Publication Date

2016

Document Type

Dissertation/Thesis

First Advisor

Hung, Wei-Chen

Degree Name

Ph.D. (Doctor of Philosophy)

Department

Department of Educational Technology, Research and Assessment

LCSH

Special education teachers--Saudi Arabia--Attitudes$vCase studies||Information technology--Study and teaching--Saudi Arabia$vCase studies

Abstract

Within the last few decades special education has benefited from the vast revolution of technologies. These technologies have contributed in facilitating cognitive development as well as learning processes for students with disabilities. One of these emerging technologies is the tablet device and its applications. Due to increasing demands to integrate the latest technology into educational settings, previous studies have looked at the potential of adopting tablet devices and their applications as instruction technology tools in special education classrooms. This case study sought to explore male special education teachers' perceptions toward using tablet devices for teaching purposes in Saudi Arabia. The objectives of this case study were 1) explore male special education teachers' perceptions about using tablet devices for teaching purposes. Their perceptions were measured based on eight variables (voluntariness, relative advantage, compatibility, image, ease of use, trialability, result demonstrability, and visibility) derived from Rogers' and Moore and Benbasat's theories; 2) Examine the impact of teachers' characteristics of age, years of teaching experiences, educational background, and school level being taught on their perceptions; 3) Identify obstacles hindering the adoption of tablet devices for teaching purposes; and 4) Explore the roles of school leadership concerning the use of tablet devices inside the school from the perspectives of special education teachers. This case study employed explanatory sequential mixed methods design, which involves two data collection phases (quantitative → qualitative). The quantitative phase is the primary phase followed by qualitative data collection. The purpose of qualitative phase is to provide further explanation regarding phase one results. A total of 175 participants participated in the survey phase. The results showed the overall perceptions had an overall mean of 3.4 and a standard deviation of (SD = 0.47). In addition, the results revealed that the participants had high perceptions concerning perceived relative advantages (M = 4.2), result demonstrability (M = 3.8), and compatibility (M = 3.9) of using tablet devices for teaching purposes. Whereas the participants had neutral perceptions (mean score range between 2.9 to 3.2) concerning the voluntariness, image, ease of use, trialability, and visibility in the use of tablet devices. Regarding the impact of teacher characteristics on their perceptions of using tablet devices, the multiple regression results showed that only two characteristics of male special education teachers significantly impacted their perceptions. The first characteristic was school level at which the teachers taught, which was significantly related to the participants' perceived voluntariness (p = .03) and trialability ( p = .01). The second characteristic, teachers' years of experience, was significantly related to perceived image (p = .04) and compatibility (p = .04). Once phase one was analyzed, a qualitative case study was carried out to provide further explanations of characteristics found to significantly impact the participants' perceptions about the use of tablet devices and their applications for teaching purposes. Furthermore, this phase aimed to explore difficulties hindering the adoption of tablet devices for teaching purposes as well as the roles of school administration in adopting tablet devices. In this phase six participants were selected purposefully based on their age, years of teaching experience, specialty in teaching students with disabilities, and school level at which they taught. A semi-structured interview method was used to collect data. The collected data were analyzed using a coding approach. The results from the data analysis showed that participants' years of teaching experience and school level were critical, if not vital, when it came to the use of tablet devices as an assistive technology tool in special education classrooms. These results also supported the findings that emerged in phase one. The results from the follow-up interviews showed that four major obstacles hindered the adoption of tablet devices in the Saudi special education system. These obstacles are lack of training, class management, shortage of tablet applications in Arabic, and the process being time consuming. Also the results indicated that school leadership did not support the use of tablet devices for teaching purposes due to lack of awareness and funding. Discussions, implications, limitations of this study as well as recommendations for future research are discussed in depth in Chapter 5.

Comments

Advisors: Wei Chen Hung.||Committee members: Rebecca Hunt; Thomas Smith.||Includes bibliographical references.||Includes illustrations.

Extent

xii, 167 pages

Language

eng

Publisher

Northern Illinois University

Rights Statement

In Copyright

Rights Statement 2

NIU theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from Huskie Commons for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without the written permission of the authors.

Media Type

Text

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