Higher Ed Faculty Adoption of Term Paper

  • Length: 16 pages
  • Sources: 20
  • Subject: Teaching
  • Type: Term Paper
  • Paper: #30811366

Excerpt from Term Paper :

" (Basson, 1999); and systematic way of designing, carrying out, and evaluating the total process of learning and teaching in terms of specific objectives, based on research in human learning and communications, and employing a combination of human and non-human resources to bring about more effective instruction (Commission on Instructional Technology, 1970)." (Basson, 1999)

Basson shares the fact that a survey conducted by Nick Hammond et al. On "Blocks to the Effective Use of Information Technology in Higher Education" states confirmation that: "...virtually all departments use computer facilities for teaching statistics and practical classes. Few lecturers report using simulations, demonstrations, self testing materials or structuring tools (such as concept mapping) within their teaching." (1999) Other findings make the suggestion that: "...lecturers tend to call on tools they already use for their research for teaching purposes. For example, word processing packages are used to prepare course notes; data analysis packages are used to analyze class practical results; and in some cases a specific software package is used for both research and teaching." (1999) This is stated to hold implications related to departmental purchasing policies related to the "...disadvantages of teaching innovation." (Basson, 1999) Conclusions in the study of Basson (1999) report that:

Technology-enhanced learning developers (TEL) in both industry and education must collaborate with each other more extensively to redefine "learning" in digital environments. In this article, we recommend ways in which TEL may be used to bridge gaps between industry and higher education and to teach college students specific job competencies; and Computer-based learning is about education, not computers, and as most lecturers received no formal training in educational technology theory and practice, how can they adopt something that they have little or no knowledge of. Most lecturers are still following in the footsteps of their mentors...high tech to them was an overhead projector and some colored chalk." (Basson, 1999)

Basson relates that it is quite easy for most educators to relate to the statement of Maddux as follows: "Many campus computing centers need additional personnel and funds to support them. However, additional resources and positions alone will not solve the problem. A large part of the problem is attitudinal and lies with both teaching faculty and campus computing personnel, both of whom 1) Often demonstrate an appalling lack of understanding of each other's mission, problems, and limitations;

2) a tendency for each to blame the other for problems; and 3) Little or no inclination to communicate constructively in a problem-solving spirit." (1999)

Basson relates that the conclusion of many instructors is that "technology is simply to unreliable and create[s] too much stress to incorporate into their courses." (1999) Other factors mention that oftentimes the educator runs into problems with computer programs and there is no one available to assist them with the problem. The survey conducted by Hammond et al. (1992) reflects the fact that the perception of staff relating to a lack of time for modification of courses and evaluation of software as well as for development of materials for use with technology in education are major barriers to the use of technology. Hammond et al. (1992) state that it might be that when the use of technology "becomes a part of the recognition and promotion systems of the universities, lecturers would be externally motivated to put in more 'after-hour' time" in order to integrate the use of technology in their instruction. Other stated barriers to use of technology in the classroom include the expense factor as well as the security factors in use of technology. In summary Basson states the following eighteen barriers to the use of technology in higher education instruction and learning:

1. "In adequate infrastructure for access, support and training for support and sustaining technology;

2. Lack of coordinated planning for technology at departmental, institutional and system levels (Faculty inadequately trained in new pedagogies using technology)

3. Using technology is not part of the prestige, recognition, promotion systems (i.e., academic norms and incentives do not support);

4. Faculty were not taught/mentored in the use of technology for teaching;

5. Technology not a financial priority (minority view: in an era of constraints);

6. Uncertainty about intellectual property rights in an electronic environment;

7. Resistance to changing the way they teach;

8. Some faculty do not understand that technology can enhance their teaching and enable them to do what they do better;

9. Lack of high level vision in administration about the role of technology Unrealistic expectations of what technology can do, its associated costs (i.e., dollars and user support) and its ease of implementation;

10. Dismissive to early inadequate experience (real or perceived);

11. Financial models lacking to build and maintain technology;

12. The generational divide between older (tenured) faculty and younger students and (untenured) faculty who have used the technology;

13. Universities are comparatively closed systems (relative to private firms) in responding to external pressures;

14. Ideological resistance to technology as social system, practice, etc. And concerns about social, political impact;

15. Faculty culture of shared governance;

16. Few models of best practice; difficulty to find descriptions of best Vendor lack of familiarity of specific requirements of the market;

17. Constantly changing products and out of sync with university planning, training and support;

18. Lack of understanding by academics and vendors of each other's priorities and concerns?" (Basson, 1999)

Basson (1999) concludes that: "Implementation of educational technology goes hand in hand with change: cognitive change, educational change and organizational change. Change takes time and perhaps the slow implementation of technology is simply a symptom of a long gestation period." (Basson, 1999)

The work of Moser (2007) entitled: "Faculty Adoption of Educational Technology" states that: "Roughly 10 years into the e-learning age, educational technology has made only modest inroads into changing teaching in universities." (2007) the work of Moser reports that in an "initial survey of nine higher education institution leading educational technology development in the Boston metropolitan area clearly showed that U.S. institutions wrestle with issues similar to those at their European counterparts..." And that "most striking was the issue of faculty resistance across the institutions." (Moser, 2007) This is stated to include top-ranked research universities or large public institutions heavily engaged in continuing education." (Moser, 2007) From this, Moser narrowed the focus of research to "educational technology support strategies..." In the attempt to gain an understanding of the exact mechanism, which serve as a guide to faculty behavior "regarding educational technology." (Moser, 2007) Moser selected three universities described as "highly interesting but very different" in nature and specifically "...MIT, Tufts, and Northeastern - for in-depth case studies into this issue." (Moser, 2007) Moser states that research consisted of over 50 interviews at the three universities to include analysis of documents, observation of participants and focus group discussions. The data-analysis process, which ensued, grounded the theoretical procedures in the study. (Miles and Huberman, 1994; as cited in Moser, 2007) Moser states that the faculty educational technology adoption cycle was proposed based on the research, which assist in tacking the "complex issue of technology adoption for teaching." (2007) Depicted in the cycle is a "circuit of faculty behavior activities which are influenced by several outside factors and conditions." These are shown in the following illustration in 'bold' and 'italic' respectively.

Faculty Educational Adoption Cycle as Proposed by Moser (2007)

Source: (Moser, 2007)

At the core of the model as proposed by Moser the time spent by faculty in the integration of educational technology into instruction "lies at the core of this model." Time is a resource that is "scarce" in nature and is the center of competition for many aspects of the consideration and commitment of time by faculty. Time commitment is greatly dependent upon organizational incentive structures (extrinsic motivation and competing) and on individual variables (intrinsic motivation)." (Moser, 2007) Stated is the following:

The heuristic model proposes a positive causal relationship between time commitment and competence development. Time commitment is the prerequisite for an involvement in competence development and an engagement in course (re-)design activities. Competence development, in turn, has a positive impact on the quality of course design. The availability of support services and other resources (such as course release time) are important to competence development and the quality of course design. Following the model through its progression, the quality of the course design is a major determinant of the teaching and learning experience. The reliability of technology can affect the teaching and learning progress considerably." (Moser, 2007)

Stated as factors that inform the process of reflection are those inclusive of: (1) an institutionalized student feedback mechanism; (2) Individual experiences of the teacher; and (3) Input from peers. (Moser, 2007)

Team teaching was reported in the study to have positive implications "by way of peer pressure and competitiveness." (Moser, 2007) However, reported as well is the opposite effect and that it is "widespread as well." (Moser, 2007) When the experiences of faculty…

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