BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Teaching and learning in the 21st Century is becoming increasingly reliant on new technologies. Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) provide an excellent vehicle for engaging students in learning. It has become key tool and a revolutionary impact on how we see the world and how we live. ICT’s impacts on education (e-learning) in general have been established.
Educational technology is the effective use of technological tools in learning and incorporates numerous types of media that deliver e.g. text books, audio CDs, photographs and animated information in the teaching and learning process. Similarly, it encompasses technological applications and processes such as audio or video tape, satellite TV, CD-ROM, and web-based learning as well as computer assisted learning. Garrison (2011).
According to Georges, (2001) state that computer is a general purpose device that can be programmed to carry out a set of logical operations. Computers as technological tools have been used to teach, manage, show and communicate information which makes them unique compared the other learning devices.
Soloway and Prior (2006) believed that there have been a number of factors impeding the impact of Information Communication Technology in education, most especially in secondary schools has include such factors as a funding to support the purchase of the technology, a lack of training among established teaching practitioners, a lack of motivation and need among teachers to adopt information as a teaching tools. Oliver & Short (2007) stated that in recent times, factors have emerged which have strengthened and encourage moves to adopt ICT in classrooms and learning settings. These have included a growing need to explore efficiencies in terms of program delivery, the opportunities for flexible delivery provided by information communication technology system and the growing use of internet and w.w.w as tools for information access and communication have witnessed growth in recent times, according to Oliver & Towers (2009).
Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) are often associated with the most sophisticated and expensive computer-based technologies. But ICTs also encompass the more conventional technologies such as radio, television and telephone technology. While definitions of ICTs are varied, it might be effortful to accept the definition provided by United Nations Development Programme (UNDP): ‘ICTs are basically information-handling tools a varied set of goods, applications and services that are effected to produce, store, process, distribute and exchange information. They include the ‘old’ ICTs of radio, television and telephone, and the ‘new’ ICTs of computers, satellite and wireless technology and the Internet. These different tools are now able to work together, and combine to form our ‘networked world’ – a massive infrastructure of interconnected telephone services, standardized computing hardware, the internet, radio and television, which reaches into every corner of the globe’. When we talk of ICTs, we refer not only to the latest computer and Internet based technologies, but also to simple audio visual aids such as the slides, tape and cassette recorders and radio; video cassettes and television; and film. These older and more familiar technologies are referred to under the collective heading of “analogue media” while the newer computer and Internet based technologies are called the “digital media” (Usha, 2001).
However, in today’s world, with the increased convergence or blending of the engineering designs and with the coming together of the satellite and the computer, the dividing lines between these different media are becoming blurred and consequently, the way people define and refer to ICTs is also getting blurred. Often, the definition of ICTs is also done in terms of “old” and “new” as if to distinguish between the analogue and digital (Livingstone 1999).
In Nigeria, studies on use information communication studies in teaching and learning are few. The few documented research findings however tend to corroborate the observations by researchers globally. For instance, Etukudo (2003), in a study on effects of computer assisted learning (CAL) in Nigerian secondary school students’ performance in Computer Science, showed that performance of students exposed to Computer Assisted Learning was better than that of their counterparts exposed to the traditional methods.
Wambugu and Changeiywo (2008) also noted that the teaching approach that a teacher adopts is one factor that may affect students’ achievement. Therefore the use of an appropriate teaching approach is critical to the successful teaching and learning of science. Although numerous research findings on Computer Assisted Learning (CAL) globally attest to its positive impact on students’ learning outcome, Omwenga (2005) noted that Nigerian high school teachers have done very little to introduce this modern teaching approach in their classroom practice .
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