Using perceptual control theory to analyse technology integration in teaching
Govender, Desmond W
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Contrary to the more traditional scenario of instructor-focused presentation, contemporary education allows individuals to embrace modern technological advances such as computers to concur with, conceptualize and substantiate matters presented before them. Transition from instructor-focused to student-centred presentation is prone to dissension and strife, motivating educators to assess elements of learner-centred teaching in conjunction with traditional teaching mechanisms and how individuals perceive and comprehend information (Andersson, 2008; Kiboss, 2010; United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), 2004). Computers can assist when used in the traditional teacher-student interface, but consideration must be given to teaching method variations and the students embracing these learning applications. If learner-centred teaching is to become accepted certain elements need to be introduced: revision of educators’ learning and teaching applications, time to facilitate knowledge and use of applicable contemporary technologies, and methods compatible with various technologies (Kiboss, 2010). Change is often not easy – while acknowledging the need to alter and revise methods they were taught to instil, educators may fail to embrace incorporation of technology into their teaching platform. Why are educators, who are quite knowledgeable and competent in computer applications and their merits, failing to embrace the benefits of technology in the classroom? A critical assessment of this mandates a transdisciplinary disposition in order to come to an amenable resolution. Perception, inhibition, ignorance and goals are just some reasons why educators are reluctant to incorporate technology despite their proficiency. Perceptual control theory (PCT) will be implemented to assess these reasons as a means towards achieving change and assessing how to move forward. Issues associated with educators’ short- and long-term goals as well as their perceptions – and hence the essential need to comprehend PCT – are addressed.