Principals' perceptions of strategies for offsetting the barriers to technology integration in elementary schools in New Jersey
Stephen Thomas Wisniewski, Seton Hall University, United States
Seton Hall University . Awarded
Technology expenditures have consistently cost school districts in the United States billions of dollars a year; however, studies have shown that these costs have not resulted in technology integration in our schools. Principals and teachers have consistently stated that, while they are in favor of technology integration as a school goal, barriers to the integration of technology have blocked successful implementation.
This study focused on principals' perceptions of possible strategies for addressing the barriers to the integration of technology in the elementary setting. The identified barriers to technology integration included: a lack of access to technology, a lack of professional development, and a lack of teacher time for mastery. This study added to the limited research on the principals' perceptions to these barriers, not by examining the barriers, but rather the possible solutions for addressing these barriers. Data from a principal survey provided insight into the extent to which principals perceived the ability to implement these solutions as a function of their level of knowledge, their attitudinal predisposition, or their organizational capacity.
Results of the study found that principals were significantly less successful in implementing technology than they would like to be, according to their school goals. Results also indicated that there was a statistically significant relationship between a principal's perceived capacity to implement access to technology within their organizational structure and actual access. Three additional statistically significant effects were found concerning the principal's knowledge of time for mastery, a principal's attitudinal predisposition towards providing time for mastery, and a principal's capacity to implement time for mastery within their organizational structure on their success in providing teachers time for mastery.
The research also focused on the relationships between the total perceived success in integrating technology in schools and the overall success in addressing each of the three major barriers identified by the research. Three statistically significant effects were found: the principals' overall success in providing access to technology, their overall success in facilitating professional development, and that their overall success in providing time for mastery was positively associated with their total perceived success in integrating technology in the schools.
Wisniewski, S.T. Principals' perceptions of strategies for offsetting the barriers to technology integration in elementary schools in New Jersey. Ph.D. thesis, Seton Hall University.
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