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The Impact Of Information Technology On Teaching And Learning Of Biology In Secondary Schools In Mbaitolu Local Government Area Of Imo State

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ABSTRACT

This study investigated the impact of information technology on teaching and learning of biology in senior secondary schools in Mbaitolu LGA of Imo State. In carrying out this research, the study had three objectives from which three research questions were posed. Descriptive survey research design was adopted. The instrument for the study is rating scale. The population of this study comprised all the 2,520 senior secondary students offering biology and teachers. The study employed the simple random sampling technique in selecting 250 respondents (students and teachers) from the above mentioned population in Mbaitolu Local Government Area. Mean and standard deviation were used in answering the research questions. The findings indicated that availability of information technology applications were deficient as five items (offline computers, scanners, printers, telephone/wireless application and ready-made courseware) out of ten were identified and only the telephone/wireless application was the available IT material in use in secondary schools in Mbaitolu LGA. It was also revealed that respondents agreed to the fact that items 16-25 on the scale as measures to improve e-learning applications in biology curriculum implementation in secondary schools in Mbaitolu. Based on the above findings, the researcher recommends government should embark on computer literacy programs for teachers and learners at all levels.

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

In this chapter, the researcher presents; background of the study, statement of the problem, scope of the study, purpose of the study, significance of the study and research questions.

1.1     Background of the Study

Information and Communication Technology (ICT) is an umbrella term that includes any communication device or applications device or application, encompassing: radio, television, cellular phones, Satellite systems, etc, as well as the various services and applications associated with them such as video conferencing and distance learning. Brandstorm (2011) defined it as a “diverse set of technological tools and resources used to communicate, and to create, disseminate, store and manage information.

The Milken Exchange on Education Technology (2019) saw ICT as computer based tools used by people to work with the information and communication processing needs of an organization. It encompasses the computer hardware and software, the network and several other devices (video, audio, photography camera that converts information (text), images, sound, and motion and so on into common digital form. To Yusuf (2010), it is an eclectic application of computing, communication, telecommunication and satellite technology. ICT has become a very important part of the educational system not only as a subject but also as an integral part of instructional delivery in institutions of learning.

Effective application of ICT is the actual teaching or execution of instruction in the classroom using Information technology. The way and manner the teacher delivers his lesson will go a long way toward facilitating and sustaining students interest in the lesson. The methods and materials he employs in his lesson delivery will increase the productivity and retention rates of the learners. With ICT tools, the teacher appeals to the multi sensory organs of the learners. The teacher brings to life his lesson by creating a learning environment where students not only see, hear but also participate in the lesson. When the secondary school teacher employs this avenue, he is increasing the productivity and retention of students because children remember twenty percent of what they see, forty percent of what they see and hear but about seventy five percent of what they see and hear and do simultaneously (Molnar, at http://www.googlesearrch.ng.com.2012).

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ICT application in education biology is the wholesome integration of modern telecommunications equipment, particularly the internet, into the education system. Tracy (2015) defines the internet as the international network of communications in which computers in the Wide Area Network (WAN) talk to each other. Shavinina (2011) defines ICT as all the digital technologies, including: computer, scanner, printer, telephone, internet, digital satellite system (DSS), direct broadcast satellite (DBS), pocket-switching, fiber optic cables, laserdisc, microwaves, and multi- media systems for collection, processing, storage and dissemination of information all-over the world. E-learning as an aspect of ICT is relatively new in Nigeria’s educational system. It is a departure from the conventional approach in curriculum implementation. The main purpose of ICT application is to transform the old methods and approaches to curriculum implementation and not to silence the curriculum or to extinguish or erase the contents of curriculum.

E-learning is driven by the curriculum. It should follow the curriculum and should not rob the curriculum of its essence. E-learning should ensure effective pedagogy and curriculum implementation in the computer age. According to Nicholls and Nicholls (2011), Mkpa (2017), and Offorma (2012), curriculum implementation is the planning and execution of the contents of curriculum in order to bring about certain changes in the behavior of the learners and the assessment of the extent to which the changes take place. The primary purposes of implementation are to achieve the objectives of instruction, and achieve retention and transfer of knowledge. E-learning is an instructional medium that permits alternative approaches to curriculum implementation in an ICT age. Richmond (2017) observed that, there is a great link between the curriculum and ICT and that there are three major areas that technology can influence learning. They include:

  1. Presentation, demonstration and the implementation of data using productivity tools.
  2. Use of curriculum – specific applications such as educational games, drills and practice, simulations, tutorials, virtual laboratory visualizations and graphics, representations of abstract concepts, musical composition and expert systems.
  • Use of information and resources on CD-Rom, online encyclopedia, interactive maps and atlases, electronic journals and other-references.

Similarly, the role of ICT in curriculum implementation is recognized by the Nigeria National Policy on Education (FRN, 2013) where it stated that, “the government shall provide facilities and necessary infrastructures for the promotion of ICT and e-learning.” It is against this background that the researcher intends to find out the extent of availability and use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) applications by teachers in secondary schools.

According to Fisher (2015), ICT as a tool has the potential to transform the way that education is delivered. It can facilitate differentiation and individualization in education. The author noted that it is possible to tailor both the content and the presentation of the subject matter to the individual background, experience and needs of students. Contributing to this, Schiller and Tillett (2014) asserted that ICT enhances what is possible by amplifying what teachers are able to do, by providing an entry point to content and enquiries that were not possible without the use of ICT, by extending what students are able to produce as a result of their investigations, and finally by providing teachers with the opportunity to become learners again. There is therefore a great need for secondary school teachers to integrate and use ICT tools in teaching and learning as both the teachers and students benefit from this experience. This is more so because ICT can be used as a means of preparing the current generation of students for future workplace, that is, providing tools for tomorrow’s practices (Onasanya, 2010).

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Through teachers use of technology (ICTs) students can be given the opportunity of becoming part of the knowledge age and skills imparted to the young people in an increasingly complex world. Teachers will need to use ICTs in order to equip tomorrow’s employees and customers with the requisite competence and knowledge to use ICTs within their work (Davis and Tearle, 2013). Again, ICT can make the school efficient or more productive, engendering variety of tools to support and facilitate teacher’s professional activities. Thus, ICTs are seen as means to reform and innovate teaching, that is, to stimulate learners to learn actively and independently in a self-directed way and/ or in collaboration with others (Kirschner and Woperies, 2013).

1.2     Statement of the Problem

Although, ICT today allows a classroom teacher to utilize these ICT resources in his/her lesson delivery, many of the institutions of learning lack the facilities for the effective teaching of the course/subject. Thus, the course is more of a theoretical course than a practical one. At the junior secondary school level where ICT is taught as computer science-education, students learn it without a single computer in sight. Some of the schools visited by the researcher actually have computer laboratories but do not allow their students access to them for fear of damage. If a school could not allow its students the use of its ICT laboratory in the teaching of the subject, could it allow a classroom teacher to utilize these ICT resources in his/her lesson delivery? This research therefore seeks to address this backdrop.

The emphasis on application of ICT in biology secondary education is to infuse and inject efficiency and effectiveness in curriculum implementation. However, in developing countries like Nigeria, e-learning is challenged with the problem of material devices such as computer, computer laboratories, internet and e-mail facilities, videophone systems and teleconferencing devices, fax and wireless applications, digital library, digital classrooms, multimedia systems and the problem of multimedia courseware development among others (Global Information Technology Report, 2015). Other studies indicated that there is dearth of trained teachers for application of ICT, lack of facilities, infrastructures and equipment to learning biology subjects (Ikemenjima, 2015; and Jegede & Owolabi, 2018). This study seeks therefore, to establish the impact of ICT application in the effective teaching and learning in public junior secondary schools in Mbaitoli Local Government Area of Imo State.

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1.3     Scope of the Study

The geographical scope of this study will be focused on government owned secondary schools in Mbaitolu LGA of Imo State. The content scope of this study seeks to address issues such as; availability of ICT materials, effect of the internet devices and challenges of ICT application in effective teaching and learning of biology.

1.4     Purpose of the Study

The purpose of this study is to examine the impact of information technology on the learning and teaching of Biology in Secondary Schools in Mbaitolu Local Government Area of Imo State.

Specifically, the study was set out to ascertain;

  1. the availability of ICT materials for effective teaching and learning of biology in secondary schools in Owerri North LGA
  2. the extent of application use of the available ICT materials for biology curriculum implementation in secondary schools in Mbaitoli LGA of Imo State
  3. The strategies for improving ICT application in biology curriculum implementation in secondary schools in Mbaitoli local government area of Imo State

1.5     Significance of the Study

It is expected that the findings of this study will be of great benefit to all educational stakeholders ranging from the government, educational management board, the school principals, classroom teachers and the students.

First, the findings of this study helped the government to put in more funds in the public schools by paying more attention on improving and providing ICT in different schools in Imo State.

It is also hoped that the findings of this study motivates Educational Management Board to ensure the establishment of ICT centers in secondary schools.

In addition, the findings of the study helps school principals to engage school teachers in in-service trainings to enable them get more equipped on the knowledge and use of ICT for effective teaching and learning.

Furthermore, students benefited from this study in the sense that improved teaching leads to improved learning. When teachers teach effectively with the help of ICT, students are more likely to achieve more academically

Lastly, the researcher hopes that the result of the study is useful to future researchers with interest in examining further the effects of ICT on students learning that can generate new ideas for the better implementation of ICT in secondary schools.

1.6     Research Questions

  1. What is the availability of ICT materials for effective teaching and learning of biology in secondary schools in Owerri North LGA
  2. To what extent do teachers apply ICT materials for biology curriculum implementation in secondary schools in Mbaitoli LGA of Imo State
  3. What are the strategies employed for improving ICT application in biology curriculum implementation in secondary schools in Mbaitoli local government area of Imo State

    Pages:  74

    Category: Project

    Format:  Word & PDF         

    Chapters: 1-5                                         

    Material contains Table of Content, Abstract and References.

 

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