University professor's attitudes toward educational technology: An analysis of selected variables

Mack Henry Bullard

Abstract

This study was conducted to determine the attitude of college professors in teacher education programs toward teaching with technology, the flexibility in using technology for instruction, and the status provided by using educational technology. This study also was conducted to ascertain data to indicate if the professors' attitudes related to selected variables. The variables that were analyzed were the professors' actual use of educational technology, their gender, place of employment, rank, length of overall teaching experience, efficacy, and institutional encouragement to use computers in instruction. Three hundred fifty professors were surveyed using the Faculty Instructional Computing Questionnaire (Faseyitan & Hirschbuhl, 1992). Professors included in the current study were employed among five randomly selected University System of Georgia teacher education programs. Multiple regression analysis and analysis of variance was used to determine the composite and independent effects of the selected independent variables on the criterion variables attitude toward educational technology and use of educational technology. The results obtained from testing the hypotheses of this study indicated that the attitude of university professors toward teaching with technology and the flexibility of using educational technology for instruction was significantly affected by the composite set of variables rank, efficacy, and length of teaching experience. No difference, however, was found between male and female professors' attitudes toward educational technology. The current study did not indicate that there was a difference in the attitude toward educational technology among the institutions surveyed. The status provided by knowing how to use computers was not significantly affected by the same composite set of independent variables nor was there a difference in computer utilization between genders. Likewise, this study did not indicate that the attitudes of university professors toward educational technology differed at institutions that encouraged the use of computer instruction from those that did not encourage instructional use. The current study did show that professors use technology more for preparation for teaching rather than in the actual classroom. Faculty members indicated that they would like to use computers more for instruction and believed that computers used in instruction would improve student learning. Although not directly tested, the professors' use of the Internet, World Wide Web and e-mail proved to be far more superior than the use of other computer related instructional materials.