Academic journal article International Journal of Education and Development using Information and Communication Technology

Promoting Pro-Environmental Printing Behavior: The Role of ICT Barriers and Sustainable Values

Academic journal article International Journal of Education and Development using Information and Communication Technology

Promoting Pro-Environmental Printing Behavior: The Role of ICT Barriers and Sustainable Values

Article excerpt

INTRODUCTION

The omnipresent nature of Information Communication Technology (ICT) has altered almost every feature of life and radically changed how people live, work and play (Kozma, 2005). As a chunk of that makeover, it has become indispensable to extensively use ICT in elementary schools' classrooms, as elementary schools prepare students for living in contemporary society. To accomplish this provision, schools need to integrate ICT in classrooms. Although, there is numerous research about ICT at schools (Korte & Husing, 2007; Lim & Khine, 2006; Watt, 1980; Yelland, 2001), there are very limited studies focusing on pro-environmental printing behavior with the combination of effective use of ICT and hence, the intention of this study to explore ICT and teachers' sustainable values from this angle in the elementary schools. Previous studies prove that onscreen reading can reduce 45% paper use (Kutami, 2009) there is a lack of research on using ICT to lower printing in combination with enhancing teachers' proenvironmental values. This paper emphasizes that deficit and uses De Groot and Steg's (2008) value scale to find out teachers' pro-environmental values orientation such as egoistic, hedonic, prosocial and biospheric.

This study is under taken at seven different elementary schools in Northwest Friesland, The Netherlands. ICT is regularly operated within the schools, but it is not often completely exploited. One possible reason for this is the lack of ICT integration in general and as a substitute for printing in particular. The schools are well-equipped with modern equipment that is updated on a fairly regular basis. Nevertheless, this does not, in itself, guarantee ICT integration in education. Other features, such as fears, knowledge, time, skills and pro-environmental values of teachers also play a vital role. Furthermore, the value and benefits of ICT integration need to be understood by teachers and thus, there is no point in showing teachers in what way to integrate ICT in their work if the reason for doing so is not understood by them (Veen, 1993).

There have been limited chances for teachers for professional development in relation to ICT. Hence, it can be concluded that their knowledge of ICT is limited and this may cause fear and avoidance of use of ICT (Tsai, 2012; Andoh, 2012). Furthermore, several studies also emphasize that there are a number of factors or barriers such as fear of making mistakes, reluctance, personal fundamental, pedagogics and technology beliefs, ICT integration, frustration, ICT skills, ICT Knowledge, lack of competence, insufficient time and outdated computers that hinder the successful integration of ICT in education.

RESEARCH QUESTIONS

Considering the aforementioned facts the central questions of this study follows:

Q1: What are the barriers of using ICT by elementary school teachers in general and as an alternative for printing in particular?

Q2: What is the influence of barriers on the effective use of ICT in the context of reducing printing?

Q3: What are the effects of pro-environmental values in reducing printing?

To test this notion, the following hypotheses are used:

H1: The higher teachers' pro-environmental values, the higher the reduction of environmental and financial costs at elementary schools measured as use of paper.

H2: The lower teachers' barriers towards ICT, the lower the use of paper.

H3: The lower ICT barriers and the higher pro-environmental values, the lower the environmental and financial costs at school measured in use of paper.

REVIEW OF LITERATURE

The focus of this literature review is on the main themes of this study ICT barriers (fears, skills, knowledge and time) and pro-environmental values (egoistic, hedonic, prosocial and biospheric).

Fears

Anxiety, lack of confidence and fear often indicates that ICT takes a back seat to conventional learning mechanisms (Russell & Bradley, 1997). …

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