Background of the study
In recent years, several studies and reports have highlighted the opportunities and the potential benefits of information and communication technologies (ICT) for improving the quality of education, particularly ICT. ICT is used as a mechanism at the school education level that could provide a way to rethink and redesign the educational systems and processes, thus leading to quality education for all.
The use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) creates a powerful learning environment and it transforms the learning and teaching process in which students deal with knowledge in an active, self directed and constructive way (Volman & Van Eck, 2005). ICT is not just regarded as a tool, which can be added to, or used as a replacement of existing teaching methods. ICT is seen as an important instrument to supporting new ways of teaching and learning. It should be used to develop student’s skills for cooperation, communication, problem solving and lifelong learning (Plomp Gregory 2004; Voogt, 2003).
Technology as a matter of fact can change or alter how people access, gather, analyze, present, transmit, and simulate information (Plomp, 2012). The impact of technology is one of the most critical issues in education (Webber, 2003). According to Flanagan and Jacobsen (2003), technology integration is meant to be cross curricular rather than become a separate course or topic in itself. Technology should be used as a tool to support the educational objectives such as skills for searching and assessing information, cooperation, communication and problem solving which are important for the preparation of children for the knowledge society (Drent Meelissen 2007).
In fact, innovative use of ICT can facilitate student centered learning (Drent, 2005). Hence, every classroom teacher should use learning technologies to enhance their student learning in every subject because it can engage the thinking, decision making, problem solving. These are cognitive behaviors that children need to learn in an information age. Despite successful efforts to acquire computer hardware and to raise the student to computer ratio to 5:1 (World Almanac, 2002), there has been less success identifying, which computer skills should be taught in school and how computers can be used for teaching and learning (Dooling, 2000). However, the use of information and communication technologies in the educative process has been divided into two broad categories: ICTs for Education and ICTs in Education. ICTs for education refers to the development of information and communications technology specifically for teaching/learning purposes, while the ICTs in education involves the adoption of general components of information and communication technologies in the teaching learning process.