Okechukwu, Oliver Dept.of Science and Computer Education, ESUT, Enugu.

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1 EMERGING TECHNOLOGIES AND THE IMPACT OF COMPUTER APPLICATIONS ON TEACHING AND LEARNING OF COMPUTER STUDIES IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN NKANU EDUCATION ZONE By Okechukwu, Oliver Dept.of Science and Computer Education, ESUT, Enugu. Abstract The study investigated the emerging computer technologies and their applications on teaching and learning, the impact of computer applications on teaching and learning of computer studies in secondary school in Nkanu. The problems and prospects of computer application on teaching and learning of computer studies in secondary schools in Nkanu, and the appropriate ways of enhancing teaching and learning of computer studies in secondary school through the utilization of emerging computer technologies. The descriptive survry design was used for study. The sample consisted of twenty (20) secondary school students and fifty (50) secondary school teachers from three (3) local government areas in Nkanu Education zone. Research questions were developed in consonance with the purpose of the study, and a questionnaire was used to collect the data for the study. Data collected for the study were analyzed using mean. Introduction In this new era of development, there has been an evolution of technologiues. These emerging technologies in their diverse areas require special skills to utilize them in such sectors as in Banking, Hospitals/Health Care Centres, Industries, Aviation, Offices, Homes, Schools/Insititutions, Agriculture, and Commmunication etc. One of the prominent features of this new age of the world economic and technological advancement is development and the exploit the new communication media concurrent with the growth and development for transmitting and processing information. Defining technology is a very complex issue. Technology is more than the computer in our houses and the satellite dish in our backyards. Technology is any invention or innovation that affects the way we live, like the Compact Digital (CD) player, microwave ovens, Calculators, magnetic resonance imaging machine and, forks. Agumuo (2005) defined technology as innovation in action. Technology is the applications of knowledge to develop the tools our society requires to run. It is a combination of science, art, engineering, economics, and social studies that brought together creativity and ingenuity to improve the quality of our lives. Technology is about making it better, faster, easier, and more efficient (Agumo, 2005). Technology can be broadly defined as the entities, both material and immaterial, created by the application of mental and physical efforts in order to achieve some values (Wikipedia; 2009). It is an activity that forms or changes culture. In many countries, including Nigeria, new technologies are emerging and these require special study to teach and learn. Some of the emerging technologies in the education sector, for instance, are the electronic whiteboard, blogs, pod casting, Auto speech recognition machines, 3D technologies, multimedia, word processor, computer assisted instruction, automatic handwriting recognition machines and clever boards, etc. According to Okorie (2001), computer education is a process of educating the people on how to use computer and its accessories to run programs of diverse application including business, industry, and commerce. 1

2 Since the development of new technologies for education has been rapid. In some instance, technology has become an integral part of the instructional process. It has further caused concepts to develop in logistics of instruction. Such concepts require new and different staff and a changing role for the teacher and the students. The primary goal is create a conducive environment which is flexible, dynamic and capable of responding to wide variety of individual s needs and learning style through the use of the media, personal and actual experience. World technological advancements have made teaching and learning easy. In recent years, computers have permeated our lives from the office to the living room as they transform the way we work and learn. Computers are being used with increased frequency and succession in schools at all levels and in all subject areas, as well as for special education, adult literacy programmes, school administration, college instruction, and training in industry and military. The role of technology in teaching and learning is rapidly becoming the most important and discussed issues in contemporary education policy, Therier (2000). In order to improve the quality of life, man is ever searching for better and quicker ways of doing things. Hence, the introduction and the use of the light technology like computer has so simplified complex tasks, and processes, huge amount of data which brain alone cannot do or process. The application of computer technology has permeated virtually every aspect of human endeavour, and there is need for every one to be conversant with the new technology. The spectrum of application ranges from the use of computers in research and teaching such as Computer Aided Instructions (CAI), Computer Aided Leaning (CAL), to advance uses like Computer Aided Design (CAD), Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAM), and Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL). Computers also have several applications in arts based discipline. The applications range from computer use in music synthesis to tele-text and tele-conferencing in mass communication. More so, the applications of computer technology have also found expression in diverse areas like industries, business, commercial/financial institution and Communication Technology (ICT) e.t.c. The most visible use of the computer instructions is to provide direct assistance to learners and teachers in enhancing curriculum delivery. Such assistance is packaged in what is called Computer Assisted Instruction (CAI) or Computer Managed Instruction (CMI) packages. Bichi in Ajere and Amos (2000), identified six (6) ways in which the computer can be of assistance in schools. These include, word processing (by staff and pupils), data storage and retrieval, control of other devices, Computer Assisted Instruction (CAI), Computer Managed Instruction (CMI), simulations and modelling. Many may see teaching as the act of giving information or the offer of drill to the learner. Those who adopt this point of view instill their learners with factual knowledge and drill them on it until they are able to reproduce the facts on demand. This is superficial teaching. Effective teaching connotes the ability on the part of the teacher to communicate, which is reflected in a lucid presentation and transmission, with enthusiasm which is infectious. Communication here does not merely imply the passing back and forth of mere sounds but the art of using the vehicle of sounds to sensitize internal reorganizations which issue in the rolling out of concepts and principles from the learner. This cannot happen if lucid presentation backed by radiating and noticeable enthusiasm from the teacher is not evidence. The teacher therefore, is the one who communicates with genuine enthusiasm. Teaching is an academic process by which students are motivated to learn in ways that make a sustained, substantial and positive influence on how they think, act, and feel. It is also a process that elevates students to a level where they learn deeply and remarkably because of some teachers attributes. Teaching is an intentional activity and it is important when the intention has been achieved. According to Offorma (2005), teaching can be seen as the systematic activity deliberately engaged in by somebody to facilitate the 2

3 learning of the worthwhile knowledge, skill, attitudes, and values by another person getting the necessary feedback. It requires devotion, dedication, time and patience. This definition clearly shows that: Teaching is a systematic activity It involves planning and the use of appropriate methods. Teaching is external to the learner It involves making somebody to learn something new. Teaching entails continued assessment of the learning outcome. Learning is often defined as a relatively lasting change in behaviour, that is, the result of experience. Learning becomes a major focus of study in psychology during the early part of the twentieth century as behaviourism rose to major school of thought. However, it is expected that when students graduate from secondary school, they should have the basic knowledge of computer and the current technologies. But the situation is not so, as we see even graduates from universities, who have less knowledge of the computer system talk less of operating the machine. Hence, there was need to study the emerging technologies and the impact of computer application on teaching and learning of computer studies in secondary schools in Nkanu education zone. The world is advancing at a rapid rate. Events have moved to the electronic stage with the computer at the centre. This development has brought a lot of innovation and revolution into teaching and learning. The world is now in the age of information technology. Hence, there is a need to keep abreast time. One of the ways of achieving this is through the introduction of computer education in our institutions of learning. Computer education is the effort on the ability to tell the computer what you want it to do, and to understand what the computer says. To be computer literate amounts to be able to read, write and speak the language of the computer (Ajibade, 2006). Computer education encapsulates computer literacy, Computer Assisted Instruction (CAI) and Computer Appreciation. Among the terms used to describe computer in a learning environment are: Computer Based Education (CBE), Computer Supported Learning (CSL), Computer Assisted Language (CAL), Computerized Instruction (CI) and the like. In addition, the school lies in the potentials of computer instruction purposes and its utility value. The computer is a tireless, relentless, evaluating teacher which has several modes of instruction at its disposal such as sound, light, and touch. Fayola (2001) asserted that the computer is diligent and consistent in its mode of operation, as it does not suffer from tiredness or lack of concentration like human beings. Computer application performs multi-functional roles in teaching and learning processes at all levels. At the primary and secondary levels of education, students can explore and generate learning through computer programmes. The computer can provide a convenient technique for designing and developing a course of instruction. It can also provide dynamic interaction between students and instructional programme, not possible with most media. Other pontentials of the application of computer in instruction identified by Abimbade (1997) are; i. It helps students learn at their own pace. ii. It provides significant time saving over conventional classroom instruction. iii. It allows students to have control over the rate and sequence of their learning. iv. It provides appropriate feedback. v. It promotes individualized instruction through personalized responses to learner s action to yield high rate of reinforcement. vi. It provides appropriate record-keeping and thereby monitors student s progress. vii. It provides a more positive, effective climate, especially for slow learners. viii. It directs instructions to learners. ix. It provides instructions at comparable expenses to other media. 3

4 Purpose of the Study The main purpose of the study is to ascertain the emerging technologies and the impact of computer application on teaching and learning of computer studies in secondary schools in Nkanu education zone. Specifically, the objectives of the study are to; 1. Determine the emerging technologies and ascertain the areas of utilization of computer in teaching and learning in secondary schools. 2. Find out the effect of computer application on teaching and learning in secondary schools in Nkanu education zone. 3. Determine the competencies required of computer educators in the uses of the emerging technologies for teaching computer studies in Nkanu education zone. 4. Ascertain the problems encountered from the application of computer in teaching and learning of computer studies in Nkanu education zone. 5. Determine ways of enhancing teaching and learning of computer studies in secondary school in Nkanu education zone. Research Questions The major research questions based on the purpose of the study that directed the research included the following; 1. What are the emerging technologies and the areas where computers are utilized in teaching and learning in secondary schools? 2. What are the effects of computer applications on teaching and learning in secondary schools in Nkanu education zone? 3. What are the competencies required of computer educators in the use of the emerging technologies for teaching computer studies in secondary schools in Nkanu education zone? 4. What are the problems encountered from the application of computer in teaching and learning in secondary schools in Nkanu education zone? 5. What are the ways of enhancing teaching and learning of computer studies in secondary schools in Nkanu education zone? Method The research design adopted for this study is descriptive survey design. This is considered appropriate for the study since a group of people or items have to be studied systematically by collecting and analyzing data from only a chosen few, considered being sufficient representatives of the entire group or population. More so, the study used a five part questionnaire to obtain. Research Questions 1. What are the ways of Enhancing Teaching and Learning of Computer Studies in Secondary Schools? Means and standard deviation on the ways of enhancing teaching and learning of Computer Studies in Secondary Schools. Where used. The result presented in Table 1 above showed that all the item statements were agreed upon as being the ways of enhancing teaching and learning of Computer Studies in Secondary schools. Each item statement had its mean response above the average mean response,

5 Table 1: Means and standard deviation were use to answer the research questions. The responses to the questionnaire item were tallied and tabulated based on the research question. S/N ITEM STATEMENTS Mean Remark (X) 1 There should be continuous and periodic training of teachers on computer and ICT skills acquisition 4.00 Agree 2 ICT should be integrated into Nigeria Educational system 3.99 Agree 3 Government at all levels should make ICT a matter of 3.71 Agree priority, providing the fund funds specifically needed for training of teachers of Computer Studies 4 Nigerian government should address the issue of erratic 4.29 Agree power supply 5 There should be monitoring division at all levels of 3.60 Agree education, to see that the ICT curriculum are adhere to 6 ICT-based classroom environments for teachers should be a replica of standard international teachers ICTtraning environment, for maximum utilization of ICTs 3.63 Agree 7 Government should budget sufficiently for the 4.06 Agree acquisition of software and hardware infrastructures/components of ICT, including maintenance 8 ICTs should be piloted in a smaller scale to determine the appropriateness being adopted for use in a large scale 3.97 Agree Discussion As a result of the study, the following findings emerging from the data are presented; it was observed that: Emerging technologies such as the internet facility, the multimedia application, word processing package, games/simulation applications and audio/visual equipment or satellite television systems are found useful in the teaching and learning of Computer Studies on secondary schools. Emerging technologies like database application, DVD ROM application, Spreadsheet application, Corel Draw application, Word Processing, simulation programs and visual libraries are somewhat not applied in teaching and learning process, to prepare teaching aids; instructional materials, lesson plans and notes for lesson delivery and finally to source for information on specific areas. It was discovered that the perceived effects of computer application on teaching and learning includes: Provisions of visual learning source that help students remember what has been taught. Making teaching more exploring, interesting, and motivating students to learn and fully participate in classroom activities. Improving learning activities, students performance, attitude and learning rate. Improving learners problem-solving skills, creativity and personal productivity. Allowing for clarity and better organization of instructional materials and course content as well as aiding in syllabi and curriculum planning. It was also recorded that the major problems encountered from the use of computer in teaching and learning of Computer Studies in Secondary schools include: 5

6 High cost of purchasing computers; inadequate facilites to support full application of computer, lack of trained personnel with appropriate computer literacy skills, teachers reluctance to change, lack of quality in service training, non-availability of computer and allied accessories, inadequate funding and limited access to internet connectivity, poor management attitude, culture erratic power supply, low access to telecommunication tools digital device among staff and limited software functions. The results based on observations made about the effective ways of enhancing the teaching and learning of Computer Studies in Secondary schools, through the use of computer revealed the following; Continuous and periodic training of teachers on computer and ICT skills acquisition. Restructuring, redevelopment, and reinforcement of the Nigeria policy for integration of ICT in Nigerian educational system. Government at all levels should make ICT a matter of priority; provide the funds specifically needed for the training of teachers in computer education. There is need for Nigeria Government to address seriously the issue of erratic electricity power supply. The adoption if ICT and its inclusion in Nigeria curriculum is highly needed. They should be monitoring division at all levels of education and will be responsible for ensuring that the ICT curricula are adhered to. Government should budget sufficiently for the acquisition of software and hardware infrastructure/components of ICT, including maintenance. Conclusion Findings indicate that computer applications have an important role to play in the future of education, but the exact nature of that role has only begun to be explored. Computer application, therefore in education is an indispensable tool in the modern teaching-learning process. Hence, its adoption by teachers will go a long way towards the enhancement of teaching and learning process. This is because issues such as good course organization, collaborative learning, and effective class management will be facilitated and enhanced by the use of computer based technology. The findings of this study have also shown that secondary schools in Nkanu education zone are lagging behind in the level application of computer in the teaching and learning process. Recommendations To actualize the utilization of computer and allied accessories in secondary schools, the following recommendations are, therefore, made based on the conclusion of the study: 1. Enough computers should be provided in schools for teachers and students use. Sources of power should show more concern in the procurement of computers in schools. 2. The government should increase funding for the entire educational sector with emphasis on computer application and this will help improve the level of computer facilities in the schools. 3. There should also be mandatory, continuous and periodic training and retraining of teachers on computer and its skills acquisition. The internet and associated areas of computer application should be integrating with curriculum instructional method of teaching and learning and administrative functions as well. 4. Government should vote special fund invest honestly for the successful utilization by teachers. There should be monitoring, inspection and evaluation divisions at all levels of education that will be responsible, for ensuring that the use of computer technology are adhered to, and that the money allocated for such purposes are not diverted to something else. 6

7 5. Teachers and students need to be computer literate, to be able to apply computer in teaching and learning process. Therefore, it is absolutely imperative to introduce diverse emerging technologies into the educational system and areas where it is necessarily required. REFERENCES Abimbade (1997). Vocational Industrial Education. Bauchi: League of Researchers in Nigeria (LRN). Adegun, O.A. (2005). Managing e-learning to achieve Education for all in Nigeria. A Paper Presented at 12 th Cambridge International Conference on Open and Distance Learning, London. Aduwa Ogiegbaen, S.E. and lyamu, E.O.S. (2005). Using Information and Communication Technolgy in Secondary Schools in Nigeria; Problems and Prospects. Educational Technology and Society, 8 (1), Retrieved from Ajibade (2005). Information and Communication Technology in Secondary Education. Position Training. 49 (3) Ajayi, I.A. (2008). Towards Effective Use of Information and Communications Technology for Teaching in Nigerian Colleges of Education. Asian J. Inf. Technology. Bichi in Ajere and Amos. (2000). Modern Office Technology: Issues, Procedures, Practice. Nsukka: University of Nigeria Nsukka Press Ltd. Offorma G. C. (2005). Increasing Professionalism in Teaching and Learning. International Journal of Art and Technology Education. Enugu: Donze Press. Vol ISSN Therier. (2000). Elements of Production Management Education and Industrial Process Control. Ibadab: University Press Ltd. Wikipedia. (2009). Using Information and Communication Technology in Secondary Schools in Nigeria: Problems and Prospects. Educational Technology and Society. Retrieved on 20/01/2009, from 7

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