Faculty and Student Technology Use to Enhance Student Learning

Keywords: educational technology, higher education, blended learning, technology integration

Abstract

Scholarly research has indicated that technology adoption to facilitate blended learning promotes the academic success of many different types of students and improves the quality of existing educational offerings. To understand how technology enhances learning, surveys queried the faculty and students of a statewide community college system. The results indicated widespread technology use among the faculty and students. The faculty survey revealed details of technology tools employed and the motivations for their use or discontinued use. Details regarding faculty use of learning management systems, textbooks, and other media characterized the current technology adoption climate. The student survey collected information about students’ perceptions of how technology influenced their learning, their preferences for specific technology tools, and their student progress. Ninety-three percent of student respondents indicated that technology enhanced their learning. Alignment between the faculty use and student preference for technology tools suggested that students are actively engaged in the technology resources used by faculty to enhance learning. Students described how technology facilitated multimodal learning. They also noted that technology increased communication, access, and inclusion in learning. Successful technology use and integration, accompanied by ongoing scholarly debate and monitoring, has the potential to provide more access, promote learning outcomes, and preserve the investment of technology for the institution. The surveys employed here, when used semi-annually, may provide a low-cost model for technology integration monitoring and evaluation. The responses to the surveys also have the potential to provide technology use and integration data that informs strategic planning processes and institutional learning outcome development. 

Author Biography

Margaret L. Gaddis, University of Colorado

Margaret Gaddis is a Lecturer at the University of Colorado - Colorado Springs, USA and a member of the Bard College (NY, USA) Citizen Science Faculty. She attended the University of the Rockies (Ph.D. Education), the University of Denver (M.S. Biology), and Mount Holyoke College (B.A. Environmental Studies). Dr. Gaddis is a restoration ecologist who works with citizen scientists. She is most passionate about native plant revegetation. In the realm of education research, she is interested in 1) the relationship between citizen science training design and the reliability of data collected by citizen scientists, and 2) how technology affects learning in educational contexts. Dr. Gaddis teaches biology, botany, and environmental science and is a Colorado Native Plant Society regional chapter chair.

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Published
2020-06-08
How to Cite
Gaddis, M. L. (2020). Faculty and Student Technology Use to Enhance Student Learning. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 21(4), 39-60. https://doi.org/10.19173/irrodl.v21i3.4600
Section
Research Articles