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Educational Technology: The Perceived Values

of Community Colleges' Position Holders

By

Ray Tjahjadi

B.S. (California State University, Fresno) 1984


M.B.A. (California State University, Fresno) 1996

DISSERTATION

Submitted in partial satisfaction of the requirements for the degree of

DOCTOR OF EDUCATION

Educational Leadership

in the

Division of Graduate Studies, CSUF


Office of Graduate Studies, UCD

of the

California State University, Fresno


University of California, Davis

Approved:

Dr. I. Phillip Young, UCD, Chair

Dr. Ron Unruh. CSUF

Dr. John McNeil, UCLA

Committee in Charge
2009

i
UMI Number: 3375534

Copyright 2009 by
Tjahjadi, Ray

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Copyright by

Ray Tjahjadi

2009
Dedication

In loving remembrance of my mother, Maryani Tjahjadi (a.k.a. Yong Lian Fung)

Ma, for you I nurture knowledge and share it with all human beings.
Acknowledgements

This study would not be completed without the tireless efforts and timely

support of three exceptional scholars-- Dr. I. Philips Young (the chair of my

dissertation committee), Dr. Ronald Unruh (a member of my dissertation

committee), and Dr. John McNeil (a member of my dissertation committee). Dr.

Young, with his awesome knowledge of educational research as well as

statistical analysis, did not let me stray from my dissertation process. There are

no words to express my respect and appreciation for Dr. Young's guidance,

encouragement, and availability from the start to the end of this study.

My deepest gratitude is also extended to Dr. Unruh who guided me in this

dissertation process through his expertise in planning and evaluation as well as

in formatting my dissertation. I would like to offer my highest appreciation to Dr.

McNeil who shared his scholarly wisdom in educational curriculum with me, and

who always reminds me that every person in this world is entitled to learn. Dr.

Unruh and Dr. McNeil's belief of "no boundary in learning" will always inspire me

to investigate the roles of educational technology at community colleges to

improve the learning outcomes of community-college graduates.

Finally, I would like to express my immeasurable gratefulness to my wife,

Sharon, and my daughters, Amanda and Maya. Your loving support of my

doctorate education has helped me learn to be a better listener and to be less

self-centered. Your question of "when my learning will end" has enlightened me

to search for an answer. / love you all.


Table of Contents

Title Page i

Copyright Page ii

Dedication iii

Acknowledgement iv

Table of Contents v

List of Tables vii

List of Figures viii

1. Introduction 1

2. Literature Review 7

Benefits of Educational Technology 8

Factors Impacting The

Implementation of Educational Technology 16

Assessment Technology 40

Simulation Technology 43

Faculty's Technology Competency 47

3. Methodology 52

Research design 52

Participants 53

Hypotheses 54

Instrumentation 55

Independent Variables 56

Dependent Variables 57

v
Procedures 58

Statistical Analysis 59

4. Finding 60

Descriptive Statistics 60

Statistical Tests 64

Post hoc Test 67

5. Discussion 69

Faculty's Technology Competency 73

Simulation Technology 77

Assessment Technology 81

Further Research 87

References 90

Appendix A: Survey Instrument 103

Appendix B: Survey Cover Letter 108

VI
List of Tables

Table 1: MANOVA 59

Table 2: Student Enrollment and Percentage of Financial Aid Recipients ... .60

Table 3: Respondents' Age Distribution 61

Table 4: Respondents' Educational Level 62

Table 5: Frequency Distribution of Respondents' Teaching Years 63

Table 6: Statistics of Respondents' Teaching Years 64

Table 7: Chi-Square Test 64

Table 8: Survey's Reliability 65

Table 9: Descriptive Statistics of Dependent Variable's Composite Scores ... .65

Table 10: Multivariate Tests 66

Table 11: Analysis of Variance of Simulation Technology 66

Table 12: Analysis of Variance of Assessment Technology 67

Table13: Multiple Comparison (Fisher's LSD - Simulation Technology) 68

Table14: Multiple Comparison (Fisher's LSD-Assessment Technology) 68

VII
List of Figures

Figure 1: Distant Education Enrollment 13

VIM
Ray Tjahjadi
April 2009
Educational Leadership

Educational Technology

The Perceived Values of Community Colleges' Position Holders

Abstract

Vs f
'JGJD
I. Philip Young^ Ed. Dl^Dissertaioh\Chair

Studies indicate that the educational technology has been proven to

increase student learning outcomes, to broadened student access to education,

and to prepare technology competency for 21st's century workers. A lack of

comprehensive research at the community college level on educational

technology is the motive of this research. Consequently, all of publicly-funded

community colleges in the United States of America serve as the population of

this study.

This study investigates differences in the values of educational technology

as perceived by executive administrators (i.e. chancellors, presidents, and vice

presidents), deans, and faculty members of publicly-funded community colleges

in the United States. Three specific aspects of educational technology

investigated in this study are technology competency, simulation technology, and

assessment technology. The targeted participants for this study are 999

community colleges selected randomly from 1,045 publicly-funded, 2-year

degree-granting, institutions in the United States.

XX
The findings from this study indicate that community colleges' executives,

deans, and faculty members are in agreement about the value of technology

competency, and congruence exists in the value of simulation technology and the

value of assessment technology between community colleges' executives and

deans. There are significant differences in the perceived value of simulation

technology as well as in the perceived value of assessment technology between

the faculty members and the executives. The faculty members fail to agree with

the deans about the perceived value of value of simulation technology as well as

in the perceived value of assessment technology.

X
1

Chapter 1

Introduction

In his 1997 State of the Union address, President Clinton outlined a 10-

point plan for improving education in the USA, which included connecting every

classroom and library to the Internet by the year 2000 and helping all students

become technologically literate. Understanding that the new technology cannot

make much of an impact on learning unless teachers are trained to make the

technology an integral part of their teaching, the National School Boards

Association, the National PTA, the National Education Association, the American

Federation of Teachers, and many business and professional organizations have

launched an initiative to recruit teacher volunteers who will improve their

competency in using education technology. These teacher volunteers then share

their expertise with their colleagues at their school (U.S. Department of

Education, 2007).

Although the educational technology has been proven to increase student

learning outcomes (Cradler, McNabb, & Freeman, 2002; Edwards, Cordray, &

Dorbolo, 2000; Office of Information Technology, 2006; Washington and Lee

University, 2003), to broadened student access to education (Bradley, 2006;

California Virtual Campus, 2007; Rovai, Ponton, Wighting, & Baker, 2007; U. S.

Department of State's Bureau of International Information Programs, 2006), and


2

to prepare technology competency for 21st's century workers (Dede, 2007),

eleven years later since Clinton's 1997 State of the Union address, the infusion

of educational technology to U. S. public schools and colleges has been slow

(Smolin & Lawless, 2007) when it is compared to businesses (Bok, 2003). U. S.

educational institutions, including public community colleges, are challenged to

be innovative in blending their technology resources with their human resources

to produce new methods for improving teaching and learning (Bok, 2003).

Exponential leaping of technology improvements creates new opportunities for

many people as well as causes challenges to educators (Smolin & Lawless,

2007).

Education leaders and teachers are pressed to assess and to evaluate the

knowledge and skills required for 21 st century citizens and to produce new

learning approaches that will be appropriate for responding to complex

technology-influenced environments including schools and colleges (Dede, 2007;

Smolin & Lawless, 2007). Current college students demonstrated fluency in using

the Internet and the information technology than their previous generations

(Jones, Johnson-Yale, Perez, & Schuler, 2007; Zhang, 2002), a condition that

demands teachers and college instructors to maintain their competency in

integrating educational technology into their teaching to avoid a technology

mismatch between them and their students. To be effective, educational

institutions must adjust their leadership to blend their technology resources with

their human resources (Bok, 2003).


3

The offering of online courses via the Internet is increasing (California

Virtual Campus, 2007; U. S. Department of State's Bureau of International

Information Programs, 2006) causes the shifting of the learning structure from a

teacher-centered learning structure to student-centered learning structure (Rovai

et. al, 2007) where online students engage dynamically in activities to complete

their required tasks by using technology (Cradler et. al, 2002; Office of

Information Technology, 2006). Shifting the learning structure from teacher

centered to student centered will be successful likely if the teachers who use the

technology are involved in developing their technology-training programs that

emphasize on the quality of interaction between the technology used and

themselves. Teachers must be involved also in the long-term planning of

technology (Ham, 1997; McKenzie, 1999; Rice & Miller, 2001).

Maintaining the technology competency of their faculty, promoting the

shifting of learning structure from teacher centered to student centered through

the utilization of technology, and involving faculty members in developing

technology plan require community colleges to rethink their leadership strategies

for making necessary transformations that will ensure a successful

implementation of technology at their institution. Community leaders must nurture

a leadership that will promote continuous improvement through changes

(Reeves, 2002) and will maintain constant interaction among organizational

stakeholders (Burns, 2003). As suggested by Bennis and Nanus (1997),

community colleges can employed three leadership strategies: (a) to pay

attention to vision and objectives, (b) to be articulate in communicating changes,


4

and (c) to display high-level commitment and integrity for the vision and

objectives.

The human-resources frame of Bolman and Deal (2003) is used as a

guide in this study to investigate the consensus about the value of educational

technology among community colleges' employees. The human-resources

frame (Bolman & Deal, 2003) asserts that people and organizations are

interdependent and that congruence must exist between an organization and its

employees. This study is to examine the perceived value of educational

technology from community colleges' executive administrators, deans, and

faculty members.

To be effective in increasing student-learning outcomes, educational

technology must be incorporated and must be implemented in the learning

process as authentic activities to support the learning units (Pellegrino, Goldman,

Berthental, & Lawless, 2007), and two specific educational technologies useful

for this purpose are simulation technology and assessment technology.

Simulation technology helps students to understand complex concepts through

computerized simulations, computations, and visualization (Grabe & Grabe,

2007; Haertel, Means, & Penuel, 2007; Pellegrino et. al, 2007; Recesso & Orrill,

2008). Assessment technology is to provide students and teachers with a

continuing formative assessment about students' progress and failure in learning

specific skills related to specific learning units (Pellegrino et. al, 2007; Grabe &

Grabe, 2007; Haertel, et. al, 2007).


5

Technology competency of community colleges' faculty measured in this

study is beyond the skill of operating a personal computer, of using word

processing, or of sending and receiving emails. It includes the competency of

installing educational software, of operating audio and video technology, of

utilizing course-management software, and of using recording software. Survey

items for this research are adopted from University of Tennessee (Oh & French,

2004) and Texas A&M University (Jones, Lindner, Murphy, & Dooley, 2002)

based on the following research questions:

1. Is there any difference in the perceived value of faculty's technology

competency among community colleges' executive administrators,

deans, and faculty?

2. Is there any difference in the perceived value of educational-simulation

technology among community colleges' executive administrators,

deans, and faculty?

3. Is there any difference in the perceived value of educational-

assessment technology among community colleges' executive

administrators, deans, and faculty?

The sample for this study (n=154) was selected at random from 1,045

publicly funded community colleges in United States ((U. S. Department of

Education's Institute of Education Sciences (2), 2008). To satisfy a return rate,

999 community colleges are selected at random as the targeted institutions.

From the selected 999 targeted community colleges, 333 were selected at

random as the targeted-executive-administrator participants, 333 were identified


6

at random as the targeted-dean participants, and 333 were chosen at random as

the targeted-faculty participants. This particular sampling strategy was employed

to ensure independence among community colleges and independence among

focal subjects (Huck, 2004).

Paper-based and Web-based surveys were employed to collect

participants' perceived values from 30 items listed in the survey questionnaire

that uses a five-point Likert scale (1 = strongly disagree, 2 = disagree, 3 =

neutral, 4 = agree, and 5 = strongly agree). Collected data were analyzed using

one-way ANOVA to compute F-test score of three levels of independent variable

(executive administrators, deans, and faculty) on three dependent variables

(technology competency, simulation technology, and assessment technology).

Details of the methodology are discussed in Chapter 3 of this study.

It is hoped that this study will trigger more research on educational

technology at community colleges across the nation. Findings from this study

can be applied to further research on roles of technology competency in

recruiting and hiring community colleges faculty as well as to help leaders of

community colleges to alter their leadership strategies in dealing with educational

technology at their institution. A limitation of this study is that it fails to take the

consideration of the individual goals and objectives of mission statement of the

community colleges surveyed in this study that may be unfit for technology

evaluation.
7

Chapter 2

Literature Review

Computers, broadcasting, telecommunications, and network technologies

have merged and have impacted traditional practices in education. This blending

is known as educational technology. Wikipedia (2007) defines educational

technology as a creative blending of ideas and of technology with subject-matter

content to produce new and improve teaching as well learning processes

(Wikipedia, 2007).

Literature indicates that educational technology improves student-learning

outcomes (Cradler et.al, 2002; Edwards, Cordray, & Dorbolo, 2000; Office of

Information Technology, 2006) and that faculty play an important role in

integrating educational technology in their curriculum as well as in their course

delivery (McKenzie, 1999; Rovai, Ponton, Wighting, & Baker, 2007), and faculty

involvement in the planning of technology is important to ensure effective

utilization of technology at their institutions (Rice & Miller, 2001). Successful

implementation of educational technology at schools requires school leaders to

employ a leadership that encourages the use of educational technology in

instruction as well as the sharing of technology expertise among faculty (Robert

et. al, 2007). Therefore, it is important for schools to have both their faculty and

their leaders agree on the value of educational technology at their school.


8

Comprehensive studies to measure the impact of educational technology

have been done mostly on K-12 schools or 4-year universities, and broad

research on educational technology at community colleges is next to none. In

general, research across multiple community colleges is very limited due to the

lack of a reliable funding base (Cohen & Brawer, 1996). The absence of research

on community colleges may be caused also by their various functions from

providing low-cost two years of general education to preparing vocational

education, and recently, to offering remedial courses for those who are

unprepared for higher education (Wolfle & Robertshaw, 1982).

A lack of comprehensive research on educational technology at

community colleges is the motive of this research. This research investigates the

perceived value of educational technology at community colleges from the

perception of various position holders-- executives, deans, and faculty. The

literature reviewed in this study focuses on three areas: (1) the benefits of

educational technology, (2) the success factors for implementing educational

technology, and (3) the components of educational technology as integrated

within community college setting.

Benefits of educational technology

There are many theories and many opinions about the purpose of

education, one opinion states that the purpose of education is to form good

citizenship by allowing young people to learn and to teach them how to utilize

their intellectual minds as well as how to acquire facts to satisfy their curiosity,

and schools are the institutions delegated to meet the purpose of education by
9

replicating facts and problems as well as their solutions of the larger society in a

control-learning environment (Roosevelt, 1930). One of the educational theories

points out that education is a process of social reproduction and of cultural

reproduction (Bourdieu, 2000). Another opinion states that education is to extract

and to facilitate realization of individuals' potentials and talents by teaching

learners specific skills and informed knowledge (Wikipedia (2), 2008).

White, Van Scotter, Hartoonian, and Davis (2007) argued that the only

purpose of education is to educate citizens about and to encourage them to

participate in important issues concerning the thriving aspects of the republic,

unfortunately, the current education that Americans find now is different than the

core purpose of education. Schools are focused on skill building, data analysis,

and job preparation where job training has replaced civic education (White, Van

Scotter, Hartoonian, & Davis, 2007). Regardless various opinions about the

educational purposes, educational technology has changed the landscape of

education by improving student learning outcomes as well as by increasing

student access to education.

Improving student learning outcomes

A study by the Center for Applied Research in Educational Technology

(CARET) showed that the use of educational technology in classrooms has

benefited K-12 students in their learning outcomes relative to content areas, to

higher-order thinking, and to problem solving. In West Virginia, 950 fifth-grade

students enrolleld among 18 schools improved their SAT-9 scores as the result

of using reading and of using mathematics software as part of their curriculum


10

standards. In a study across nine states assessing the impact of Jasper software

in mathematics instruction, the use of computers and the application of Jasper

software helped the students to complete complex problem-solving tasks better

than those students who failed to follow a similar protocol (Cradler et. al, 2002).

Educational technology is used also to encourage students' participation

in their learning through a system known as classroom performance system

(CPS) that is called also as personal response system (PRS), as audience

response system (ARS), as student response system (SRS), or as clickers. This

technology system allows the instructor to ask questions generated from a

computer and displays the questions on a projector screen in the classroom, and

the students answer the questions by clicking a button on their remote-control

hand-held device (clicker) that corresponds to one of the displayed answers.

Student answers are transmitted immediately and electronically to the receiver

installed at the instructor's computer, and these answers are automatically

summarized, stored, and displayed back to the students in real time. (The Ohio

State University, 2008; Wikipedia (1), 2008).

At Washington and Lee Universtiy, CPS technology was used in

introductory geoscience courses to measure student understanding of a topic

instantly and to allow alteration of the lecture accordingly (Washington and Lee

University, 2003). By using CPS technology, students were be able to gauge

their level of understanding for course material relative to their peers. Surveys of

CPS use in introductory geosciences courses were conducted between 2001 and

2003 with the following survey results:


11

1. More than half of the students surveyed (65% - 77%) indicated that CPS

enhanced their understanding about the course material.

2. A majority of the students surveyed (71 % - 85%) confirmed that CPS

reinforced important concepts explained in lecture.

3. A very high percentage of the students surveyed, about 90%,

recommended CPS use in introductory geology courses as well as other

courses.

This study showed that CPS helps students to learn better in a technology-

supported learning environment than in a traditional-lecture learning

environment. (Washington and Lee University, 2003).

In the fall of 2005, a large-scale pilot study involving 1,940 students and

16 faculty members on the clickers at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville,

showed that students were more engaged with their classes and achieved higher

retention levels after using the clickers than before using the clickers. Using the

device helped 74% of the students to understand important lecture points and to

identify study areas that they needed to spend more time on. From 16

participated faculty, 15 of them planned to use clickers in their spring 2006

classes (Office of Information Technology, 2006).

Beyond the hardware and the software specific technology such as

clickers and Jasper mathematical software, Internet technology benefits also

many students to broaden their access to education as well as to increase their

critical thinking. Working in tandem with information technology, the Internet has

changed the delivery of many courses that are traditionally offered in physical
12

classrooms at specific times. Learners now have the option of taking online

courses on the Web (Shelly, Cashman, & Vermaat, 2003). As a result, students

think critically and are motivated to learn in a technological-learning environment.

By utilizing the Internet to research topics and to share information for

their course projects, students become more critical in their thinking than the

students who failed to use the Internet for completing their course projects

(Cradler et. al, 2002; Office of Information Technology, 2006). Rovai, Ponton,

Wighting, and Baker (2007) conducted a comparative study of 353 students from

three universities enrolled either in 12 online or in 12 traditional-classroom

university courses. Using a three-way MANOVA, they found that online students

possess stronger intrinsic motivation than traditional students who attend regular

classes (Rovai et al., 2007).

Increasing the access to education

At the 22nd Annual Conference of Information Technology, two community-

college instructors presented the effects of educational technology at Orange

County Community College in Middletown, New York. These instructors found

that the use of technology improved preparation and commitment among

students in the courses they took. Educational technology has helped this college

to offer online courses as well as hybrid courses and broadens student access to

education, specifically to higher education (Bradley, 2006).

Students demanded also more online and additional hybrid courses to be

offered by the college, and the offering of online courses has grown from two in

1996 to 26 plus four hybrid courses. Unfortunately, many senior faculty members
13

at Orange County Community College had insufficient technology skills beyond

simple word processing and electronic mail. To avoid a technology mismatch

between younger students who are computer oriented and senior faculty, the

college offered a laptop computer as an incentive for their senior faculty to

participate in a voluntary technology-training program (Bradley, 2006).

An Orange County Community College's faculty member who teaches

marketing courses, stated: "Every product, every service will die if it is not re-

engineered. If we don't re-engineer our course offerings, our departments will

die" (Bradley, 2006, p. 8). The situation faced by Orange County Community

College is faced also by the California Community Colleges. It was projected that

distance education, via the Internet, would count for 20% of student enrollment at

California Community Colleges in 2016 (California Virtual Campus, 2007) as

shown in Figure 1.

Figure 1. Distance Education Enrollment.

25 -|

„ 20 -pk

Enrollment: 1998-04

12-Year Projection: 2005-


2016
Linear (Enrollment: 1998-04)

a. 5 > y 1

0-"
1998 2004 2016
14

The delivery of courses, in a classroom or by an online setting at

community colleges, is the full responsibility of faculty who teach the courses

(Fresno City College, 2007; Maricopa Community College District, 2007; Monroe

Community College, 2007). Because faculty members are the sole entity in

teaching their courses, it is important for community colleges to recruit new

faculty who are capable of integrating educational technology in teaching

traditional courses as well as online courses. Technology competency will

eliminate the technology mismatch between younger, computer oriented students

and community colleges' faculty.

Since 2001, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has been

offering 1,500 free online courses through its OpenCourseWare (OCW) Web site.

Five years later, the Web site became an international group acquiring 50 plus

educational institutions from U.S., Africa, Asia, South America, and Europe. MIT

President Susan Hockfield published a statement on the MIT's OCW homepage:

"Through MIT OCW, educators and students everywhere can benefit from the

academic activities of our faculty and join a global learning community in which

knowledge and ideas are shared openly and freely for the benefit of all." (U. S.

Department of State's Bureau of International Information Programs, 2006).

OCW Web site of MIT includes course syllabi, PowerPoint presentations,

problem sets and solutions, exams, lecture notes, and videotapes lectures. By

2008, MIT plans to offer 1,800 free online courses, and Yale University

announced that it would offer free video-recorded lectures from its seven liberal

arts courses including their transcriptions in several foreign languages (U. S.


15

Department of State's Bureau of International Information Programs, 2006).

MIT's OCW Web site shows the significant role of the Internet and of educational

technology in making global access to higher education possible.

Computer technology and educational software have been instrumental

for allowing all learners to engage equally in the learning process, including those

with physical and learning disabilities. Educational software has built-in

capabilities to repeat lesson exercises with immediate feedback and explanations

for learning-disabled students to help them building skills as well as to help them

retaining information. Computerized-adaptive technology helps physically-

challenged students by providing them with screen enlargement, text-to-voice

synthesizer, and voice recognition (Payne & Sachs, 1994).

Traditionally, computerized-adaptive technology was provided by schools

and by colleges in their adaptive-technology-enabled labs to meet the American

with Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. Today, most

functions of computerized- adaptive technology are included as standard

features of desktop and of laptop computers. Students with a physical disability

or a learning disability can take online courses via the Internet by using their

desktop computer or their laptop computer.

Another benefit of educational technology is to help students to be

competent in using information technology and communication technology.

Competency in information technology and in communication technology is one

of the requirements of 21st's century workers. Educational technology brings the

diversed world to students and exposes them to global events (Dede, 2007).
16

A positive opinion about the Internet's impact on education is growing

among 7,421 college students from 40 colleges surveyed in 2005 by Pew

Internet and American Life Project (Jones et. al, 2007). All survey participants

used the Internet for information searching, and about 78% of them

communicated about their courses using electronic mail and instant messaging.

Although the educational technology makes plagiarism easy to do, 96% of the

students surveyed indicated that plagiarizing other people's work was an

academic infraction (Jones et. al, 2007).

College students are taking advantages of "Web 2.0 technology" (p. 39)

for social networking and for video sharing. It is expected that college graduates

will continue to use the Internet technology heavily in the future (Jones et. al,

2007,), a typical trait of a 21 s t century worker (Dede, 2007). One may conclude

that educational technology helps to prepare college graduates to enter the

workforce of 21 s t century.

The literature reviewed in this section shows that educational technology

improves student learning outcomes as well as broadens the student access to

education. Successful implementation of technology at organizations is a

complex issue because it involves a comprehensive technology plan, it needs

adaptive employees' behavior to utilize the technology, it must have effective

technology training for the employees, and it requires supportive organizational

leadership for the technology as well as it is an expensive investment (Bellamy,

2007; Czubaj, 2002). The next section examines the factors impacting the

implementation of educational technology within educational institutions.


17

The factors impacting the implementation of educational technology

Acquiring and deploying sustainable educational technology involves both

expensive direct and indirect technology-related costs. Direct costs are

associated with hardware, software, network infrastructure, and training. It is

estimated that $53.7 billion is needed to deploy education technology at

American schools, and an additional $268.2 billion is required to improve their

infrastructures (Czubaj, 2002). In 2007, US Department of Education awarded

$272 millions to various states in educational-technology grants (Office of

Management and Budget, 2008).

Indirect costs are usually ignored by most schools in implementing

technology at their schools. An example of indirect costs is the cost to acquire

the learning resources, such as electronic databases, to be deployed by the

school network. To have a comprehensive view of educational-technology costs,

schools should consider the total cost of ownership (TCO) that addresses the

following seven most neglected areas in technology planning (McKenzie, 2002):

1. Learning resources: Learning resources are not included with networked

computers. School leaders must be aware that the Internet can fail to

always provide quality information, and they may end up subscribing to

expensive digital resources, such as Classroom Connect. These digital

resources provide lesson plans and user interfaces that are reliable and

standards based. Schools often end up buying supplemental materials like

lesson packs to support new technology.

2. Organizational Impacts and Management


18

a. Assessment: Along with benefits, new technology can bring stress and

disappointment.

b. Adjustment: Programs have to be changed in order to better match

with the unique aspects of each school. It is essential to have a

planning process that embraces information about what fails to be

working.

c. Opportunity Costs: Schools need to look at what will have to be given

up or to be postponed in order to acquire new technology.

d. Churn: Stability in the classroom must be maintained to enable

teachers to nurture student learning. The new technology programs

should not put too many demands on teachers. Stability allows change

to occur more smoothly.

e. Drag: Other areas may suffer because so many resources are going to

the network.

f. Disillusionment: There is a risk of disillusionment because when

people are being convinced to support the new technology, unrealistic

promises are often made.

g. Distraction: The technology can be a distraction and cause other things

fail to get done.

3. Network Management and Development

a. Consulting: Because school personnel may fail to have sufficient

resources to handle the networking process, outside consultants are


19

often employed. Care must be taken to create advisory relationships

without conflicts of interest or dependencies.

b. Connectivity: If network bandwidth is under funded, using the Internet

will be so slow causing it to lose its value as a learning resource.

c. Technical Support: Business standards for technical support call for

one technician for every 50-75 users, while schools often have only

one technician for 300-500 users. The result is an unstable network

that frustrates users.

4. Network Resources: Software often comes in bundles with the purchase

of computers. Schools will use what comes free with the computer

because so much was spent buying the system that nothing is left to get

curriculum-related software. It is costly to maintain software licenses when

they expire. Technology advances so quickly that equipment becomes

obsolete in about 36 months. It is a cost that is often not considered

realistically. Upgrading infrastructure will have to be done to support new

systems.

5. Research and Development: Lesson plans need to be purchased or to be

created to match curriculum and goals. Teachers should be involved in

creating and in testing new curriculum units. A culture of support,

encouragement, collaboration, and trust must be created as well as a

training program. It often takes 50-100 hours of teacher training for

technology to reach its potential to enhance learning. Most schools do not

offer enough training to teachers. Schools should take the traditional


approach of piloting new programs in a small way so they can find out

what will work before committing to a new program.

6. Spirit and Support Building: Morale building activities should be used.

Persuasion of all whose endorsement and approval is needed must be

done. Everyone involved should understand why the new technology is

being sought. Public relations efforts are necessary so the schools can

communicate to the public why major resources are being spent on a

technology.

7. Anticipating the True Cost of Ownership: Promote awareness of the true

costs and of the responsibilities for purchasing technology. Create a

budget that is realistic and that identifies all costs.

Considering the high costs of educational technology and its important

roles in shaping the educational process, it is critical for educational

organizations to develop a technology plan that aligns with their educational

goals (McKenzie, 2002). Educational technology should be planned to support

schools' instructional objectives in the areas of curriculum, learning content,

problem solving, skill building, and learning tools. The evaluation of educational

technology should be based on the students' needs, perceptions, motivations,

and learning outcomes (Foshay & Quinn, 2005).

Technology plan

In the clickers study at the University of Tennese (Office of Information

Technology, 2006), some faculty members and some students expressed a

common dissatisfaction with technology in using clickers. Unfortunately, the


21

study failed to quantify the technology problems faced by either faculty or

students. The report did include some comments concerning technology

problems such as "Get them to work 100% of the time," "Took more time to figure

out than I thought it would," and "Several students experienced difficulty

registering and/or getting their clickers to work" (Office of Information

Technology, 2006). One conclusion can be derived from these comments that

clicker's technology may fail to be the main problem.

Problems associated with using the clickers at the Universtity of Tennese

may lie with the competency of the students and of the faculty, and the

competency may be caused by an inadequate training to use the clickers'

technology effectively. To be effective in integrating specific instructional or

educational technology in classrooms, students must be trained appropriately

and must be retrained to use the technology (King-Sears & Evmenova, 2007).

Technology training must be included as part of the plan in deploying specific

educational technology in a classroom.

Educational technology has shifted the paradigm of learning. For online

students who use educational technology in taking online courses, the learning

structure has shifted from an instructor-directed learning to a self-directed

learning where students must learn to become self-directed rather than passive

receptors of knowledge (Rovai et. al, 2007). Shifting the learning structure from

an instructor-directed to a self-directed approach requires adoption of education

technology as an integral part of the course curriculum and delivery.


22

The official-curriculum documents of Fresno City College, Maricopa

Community College, and Monroe Community College show that course

curriculum and course delivery are driven primarily by decisions made by

curriculum committees relying mainly on voting faculty. These documents

exclude specific technology qualifications required for their faculty in any

discipline (Fresno City College, 2007; Maricopa Community College District,

2007; Monroe Community College, 2007). Using the three official-curriculum

documents as evidence, a conclusion can be derived that faculty are the primary

force in integrating educational technology for curriculum and for course delivery,

therefore, it is logical to require these faculty to be competent in educational

technology.

Building technology competency among community-college faculty can be

achieved either by recruiting new faculty who are competent in the use of

educational technology or by providing educational-technology training to existing

faculty who are not technologically competent as a part of staff development.

According to McKenzie (2002), it often takes 50 to100 hours of teacher training

for technology to reach its potential for enhancing learning. Many community

colleges may face a difficulty in allocating the fund required to finance effective

technology trainings for faculty members.

Lacking specific data in her article, McKenzie's teacher-training hours

(2002) is consistent with the teacher-technology-training hours recorded in

Brinkerhoff's (2006) 3-year study of professional development on technology at

the University of New Mexico from 2003 to 2005. In this study, the Technology
23

Beliefs and Competencies Survey, which has 0.96 reliability of Cronbach Alpha,

was used to collect data from volunteer teachers who attended the University of

New Mexico's Professional Development Academy of Technology (Brinkerhoff,

2006). These studies show that many hours are needed to provide adequate

technology training for teachers.

Using the faculty contract of the State Center Community College District

(2006) as an example, these technology-training hours are approximately equal

to 8% of the typical annual working hours of a community-college instructor. If

community colleges are committed to providing adequate technology training for

their faculty, then they need to increase their faculty-salary fund at least by 8%.

According to McKenzie (2002), funding is the primary barrier for most schools in

the United States to provide an acceptable level of technology training for their

teachers.

Most schools fail to offer enough training to teachers due to the funding

shortage (McKenzie, 2002) so it will make more sense for community colleges to

consider technology competency as a criterion for recruiting new faculty. New

technological-competent faculty may stimulate existing technological-

incompetent faculty to learn and to adopt educational technology. If technology is

a crucial part of community colleges' mission to deliver quality learning to their

students, then it is fair to favor applicants based on their technology competency

when selecting and when hiring new faculty (Arvey & Faley, 1992).

Appropriately planned and utilized computers, educational software, and

teachers' technology competencies will enhance the learning outcomes for


24

students. Students have the option of taking online courses over the Internet,

which removes the time barrier and the distance barrier for those who are unable

to attend traditional classes. Using computers and the Internet, online students

engage actively in activities such as group discussions, research assignments,

and hands-on exercises. (Cradler et. al, 2002; Office of Information Technology,

2006).

Shifting the learning structure from teacher-centered to student-centered

would require college faculty to change their teaching to enable them to

capitalize on the benefits offered by educational technology (Rovai et. al, 2007).

A study to determine whether or not a technology training program influenced

teachers to shift their teaching from teacher-centered to student-centered

learning was conducted by Di Benedetto (2004) to measure differences in

teaching between the teachers who received technology training and those who

failed to receive technology training. The participants of this study were 400

elementary teachers randomly selected from a stratified sampling process of 51

public schools in the state of Louisiana.

From those 400 participants, 200 of the them completed a 7-day

technology training provided by the Louisiana Regional Technology Center, and

the other two hundred were excluded from the 7-day training. Di Benedetto

(2004) used a MANOVA to analyze data from the participants, and she found

that there was no significant difference between those teachers who received

technology training and those who failed to receive technology training in regard

to student-centered learning, to utilization of technology skills, to teaching


25

pedagogy, and to preferences toward technology use in the classroom. A post-

hoc ANOVA was conducted even though the MANOVA test failed to reveal

statistically-significant differences, and result showed that there was no

significant difference in student-centered learning and in the utilization of a

variety of technology skills (Di Benedetto, 2004).

Both MANOVA and post-hoc ANOVA indicated that there was no

significant difference between those teachers who received technology training

and those who failed to receive technology training with respect to student-

centered learning and to the utilization of technology skills. One conclusion that

can be extracted from this study is that technology training fails to change the

teaching practice from teacher-centered learning to student-centered learning.

This situation may be caused by the focus of the technology-training program,

where the program may focus on quantity of interactions between teachers and

technology, such as the number of software and hardware included in the

training rather than on quality of interactions between technology and teachers

that emphasizes appropriate pedagogies of using technology in a student-

centered learning (McKenzie, 1999).

McKenzie's study (1999) would be very helpful if it included the reason

why technology-training programs focus on the quantity of interactions between

teachers and technology rather than on the quality of interactions. One of the

reasons may be teachers are excluded from the activities of developing their

technology-training program. If teachers are involved in developing their

technology-training program, then the training result may shift from quantity to
26

quality of interactions between technology and teachers as shown in the

following two studies.

As a part of National Data Base on Faculty Governance (NDBFIG) project

at the University of Alabama, Rice and Miller (2001) conducted a study to access

the extent of college faculty involvement in the planning of technology. From 30

randomly selected faculty senate presidents, 29 of them responded on a 1-5,

Likert-like scale, survey, where 1 = strongly agree, 3 = no opinion, and 5 =

strongly agree. The results of the study indicated three areas of serious concern:

(1) the participants prefer to see structural schemes for identifying who should be

included in technology planning and decision making, (2) the participants indicate

that faculty should participate in instructional technology planning as well as

administrative technology planning, and (3) the participants strongly believe that

the faculty senate should have a technology body that will allow the involvement

of faculty in establishing planning procedures and initiatives (Rice & Miller, 2001).

The second and third concerns of Rice and Miller's (2001) study indicated

that faculty should be included in planning technology-training program.

Educational leaders should involve their faculty in technology planning. The

significance of having faculty in technology planning was indicated in a study of

elementary and secondary teachers in New Zealand.

From 1994 to 1995, New Zealand Ministry of Education and the

Christchurch College of Education sponsored an intensive professional

development program, to use technologies as tools for learning, for 450

elementary and 150 secondary school teachers. After completing the training,
27

these elementary and secondary teachers responded to a survey. The results of

the survey indicated that teachers were concerned about lack of teachers'

involvement in the long-term planning of technology that would address the

issues of evaluating the technology before purchasing and implementing the

technology, of access to the technology, of technical support, and of ongoing

professional development (Ham, 1997).

Preceding studies indicated educational technology can be used to

improve student learning based on three conditions: (1) teachers must embrace

information technology as an important tool in developing and delivering their

course contents, (2) teachers need to shift their teaching practices from teacher-

centered learning to student-centered learning to utilize the benefits provided by

information technology to elevate the problem-solving skills of students, and (3)

teachers are included in developing technology planning including their ongoing

technology-training program (Cradleret. al, 2002; Ham, 1997; McKenzie, 1999;

Office of Information Technology, 2006; Rice & Miller, 2001; Rovai et. al, 2007).

These three conditions can be used by community colleges' leaders to rethink

their leadership strategies and to evaluate their organization for making

necessary organizational transformations to ensure a successful implementation

of technology at their institution.

Organizational leadership strategies

Leadership is a continuous process that binds leaders and followers in

various democratic-communal efforts to make needed changes to improve

employees' life at work, schools, cities, and/or countries by transforming the way
28

they think and learn. As a process, leadership is to lead people to sustainable

and mutually beneficial changes. Leaders must maintain an on-going and a

concise communication with followers during the process of initiating, planning,

and implementing needed organizational changes. (Argyris, 1991; Burns, 2003;

Dahl, 1989; Leithwood & Jantzi, 1999; www.nwlink.com, 2006).

Educational leaders are faced with on-going challenges to keep up with

external changes caused by technology, businesses, globalization, politics,

immigrants, poverty, and many others. To face these challenges, these leaders

must nurture a leadership that opposes status-quo environments, and they must

act as architects in designing organizational environments that promote

continuous improvement through changes (Reeves, 2002). These changes

should include the implementation of three conditions stated in the previous

section for the utilization of educational technology that will foster student

learning.

Burns (2003) stated that organizational changes by their nature can be

either transactional changes or transformational changes. Transactional leaders

solve problems by isolating those problems individually on the organizational

units where the problems occur, and gains from the transactional changes

usually have short life. Transformational leadership, on the other hand, initiates

changes that create a metamorphosis in organizational structure, personnel,

culture, and politics by maintaining continuous interaction among organizational

stakeholders in all units of the organization (Burns, 2003).


29

A classic example of transactional leadership is a contract negotiation

between a teacher union and a school administration. According to Young

(2008), the leadership of school administration would make sure that the new

contract will allow the school to operate effectively and efficiently by maintaining

the administration's authority and rights. On the other hand, the leadership of a

teacher union would prefer that the new contract will protect and will increase the

securities as well as the opportunities for union members that include salary, job

security, job advancement, and other benefits (Young, 2008).

In a transformational leadership, the school administration and the teacher

union would negotiate a contract that emphasizes student education while

making sure that teachers are paid and provided with benefits that conform to the

labor market. Transformation leadership would be an appropriate leadership

strategy to elevate technology competency among community college instructors

that will help these instructors to improve students' learning outcomes by utilizing

educational technology correctly. Community-college leaders can use three of

four strategies, as suggested by Bennis and Nanus (1997), to transform their

community college into a technology-oriented community college.

Bennis and Nanus (1997) suggested the following four leadership

strategies to help organizations to change:

1. to pay attention to vision by emphasizing the reasons behind the vision

2. to be articulate in communicating shared meanings

3. to display high-level integrity and commitment for the vision by engaging

trust within the organization


30

4. to deploy positive self-regard by recognizing one's strength and

compensating for weaknesses.

From these four strategies, the fourth strategy fails to be an appropriate

strategy to use with public organizations such as public schools or municipal

agencies. Bennis and Nanus (1997) stressed the importance for leaders to build

staff that can compensate for their weaknesses and to set a standard of

greatness (Bennis & Nanus, 1997). For public organizations, such as schools,

this is a dangerous suggestion because it violates the concept of democracy that

built the United States of America.

Building staff to compensate leaders' weaknesses is equal to creating

bureaucracy where personal rules are forced on others as well as ignoring the

voice of the people. This situation may transform leaders into guardians of

people, a situation that could suppress the democracy at our public institutions

(Dahl, 1989). Another drawback of Bennis and Nanus' fourth strategy is that it

fails to address fostering double-loop or inquiry-based learning in organizations

as suggested by Argyris (1991) because these leaders are uncomfortable with

possible failures due to their weaknesses.

According to Argyris (1991), organizations have a tendency to implement

single-loop learning that emphasizes identifying symptoms and solving them

quickly. Organizations are encouraged to implement double-loop learning, a

process of reflecting one's assumptions and hypotheses about a problem before

solving it. Double-loop learning is inquiry-based learning, and it requires the use

of cognitive rules to design and to execute solutions (Argyris, 1991).


31

Many professionals, including educational leaders, who were successful

academically, have a hard time adapting to double-loop learning because they

focus on the magnitude of the immediate effect for the solutions that they applied

to the problems. These professionals are quick to be defensive when faced with

their own failure because they are embarrassed. Being defensive prevents many

professionals from learn from their own failures, and the deficiency of learning

from failure leads to the fear of failure (Argyris, 1991).

This fear of failure may play a significant role in US' public educational

system in preventing educational reforms from coming from lower levels of

organizations. Looking at the history of educational reforms in this country, those

reforms, such as Ronald Reagan's A Nation at Risk (Tyack & Cuban, 1995) and

No Child Left Behind, were made by federal or state leaders, who acted as the

educational guardians in enforcing rules at the public schools. The concept of

democracy, "For the People and By the People," has been violated by these

federal or state educational reforms.

The fear of failure and the fear of being embarrassed for making mistakes

may be embedded in the culture of US' public schools; these psychological

states may be responsible for the lack of innovation, including utilization of

technology, among local schools in solving our educational problems.

Democracy is not working in our public schools, the entities that are supposed to

nurture the democracy. We need to put the democracy back into our public

schools by reconnecting our citizens into public schools as suggested by Boyte

(2004) by doing several tasks: (1) to convince people that we are the co-creators
32

of democracy, (2) to get people actively involved in creating productive

partnerships between government and citizens, and (3) to change our civic

identity from political consumers to political producers (Boyte, 2004).

Democratic organizations, such as Jane Addams Schools, operate on the

basis of sharing ideas and of working together among local members (Boyte,

2004). Putting the democracy back into our schools as suggested by Boyte

(2004) will help to foster transformational leadership at community colleges. In a

democratic atmosphere, transformational leadership will promote new inventions

of integrating technology into education that are created locally to solve local

problems among community colleges' stakeholders—students, community,

businesses, staff, faculty, and administrators— in improving the learning

experiences and learning values of their students.

Leadership that strategizes on organizational transformations, rather than

transactional (individual and isolated) changes, involving all stakeholders in a

continuous and democratic dialog will satisfy the three conditions for improving

student learning through the use of educational technology. These three conditions

are (1) teachers must embrace information technology as an important tool in

developing and in delivering their course contents, (2) teachers need to shift their

teaching practices from teacher-centered learning to student-centered learning

by utilizing the benefits of educational technology that will elevate the problem-

solving skills of students, and (3) teachers are included in developing technology

planning including their ongoing technology-training program. Community

colleges with transformational leadership can derive valuable experiences in their


33

organizational transformations to identify and improve the qualifications of their

instructors.

Competency in educational technology will help community college faculty

to develop an effective curriculum to teach their courses and to improve student

learning as well as student achievement. Robert, Kelly, and Medline (2007)

conducted a study involving 44 university faculty teaching Accounting courses at

various accredited colleges within the State of North Carolina. They identified five

factors that prevent faculty from using educational technology in their classroom:

(1) fear of change, (2) fear of time commitment, (3) fear of appearing

incompetent, (4) fear of failure, and (5) fear of having to move backward to go

forward (Robert et.al, 2007).

Considering many benefits of educational technology in teaching, faculty

should be encouraged to use educational technology in their instruction. The

encouragement must include (1) organizational commitment to physical

resources and support, (2) effective technology training for teaching and

improving student learning, (3) identification and documentation of the benefits

and impacts of technology on teaching and learning, (4) recognition and

acknowledgment of faculty's personal satisfaction with educational technology,

and (5) promotion of a social fabrics among faculty to encourage sharing of

technology expertise (Robert et. al, 2007). To have faculty to adopt educational

technology in their teaching, community colleges should remove the five negative

factors from their faculty and provide them with the five sources of positive

encouragement.
34

The human-resources frame of Bolman and Deal (2003) portrays an

organization as an extended family with different needs among it members. This

frame assumes that (1) organizations are to serve human needs, (2) people and

organizations are interdependent, and (3) a fit must exist between organizations

and their people; people experience satisfying work and organizations benefit

from the talents and from the energy of their people (Bolman & Deal, 2003).

These assumptions are important for this study because the study is to measure

the perceived value of educational technology among the people of community

colleges as well as to find out the significance of technology competency in

retaining and recruiting California community colleges' faculty.

From an organizational perspective, recruitment is a human-resource

activity to identify potential job applicants for vacancies within an organization

and to stimulate them to apply for the vacant positions (Young, 2008). To be

successful in recruiting the right people for the right jobs, organizations must

develop effective recruitment that includes the projection of long- and short-term

staffing needs and considers the condition of the labor market. Recruitment is a

strategic human-resource activity needed to ensure a stable supply of competent

personnel to perform various tasks in the operation of an organization (Barber,

1998; Richardson, 2007; Young, 2008).

Job vacancies are created by replacing employees holding existing

positions or by filling new positions. Retirements and resignations require

employee replacement, and new positions are necessary to facilitate

organizational changes or expansion. Filling job vacancies is not a simple


35

process; it is a complex human-resource activity linking organizational strategic

planning with recruitment efforts (Young, 2008).

Within public-education organizations, recruitment programs must

consider internal factors such as organizational goals and policies as well as

external factors such as labor markets and legal requirements. Effective

recruitment programs will reduce occurrences of problems related to selection

and to hiring of applicants (Young, 2008). Organizations must plan, apply, and

monitor the recruitment program to attract qualified applicants to apply for job

vacancies because employees are critical for determining the successful

operation of an organization, (Winter, 1996; Young, 2008).

In 50 years, U.S. businesses have accomplished many advances in their

consumer products with regards to quality, latest technology, and affordability.

Personal computers and electronic equipment are less expensive and have more

features each day; product improvements are made in months rather in years.

During the same period of time, educational systems have failed to make

significant changes (Bok, 2003).

Bok (2003), a former Harvard University's president, states that

educational leaders can learn valuable lessons from their business counterparts

to operate their organizations more effectively. Businesses are engaging

constantly their human and technology resources in a knowledge-based system

to make decisions in improving their products as well as in getting closer to their

consumers; they rely on knowledge-based decision making processes to stay

alive in their respective industry. Educational systems, on the other hand, are
36

less successful than businesses in blending their technology resources with their

human resources to produce new methods for improving teaching and learning

(Bok, 2003).

To operate a knowledge-based system where the human resource is

harmoniously blended with the technology resource, community colleges should

transform their organizational structure into a combination of Mintzberg's

divisional and adhocracy organizational structures to reduce their hierarchical

bureaucracy as suggested by Bolman and Deal (2003). The Internet and

educational technology can help to support continuous and interactive dialogs

among teachers, administrators, and government agencies. With a knowledge-

based system as the catalyst for various work flows such as reporting and

decision making, school accountability will be automatically a priority for our

educational systems.

A knowledge-based system is built on empirical data and involves

scanning of current trends constantly as well as inputs from those who use the

system (Bok, 2003). An example of a knowledge-based system is Amazon's

online shopping that uses technology to project the profile of its customer and

their preferences. Books offered and sold on Amazon's Web site come with

details including a table of contents, an author's biography, and citations to

inform their customers.

Designing a knowledge-based system must begin with knowing the

clientele it serves. This approach is consistent with the Backward Design of

Wiggins and McTighe (2006) who suggest that curriculum design must begin with
37

identifying the desired results, followed by determining acceptable evidence, and

concluded by planning experiences and instructions (Wiggins & McTighe, 2006).

Because teachers know the most about their students, they must be involved in

building an educational knowledge-based system as well as must be competent

in education technology.

Coordination of processes in a knowledge-based system should be based

on lateral coordination (Bolman & Deal, 2003) that is designed for complex jobs

dealing with unpredictable elements such as human behavior. Lateral-

coordinated organizations utilize informal meetings, mutual cooperation, and

cross-functional task forces in completing their tasks. Technology plays

significant roles in this design for capturing, storing, and sharing information

among organizational members in a timely manner (Bolman & Deal, 2003).

Community colleges' organizational structure should be designed to follow

the lateral coordination design (Bolman & Deal, 2003) and to foster a social

fabrics among their faculty that will encourage sharing of technology expertise

(Robert et. al, 2007). The symbolic frame presents the importance of

collaborations across various entities in organizations (Bolman & Deal, 2003).

This situation is consistent with one of the theories presented by Senge et al. that

"every organization is a product of how its members think and interact" (Senge,

Cabmron-McCabe, Lucas, Smith, Dutton, & Kleiner, 2000, p19).

Effective organizational leaders must create a mental map to vision the

whole picture of their organization and must update constantly their management

skills. A combination of effective leadership and of efficient management skills


38

will help organizational leaders to acquire and to utilize organizational resources

in reaching their organizational mission and organizational objectives (Hershey,

Blanchard, & Johnson. 2001). Community colleges' leaders must apply

appropriate leadership strategies and must make sound managerial decisions to

blend their technology resources with their human resources.

Blending technology resources with human resources will produce a

knowledge-based system that will allow the acceleration of reaching

organizational mission and objectives as well as the invention of new methods

and products (Bok, 2003) such as the development of academic curricula that will

nurture valuable student-learning experiences and outcomes. Leaders of

community college must promote the lateral sharing of technological expertise

among their instructors to foster a knowledge-based system by providing needed

resources as well as required technical support. This lateral coordination

(Bolman & Deal, 2003) of technology sharing will elevate community colleges'

faculty's technology competency because ideas are exchanged freely without

being fear of failure (Argyris, 1991) and because thoughts are focused on the

quality of academic topics rather than on the quantity of technology topics

(McKenzie, 1999).

One of three conditions for improving student learning through the use of

educational technology stated in this essay calls for teachers to embrace

educational technology in developing their course curricula and in teaching their

courses. In his study about the infusion of technology in curriculum, Williams

(2003) presented a mandate by the Clinton Administration that all teachers must
39

be trained to integrate Internet technology into the curriculum, and he found that

veteran teachers failed to infuse technology into their subject areas, while pre-

service teachers incorporated technology in their curriculum and in their teaching

(Williams, 2003). Community colleges should use this finding to adjust their

technology training for their faculty members.

Ruffins (2007) shows various benefits of infusing educational technology

into course curricula and academic services for those students who fail to have

the opportunity for attending college classes in traditional classrooms (Ruffins,

2007). At community colleges, course curricula are driven primarily by decisions

made by curriculum committees comprised mostly of full-time faculty (Fresno City

College, 2007; Maricopa Community College District, 2007; Monroe Community

College, 2007). From official-curriculum perspective (Posner, 2004), community

colleges must consider seriously the experience of integrating educational

technology into curriculum as a factor in recruiting their new instructors as well as

in developing and implementing their staff-development program.

Posner (2004) describes operational curriculum as the learning

components that must be taught to the students. This curriculum is materialized

commonly in the forms of course syllabus and of teaching the course (Posner,

2004), and educational technology is increasingly important in teaching courses

at community colleges. Considering many benefits of educational technology in

improving student learning as well as in increasing student access to education

(Bradley, 2006; Cradler et. al, 2002; Dede, 2007; Jones et. at, 2007; Office of

Information Technology, 2006; Payne, M. D. & Sachs, R., 1994; Rovai et. al,
40

2007; Shelly et. al, 2003; U. S. Department of State's Bureau of International

Information Programs, 2006; Washington and Lee University, 2003), community-

college leaders should promote a leadership strategy that encourages their

faculty members to integrate educational technology into their operational

curricula.

A well-thought technology plan and an effective organizational leadership

will help to ensure a successful implementation of educational technology at

community colleges. Community colleges should apply transformational

leadership to maintain continuous interaction among organizational stakeholders

in all units of the organization (Burns, 2003) in a lateral-coordinated

organizational structure (Bolman & Deal, 2003) to foster a social fabrics among

their faculty that will encourage sharing of technology expertise (Robert et. al,

2007) by engaging trust within the organization (Bennis & Nanus, 1997).

Technology competency among community colleges's faculty members must be

emphasized to utilize educational technology in the learning environment by

recruiting new faculty who are technologically competent and by providing

sufficient fund and support for on-going staff development.

To maximize the benefits of educational technology in improving student

learning, educational technology must be optimized beyond its function as a

general electronic tool. Educational technology must be incorporated in

curriculum and must be implemented in the learning process as authentic

activities to support the learning units being learned (Pellegrino et. al, 2007), and

commonly used educational technology includes:


41

1. Assessment technology: To provide students and teachers with a

continuing formative assessment about students' progress and failure in

learning specific skills related to specific learning units (Grabe & Grabe,

2007; Haertel, et. al, 2007; Pellegrino et. al, 2007).

2. Simulation technology: To help students understand important concept

through the use of computerized simulations, graphic applications,

computations, and visualization (Grabe & Grabe, 2007; Haertel, et. al,

2007; Pellegrino et. al, 2007; Recesso & Orrill, 2008).

3. Communication technology: To encourage students to collaborate in

group activities for expressing, capturing, and discussing ideas among

them and to communicate with their teachers (Grabe & Grabe, 2007;

Haertel, et. al, 2007; Pellegrino et. al, 2007; Recesso & Orrill, 2008).

4. Multimedia technology: To allow students to create group products that

incorporate texts, graphics, video, and audio (Grabe & Grabe, 2007;

Haertel, et. al, 2007; Pellegrino et. al, 2007;).

With the advancement of computer and networks technology, multimedia

technology and communication technology are incorporated into assessment

technology as well as into simulation technology (Grabe & Grabe, 2007; Haertel,

et. al, 2007; Jones et. al, 2008). Both communication technology and multimedia

technology are used also by teachers for non-learning purposes such as sending

and receiving electronic mails and visiting multimedia Web pages that could

influence their perception about the value of these technologies. Because this

study was planned to examine the integration of educational technology from


42

teacher perspective rather than from student perspective and because of the two

previous reasons, the perceived value of communication technology and

multimedia technology will not be measured in this study.

This study is aimed to measure the perceived value of technology

competency, assessment technology, and simulation technology as perceived by

the top administrators, deans, and faculty members of community colleges

because a systematic study about the educational technology acrosss multiple

higher-education institutions is missing, and studies about the effectiveness of

educational technology were mainly done on individual programs (Pellegrino et.

al, 2007). The next section is to examine each of the three topics that may affect

the integration of educational technology at community colleges: (1) assessment

technology, (2) simulation technology, and (3) faculty's technology competency.

Assessment technology

To be effective, information technology must be used as an educational

tool as well as a measurement of thinking representation to consolidate and

organize learning and knowledge subjects for meeting the challenges of creating

and maintaining appropriate learning environments. As a tool, educational

technology can be utilized to bring real facts and problems through the use of

demonstrations and simulations and to gauge students' thinking representation.

Representation of thinking can be measured by the use of assessment software

that will help teachers to identify the mastery-learning levels of their students,

from beginner level to proficient level (Bransford, Brown, & Cocking, 2000).
43

Two types of learning assessment commonly used by educational

institutions are the summative assessment and the formative assessment.

Summative assessment provides a summary of student performance such as a

report card intended for those outside the classroom, and this assessment fails to

report the details of the summary information such as the reasons for specific

grades recorded in the report card. On the hand, formative assessment presents

feedback for those who engage in the learning process inside the classroom as

well as provides a measure about student performance for a given learning unit

(Starkman, 2006).

Learning assessment is more than the concept of testing, and the

assessment must be formatted to help students' thinking visible to themselves, to

their classmates, and to their teacher. Formative assessment provides feedback

to teachers about the understanding of their students about a subject matter, and

the feedback can be used to improve and to enhance students' understanding of

the concerned subject matter. (Bransford et. al, 2000; Haertel et. al, 2007). By

working collaboratively and by discussing each other's feedback, students can

assess and can improve their understanding about the subject being collaborated

(Bransford et. al, 2000).

Formative assessment should be conducted continuously to provide

students with opportunities for improving their thinking as well as for allowing

them to see their progress over a time period, and the assessment can be

presented in a scenario-discussion format rather than a test format, for example

by asking the students to discuss and to report about establishing a democratic


44

government on the moon for a group of people who just settle there (Bransford

et. al, 2000). Assessment technology elevates the amount of feedbacks by

allowing students and their teachers to interact electronically and efficiently

(Bransford et. al, 2000; Haertel et. al, 2007; Starkman, 2006; The Ohio State

University, 2008). To be effecive, formative assessment must be related closely

to sub-sequent learnings that will follow the matters being assessed, and

educational technology can be used to support such assessments better and

faster than the traditional time-consuming pencil-paper assessment (Haertel et.

al, 2007).

Facets is an example of formative-assessment software that has the

diagnosis feature that evaluates students' assessment answers and provides the

students and their teachers with the explanation for various specific diagnoses

quickly (Haertel et. al, 2007). In Bransford et. al's (2000) example of creating a

democratic government on the moon, Facets software will provide the students

with a understanding level of democratic concepts and of the branches of

democratic government. Assessment technology will help teachers to have a

complete view of their students' knowledge level for the topic being assessed.

Many students associate learning assessments with testing that require

the students to memorize standardized answers that include key terms and

concept definitions. Students may think that a simulated electrical-circuitry

project using computer software is a fun activity rather than as an assessment,

the fact is the simulation software interactively assesses each of the detailed

responses given by the students for capturing their reasoning. The simulation
45

software provides the students with feedback that helps the students to view their

level of understanding of electrical circuit and, at the same time, it allows the

teacher to tailor the next lesson for meeting the current-knowledge state of

individual students (Haertel et. al, 2007).

Simulation technology

Four of best practices (Tomel, 2003) of the new standards for teaching

and for learning in America's schools specify that learning must be reflective,

student centered, challenging, and experential. These four practices will allow

learners to reflect, debrief, and reproduce on their experiences by investigating

their own questions in a learning environment where learners are challenged to

be responsible for their own learning (Tomel, 2003). "Simulation is the imitation of

a process, skill, or knowlegde to be learned" (Recesso & Orrill, 2008. p. 85), and

simulation technology is defined as a "computer program that imitates the key

elements of realistic experiences" (Grabe & Grabe, 2007. p. 408) that will support

the four best practices in classrooms by bringing real-world environments into a

controlled-classroom learning environment where teachers act as conductors in

orchestrating their lessons (Grabe & Grabe, 2007).

In a study measuring the effect of Simulation in Developmental Disabilities

(SIDD) software involving nine female students and two male students with the

average of 23 years, Desrochers, House, and Seth (2001) found that SIDD and a

lecture on clinical strategies increased the test scores of the participants on the

subject compared to the control group who received the lecture only. The tests

on clinical strategies were administered before the lecture, after the lecture, after
using SIDD, and a few weeks after the lecture. The lecture failed to impact both

the experimental group's test score and the controls group's test score about

clinical strategies, and the exposure to SIDD increased the test scores of the

experimental group while the test score of the control group remained the same

in a follow-up test (Desrochers et. al, 2001).

Simulation technology helps increase students' learning performance

because students are exposed to the lecture-simulation combination than to the

lecture alone (Brant, Hooper, & Sugrue, 1991; Desrochers et. al, 2001; Grabe &

Grabe, 2007). Grabe and Grabe (2007) pointed four benefits of integrating

simulation technology into lectures:

1. To provide concreteness for facts that will be difficult to observed in

lectures such as (1) the flowing of electrons in an electrical circuit, (2)

the orbiting path of planets around the sun, or (3) the drifting of

continents over time.

2. To allow students to control their simulated situations by making

decisions and to see the consequences of their decision such as the

effect on business profit if the frequency of advertisement is increased.

3. To reduce educational cost by replacing expensive-traditional

experimental laboratory projects with computerized simulations, such

as building electrical circuit or disecting a frog.

4. To offer safety to students when they have to experiment performing

dangerous tasks such as mixing chemicals or flying airplane.


47

Simulation technology is the foundation of educational games known also

as edutainment software such as SimCity. SimCity is an educational-computer

game that assigns the player as a city major who is responsible for building a city

or for managing an existing city by developing city infrastructure and

transportation, by planning neighborhoods, by zoning lands for commercial and

industrial, and by enforcing city ordinances. Player's decisions and action in this

game are recorded and responded with feedbacks that are built based on the

characteristics of a real city (Grabe & Grabe, 2007).

The versatility of simulation technology enables teachers to use it in "four

stages of instruction: presentation, guidance, practices, and assessment" (Grabe

& Grabe, 2007. p. 126) as well as in six knowledge levels of Bloom's

Taxonomy—knowledge, comprehension, application, analysis, synthesis, and

evaluation (Recesso & Orrill, 2008). Simulation software will help teachers to

provide their students with an experience to build and to apply their

understanding about specific learning units by exposing the students to hands-on

learning activities, to problem solving, and to continuous assessment of their

learning progress.

Successful implementation of assessment and simulation technology to

improve student learning depends on the availability of and the support of the

technology at individual educational institutions as well as the skill and

knowledge of the teachers for integrating the technology in their curricula and in

their teaching. At community colleges, presidents and deans must devise and

must implement a strategic plan to acquire and to utilize needed resources in


48

reaching their technology objectives (Hershey, Blanchard, & Johnson. 2001).

Blending of technology resources with human is a pre-requisite to invent new

methods and products (Bok, 2003) such as academic curricula that will improve

student learning.

Teachers teach "the way they were taught" (p. 61), and, if they failed to

experience educational technology in their education, most likely that they will fail

to incorporate educational-technology in their classrooms unless they are

exposed to educational technology at their teaching institutions (Pellegrino et. al,

2007). Because technology changes rapidly, constant staff development for

teachers to address and adapt these changes is a must to satisfy demands for

quality learning as well as school accountability (Vrasidas & Glass, 2007). The

administrators and faculty members of schools, including community colleges,

must be congruent to a consensus for addressing the needs of integrating

educational technology into their courses as well as recruiting new faculty

members who are competent in using educational technology in teaching their

courses.

Faculty's technology competency

From organizational perspective, recruitment is a human-resource activity

to identify possible job applicants for vacancies within an organization and to

stimulate them to apply for the vacant positions (Young, 2008). To be successful

in recruiting the right people for the right jobs, organizations must develop

effective recruitment that includes the projection of long- and short-term staffing

needs and considers the condition of the labor market. Recruitment is a strategic
49

human-resource activity needed to ensure a stable supply of competent

personnel to perform various tasks in the operation of an organization (Barber,

1998; Richardson, 2007; Young, 2008).

Because employees are critical for determining the successful operation of

an organization, organizations must plan, apply, and monitor the recruitment

program to attract qualified applicants to apply for job openings (Winter, 1996;

Young, 2008). Within public-education organizations, recruitment programs must

consider internal factors such as organizational goals and policies as well as

external factors such as labor markets and legal requirements. Effective

recruitment programs will reduce occurrences of problems related to selection

and hiring of applicants (Young, 2008).

Winter and Mu (2001) conducted a study to measure the composite rating

of potential applicants to a community-college faculty vacancy based on three

independent variables: (1) job mobility, (2) recruiter background, and (3)

applicant sex. Job mobility was operationalized as relocation or no relocation,

and recruiter background was operationalized as either business or education

school. Results of the study showed that similarity-background recruiters

(business-business) were rated higher than dissimilarity-background recruiters

(education-business) (Winter & Mu, 2001).

College students and the younger generation in the workforce expressed

more self-efficacy in using the Internet and the information technology than the

older generation (Jones et. al, 2007; Zhang, 2002). To avoid a technology

mismatch between college students and their faculty, it is critical for community
50

colleges to recruit new faculty who are competent in technology. Community

colleges must transfrom themselves into technologically-oriented institutions

because technologically-oriented community colleges will attract technologically-

competent teaching applicants due to the similar background between the

community colleges and their teaching applicants (Winter & Mu, 2002).

Current leadership at community colleges must be altered to be

tranformational for initiating technological changes at their institution by

maintaining continuous interaction among organizational stakeholders in all units

of the organization (Burns, 2003) as well as to promote a lateral coordination

(Bolman & Deal, 2003) of technology-expertise sharing among their instructors

that will elevate community colleges' faculty's technology competency without

being fear of failure because ideas are exchanged freely (Argyris, 1991).

Chancellors, presidents, and academic deans of community colleges must be

congruent with their faculty members to appreciate the value of faculty's

technology competency as well as the value of assessment technology and

simulation technology.

The literature reviewed in this study shows that the benefits of educational

technology for improving student learning as well as for increasing student

access to higher education at communicty colleges are promisable and

implementable. Faculty members at community colleges play a critical role in

integrating and implementing educational technology in their curricula and in their

teaching because they are responsible to develop their courses, to teach their

courses, and to access their students' performance (Fresno City College, 2007;
51

Maricopa Community College District, 2007; Monroe Community College, 2007).

It is important for them to be technologically competent in performing their

academic and teaching duties as well as to be congruent with their administrators

in valuing the significant role of assessment technology and simulation

technology to improve student learning at community colleges.


52

Chapter 3

Methodology

Research design

Literature indicates that comprehensive research on educational

technology at community colleges is next to none. The lack of broad research

across multiple community colleges is caused by the lack of a reliable funding

base (Cohen & Brawer, 1996) and is caused also by community colleges' various

functions from providing low-cost two years of general education to offering

remedial courses for those who are unprepared for higher education (Wolfle &

Robertshaw, 1982). This research was designed to collect and to analyze data

from community colleges across the United States and to answer the following

research questions:

1. Is there any difference in the perceived value of faculty's technology

competency among community colleges' executive administrators,

deans, and faculty?

2. Is there any difference in the perceived value of educational-simulation

technology among community colleges' executive administrators,

deans, and faculty?


53

3. Is there any difference in the perceived value of educational-

assessment technology among community colleges' executive

administrators, deans, and faculty?

The population of the study includes all executive administrators, all

deans, and all faculty members of 1,045 publicly-funded 2-year degree-granting

institutions in United States (U. S. Department of Education's Institute of

Education Sciences (2), 2008). This study uses one-way MANOVA to test for

differences among community colleges executive administrators', community

colleges deans', and community colleges faculty members' perceived-values in

technology competency of faculty, in simulation technology, and in assessment

technology. Findings of the study are presented in Chapter 4.

Participants

The participants (n = 154) in this study are executive administrators

(superintendents, presidents, and vice-presidents), deans, and faculty members

of community colleges selected at random from 1,045 publicly-funded 2-year

degree-granting institutions in the United States (U. S. Department of Education's

Institute of Education Sciences (2), 2008). These public community colleges

enrolled 6,184,229 students in fall semester of 2005 (U. S. Department of

Education's Institute of Education Sciences (3), 2008). Each of the colleges is

represented by an executive administrator, a dean, or a faculty member.

Because of the increasing role of educational technology in education,

researchers are encouraged to examine perceptions of faculty and administrators

toward technology aspects and potentials (Jones et. al, 2002). To assure an
54

adequate number of participants in this study, Cohen's power analysis was

conducted to determine the sample size for an alpha of 0.05 level. Using the

medium effect size of Cohen's convention, a sample size of 150 is needed for

this study (Cohen, 1988) with equal representation among participants sampled

at random.

The selection of targeted participants is done by selecting at random 999

community colleges from 1,045 community colleges to ensure that each

community college in the United States had the same chance to be included in

the study (Huck, 2004). From the selected community colleges (n= 999), 333 are

selected at random as the targeted-executive-administrator participants, 333 are

identified at random as the the targeted-dean participants, and 333 are chosen at

random as the targeted-faculty participants. This particular sampling strategy

was employed to ensure independence among community colleges as well as

independence among focal positions held by participants (Huck, 2004).

Hypotheses

The three research questions in this study are set forth to measure the

perceived value of technology competency, of simulation technology, and of

assessment technology. Those questions are reframed according to the

following null hypotheses:

Hi. 0 : There is no significant difference in the perceived value among community

colleges' executive administrators, deans, and faculty members regarding

technology competency of faculty members in their institution.


55

H2-0: There is no significant difference in the perceived value among community

colleges' executive administrators, deans, and faculty members regarding

simulation technology in their institution.

H3.0: There is no significant difference in the perceived value among community

colleges' executive administrators, deans, and faculty members regarding

assessment technology in their institution.

Instrumentation

The survey instrument used in this study is a Web-based questionnaire

adopted from two different surveys: (1) a modified version of the National

Educational Technology Standards for Teachers that was developed by the

International Society of Technology Education and adopted by the University of

Tennessee' study of preservice teachers' perception (Oh & French, 2004) and (2)

a study of faculty philosophical view regarding technology competency,

technology value, and technology support at Texas A&M University (Jones et. al,

2002). Three experts in educational technology at the University of Tennessee

examined the content validity of the first survey (Oh & French, 2004). The second

survey's Cronbach's Alpha was established at .84 (Jones et. al, 2002).

Based on the above surveys, 30 questions addressing four sections are

formulated. The first section of the survey requests the participant to respond to

seven questions related to their gender, to their year of birth, to their level of

education, to their teaching experience, to their institution's student enrollment in

fall 2007 semester, to the percentage of students receiving some sorts of

financial aid in fall 2007 semester, and to their current position. Using a five-
56

point Likert scale (1 = strongly disagree, 2 = disagree, 3 = neutral, 4 = agree, and

5 = strongly agree), the participants are asked to rate their opinion about the

technology items presented in the second section (i.e. technology competency),

in the third section (i.e. simulation technology), and in the fourth section (i.e.

assessment technology).

Within the second section of the survey, the participants are asked to

respond to 12 survey items related to the significance of technology competency

for community colleges' faculty members. The third section of the survey asks

the participants to respond to six questions about the value of simulation

technology in teaching and in learning. All participants are asked in the fourth

section of the survey to provide their opinion according to five questions

regarding the value of assessment technology in education.

A pilot study (n=25) was conducted to measure the content validity and

the reliability of the instrument in June 2008 using a cross impact matrix (Young,

Rinehart, & Place, 1989). The result of the pilot study was reviewed by a panel

of experts. It was determined by the panel that the instrument possesses content

validity, that is, the survey measures what it is intended to measure (Huck, 2004).

(See Appendix A for the example of printed version of the survey questionnaire).

Independent variables

There is one independent variable with three levels and three dependent

variables in this study. The levels of independent variable includes three position

holders involved in planning, in implementing, and in using educational


57

technology at community colleges: (a) executive administrators, (b) deans, and

(c) faculty. Accordingly, each of the levels is operationalized as follows:

a) Executive administrators are the individuals who are on the top level of

organizational structure and who are responsible for making strategic and

budgetary decisions. For this study, community colleges' executive

administrator are chancellors, superintendents, presidents, or vice

presidents.

b) Deans are the heads of a specific area of instruction within community

colleges and include such areas as business, natural science,

engineering, or social science.

c) Faculty members are the individuals whose primary responsibilities are to

develop curricula and to teach courses at community colleges.

Dependent variables

This study examines the perceived value of three dependent variables: (a)

technology competency, (b) simulation technology, and (c) assessment

technology. Technology competency is operationalized as the needed skill and

the content knowledge for faculty in computer hardware and software, in

multimedia technology, in communication technology, in audio and video

equipment, and in keeping current with technology. Simulation technology is

operationalized as a supplemental technology for lectures that will enhance

student learning through computerized simulation of facts and real-world

problems as well as will reduce the educational cost, and assessment technology

is operationalized as technology-supported formative learning assessment with


58

built- features that are capable of recording student responses, of diagnosing

student answers, and of providing instant feedback to students regarding their

answers to assessment questions.

Procedures

Targeted participants received the survey notification through U.S. mail

and email in the first week of September 2008 when the fall semester of 2008

had started and when targeted participants were not in the hectic mode of

preparing and of starting a new semester. A link to an anonymous-survey Web

site is included in the email to allow participants to respond to the study

questionnaire immediately. Reminder emails were sent out in the third week of

September 2008 to thank those who completed the survey and to remind and

encourage those who failed responding to complete the survey.

Both the cover letter via U.S. mail and the email explain the focus of and

the purpose of the study as well as the significance of the data collected from the

study participants. The author information as a community college's instructor

was included in the cover letter of U.S. mail and was included also in the email to

remind participants that the study is conducted by a community college's faculty

member, and findings of the study will be useful for other communtiy colleges in

America. It is explained in the cover letter of the mail as well as in the email that

the survey only will take less than 10 minutes to complete, and the participant

would remain anonymous (See Appendix B for the example of cover letter).

A stamped self-addressed envelope was included in the survey to return

the completed survey questionnaire via the U.S. mail. An appreciation note is
59

included in the questionnaire for the participants' time in completing the survey.

As an incentive to increase the return rate of the survey, the appreciation note

offered feedback about finding of the study to the participants if they entered their

email address on the survey questionnaire.

Obtained data were entered and tabulated in a Microsoft Excel

spreadsheet and used as the inputs for the statistical analysis of this study.

Composite scores were calculated for each of the responses in the spreadsheet.

SPSS statistical software was used to analyze the collected data and to produce

the statistical summary of one-way MANOVA.

Statistical analysis

The statistical analysis for this study is done using one-way MANOVA on

three by three matrices as shown in Table 1. Each of the nine cells contains the

mean of perceived value for the dependent variables from the study participants.

Table -\. MA NO VA

Technology Simulation Assessment


Competency Technology Technology

Executive

Administrators

Deans

Faculty
60

Chapter 4

Finding

Descriptive Statistics

There are 154 questionnaires completed and returned by the selected

participants (n = 999), and six of those completed questionnaires are printed

copy returned using the stamped self-addressed envelope. The returned data

were compiled in a MS Excel spreadsheet document. All responses (n = 154),

both from the returned printed questionnaires and Web-based questionnaires,

are completed without any missing data.

From 154 publicly-funded community colleges represented in this study,

the smallest enrollment is 800 students (n = 2), the largest enrollment is 60,000

students (n = 1), and the average enrollment is 11,313 students. The average

percentage of students receiving some sort of financial aid is about 56% with a

standard deviation of 18.41%, and one community college responded that 100%

of their students are financial aid recipients. Table 2 shows the statistics of

student enrollment and financial aid recipients.

Table 2. Student Enrollment and Percentage of Financial Aid Recipients

Std.
N Range Minimum Maximum Mean Deviation
Student
154 59200 800 60000 11313.01 10092.99
Enrollment
Financial
Aid 154 94.00% 6.00% 100.00% 56.10% 18.41%
Recipients

Among 154 participants included in this study, 46 are executives


61

(chancellors, presidents, or vice presidents), 53 are deans, and 55 are faculty

members. There are 80 female respondents compared to 74 male respondents.

The average age of respondents is 52.91 years with the youngest one being 30

years, and the oldest one being 70 years as illustrated in Table 3.

Table 3. Respondents' Age Distribution


Respondents' Age Frequency Percent Cumulative Percent
30-31 1 1.3 1.3
36 3 1.9 3.2
37 1 .6 3.9
38 1 .6 4.5
39 4 2.6 7.1
40 2 1.3 8.4
41 3 1.9 10.4
42 4 2.6 13.0
43 3 1.9 14.9
44 2 1.3 16.2
45 7 4.5 20.8
46 4 2.6 23.4
47 3 1.9 25.3
48 1 .6 26.0
49 7 4.5 30.5
50 2 1.3 31.8
51 3 1.9 33.8
52 6 3.8 37.7
53 8 5.1 42.9
54 6 3.8 46.8
55 8 5.1 51.9
56 15 9.6 61.7
57 13 8.3 70.1
58 12 7.7 77.9
59 7 4.5 82.5
60 5 3.2 85.7
61 6 3.8 89.6
62 6 3.8 93.5
63 5 3.2 96.8
64 2 1.3 98.1
66 1 .6 98.7
69 1 .6 99.4
70 1 .6 100.0
Total 154 100.0

Doctoral degree holders represent 50% of the respondents, and 46% of


62

the respondents hold a master's degree. Only six of the respondents hold a

bachelor's degree. Shown in Table 4 is the frequency distribution of respondents'

educational level grouped by their job position, sex, and educational level.

Table 4. Respondents' Educational Level Grouped by Job Position and Sex

Educational Level
Master
degree Bachelor
with degree
some with some
graduate graduate
Doctoral course Master course Bachelor
Position Sex degree work degree work degree Total
Executive Female 16 4 0 0 0 20
Male 18 8 0 0 0 26

Dean Female 14 8 3 0 0 25
Male 16 7 4 1 0 28

Faculty Female 10 17 6 2 0 35
Male 3 11 3 1 2 20

Total 77 55 16 4 2 154

The years of respondents' teaching experience spans over 41 years with a

mean of 17.84 years. A male executive responded that he has 41 years of

teaching experience, and two male deans indicated that they do not have any

classroom-teaching experience. Table 5 shows the frequency distribution of

teaching years, and Table 6 illustrates the statistics of respondents' teaching

years.
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64

Table 6. Respondents' Teaching Years Statistics

N 154
Mean 17.84
Median 18.00
Mode 20
Range 41
Minimum 0
Maximum 41

Statistical Tests

To make sure that the sample data in this study come from the same

population relative to response rate, a Pearson's chi-square test was conducted

with the null hypothesis specifying that all respondents (i.e. executives, deans,

and faculty members) differ only due to sampling fluctuation (Huck, 2004). The

chi-square test failed to produce a significant difference (x2(2) = 1.36, p <= 5.99)

so the null hypothesis is accepted. Table 7 shows how the chi-square is

computed (Aron & Aran, 2003).

Table 7. Chi-square test

Observed Expected O-E (O - E)2 (O - E)2/E


Executive 44 50.67 -6.67 44.44 0.88
Dean 53 50.67 2.33 5.44 0.11
Faculty 55 50.67 4.33 18.78 0.37
Chi-square 1.36

Reliability of the survey responses for this study is assessed for internal

consistency, and the computed Cronbach's alpha coefficient indicates that the

reliability of the responses to be .82 for the second section (i.e. technology

competency), to be .81 for the third section (i.e. simulation technology), and to be

.88 for the fourth section (i.e. assessment technology). These findings with the
65

sample data are consistent with the pilot study (n = 25) conducted in June 2008,

the computed Cronbach's alpha values indicate that the survey is reliable (Huck,

2004; Aron & Aron, 2003). Table 8 shows the survey's reliability as well as the

number of items comprising each of the composite scores, and Table 9 displays

the descriptive statistics of dependent variable's composite scores.

Table 8. Survey's Reliability

Dependent Variable Cronbach's Alpha N of Items


Technology competency 0.82 12
Simulation technology 0.81 6
Assessment technology 0.88 5

Table 9. Descriptive Statistics of Dependent Variable's Composite Scores

Dependent Indp. 95% C.I.


Variable Variable N Mean S.D S.E. Lower Upper Min Max
Executive 46 52.85 3.13 .462 51.92 53.78 44 59
Technology Dean 53 51.96 3.88 .533 50.89 53.03 38 57
Competency Faculty 55 50.95 5.94 .801 49.34 52.55 34 60
Total 154 51.86 4.59 .370 51.13 52.59 34 60
Executive 46 23.39 2.93 .431 22.52 24:26 19 30
Simulation Dean 53 22.40 3.12 .428 21.54 23.25 18 30
Technology Faculty 55 20.16 3.84 .518 19.12 21.20 12 29
Total 154 21.90 3.59 .289 21.33 22.47 12 30
Executive 46 20.28 2.72 .401 19.47 21.09 15 25
Assessment Dean 53 19.89 2.91 .400 19.08 20.69 15 25
Technology Faculty 55 17.84 3.17 .428 16.98 18.69 6 25
Total 154 19.27 3.13 .252 18.77 19.77 6 25

Wilks' Lambda (F = 4.752, p < 0.05) indicates that one or more significant

differences exist among the means for the three group classification—community

college executive, community college deans, and community college faculty

members.
66

Because a significant difference is shown in overall-vector mean, a further test is

conducted to identify individual differences among the three dependent variables.

The result of the multivariate test for this study is shown in Table 10.

Table 10. Multivariate Test (Intercept + independent variable)

Effect Value F Hypothesis DF Error DF Sig.


Intercept Wilks' Lambda .01 6.83E3 3.000 149.000 .000

Ind. Wilks' Lambda .83 4.75a 6.000 298.000 .000


Variable
Exact statistic

From the tests of between-subjects effects, the first null hypothesis is

accepted because there is no significant difference in the perceived value among

community colleges' executive administrators, deans, and faculty members

regarding technology competency of faculty members in their institution (F =

2.21, df = 2, p > 0.05). The second null hypothesis and the third hypothesis are

rejected because a significant difference is found in the perceived value of

simulation technology (F = 12.58, df = 2, p < 0.05) as well as in the perceived

value of assessment technology (F = 2.21, df = 2, p < 0.05) as shown in Table 11

and Table 12.

Table 11. Analysis of Variance of Simulation Technology

Source DF SS MS F
Between groups 2 281.18 140.59 12.58*
Within groups 151 1687.16 11.17
Total 153 1968.34
*p<05
67

Table 12. Analysis of Variance of Assessment Technology

Source DF SS MS F
Between groups 2 180.37 90.19 10.33*
Within groups 151 1318.17 8.73
Total 153 1498.54
*p<05

Post Hoc Test

To determine how significant F values are produced in the between-

subject test, a post hoc test is conducted to investigate the likely reason for

rejecting the second null hypothesis and the third null hypothesis. A Fisher's

LSD multiple-comparison test is selected to assess specific significant

differences among the three group classifications (Huck, 2004). The result of

Fisher's LSD procedure, as shown in Table 13 and Table 14, confirms the result

of the tests of between-subjects that:

1. The perceived value of simulation technology is different between the

community college's executives and the community college's faculty

members.

2. The perceived value of simulation technology is different between the

community college's deans and the community college's faculty members.

3. The perceived value of assessment technology is different between the

community college's executives and the community college's faculty

members.

4. The perceived value of assessment technology is different between the

community college's deans and the community college's faculty members.


68

Table 13. Multiple Comparisons (Fisher's LSD - simulation technology)

Dependent Independent Variable Mean Sjg


Variable (I) (J) Difference (l-J) S.E. (a = .05)
Simulation Executive Dean 1.00 .67 .14
technology Faculty 3.23* .67 .00
Dean Executive -1.00 .67 .14
Faculty 2.23* .64 .00
Faculty Executive -3.23* .67 .00
Dean -2.23' .64 .00
* The mean difference is significant at the .05 level

Table 14. Multiple Comparisons (Fisher's LSD - assessment technology)

Dependent Independent Variable Mean Sig


Variable (I) (J) Difference (l-J) S.E. (a = .05)
Assessment Executive Dean .40 .60 .51
technology Faculty 2.45* .59 .00
Dean Executive -.40 .60 .51
Faculty 2.05* .57 .00
Faculty Executive -2.45* .59 .00
Dean -2.05* .57 .00
* The mean difference is significant at the .05 level

The findings from this study indicate that community colleges' executives,

deans, and faculty members are in agreement about the value of technology

competency, and congruence exists in the value of simulation technology and the

value of assessment technology between community colleges' executives and

deans. There are significant differences in the perceived value of simulation

technology as well as in the perceived value of assessment technology between

the faculty members and the executives. The faculty members fail to agree with

the deans about the perceived value of value of simulation technology as well as

in the perceived value of assessment technology.


69

Chapter V

Discussion

Studies indicate that the educational technology has been proven to

increase student learning outcomes (Cradler et al., 2002; Edwards et al., 2000;

Office of Information Technology, 2006; Washington and Lee University, 2003),

to broadened student access to education (Bradley, 2006; California Virtual

Campus, 2007; Rovai et. al, 2007; U. S. Department of State's Bureau of

International Information Programs, 2006), and to prepare technology

competency for 21st's century workers (Dede, 2007). The infusion of educational

technology to U. S. public schools and colleges has been slow (Smolin &

Lawless, 2007) and creates challenges for U. S. educational institutions,

including public community colleges, to be innovative in blending technology

resources with human resources to produce new methods for improving teaching

and learning (Bok, 2003). Exponential leaping of technology improvements and

innovations creates new opportunities as well as challenges to educators (Smolin

& Lawless, 2007).

Organizations, including schools and colleges, are affected by the

utilization of information technology in operations as well as in decision-making

processes that require organizations to blend appropriately technology resources

with human resources to be effective (Bok, 2003). Jones et al. (2007) and Zhang
70

(2002) point out that current college students are technologically more advance

than previous generations of students, a condition that demands teachers and

college instructors to maintain their competency for integrating educational

technology into their teaching to avoid a technology mismatch between them and

students. Educators need to assess the knowledge and skills required for 21 st

century citizens and to innovate new learning approaches that will be appropriate

for responding to various complex technology- environments (Dede, 2007;

Smolin & Lawless, 2007).

The increasing number of online-course offerings via the Internet

(California Virtual Campus, 2007; U. S. Department of State's Bureau of

International Information Programs, 2006) causes a shift in the learning structure

from teacher-centered learning (i.e. instructor-directed learning) to a student-

centered learning (i.e. self-directed learning) (Rovai et. al, 2007) where online

students engage with their teacher to complete required learning tasks by using

technology (Cradler et al, 2002; Office of Information Technology, 2006). To

maintain an acceptable technology competency among school teachers and

college professors, it is important for educational leaders to involve teachers

when developing quality technology-training programs as well as technology

plans for their organizations (Ham, 1997; McKenzie, 1999; Rice & Miller, 2001).

To be effective in shifting the learning structure from a teacher-center to a

student-centered structure as well as in increasing student-learning outcomes,

educational technology must be incorporated and must be implemented beyond

its function as a general-electronic tool in the learning process as authentic


71

activities to support the learning units (Pellegrino et al., 2007), and two specific

educational technologies useful for this purpose are simulation technology and

assessment technology.

Simulation technology is designed to help students understand important

concepts through the use of computerized simulations, graphic applications,

computations, and visualization (Grabe & Grabe, 2007; Haertel, et al, 2007;

Pellegrino et al, 2007; Recesso & Orrill, 2008). In compliment, assessment

technology provides students and teachers with a continuing formative

assessment about progress and failure in learning specific skills related to

instructional units (Grabe & Grabe, 2007; Haertel et al, 2007; Pellegrino et al,

2007). As such, simulation technology, assessment technology, and technology

competency are the three focuses of this study.

This study is designed to measure the perceived value of simulation

technology, assessment technology, and technology competency as self

reported by community college executive administrators, deans, and faculty

members across the nation. A lack of comprehensive research at community

college level on educational technology (Cohen & Brawer, 1996) is the motive of

this research. Consequently, all of publicly-funded community colleges in the

United States of America (N = 1045) serve as the population of this study.

For this population, the human-resources frame of Bolman and Deal

(2003) is used as a guide to investigate the consensus about the value of

educational technology among community college employees. Bolman and Deal

(2003) assert that people and organizations are interdependent and that
72

congruence must exist between an organization and its employees. According to

this model, community college educators (i.e. executives, deans, and faculty

members) should focus on reaching congruence about the perceived value of

technology competency, of simulation technology, and of assessment

technology.

Results of this study indicate that there is no significant difference in the

perceived value among community college executive administrators, deans, and

faculty members regarding technology competency in their institution. However,

findings of this study show significant differences in the perceived value of

simulation technology between community college executive administrators and

community college faculty members (mean = 23.39 vs. 20.16, p < .05; see Table

9) as well as between community college deans and community college faculty

members (mean = 23.40 vs. 20.16, p < .05; see Table 9). Also, Community

college faculty members are significantly different in their perceived value about

assessment technology than are community college executive administrators

(mean = 20.28 vs. 17.84, p < .05; see Table 9) and deans (mean = 19.89 vs.

17.84, p < .05; see Table 9).

The proceeding sections of this study discuss the results related to

technology competency, to simulation technology, and to assessment

technology. Recommendations are suggested that may be useful for community

colleges to utilize when blending technology resources with human resources in

a complementary manner. This chapter is concluded by suggesting directions for

future research.
73

Technology Competency

Technology competency assessed in this study goes beyond the skills of

operating a personal computer, of using word processing, and/or of sending and

receiving emails. It includes the competency of installing educational software, of

operating audio and video technology, of utilizing course-management software,

and of using recording software. Competency in educational technology will help

community college faculty members to develop effective curricula for their

courses and to improve student learning as well as student achievement (Robert

etal.,2007).

This study reflects congruence among community college executive

administrators, deans, and faculty members about the positive value of

technology competency. Using a five-point Likert scale (1 = strongly disagree, 2

= disagree, 3 = neutral, 4 = agree, and 5 = strongly agree) for 12 survey items to

rate the perceived value of technology competency, the score of 60 represents

the highest potential rating, and the score of 12 reflects the lowest potential

rating. All participants agree that technology competency among community

college faculty members is an important factor to effectively utilizing educational

technology at their institutions (see Table 10 for the descriptive statistics of this

dependent variable's composite scores).

Congruence about technology competency among the three groups of

participants (i.e. executive administrators, deans, and faculty members) may

attribute to the possibility that community colleges have removed successfully the

five fears associated with educational technology as pointed by Robert et al.


74

(2007). In their study at various accredited colleges within the State of North

Carolina, Robert et al. (2007) identified five fears of educational technology

among accounting faculty members: (1) fear of change, (2) fear of time

commitment, (3) fear of appearing incompetent, (4) fear of failure, and (5) fear of

having to move backward to go forward. Considering many benefits of

educational technology for improving student-learning outcomes (Cradler et al,

2002; Edwards et al., 2000; Office of Information Technology, 2006; Washington

and Lee University, 2003), in enhancing quality of curricula and teaching

(McKenzie, 1999; Rovai et al., 2007), by increasing student access to higher

education (Bradley, 2006), and in allowing all learners, including those with

physical and learning disabilities, to engage equally in the learning process

(Payne & Sachs, 1994); community college educators must work together to

keep suppressing the five technology fears among community college faculty

members.

One way to keep technology fears from occurring among faculty

members, as suggested by Robert et al. (2007), is that community colleges can

utilize five sources of positive encouragement. These positive sources of

encouragement must include (1) organizational commitment to physical

resources and support, (2) effective technology training for teaching and

improving student learning, (3) identification and documentation of the benefits

and impacts of technology on teaching and learning, (4) recognition and

acknowledgment of faculty's personal satisfaction with educational technology,

and (5) promotion of a social fabrics among faculty to encourage sharing of


75

technology expertise (Robert et al., 2007). It is recommended for community

colleges to include all of Robert et al.'s (2007) five sources of positive

encouragement into their technology plans.

Because faculty members are the parties responsible for utilizing available

educational technology in their teaching, it is important for community colleges to

include faculty members in developing technology plans, including the one that

addresses faculty technology-training program (Cradleret al., 2002; Ham, 1997;

McKenzie, 1999; Office of Information Technology, 2006; Rice & Miller, 2001;

Rovai et. al, 2007). To ensure an effective planning process, community college

leaders should promote lateral coordination (Bolman & Deal, 2003) that utilizes

informal meetings, mutual cooperation, and cross-functional task forces in

developing their technology plan. The leadership at community college level must

support an organizational culture that stimulates a harmonious collaboration

among executives, deans, and faculty members to support technology

innovations in a fear-free environment.

Promoting and implementing lateral coordination suggested by Bolman

and Deal (2003) requires community colleges to nurture a continuous process

that binds leaders and followers in various democratic-communal efforts to

achieve sustainable and mutually beneficial changes. Community college leaders

must maintain an on-going and a concise communication with their faculty during

the processes of initiating, planning, and implementing needed organizational

changes (Argyris, 1991; Burns, 2003; Dahl, 1989; Leithwood & Jantzi, 1999;

www.nwlink.com, 2006). This situation is consistent also with one of the theories
76

presented by Senge et al. (2000) in that an organization is a function of how its

members think and work together.

Simulation Technology

Four best practices listed in the new standards for teaching and for

learning in America's schools advocate that learners reflect on, debrief about,

and reproduce experiences by investigating personal questions in a learning

environment where learners are responsible for their own learning (Tomel, 2003).

Simulation technology will support the four best practices in classrooms by

bringing real-world situations into a controlled-classroom learning environment

where teachers act as conductors in orchestrating their lessons (Grabe & Grabe,

2007; Recesso & Orrill, 2008). Desrochers, House, and Seth (2001) found that

combining simulation-technology software with a lecture on clinical strategies

increased the test scores of the participants on the subject matter when

compared to the control group receiving only the lecture.

Simulation technology helps increase learning because students are

exposed to the lecture-simulation combination rather than just to the lecture

alone (Brant, Hooper, & Sugrue, 1991; Desrochers et. al, 2001; Grabe & Grabe,

2007). Grabe and Grabe (2007) pointed out four benefits of integrating simulation

technology as part of lectures:

1. To allow students to control their simulated situations by making decisions

and to observe the consequences of their decision such as the effect on

business profit when the frequency of advertisement is increased.


77

2. To provide concreteness for facts that will be difficult to observed in

lectures such as (1) the flowing of electrons in an electrical circuit, (2) the

orbiting path of planets around the sun, or (3) the drifting of continents

overtime.

3. To reduce educational cost by replacing expensive-traditional

experimental laboratory projects with computerized simulations, such as

building an electrical circuit or dissecting a frog.

4. To offer safety to students when they have to experiment performing

dangerous tasks such as mixing chemicals or flying airplane.

Based on the literature reviewed in this study, simulation technology is

defined as multimedia-computerized technology that is capable of replicating

elements of a real-world environment in a controlled learning situation such as

dissecting a virtual frog on the computer screen or by flying a jet using a flight

simulator. The versatility of simulation technology enables teachers to use it in

"four stages of instruction: presentation, guidance, practices, and assessment"

(Grabe & Grabe, 2007. p. 126) as well as in six knowledge levels of Bloom's

Taxonomy—knowledge, comprehension, application, analysis, synthesis, and

evaluation (Recesso & Orrill, 2008). Studies indicate that simulation software will

help teachers to provide their students with an experience to build on and to

apply to their understanding about specific learning units, and it was expected

that community college executives, deans, and faculty members would be in

agreement about the value of simulation technology.


78

However, a Fisher's LSD post hoc procedure indicates that community-

college faculty members are not in agreement with their executive administrators

(mean difference = -3.23, p < . 0 5 ; see Table 13) as well as with their deans

(mean difference = -2.23, p < . 0 5 ; see Table 13) about the value of

simulation technology. On the other hand, Executive administrators and deans of

community colleges are in agreement about the value of simulation technology

(mean difference = 1.00, p > .05; see Table 13). Considering that both executive

administrators and deans of community colleges represent the administration of

community colleges, it is reasonable to assume that, at community colleges,

faculty members have a different view in using simulation technology in their

classes than the view held by their administrators.

Although specific studies need to be conducted to investigate the reasons

for difference in opinion about the value of simulation technology between

community college faculty members and their administrators, this difference may

be attributed to one or both of the following two reasons. The first reason is that

teachers teach "the way they were taught" (p. 61), and, if they failed to

experience educational technology in their education, most likely that they will fail

to incorporate educational-technology in their classrooms unless they are

exposed to educational technology at their teaching institutions (Pellegrino et. al,

2007). Therefore, community-college faculty members, who were not exposed to

educational technology in their education, would likely to maintain the status quo

of their teaching. This status quo of teaching assumes that faculty members are

the central figure in a classroom to assure a quality student learning, and faculty
79

members' productivity is best measured by the number of classes taught by them

(Guskin, 1994).

Brown (1999) points out that implementing simulation technology creates

additional challenges to faculty members who will incorporate the technology into

their teaching. These challenges include technology skills, lack of a group-work

feature, and portability. To integrate simulation technology into an effective

learning situation, faculty members must possess greater technology skills

because simulation technology is more complex to implement and to maintain

than those of productivity technology or communication technology (Brown,

1999).

Most of simulation technology is used by individual and is difficult to

integrate into group activities (Brown, 1999). Due to this challenge, faculty

members must be creative and must spend additional time to incorporate

simulation technology into their lesson plans. Without proper support and

encouragement, simulation technology may not gain popularity among faculty

members at the cost of their students.

Portability is the other challenge for using simulation technology at

colleges or universities classrooms. To be effective, simulation technology

requires the use of computers by individual students meaning that only

classrooms with computers connected to a network can be used to teach

simulation-technology enhanced courses (Brown, 1999). This situation may

create difficulty for many colleges and universities to share classrooms among

their faculty members because all classrooms failed to be equipped.


80

The second reason for differences in the perceived value of simulation

technology between community-college faculty members and their administrators

(i.e. executives and deans) may be rooted in the challenges pointed by Brown

(1999). Lack of encouragement, of incentive, and of support at community

colleges for their faculty members to innovate new teaching methods by

incorporating simulation technology may cause community colleges' faculty

members to value simulation technology differently than their administrators.

Blending of technology resources with human resources is a pre-requisite to

invent new methods and products (Bok, 2003) such as simulation-technology-

enhanced academic curricula that will improve student learning.

At community colleges, executives (i.e. presidents and vice presidents)

and deans must devise and must implement a strategic plan to acquire and to

utilize needed resources in reaching their organizational objectives (Hershey et

al., 2001), including the objective of utilizing simulation technology to increase

student learning. It is recommended that community colleges provide incentives,

resources, and support to faculty members who will volunteer to incorporate of

simulation technology into their courses as well as to share their experience with

their peers. Because technology changes rapidly, it is important for community

colleges to emphasize the importance of having constant staff development for

faculty members to address these changes (Vrasidas & Glass, 2007) and to

introducing the benefit of simulation technology as well as the benefit of

assessment technology for improving student learning.


81

Assessment Technology

To be effective, information technology must be used as an educational

tool as well as an indicator for helping teachers to measure the mastery level of

students for a particular knowledge or skill. Assessment software will help

teachers to identify the mastery-learning levels of their students from a beginner

level to a proficient level (Bransford et al., 2000). Two types of learning

assessment commonly used by educational institutions are the summative

assessment and the formative assessment (Garrison & Ehringhaus, n.d.).

Summative assessment provides a summary of student performance at a

specific time such as the grades recorded on a report card. This assessment

acts as a gauge for measuring student mastery relative to a knowledge base. On

the hand, formative assessment presents feedback for those who engage in the

learning process inside the classroom as well as provides a measure about

student performance for a given learning unit (Garrison & Ehringhaus, n.d;

Starkman, 2006).

Formative assessment allows students to practice the skills and

knowledge, and the result of each of the practices helps teachers to formulate

their instructions (Garrison & Ehringhaus, n.d). Formative assessment provides

feedback to teachers about the understanding their students have about a

subject matter, and the feedback can be used to improve and to enhance

students' understanding of the subject matter (Bransford et. al, 2000; Haertel et.

al, 2007). Accordingly, formative assessment must be designed and

implemented through involving students to be their own assessors as well as


82

resources to their classmates, and teachers play a critical role in developing

learning goals, in defining needed tasks, and in writing feedbacks of formative

assessment (Garrison & Ehringhaus, n.d).

Feedback provided by formative assessment must be written clearly to

allow students to understand their learning goals as well as to provide students

with the information to reach the next learning goals (Garrison & Ehringhaus,

n.d). By working collaboratively and by discussing each other's feedback,

students can assess and can improve their understanding about the subject

being examined (Bransford et. al, 2000). Assessment technology elevates the

amount and the quality of feedback by allowing students and teachers to interact

electronically and efficiently (Bransford et. al, 2000; Haertel et. al, 2007;

Starkman, 2006; The Ohio State Universtiy, 2008).

To be successful, formative assessment must be implemented

continuously to provide students with opportunities for improving their analytical

skills as well as for allowing them to observe their progress over time. The

assessment can be presented in a scenario-discussion format rather than a test

format. For example, students may be asked to discuss and to report about

establishing a democratic government on the moon for a group of people who

just settle there (Bransford et. al, 2000).

Facets software is an example of formative-assessment software that has

an important diagnostic feature. That is, answers of students are evaluated

immediately and outcomes provide the students as well as teachers with an

explanation for various specific diagnoses (Haertel et. al, 2007). In Bransford et.
83

al's (2000) example of creating a democratic government on the moon, Facets

software will provide the students with a understanding of democratic concepts

and of the branches of democratic government.

Considering the potential benefits of assessment technology for improving

student learning, it was anticipated that community college executives, deans,

and faculty members would be in agreement about the value of assessment

technology. On the contrary, through a Fisher's LSD post hoc procedure, this

study found that community-college faculty members are not in agreement with

their executive administrators (mean difference = -2.45, p < .05; see Table

14) as well as with their deans (mean difference = -2.05, p < . 0 5 ; see Table

14) about the value of assessment technology. Executive administrators and

deans of community colleges are in agreement about the value of assessment

technology (mean difference = .40, p > .05; see Table 15). Similar to the finding

of measuring the value of simulation technology, community college faculty

members have a different perceived value in using assessment technology in

their classes than the value perceived by their administrators.

The difference in perceived value of assessment technology between

community college faculty members and community college administrators found

in this study is a significant topic for further studies. In the meantime, using the

literature reviewed in and the data collected by this study, a discussion will offer

possible causes of the difference in opinion about assessment technology at

community colleges between faculty members and administrators. The exposure

of using technology to community college faculty members during their college


84

education may contribute to their opinion about using assessment technology in

their courses.

Those faculty members who learn using technology during their education

have a tendency to utilize technology in their teaching, and these individuals are

motivated to be innovative technologically in delivering their courses and are

willing to learn more about technology (Adcock, 2008). The statistics for faculty

age in this study show that the average faculty age is 52.4 years, the median

faculty age is 56 years, and the mode faculty age is 56 years (See Table 4). With

more than 70% of the faculty members being 50 years or older (see Table 5), it is

reasonable to suggest that many of faculty participants in this study did not use

assessment technology during their undergraduate college education, between

the years of 1979 and 1984, when they were between 19 years old and 26 years

old, and when personal computers and educational technology were in early

stage.

Tshibalo (2007) points out that computer-based assessment technology is

very useful for formative assessment because the technology is capable of

integrating multimedia (i.e. images, texts, sounds) in the feedback provided to the

students. This capability enhances student learning regardless of the learning

mode as well as the learning disabilities of students (Tshibalo, 2007). Weighing

the benefits of assessment technology for improving student learning and in

providing educational access to students with physical challenges (i.e. sight,

hearing, and mobility), leaders of community colleges should promote the

utilization of assessment technology among their faculty members by inviting


85

them to get involved in planning and in conducting effective assessment-

technology training as well as by being committing to providing the necessary

resources and support for the training (Robert et al., 2007).

One challenge faced by schools in the United States when providing an

acceptable level of technology training for their teachers is the lack of funding

(McKenzie, 2002). Therefore, if technology is a crucial part of the mission to

deliver quality learning to their students by community colleges, then it is fair to

favor applicants based on their technology competency when selecting and when

hiring new faculty (Arvey & Faley, 1992). Because faculty members are

responsible for teaching their courses, it is important for community colleges to

hire new faculty members who are capable of integrating educational technology

in their courses, and these new faculty members may stimulate existing non-

technological-oriented faculty to learn and to adopt educational technology.

Many community colleges implement shared governance where decision

making is a shared responsibility among the governing board, the administrator,

the academic senate representing faculty members, the classified staff, and the

students (Community College League of California, n.d.; Schuetz, 1999). Shared

governance provides an opportunity for faculty members, who are represented

by their academic senate, to engage actively in making decisions for their

college, including the decision related to the planning and the implementation of

appropriate educational technology that will support and will improve student

learning. This study suggests that the academic senates of community college

should assume a leadership role in integrating simulation technology as well as


86

assessment technology into community college courses to benefit students by

promoting the potential advantages of educational technology to faculty

members.

As the governing body for faculty members, the academic senate of a

community college should promote a continuous process that binds all

community college constituents (i.e. students, staff, faculty members,

administrators, and governing board) in various democratic-communal efforts to

make needed changes to improve student learning by transforming the way

people think and learn (Argyris, 1991; Burns, 2003; Dahl, 1989; Leithwood &

Jantzi, 1999; www.nwlink.com, 2006). Considering many benefits of educational

technology, the academic senate of a community college should encourage

faculty members to be innovative in incorporating and utilizing educational

technology in their courses by removing their fear from technological failures

(Argyris, 1991). Fear of technological failures can be minimized when faculty

members share ideas and work together (Boyte, 2004) to harvest various

benefits of simulation technology and advantages of assessment technology.

Further Research

The results of this study show congruencies as well as differences in the

perceptions of technology values among faculty members, deans, and executive

administrators of publicly-funded community colleges in the United States. It is

hoped that the findings of this study will help community colleges in developing

their technology plan, in allocating adequate funding for their technology

resources, and in encouraging their faculty members to be innovative


87

technologically. The finding and limitation of this study can serve as a

springboard for further research on measuring the effectiveness of educational

technology at community colleges across the country.

One limitation of this study is that it fails to take into consideration the

academic discipline of faculty members when measuring their perceptions about

educational technology. Further research should focus on the attitude toward

educational technology among community college faculty members from various

academic disciplines. Knowing differences in the perceived value of educational

technology among various disciplines will help community colleges to avoid a

"one size fits all" approach in planning and developing technology training

programs for their faculty members.

Failure to include the students is another limitation of this study. Future

studies about educational technology at community colleges should include also

those participants representing students. Educational-technology research

addressing perception of students about educational-technology values will

provide specific data about the success and the failure of educational technology

at community colleges, and these data can be used by respective governing

boards to adjust their policies related to the planning and funding of educational

technology at their institution.

A follow-up study should be done immediately to investigate further the

responses given in this study. Using the data collected in this study, a study to

correlate the three dependent variables (i.e. technology competency, simulation

technology, and assessment technology) with age, with sex, and with teaching
88

years of the participants would provide additional data regarding specific

attributes toward educational technology at community college. These additional

data would help community colleges to alter their technology culture at their

campuses.
89

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Appendix A: Survey Instrument


103

Educational Technology's Perceived Values Questionnaire

This survey is to measure the perceived values of educational-simulation


technology, educational-assessment technology, and faculty's technology
competency from community-college educators across the United States. Your
help to complete this survey will be appreciated and will contribute to the effort of
investigating technology aspects implemented at community colleges nationwide.
It takes approximately less than 10 minutes to complete this 30-question survey.
You can also complete this survey online at www.cctechvalues.org. The findings
of this survey will be emailed to you if you email a request to
ray, tiahjadi@scccd.edu.

Section I. Demographic (please write in the blank line or circle an answer)


1. Your gender a. Male
b. Female
2. Your year of birth (e.g. 1952)
3. Your highest level of education a. Bachelor's degree
b. Bachelor's degree with some graduate
coursework
c. Master's degree
d. Master's degree with some graduate
coursework
e. Doctoral's degree
4. Your current position a. Executive Administrator (Chancellor,
President, or Vice President)
b. Dean
c. Faculty
5. Your years of teaching
experience (e.g. 6 years)
6. Your college's student enrollment
size in Fall 2007 (e.g. 8,500)
7. Your college's percentage of
students receiving some sorts of
financial aid in fall 2007 semester
(e.g. 35 %)
104

Please mark your response on an appropriate column for the next 23


questions where:

SA N D SD

Strongly Agree Agree Neutral Disagree Strongly Disagree

Section II. Faculty's technology competency is defined beyond the skill of


operating personal computers, of using word processing, or of sending and
receiving emails. It includes the competency of installing educational software, of
operating audio and video technology, of utilizing course-management software,
and of using recording software.

It is important for community-college faculty to: SA A N D SD


1. know the difference between software and hardware.
2. know how to operate a personal computer.
3. know terminology related to computer technology.
4. know how to install educational software.
5. know how to use productivity software (i.e. word
processing, spreadsheet, etc).
6. know how to use communication software (i.e.
electronic mail, text messaging, video conferencing,
etc).
7. know how to use presentation/multimedia software
(i.e. PowerPoint, HyperStudio, etc).
8. know how to use course-management software (i.e.
BlackBoard, Moodle, WebCt, etc).
9. be confident with basic computer-troubleshooting
techniques.
10. know how to use computer recording software that is
capable of capturing graphics, texts, and videos
displayed on computer screen as well as audio (i.e.
Captivate, Camtasia, Tegrity, etc)
11. have knowledge of concepts and operations of audio
and video technology for classrooms (i.e. data
projector, CD/DVD player, document camera, video
camera, etc.)
12. be current about the technology aspects specified in
items 1 through 11.
105

Section III. Simulation technology is defined as multimedia-computerized


technology that is capable of replicating elements of real-world environment in a
controlled learning environment such as dissecting a virtual frog on the computer
screen or flying a jet using a flight simulator.
Simulation technology will SA A N D SD
13. make the learning process interesting and will
increase students' motivation to learn the material
presented to them
14. shift student learning from teacher centered to
student-centered and will make students active
learners
15. increase students' learning retention because it
reinforces and supplements lecture materials
16. reduce educational costs because educational
technology reduces the building of and maintaining
of physical laboratories for experiments that can be
done in simulated environments
17. increase personal safety because educational
technology eliminates physical damages or
hazards when errors are made in simulated
experiements
18. increase students' higher order of thinking.

Section IV. Assessment technology is defined as a computerized technology


that is capable of collecting, recording, storing, analyzing, and summarizing the
result of assessments taken by students. This technology allows teachers to
obtain their students' individual performance and their class profile immediately.
Assessment technology will SA A N D SD
19. help instructors to improve their sub-sequent
instructions because educational technology helps
identify the learning units that are not well
understood by students
20. help instructors to gain insight in developing new or
in modifying existing course curiculum that will
increase student learning
21. help students to achieve the intended learning
outcomes because educational technology
provides students with the summative information
about their learning progress
22. motivate students to increase their mastery level
for specific learning units because educational
technology provides instant feedback for each of
106

students' answers as well as allows students to


practice repeatedly
23. help instructors to organize and to document their
lesson plans

Thank you for completing the survey


107

Appendix B: Survey Cover Letter


Date

Name of the targeted participant


Name of the communtiy college
Address information
City, State Zip code

Re: Technology Survey for community colleges by a community college

Dear Community College Educator:

The role of educational technology at community colleges is increasingly


important in providing valuable education to community college students. Public
community colleges are challenged to be innovative in blending their technology
resources with their human resources to produce new methods for improving
teaching and learning. Literature shows that comprehensive studies to measure
the impact of educational technology have been done mostly on K-12 schools or
4-year universities, and broad research on educational technology across
multiple community colleges is almost non-existent.

A lack of comprehensive research on educational technology at community


colleges is the motive of this research. This research is a comprehensive study
involving 999 publicly-funded community colleges across the United States to
investigate the value of educational technology at community colleges from the
perspective of various position holders—executive administrators, deans, and
faculty. Because you are an experienced community-college educator, you have
been chosen to represent your communtiy college as one of 999 community
colleges within the United States. Although I realize that your time is valuable
and limited, your input and contribution are extremely important in improving
research in the field of educational technology at community colleges.

This survey takes less than 10 minutes to complete. Enclosed is a questionnaire


requesting that you provide your opinion regarding faculty's technology
competency, simulation technology, and assessment technology. Please
complete the questionnaire as completely and candidly as possible. Upon
completion, please return the questionnaire in the enclosed stamped envelope.
You can also complete the survey online on the following Web address:

http://cctechvalues.net

Confidentiality of your participation will be treated with the utmost respect. If you
would like to receive a summary and implications of the results of this research,
please send an email to ray.tiahjadi@scccd.edu.
Thank you for your time and significant contribution to this research. They are
greatly appreciated.

Sincerely,

Ray Tjahjadi
Information Systems Faculty
The North Centers, Reedley College
State Center Communtiy College District