Teacher training implications of gender and computer self efficacy for technology integration in Nigeria schools
To effectively live in the information age, there is the challenge of being familiar with and being able to use Information Technologies (IT) to meet daily needs. This requires some understanding of the basic concepts, principles and applications of IT, something that has become necessary for everyone. As such, it is vital that these skills are imparted to all students within educational systems, necessitating teachers to have or develop adequate knowledge and IT skills. To ensure IT’s effective and appropriate use in schools in Nigeria. this paper argues for the planned, research-based, and systematic training of all secondary teachers. Such an approach will go a long way to ensuring that teachers would not simply go back to their traditional methods of teaching, especially important given the significant investment in technology that has already been made.
This study investigated two of factors that could affect technology use by teachers: gender and self efficacy. Secondary teachers from Ondo West Local Government in Ondo State were asked to indicate their beliefs in their own capability in the use of computers via questionnaires, resulting in 589 complete responses used in the analysis. The survey was divided into two sections: personal information about the subjects, and a computer self efficacy scale. The results found that female teachers possess higher computer self efficacy than their male counterparts, supporting the findings of Loyd & Gressard (1987) who reported that females had less computer anxiety than males, and that females like working with computers more. A reason identified to explain this is that more female teachers attend organised computer training and workshops than male teachers, with unstructured interviews amongst teachers indicating that most males were simply not interested in the trainings.
In the light of the findings, the authors recommend that there should be various types of motivational strategies employed to get the male teachers more interested in technology training, including awareness workshops where teachers can see evidence of improved student performance and other benefits of integrating technology into their classrooms. Other strategies to consider include seeking corporate support for innovative use of technology by teachers, giving awards, and technology related gifts for innovative use ideas. Gender based training where competition is introduced may also be helpful, since it is suggested that the male ego, in not wanting to be defeated, may stimulate male teachers to be more committed to the training.