A qualitative analysis and comparison of the educational technology diffusion and attitudes toward adopting computing technologies, of the Ministry of Education, principals/vice-principals, and teachers, in Jamaican public primary and secondary schools
Kerry-Ann White, Polytechnic Institute of New York University, United States
Polytechnic Institute of New York University . Awarded
Given the lack of computer diffusion studies in the Caribbean, and coupled with the necessity to understand Jamaica in efforts to get a clearer global representation of the digital divide, this study takes an exploratory approach and examines the differences of the computer technology adoption and diffusion attitudes and viewpoints between the three levels of public school administration. Using a technology management lens influenced by educational technologies, the digital divide, and the diffusion of innovations, this study explores qualitative data collected from twenty-nine schools throughout three parishes in Jamaica. As such, I aimed to understand and expose issues regarding how the Ministry of Education officials, administrators and teachers in Jamaican primary and secondary schools adopt Information Communication Technologies (ICTs) diffused through the E-Learning Jamaica Project (E-LJam), their perspectives toward training and post-training opportunities, and how access influenced their levels of ICT adoption. The qualitative data included fifty-eight interviews, twenty-three technology checklists, five observations, four Ministry of Education documents, and nine teacher reflection journals. The data was triangulated and analyzed using several qualitative coding approaches and a database tool, in conjunction with SQL, to uncover emerging themes in the data. The themes which emerged were: the global perspective; training; and lastly the accessibility, security and confidence theme. These themes were linked and discussed throughout the chapters dedicated to the results of this research. The theory which emerged was that E-LJam—largely funded by a levy on incoming calls to Jamaica—empowered administrators and teachers to lead or follow, and avoid getting left behind, in a technologically inclined and competitive global world. The findings of this qualitative study will be published and may serve as a catalyst of change for the Jamaican educational system regarding further ICT adoption and diffusion in public primary and secondary schools, and may also serve as a foundation for understanding similar issues in comparable developing countries.
White, K.A. A qualitative analysis and comparison of the educational technology diffusion and attitudes toward adopting computing technologies, of the Ministry of Education, principals/vice-principals, and teachers, in Jamaican public primary and secondary schools. Ph.D. thesis, Polytechnic Institute of New York University. Retrieved February 22, 2019 from https://www.learntechlib.org/p/126643/.
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