rivera, 2004; Pope, Hare, & Howard, 2002).

Models of technology use by pre-service teachers have been developed over the past few years. For example, Venkatesh, Morris, Davis, and Davis (2003) developed the Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology (UTAUT). They suggested that eight elements play an important role in technology acceptance: gender, age, experience, voluntariness of use, performance expectancy, effort expectancy, social influence, and facilitating conditions. These variables were found to predict 70% of the variance in user intentions toward computer technology. Yuen and Ma (2002) used the Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) with pre-service teachers to examine the influences of perceived usefulness and perceived ease of use on their intention to use. The results of the study indicated that perceived usefulness had a significant positive effect on intention and usage but not on perceived ease of use. Likewise, Smarkola (2007) and Ma, Andersson, and Streith (2005) used a modified version of the TAM to examine determinants for pre-service teachers' use of computer technology. They discovered that perceived usefulness and ease of use of the technology were the key factors.

Dexter and Riedel (2003) found that pre-service teachers' comfort with technical skills (e.g., word processors and Internet browsers) and availability of computers at school site was rated the highest in their effect on technology integration in the teaching process. In their study, based on individual interviews, pre-service teachers indicated that technology was not modeled by instructors via the courses taught. Chen (2004) found that pre-service teachers increased their confidence in using computer technology by having experiences from a previous computer course. Chen (2004) asserts that "teachers need to have the confidence and positive attitudes towards computers that will motivate them to integrate computers into their instructional strategies" (p. 50). Moreover, Anderson and Maninger (2007) found that pre-service teachers' self-efficacy was the best predictor of technology use in the classroom. …

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