THE AWARENESS AND USE OF ICT TOOLS IN TEACHING AND LEARNING OF MATHEMATICS AT A COLLEGE OF EDUCATION IN NIGERIA
The study investigates the awareness and use of ICT tools among lecturers and students in a frontline College of Education in Nigeria where pre-service teachers are trained to teach secondary students on graduation. Mathematics is compulsory in the secondary school curriculum in Nigeria and it is highly important that the pre-service teachers be taught on how to use the tools of ICT to teach mathematics when they graduate. Results of the study revealed that both lecturers and students are aware of usefulness of ICT tools like desktop computers, laptops, iPads, tablets,Internet-ready mobile phones, Androids, iPods,smartphones etc. Computers with Internet facilities are also available in the College Library as well as the many cybercafes in the College. Despite the awareness of these tools, only 60% of the lecturers have personal desktop computers ,laptop or Internet-ready phones. Only 10% of lecturers make use of these tools for instructional purposes, downloading of mathematics lecture notes as well as examination questions. Due to financial constraints only 10% of students have laptops while 80% have Internet -ready mobile phones which they use to access materials for some class assignments.Lecturers and students are also aware of the existence of social media like Facebook, Skpe, Twitter, Whatsapp, etc.The Whatsapp is the popular media for group instruction and assignment for the very few lecturers who used it. The students used these social media more for social interactions than academic activities .The challenges identified included :poor service provider, high cost of Internet access, time constraint due to overcrowded cybercafes, lack of adequate skills by lecturers on how to use the tools for instructional purposes.The paper calls for needs for lecturers to be given more training on how to use these tools for instructional purposes thereby making learning of mathematics courses easier and interesting for their students.It also advocates that students should be sensitized on how to use these tools not only for social purposes but also for academic purpose so that when they graduate they can use the ICT tools to develop positive affective and cognitive outcomes in the secondary school students that they will teach.