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Information and Communication Technologies are playing crucial roles and are leading to shifts in teaching and learning methodology in both traditional and distance education. Computers, video-conferencing, interactive video and Internet have been adjusting the learning and teaching experiences in the classroom environment. As Asian Development Bank [ADB] (2009) mentioned, "as various ICT become increasingly affordable, accessible, and interactive, their role at all levels of education is likely to be all the more significant in making educational outcomes relevant to the labor market, in revolutionizing educational content and delivery, and in fostering information literacy" (p. 1). There are three more studies to prove that students who learn with ICT can receive benefit greatly from methodology of learning.
First, a survey was conducted in four Southeast Asian Countries (Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, and Thailand) and four South Asian countries (Bhutan, India, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka). It was indicated that Asian instructional organizers are very fascinated to design training associated with the application of current research and theory; the selection and use of methods and media; and technology trends including mobile learning methods. Therefore, they become crucial in assisting students' effective learning through ICT. The same survey also stated, "in particular, students who knew how to use e-mail and how to create a short talk with slides by means of presentation manager, were more positive about the use of ICT in education" (p. 11). It meant presentations are important for students to share and present the information easily to the audience when e-mails were mainly to exchange information and communication. However, lacking of experience as well as ability to use ICT would lead to traditional methods in learning.
Second, due to finings produced by Belawati (2009) has shown that Higher Education in China mainly via the Conventional System is becoming more accessible to students through the use of ICTs in order to offer flexible e-learning methods. There were over 15% of Chinese students who have accessed ICTs in Higher Education. Furthermore, E-learning in Chinese higher education is increasing rapidly, as there are 6, 000 students in 2009 outside the campus that learn via E-learning. For instance, in Mongolia it is not surprise that radio and TV broadcasting are major components of the emerging sectors in the country. This includes the Internet, which has been prioritized by Distance Learning Council of Mongolia. Moreover, Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam have been encouraged to start arranging the programs related to ICT in order to increase the interest of learners and make learning more effective.
Moreover, a study by Peou (2010) shows that among 2074 students from four universities and two high schools in Phnom Penh prove that 75% of students have their personal computers at home, and 94% are proficient in typing. Of those university students, 39% study arts and humanities, 22% in social science, 21% in business and related, 12% of sciences, 5% of law, and less than 1% is on the other subjects.
The study also claims that 85% of them have experienced using Internet and 46% access the Internet at the Internet shops, 33% through mobile phones, 25% at universities or/and campus facilities, 19% at home, 3% at restaurant where Wi-Fi connection is provided. Apparently, they use Internet in order to search for information for schoolwork, sending/reading emails, online chatting, looking for job announcements, and a few look for friendship and romance. In addition, there are three main reasons for information seeking, entertainment and socialization (Peou, 2010).
However, after more than thirty years civil war in Cambodia, the Royal Government of Cambodia has been trying to develop human resources as well as other sectors in the main purpose of reconstructing and integrating the country into the regional and international community, otherwise Cambodia will fall farther behind other neighbor counties and the young generation will not have enough qualifications as well as practical skills in order to meet their needs to live in this technology age. In partnership with national and international partners especially UNESCO, Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports [MoEYS] (2004) had completely formed the Policy and Strategies on Information and Communication Technology in Education in Cambodia in 2004 with its vision is to make sure all citizens have equal access to quality basic education and to prepare all of them to play a very active role in reconstructing our country and also integrating Cambodia to the knowledge-based global society. Moreover, three main goals are set in order to achieve its vision are:
Increased access to basic education for all, both formal and non-formal, using ICT as one of the major tools for learning, teaching, searching and sharing information.
Improved quality of basic education and promote independent and lifelong learning, especially for post-primary education,
Availability of workforce with the ICT skills needed for employment and use in a knowledge-based society; to ensure that Cambodia can compete and cooperate in an increasingly interconnected world.
Since then, Policy of ICT in Education has been formulated by MoEYS with financial support of Japanese Funds-in-Trust and technical assistance from UNESCO. This policy focuses on four core areas: (1) in order to reduce the gap of digital between Cambodian schools and other neighbor counties all teachers and students are provided access to ICT, (2) use ICT functions in education as learning and teaching tools in variable subjects as well as ICT itself, (3) introduce it to all ages, genders, ethnicities, disability people and locations through distance learning, self-learning and especially children, youth, adults who can access less or cannot access to training skills as well as basic education by integrating ICT with other tools such as television, printed or painted materials, radio and other media, (4) push to use ICT to produce more productivity, effectiveness and efficiency in education management. Then, Richardson (2008) claimed that National Information Communication Technology Development Authority (NiDA) was created in August 2000 to " promote and formulate IT development policy for the short, medium, and long term; implement IT policies to ensure maximum economic growth; and monitor and audit all IT-related projects in Cambodia" (p. 69).
1.2 Research Problem
There is a limitation on using ICTs to support students' studies is because many students are from different backgrounds and most of them are from the provinces, so ICT tools are quite expensive for some students to afford. High costs, limited availability, and other factors contribute to preventing students from using ICTs to improve their education as well as their daily life (MacLean, 2009). However, according to Spot Survey (2001) the power of ICT had been adjusting the learning process and its result was really influenced students' education, particularly in the science and technology subjects. Therefore, those who had experienced online discussion believe that ICT is another resource to assist students to learn effectively such as doing assignment and homework. Furthermore, students are positive towards the use of ICT in education and learning because it could lead to more precise guidelines on how to complement ICT learning with technology methods.
In addition, students have shown the three opportunities such as facilitating contact and information exchange, and promoting access to higher education and adjusting the learning process and learning outcomes. In contrast, according to Policy and Strategies on Information and Communication Technology in Education in Cambodia (2004) mentioned, "Not all colleges have enough computers to run ICT courses effectively and some have problems with power supply for example having rely on a generator or having to turn off all other electrical appliances in the college while the computer room is in use" (p. 9). When Richardson (2008) found, "15.6% of the schools never allowed their students to access the computers, 22.9% of the schools reported that none of their teachers had access to the computers, while only 14.6% of the school reported all of the teachers had access to the computers" (p. 70). Anyway, Floridi (1995) argues, the Internet remains appealing to higher education for a number of reasons: the reduction of the time lag between the production and utilization of knowledge; the promotion of international co-operation and sharing of viewpoints; the free share of information; and the weakening of the concept of specialization (as cited in Marriott, Marriott, & Selwyn, 2004).
1.3 Research Objectives
Due to the problems above this research objective should be:
To collect students' perceptions about the potential of using ICT to assist them to learn.
To understand the perceptions of ICT services in that target university.
1.4 Research Questions
To achieve these two objectives we have to answer these following questions:
How do students use ICTs in their studies?
What kinds of opportunities do universities provide to encourage students to use ICTs?
What kinds of ICT services are provided in universities?
1.5 Significance of the Study
Apparently, this research is very necessary to conduct because of the following helpful reasons. One, its result will help to shape the students' thoughts in using ICT to improve their studies. It is very useful when the students get involved with ICT for the right purposes and right ways of using them, rather than using them to entertain themselves so much but also use them to evolve the capacities, skills and knowledge. Hence, when they are qualified enough they will be able to fulfill the job market's needs, which is possibly encourage them to gain more helpful experiences for their better living. Two, this research will awaken the students as well as higher institutions to the realization that ICT is one of the other most important components should be equipped to produce more qualified and skillful human resources for this technology age. Also, it would be able to guide some weaker students to use ICT in proper and useful ways for their studies.
1.6 Definition of Key Terms
Information and Communication Technology (ICT) refers to all kinds of media such as radio, television, computers, Internet, phones as well as other printed materials (MoEYS, 2004). However, (Anderson, 2010) stated "the term ICT, short for Information and Communication Technologies, embraces the many technologies that enable us to receive information and communicate or exchange information with others" (p. 4).
1.7 Proposed Chapter Outline
This proposal systematically exists three main chapters. The first chapter is the introduction of the research that mention about the background of the study, research problem, research objective, research question, significance, the definition of the key terms and the proposed chapter outline. The literature review will be discussed in chapter two. The final chapter will detail about the research design, tools, or instruments for data gathering, sample or population, sampling, data collecting procedures, analyzing data, and ethical consideration.
ANNOTATED LITERATURE REVIEW
Asian Development Bank. (2009). Forcus on Education. Good Practice In Information
And Communication Technology for Education.
This article discussed how teachers have to organize themselves before assigning any related ICT work/assignments to their students. It also argued on how curriculum should be designed for teachers to teach. ADB (2009) stated, "Technology should be mainstreamed into the entire teacher education curriculum and introduced in context to develop pre-service teachers' ICT capability. The many uses of technology should be integrated throughout coursework and field experiences" (p. 12). In addition, various ICTs should be accessible, and affordable for all education levels to produce more outcomes to meet labor market's needs in this globalization world as well as to deliver educational content and information literacy to the learners. It also argues that using computers and Internet for learning in classrooms are not always the best ways to develop and improve teaching and learning practices, but partly some issues are from teachers' themselves lack initiative ideas as well as leadership in fostering schools and students to be familiar with those ICTs to become a culture in school. Although Kader (2008) asserted "a common misconception among teachers is that using the courseware or educational software simply means assigning a topic for students to learn or search (as cited in ADB, 2009, p. 14).
This article is really relevant to my research topic because it mainly discusses about how teachers organize and use ICTs to teach. Moreover, it argues about how students are prepared their learning to meet the job market's needs.
Knight, C., Knight, B. A., & Teghe, D. (2006). International Journal of Education and
Development using Information and communication Technology. Releasing the
padagogical power of information and communication technology for learners: A case
study , 2 (2), 27-34.
This article discussed two issues, they are the barriers that educators embrace in new technology and the last one is the strategies that educators use to break the barriers down. These authors realized that the educators are difficult in adopting ICT in their teaching and they still also use the old styles to teach. However, the authors supported ICTs demand changes the education system as well as the importance and relevance of ICTs in teaching are acknowledged by most educators.
Their article is relevant to my topic because they focus on educators using ICTs in their teaching. Although the authors do not answer my research questions directly, I will use their information to describe how teachers in two universities use ICTs as the helpful tools to teach their students.
Marriott, N., Marriott, P., & Selwyn, N. (2004, December). Accounting Education.
Accounting undergraduates' changing use of ICT and their views on using the Internet
in higher education - a research note , 117-130.
This paper focuses on Accounting students who use Internet to develop their capcities as well as edcuation in two universities in UK. Internet is likely to be the only one method that acknowledged and supported by learners in their choosen way of education transferring. The authors tried to examine how students used Internet for their Accounting major, and to find out what were their views and perspective about possible applications of the Internet and computers in the future.
As it conducted with undergraduate students who attended those two universities and studied Accounting, it's really connected to my research which is focuses on two universities as well. And one major among other chosen majors will be Accounting that I will choose to interview. However, this study's information will be used for my future research as it's likely to be more useful and helpful.
Peng, H., Tsai, C. C., & Wu, Y. T. (2006). Educational Studies. University students'
self-efficacy and their attitudes toward the Internet: the role of students'
perceptons of the Internet , 32 (1), 73-86.
This study discussed university students' attitudes in using Internet. There are two types of students' attitudes; first one talked about students who use the Internet as an entertainment tool expressed more positive attitudes and communication than who use the Internet as a practical tool. As the authors strongly believed that Internet usage of the learners is very affected to their learning outcomes, especially Interne-based environments, self-efficacy and their attitudes toward Internet usage, hence the authors tended to investigate it. As the primary result, the authors found that students were categorized by gender, while male students tended to use Internet as a toy; female students used it as a practical tool.
This study is related to my research because it functionally focuses on how university students use Internet in their learning. Stating, " The results indicate that university students demonstrate positive attitudes and adequate Internet self-efficacy and that these students are inclined to view the Internet as a functional tool - a functional technology" (p. 73). Even though, these authors do not answer my research questions directly, I will still use their information to detail how university students in two universities use ICTs as their practical tools in their learning.
Richardson, J. W. (2008). ICT in Education Reform in Cambodia. Problems, Politics,
and Policies Impacting Implementation , 4, 67-82.
Richardson argues on streams model of politics, problems, and politics of ICT in Education Reform in Cambodia. In this study, he discussed on negative impact, strenths, weaknesses, and improvement as well as implementation of using ICTs in Education reform. Morever, he assertted, "because politics, problems, and policies failed to remain interconnected, an ICT in education reform has yet to be fully embraced in Cambodia" (p. 68). In addition, description, multiple streams model, and analyses of how ICT in education reform which were introduced in the current status were disscussed in this study as well and it concludes with another disscussion of how those streams may pursue to impact and interact the implentation of this reform. Even though it doesn't answer to my research questions a lot but it is really related to my research, especially it talks about MoEYS procedure in developing ICTs into education revolution, therefore I will use its information to give more detail to my paper.
3.1 Research Design
According to (Gay, Mills, & Airasian, 2009) mentioned, "Narrative Research is the study of how different humans experience the world around them, and it involves a methodology that allows people to tell the stories of their storied lives" (p. 384) and "Ethnographic Research is the study of the cultural patterns and perspectives of participants in their natural settings" (p. 404). I'm a narrative researcher who has to collect the data about participants' lives, how they experience differently of using ICT in their learning when I have to understand deeper about a particular phenomena into a meaningful context as I'm an ethnographic researcher at the same time. In short, qualitative research is probably used to conduct this research.
3.2 Instruments and tools for collecting the data
In order to gain the trustfully data, unstructured and structured interview with designed questionnaires and observation will be used. This is important because I have to obtain more complex about the participants' personal information when other questions are prepared to ask participants by inventing conversation around what, where, when, who, why and how. Base on (Gay, Mills, & Airasian, 2009) "Interviewers can explore and probe participants' responses to gather in-depth data about their experiences and feelings. They can examine attitudes, interests, feelings, concerns, and values more easily than they can through observation. Interviews may range in length from a few minutes to a few hours" (p. 370).
3.3 Site, population, sample size and sampling
I have decided to select one university in Phnom Penh city to opt the participants, which is ABC University and they are in major of English Literature. Top ten students from the class will be selected purposively by the students' list with final exam results and the selected participants will probably be in third year. Base on my experiences I think that university students who have been using new technologies as well as ICT in their learning always get better results, so in this research I will probably use purposive techniques to select the participants. First of all, ten participants will be selected, but four only will be finally chosen to do depth-interview after first meet and interview base on some criteria and possibility reasons as the following:
Students who use ICT most in their learning.
Students who can afford it most.
In case some participants who may not be able to be involved in the middle process, then I can have other reserved to replace instantly.
However, this university is not the most famous and not the worst in Phnom Penh either. The reason that I choose it is if I choose the most famous one, that university would probably equips everything for their students in order to attract more students, especially ICT availabilities will be provided but when I choose this one it doesn't have many possibilities to equip all related study materials as well as ICT tools to help its students much, so it would be insufficient of having more opportunities of encouraging its students to learn especially through ICT, then students will seek for any possible and helpful ways to improve their capacities so ICT will be one of other best choice they will automatically choose. In addition, one of my friends is a lecturer there so it's probably convenient for me to work with his university as well as his school administration when I want to ask for any help. However, if I choose any universities that are especially famous for ICT subject such as RUPP or IIC I think it is not fair to do the research on ICT topic.
3.4 Data collecting procedure
According to (Gay, Mills, & Airasian, 2009), "qualitative researchers collect descriptive - narrative and visual - non-numerical data to gain insights into the phenomena of interest. Because the data that are collected should contribute to understanding the phenomenon, data collection is largely determined by the nature of the problem" (p. 366). As I tend to use qualitative research methodology, two specific data collection techniques, administrating questionnaires with unstructured interview and nonparticipant observation are going to be used.
Firstly, I will probably have to explain each participant about my purpose to do this study. That is why I would let them know that I will not use their answers to do anything illegally, and I will also inform them that their answers to these questions would be a great benefit in assisting to shape the use of ICT in education fields. They will be kept confidential and used only in my study. Hence, I am going to use some questions to ask them to get some more detail to ensure with my study that the findings base on what I have experimented and interviewed. Then, I will interview them individually, which lasts about 40 to 60 minutes for each I guess. In the meanwhile, I will be taking notes and try to ask with the questions "HOW and WHY" in order to get detail information from them. Then, I will compile their answers together, analyze and use them for my research study.
In addition, field notes will be used as well to record, gather and compile the data during the field work because it will probably helps when I sometimes may forget or miss some information but I have a recorder so I can play it back to make sure I have got accurately data. Then, I will use that information to analyze base on what I will have seen or heard during the study including my own experience, thoughts during my observation time.
Administrating questionnaires (see Appendices) will be used as a tool to collect the data, in the mean time individual and group discussion will be assigned as well to gain more detail.
3.5 A plan to analyze data
As this is the qualitative research, descriptive, narrative and non-numerical will be the best natural ways to analyze the data that has already collected. Therefore, memoing, describing, and classifying are the process of analyzing the data as well. The answers from the interviews will be transcribed and analyzed accordingly into themes. Finally, the findings will be interpreted to illustrate how university students use ICT effectively in their learning.
3.6 Ethical consideration
In order to make sure ethical considerations to participants, approval from school principals and selected participants will be required. All participants are on volunteering-based and they can leave their participation whenever they want. Moreover, all obtained information and data will be kept confidentially and anonymously. In addition, interview will be conducted in individual and group after having an agreement of a set date. Finally, all participants will be asked to add more comments or recommendations to the study they might have.
3.7 Strengths and limitation of the method
The researcher is going to ask 10 participants at the ABC University to answer and to fill the questionnaires. The sample size is small, but more detailed answers are expected to get due to in-depth questions used. The questionnaires and the pre-arranged questions of the interviews will be deeply asked about their perceptions. Therefore, the answers on (1) How do students use ICTs in their studies? (2) What kinds of opportunities do universities provide to encourage students to use ICTs? (3) What kinds of ICT services are provided in universities will be answered.
The expected answers cannot be used to generalize all the perceptions among the other students from other universities in Cambodia because the number of the respondents is absolutely small. However, the individual respondent will have enough time to give details. The answers will show the foundation of students' perceptions about the potential of using ICT to assist their learning, and perceptions of the provided ICT services in that target university.