Teachers and Educational Technology: Perceptions on the use of Computers in South African Classrooms

By Vuyisile Msila.

Published by The Technology Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Information technology is not only widespread in developed countries for its influence is evident in developing countries as well. In South Africa, transformative, political groups and individuals have seen the advent of computers and technology as the ultimate goal in the transformation of the society. Arguably, computers are seen as implements that would enhance the total realisation of a new era; an era that completes decades of a social and political revolution. It is also argued that empowering the young through computer teaching prepares them well for the challenges of the 21st century. The innovations linked with computers are a boon to the future generation. Yet it is teachers who are always at the heart of any innovation in education. South African teachers, particularly those from the historically disadvantaged schools might find computers daunting as these challenge the traditional chalk and talk that many of them have become used to.
In this study, 40 “technology teachers” (from historically black schools), were investigated. Their attitudes and beliefs pertaining to computer use in the classroom were recorded. A number of these teachers displayed reservations when it came to computer usage in their classrooms. Whilst the majority supported the use of computers as mandatory for the future, a number of them also perceived computers as tools that pose a threat to their creativity and they found it challenging to integrate computers in their own teaching. Furthermore, some participants maintained that computer education, although highly necessary; it also has a potential of deskilling them.

Keywords: Educational Technology, Teacher Perceptions

The International Journal of Technology, Knowledge and Society, Volume 5, Issue 6, pp.95-110. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.163MB).

Prof. Vuyisile Msila

Senior Lecturer, Advanced Studies in Education, University of Johannesburg, Port Elizabeth, South Africa

Vuyisile teaches at the University of Johannesburg in the Faculty of Education (Educational Management). He is mainly responsible for post graduate teaching and research. His interests include Educational Policy and Sociology of Education.


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