Academic journal article The Journal of Research in Business Education

Perceptions of Public Educators regarding Accessibility to Technology and the Importance of Integrating Technology across the Curriculum

Academic journal article The Journal of Research in Business Education

Perceptions of Public Educators regarding Accessibility to Technology and the Importance of Integrating Technology across the Curriculum

Article excerpt

Introduction

During the past three decades the commercialization of the Internet and the development and application of technologies have changed many facets of everyday life. Numerous recent researchers have reported that the integration of technology into instruction is a key ingredient for student success in the 21st century workforce (Cornelius, 2012; Foster, Kelley, Pritz, & Hodes, 2011; Harter, 2011; Pritchett, 2012; Washbon, 2012; Williams, 2009).

"Net Generation" students are quite different from the teachers who educate them. Current students expect instant gratification. They view the Internet as a tool for self-expression; furthermore, they are constantly connected via some form of technology. Because today's students have been exposed to technology throughout their lives, they expect technology to be a part of their education. As a result, successful educators must accommodate students' need for technology (Cornelius, 2012; Foster et al., 2011; Gaytan, 2011; Harter, 2011; Henderson & Chapman, 2012; McEwen & King, 2012; Pritchett, 2012; Washbon, 2012).

Gaytan (2011) found that when technology is used in teaching, student-teacher interactions increase and students are more engaged in the learning process. Pritchett (2012) agreed and concluded that utilizing technologies in instruction supported authentic learning environments and helped students make the connection between the classroom and the workplace. Educators must understand that "regurgitating the textbook" (Gaytan, 2011, p. 47) in a lecture-style atmosphere is no longer an effective instructional delivery method. Adding technology to the instructional mix ensures greater student engagement in the learning process. Knowing this, the researchers acknowledged that it would be enlightening to investigate not only business/marketing educators' attitudes but also the attitudes of teachers who teach other subjects.

Purposes of the Study

This study was designed to determine if specific demographic factors affect teachers' attitudes toward (a) the utilization of technology, (b) the availability of resources and equipment to educators, and (c) the amount of technology training that the educators had received. The research also sought to determine if a relationship existed between the educators' access to technology and their use of technology in instruction. An additional purpose was to provide information that may be used to improve the overall effectiveness of utilizing technology for classroom instruction and the integration of web-based learning into the curriculum.

Significance of the Study

The research findings will be useful to school administrators for planning, budgeting, and integrating technology into their school systems. Furthermore, the findings will give business/marketing educators an awareness of the attitudes that core academic subject teachers possess regarding technology and the barriers to effectively integrating technology into classroom instruction.

Research Questions

1. Is there a statistically significant relationship between the teachers' attitudes toward the utilization of technology and (a) the number of years the educator has been teaching, (b) the subjects taught by the educator, or (c) the perceived ability of the educator?

2. To what extent is there a significant difference between the teachers' attitudes toward the utilization of technology and the availability of technology resources and equipment?

3. Is there a significant relationship between the teachers' attitudes toward the utilization of technology and the amount of technology training that the educator has received?

4. To what extent is there a significant correlation between the teachers' access to technology equipment and the teachers' use of technology equipment in instruction?

Review of Related Literature

Washbon (2012) observed that technology has changed the types of skills and knowledge used in the workplace. …

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