The federal government maintained in his release on educational objectives
for secondary education, as endorsed in the Federal Republic
of Nigeria (1998), the need to equip students to live effectively in this
modern age of science and technology. In order to enhance its attainment, science
education has met with a revolutionary trend in the past few decades.
The major goal of science education is to develop scientifically literate individuals
that are concerned with high competence for rational thoughts and actions. The
objectives of science education in this country according to Onwu
(1993) include the need to prepare students to:
||Observe and explore the environment
||Explain simple natural phenomena
||Develop scientific attitudes including curiosity, critical reflection
||Apply the skills and knowledge gained through science to solve everyday
problems in the environment
||Develop self-confidence and self-reliance through problem solving activities
In a bid to attain these objectives, several strategies and resources have evolved. The resources range from human to materials including the audio-visual/media materials that can be used to catch the attention learners during the lesson.
Towards the end of the 20th century and at the wake of the 21st century, it
became apparent that national development depends on educational advancement
which in turn depends on technological progress, (Adeyanju,
1998; Akindolu, 2002). Development in Information
and Communication and Technology (ICT) has broken all national and international
barriers and turned the world into a global village, making information available
to everyday anywhere and at any time. Since, ICT improves the quality of education
of a nation, then national development depends on the extent to which a nation
used ICT facilities in education. Then one can ask, what is ICT? What are its
various facilities and uses in education? How does it enhance science education
and national development?
Information and Communication Technology (ICT) deals with the handling and
processing of information, using all kinds of electronic devices (NCET,
These electronic systems can be used for broadcasting, telecommunications and
all forms of computer-mediated communications. Information and Communication
technology centered education covers the use of computers, on-line self-learning
packages, interactive CDS, satellites, radio, optical fibber technologies, tele
presence systems and all types of Information Technology (IT) hardware and software
(Akindolu, 2002; Adebayo, 2002).
The roles and values of ICTs in science education are varied and these include the followings ICTs can:
||Foster students interest and motivation
||Promote students commitment to learning
||Make the lessons more exciting and interesting for both teachers and students
||Introduce the concept of new learning e.g., many on-line learning packages
which give students greater control over what they learn and how they learn
||Bring students and teachers together for lectures, tutorials and one to
one interactions across geographic locations
||Make students to do science effectively and conduct experiments as viewed
||Facilitate the process of learning through interaction with simulations
||Make students visit different landscapes, museums, libraries and any other
places (factories, industries, dams, ecological sites/habitats etc.) on
time screen while staying at a place
||Promote distance science learning (e.g., summer school over the internet
and the use of Integrated Digital Services Network (IDSN) for Masters
degree programme via interactive lectures; in virtual University in Britain
However, the benefits of ICT or IDSN can only be enjoyed by a computer literate
population. That is, the people (teachers students and the public) need to be
computer literate. In a bid to achieve this, the federal government made computer
education one of the subjects to be offered in both junior and secondary schools
(Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1998). Moreover, in May
2000, the Minister of Science and Technology introduced Fix-It-Yourself (FIY)
computer assembly kits to be used in both secondary schools and tertiary institutions
(Ayeoyenikan, 2000). Since, its introduction, there have
been relatively few studies on the level of teachers awareness and the
extent of utilization of both the FIY kits and the ICTs.
Computer awareness refers to the ways in which computers may have an impact
on education. Computer awareness programme familiarizes the students/teachers
with the computer technology and the basic principles on which computer works
including some elementary BASIC programming (Yusuf, 1998a).
With the introduction of computer education into secondary school curricula, there is an urgent need to examine the teachers awareness of the extent of utilization of the various kits coupled with other uses of the computer such as in instructional delivery process (e.g., the use of Computer Assisted Instruction/Learning (CAL) and Computer Managed Instruction or Learning, (CMI) and educational administration.
Previous studies have also revealed some inconsistencies. While, some principals
(of schools) sampled believed that their teaches are competent to teach computer
education (Ayoola, 1994), another survey (Yusuf,
1997) on teachers competence showed that less than 40% of the teachers
in 16 sampled federal unity schools have the experience of using computer (Yusuf,
1997). The survey further revealed that less than 40% have acquired proficiency
in the use of the software work processor, desktop publishing, database programming
etc. Therefore, since teachers competence will form the foundation of the success
of any computer education programme introduced into the school system, then
the shortage of trained teacher is a barrier to the success of such programme
as educational opportunities are lost and students level of awareness and utilization
of computer programmes are hindered. However, since several empirical studies
have also indicated an increased willingness among educators (including teachers)
to use computers (Yusuf, 1998a), then it may be possible
that some of the educators must have acquired self-improvement training skills
to attain adequate proficiency on the use of the computers and its various uses,
particularly as avenue for information and communication technologies.
This study is therefore, premised on two pertinent questions.
||What is the computer literacy level of secondary school science
||What is the teachers level of utilization of ICT?
Two main hypotheses shall be tested in this study. The hypotheses addressed include:
||There is no statistically significant difference in the mean
scores of male and female science teachers on all the sections for Computers
Literacy Test (CLT)
||There is no significant difference between the male and female
science teachers scores on their level of utilization of ICTs
MATERIALS AND METHODS
This study was an ex-post facto research (Best, 1970;
Leedy and Ormrod, 2005). The sample consisted of 240 science
teachers including physical and health teachers from forty secondary schools.
The sample schools were randomly selected from all secondary schools from ten
local government areas of Oyo State, Nigeria during the 2006/2007 academic period.
|| Reliability and weighting of CLT section
|Average = 0.77
Thirty six of the schools were co-educational (boys and girls) while, four
of the schools were single sex: two boys and two girls. All the teachers used
cut across different science subjects offered at secondary school level: Integrated
Science, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Agricultural Science, Introductory Technology
and Physical and Health.
Instrument for data collection: Two instruments were used for this study.
Computer Literacy Test (CLT): Developed and validated by the researchers. The instrument had four sections with the reliability coefficients and weighting as in Table 1. The total score for each teacher in all the sections of CLT was 100%.
The criteria for determining the level of computer literacy was set by the researcher as follows:
Sixteen percent and above indicated high level of computer literacy, 59% and below indicated low level of computer literacy.
The sectional means for the sections were also fixed as follows:
The forty item CLT instrument also covers the basic computing concepts, modern computers generations, computer programming, software programme, stages involved in developing programmes, disk operating system/commands etc.
Questionnaire on teachers level of utilization of ICTs (Q.T.U.I): This instrument was researcher-designed and consisted of 20 items to determine the teachers level of utilization of ICTs. The items were arranged on a four point scale of utilization level; Very often; Often used; Rarely used and Never used. A Cronbach Alpha Measure of 0.82 was obtained as reliability index. The teachers were administered the CLT instrument first, followed by the questionnaire (Q.T.U.I).
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
The research questions were answered by computing means and standard deviation scores of science teachers on CLT and Q.T.U.I. The null hypotheses were tested at 0.05 level of confidence using t-test and the results were as presented below:
Research question 1: What is the computer literacy level of secondary school science teachers?
From Table 2, the level of computer literacy of science teachers
of this study is low. The overall mean of 54.86 with SD of 12.94 is lower than
the criteria mean of 60 set for high level of computer literacy. The results
also revealed that within the population, the computer literacy trend of male
science teachers is high compared to that of the females.
|| Means and standard deviation scores of science teachers on
|| Test for male and female science teachers on all sections
|*S: Significant at 0.05 level of confidence
With a mean score of 62.08 and SD of 12.08 the males out performed the females
who have mean score of 46.60 with SD of 12.55. The finding indicates that the
low level of computer literacy of secondary school science teachers may have
been greatly influenced by the female teachers. This finding is in agreement
with previous findings of Yusuf (1998b). The later reported
that male teachers showed greater positive attitudes towards computer in education
than the female teachers, with established significant difference. Therefore,
this study has provided indications that gender could be an important variable
in teachers computer literacy level. This is worthy of note by educational
planners, computer studies teacher/lecturers, guidance counselors and school
administrators. Female science teachers need to be motivated more to acquire
more knowledge, affects and skills in computer literacy programmes around them.
Moreover, there is the need to provide computer experience for pre-service science
teachers prior to their full employment as teachers.
Furthermore, serving science teachers should be required and supported to undergo in-service training on the use of computer. Such an exposure can enhance instructional delivery process and educational administration.
Research hypothesis 1: There is no statistically significant difference in the mean scores of male and female science teacher on all the sections for Computer Literacy Test (CLT).
From Table 3, the comparison of male and female teachers median scores on CLT sections revealed knowledge (17.52 vs 11.68); application (17.44 vs 12.63); appreciation (15.66 vs 11.46) and communication (11.45 vs 9.83). That is, the male teachers scored higher than their female counterparts in all the sections of CLT. Therefore, the males belong to higher computer literacy level than the females.
Using the assumed means of 12 for knowledge, 14 for Application, 10 for Appreciation and 14 for Communication, the Table 3 showed that the mean scores for males are higher than the set means in all the sections except for communication in computer. This confirms that the male science teachers are unable to communicate computer ideas and skills to either their female counterparts or their students. This tendency could have affected transfer of learning because they are unable to relate their computer ideas/information to others.
Although, the female science teachers appreciate the role of computer as much as their male counterparts, (as shown in their means scores being higher than the assumed means), yet they lag behind in computer knowledge, application and communication. This may also affect their level of computer interaction, acquisition of information and its usage. Moreover, the values of 6.48, 3.62, 3.34 and 2.63, respectively are higher than the critical values of 0.000, 0.000, 0.000 and 0.012, respectively at 0.05 confidence level and 238 degrees of freedom.
From the above findings, the null hypothesis was therefore not accepted, because
the means scores of male teachers are significantly higher than those of the
females on all the sections of CLT. This finding is in agreement with the findings
of Yusuf (1998b), who reported significant difference
between male and female teachers attitudes towards computers literacy
with males possessing greater positive attitudes than their female counterparts.
Research question 2: What is the teachers level of utilization of ICTs?
From Table 4 and 5, the extent of science teachers utilization of ICT resources is low. The overall weighted mean of 1.39 with SD of 3.2 is lower than the criteria weighted mean score of 2.50 set for high level of utilization of ICTs. The results further revealed that the extent of utilization of ICTs of male science teachers is higher compared to that of the female. This finding indicates that both male and female teachers underutilize the ICT resources for science teaching learning.
|| Frequency percentage and weighted mean scores of male and
female teachers extent
|| Means and standard deviation scores of science teachers on
extent of utilization of ICT resources
|| The t-test for all male and female Science Teachers on the
extent of Utilization of ICT resources
|df: 238; *S: Significant at 0.05 level
|| t-test for male and female science teachers on their extent
|df: 238; t-table: 1.96; *S: Significant; NS: Not significant;
0.05 level of significance
Research hypothesis 2: There is no significant difference between the male and female science teachers scores on their level of utilization of ICTs.
The comparison of male and female teachers on their extent of utilization of ICTs revealed mean scores of 1.47 with SD 3.07 for males and 1.31 with SD 3.50 for females. The t-value obtained is 4.00, which is higher than the table t-value of 1.96 at 0.05 level of significance (df = 2.38). Therefore, the null hypothesis was not accepted. That is, there exists a significant difference between the male and female science teachers in their level of utilization of ICTs, with the male out-performing their female counterparts with higher mean scores (Table 6).
However, the findings in Table 7 showed a general low level of utilization of ICTs for all sections except section D. The mean scores obtained for males (3.17) and for females (2.77) are higher than the criteria weighted mean score of 2.50 set for high level of utilization of ICTs. That is, both male and female science teachers utilize the radio and T.V resources for science instruction.
Furthermore, a significant difference was obtained between the males and female in their use of section A on line self learning packages (t = 2.22); B Internet (CDS, offline CD-ROMS (t = 2.42); D Radio, T.V. (3.77); G (1) Wordstar, Microsoft (t = 2.42); G (2) Play games (t = 2.23) and G (3) Maths Packages (t = 2.20). These t-values were observed to be higher than the table t-value of 1.96 at 0.05 level of significance (df = 238). No significance difference exists between the male and female teachers in their use of section C Satellite (t = 0.53) and F-Telephony (t = 0.50).
In this study, it was also observed that both male and female teachers rarely
or never used satellite, telephony and optical fibber technologies. This finding
confirmed that the computer literacy level of all the teachers is really low
coupled with their low level of utilization of ICTs resources for science teaching
and learning. Moreover, this study also revealed that gender could be an important
variable in teachers level of utilization of ICTs. Therefore, female science
teachers need to be provided with relevant ICTs/computer experiences and training
in order to enhance their instructional delivery process. This assertion is
in line with previous works (Yusuf, 1998a, b;
Bilesanmi-Awoderu, 1998). Some of the reasons accrued
to those deficiencies include non-availability of facilities and equipment to
facilitate computer education; lack of funds (finance) to procure equipment;
hot climatic condition; irregular power supply and teacher incompetence.
Non-availability of facilities and equipment: Most public schools lack
needed facilities and equipment (Yusuf, 1998b). Such
facilities included computer laboratory, chairs, tables, packages, electricity
etc. A survey by Ayoola (1994) revealed that most of
the teachers in Federal Unity Schools sampled indicated inadequate facilities
and materials for implementing computer education programme.
Lack of funds (finance): In spite of the falling cost of computer, it is still not cheap to install in public schools. Even, other electronic devices, the conventional opague projector, radio, television and video players and tapes are not available in most schools. Hence, there is need for P.T.A companies and non-governmental organizations support.
Hot climatic condition: The absence of Air Conditioner (A/C) in most schools creates problems of durability for equipment purchased. Hence, there is need for government to provide electric fans and A/C to schools.
Irregular power supply: Lack of electricity in most schools coupled with its irregular supply where it is available create problem for effective integration of computer and other electronic devices in Nigerian schools.
Teachers incompetence: As shown by Yusuf (1997)s
survey, less than 40% of the teachers in 16 sampled Federal Unity Schools were
found to possess the experiences of using computer. Less than 40% also had proficiency
in the use of software, word processor, desktop publishing, database programme.
This finding is synonymous with the result obtained in this survey.
The teachers incompetence on the basis of computer operation (keyboard skills, diskette formatting etc.) has gross implications on their inability to use computer based ICTs, software packages (e.g., self learning CDS, CD ROMs Statistical/Mathematical packages, computer assisted instructional packages, Computer Managed Instruction (CMI), graphical illustrations, conferencing etc. Therefore, the need for computer training of teachers pre-service and in-service cannot be over-emphasized.
As proposed by Aremu (2002) and Cox
(2000), the use of ICT in science classes demands that a science teacher
||Identify the topics that any of the ICT modes could be applied
||Select the learning aids and objectives for the contents covering the
cognitive, affective and psychomotor domains
||Source for ICT resources that can meet the set aims and objectives. For
example, the use of self learning or data handling package to help in experiments,
CD, ROMs to explain scientific concepts, or video tape on photosynthesis,
reproduction wild vegetation, deserts life in Biology
||Ensure the students can handle ICT resources with adequate skills in order
to carry out the experiment/activity mapped out for them
||Discuss before and after the use of ICT, using questions, group work,
discovery approach, students demonstrations etc to ascertain their
comprehension of the lesson and adequate acquisition of relevant knowledge,
attitude and skills
||Ensure important aspects are covered using enough lesions and give students
assignment to finish up the package in their spare time
||Use cooperative learning group, which can be heterogeneous, but not more
than 4-5 students per group, to allow for accessibility
||Introduce the students to the goals/objectives of the lesson first before
working on any ICT
||Guide the students ICT activity and give enough time for students
discussions, analysis and evaluation of their attainments
||Allow students to repeat the ICT activity in related homework exercise
in order to practice what they have learnt and this aids retention and transfer
Based on the finding of this survey, the following recommendations are advanced:
||The required ICT infrastructure should be provided in schools
by government, companies, religious groups, NGOs, social organizations,
||The government should ensure regular supply of electricity in schools
||Science teachers should be trained on the use of ICT resources for science
teaching and learning particularly, the use of different software packages,
CDS, CD ROMs, videotapes on science concepts and processes etc.
||Computer literacy programme should be provided for both pre-service and
in-service teachers and full integration of ICT resources into Science Education
Programme at teacher preparatory level should be ensured
||More efforts should be intensified to motivate female science teachers
on the use of the computer and other ICT resources vis-α-vis its application
to science instructions
||The government should establish and fund computer education research and
development centers (as National Educational Technology Centre Units) in
each state of the Federation, equipped with necessary facilities/equipment
and train manpower to produce software for computer and science education.
This will foster easy access to ICT materials
||The federal government should link all tertiary institutions to the global
telecommunications network (Internet) to enable lecturers and students benefit
from research collaboration, video conferencing, resources sharing, distance
learning and other services available in the Internet
In this present era of technology revolution, a functional ICT centered-education system can launch this country into the high-tech race of the new millennium thereby fostering the process of information organization and retrieval for sustainable educational development.