Investigating predictors of faculty Internet usage
Amany M. Alshawi, George Mason University, United States
George Mason University . Awarded
My thesis examined faculty members' level of Internet use in four northern Virginia universities. A cross-sectional survey research design was used to fulfill three objectives. First, I examined to what extent faculty are integrating the internet into their teaching, research, and communication efforts. Second, I investigated the relationship between the level of faculty internet use and five independent variables: gender, age, academic discipline, computer skills, and available university resources. Third, I identified the major internet issues that play a role in preventing faculty from using the internet more. The specially designed Faculty Internet Usage Questionnaire was sent to a randomly selected sample of faculty members in each of the four universities. Study results show that communication is the primary use, followed by research and teaching. Of all the study independent variables, I found that faculty's computer skills was the strongest predictor of their internet use. Data analysis indicated a negative correlation between internet use and age; however, no statistically significant relationship was found between gender and internet use. Although no relationship was found between available university resources and level of use, the study indicated a significant correlation between training and faculty internet use. Overall, the study showed no significant difference in the level of internet use between technology-based disciplines and other professional and academic disciplines. The study concluded that the three major Internet problems worrying faculty are: lack of Internet speed, loss of privacy, and information inaccuracy. Finally, I discuss recommendations resulting from the experiment for improving professional development strategies intended to increase faculty internet usage in the entire university environment.
Alshawi, A.M. Investigating predictors of faculty Internet usage. Ph.D. thesis, George Mason University.
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Khawla Al-Wehaibi, Prince Sultan University, Saudi Arabia; Areej Al-Wabil, City University London, Saudi Arabia; Amany Alshawi, Prince Sultan University, Saudi Arabia; Zainab Alshankity, King Fahad Medical City, Saudi Arabia
EdMedia + Innovate Learning 2008 (Jun 30, 2008) pp. 24–33
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