Ghana Technology University College (GHANA)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN15 Proceedings
Publication year: 2015
Pages: 5536-5542
ISBN: 978-84-606-8243-1
ISSN: 2340-1117
Conference name: 7th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 6-8 July, 2015
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Colleges and universities all over the world continue to invest in technologies in support of teaching and learning, and are also working at getting faculty and instructors to use these technologies effectively to impact positively on learning outcomes. This is because the real value of educational technologies lies in the ability of faculty to integrate these technologies into their teaching and learning, and also use these technologies to further refine their course delivery and student engagement.

Incidentally, faculty members in most institutions have different needs and requirements of technology, different levels of expertise, different communication styles, and different service expectations etc. This is being compounded by the proliferation of new technologies and concepts such as mobile computing, cloud computing, BYOD etc., a situation which is leading to the emergence of very diverse technology environments that are also a getting out of direct control of institutions.

The cumulative effect of these issues is a growing number of varied educational technology solutions driven mostly by individual faculty initiatives, and by the (often uncoordinated) efforts of service providers throughout the institution. Under these circumstances, without a holistic guiding vision, the application of technology to teaching and learning by any institution will neither be strategic nor optimized.

One step towards developing such a "guiding vision" is for institutions to have, and continue to develop, a clear picture of faculty members' technology needs, expectations, usage levels of existing technologies as well as their dispositions towards emerging technologies. Such understanding will provide direction to institutions regarding how they can provide seamless technology experiences for faculty and thus fulfill the promise that technology brings to higher education.

It is against this backdrop that this study explored faculty perceptions, use patterns, and expectations of educational technology resources and services at a private university in Ghana, with the objective of gaining a better understanding of their perspectives of technology in relation to teaching and research. Through an online survey questionnaire, faculty members were asked about their technology experiences, levels of satisfaction with existing technologies, levels of importance they attach to some technologies, as well as their technology needs and expectations. Responses were received from 42 out of the total seventy five 75 full-time faculty members of the university.

Findings reveal that on average, faculty members have positive attitudes and dispositions toward educational technologies, but are less enthusiastic about integrating these technologies into their teaching activities. This reflects in their reported low levels of usage and satisfaction with existing technologies such as the school's LMS, as well as their low expectations of any prospects of future educational technology initiatives. Faculty members however acknowledge that they could be more effective instructors if they were better equipped with the requisite skills for integrating various kinds of technologies into their courses.

These and other outcomes are discussed within the context of how institutions can prioritize strategic contributions of educational technologies to teaching and learning, and plan for technology shifts that impact faculty so they can become more technologically competitive.
Educational Technologies, Faculty Adoption, Higher Education, Ghana, Ghana Technology University College.