ICT use in education
www.hg0188.comTwenty of the participating education systems reported having a system-wide policy relating to ICT in education, though their policy concerns differed. The majority of countries had at least slightly increased their ICT spending in the last 5 years and reported some level of government funding for the provision of hardware and software. With the exception of one country, nearly all of the schools in the participating countries reported having computer and Internet access for pedagogical use. However, the percentage of teachers reporting that they used ICT for teaching was comparatively low. ICT use was generally more prevalent among science teachers than mathematics teachers in most countries, but the extent to which teachers had adopted ICT differed considerably across countries, varying from 20% to 80%. Furthermore, there was no correlation between the level of ICT access (student-to-computer ratio) and the percentage of teachers who reported using ICT in their teaching.
The perceived availability of technical, administrative, and infrastructural support was the most consistent positive predictor of teachers' use of ICT. The extent of ICT use depended not only on school-level conditions, however, but also on national curriculum policies, as evidenced by large differences in the use of ICT among mathematics and science teachers within the same schools in some countries. For example, in Japan and Israel, the percentages of mathematics teachers reporting ICT use (around 22.5% in both countries) were much lower than those for science teachers from the same samples of schools (44% and 53% respectively).
21st century skills and ICT use
The perceived impact of ICT use on students was highly dependent on the pedagogical approaches adopted by teachers when using ICT. Greater student gains in 21st century skills such as collaboration and inquiry were reported by teachers with a lifelong-learning orientation (taking on a more facilitative role, providing student-centered guidance and feedback, and engaging more frequently in exploratory and team building activities with students).
Changes in ICT provisions and priorities in teaching practice
Between 1998 and 2006, great improvements in access to computers and the Internet were reported, though considerable diversity in terms of the ICT infrastructure available in schools remained. In most countries, there was a general increase in teaching practices that involved information handling (e.g., searching for information, processing data, and presenting information).
There was considerable diversity in countries' trends in development. In most countries, there was a general increase in the perceived presence of lifelong-learning pedagogy. Substantial increases were evident in several Asian countries that reported the lowest presence in 1998 (Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore); conversely, a decrease in presence was reported in the three European countries (Norway, Slovenia, Denmark) that registered the highest presence of lifelong-learning pedagogy in 1998.