ERIC Number: ED408135
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997-May
Factors Affecting Use of E-Mail by Public School Principals of the Central Appalachian Region.
Carter, Micheal T.
A survey of elementary, middle/junior high, and high school principals in central Appalachia examined their use of e-mail and factors influencing that use. The survey was sent to a stratified random sample of 620 principals in Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia; 375 usable responses were received. Respondents provided data on demographics, accessibility to hardware and software, experience and training on computers and e-mail, uses of e-mail, and factors influencing their use or non-use of e-mail. E-mail was used by 59.7 percent of respondents. Predictors of e-mail usage were previous computer experience, accessibility to resources, and training. There were no differences between users and non-users with respect to gender, age, highest degree earned, or total years of educational experience. Use of e-mail by superiors, fellow principals, or teachers, and keyboarding skills were not indicators of e-mail usage. Principals used e-mail primarily for administrative tasks and secondarily for accessing and retrieving information. The primary methods for training in computer and e-mail skills were self-teaching, local courses, conferences or workshops, spouses or friends, colleagues, and on-site consultants. E-mail users had hardware and software resources, training, support, and encouragement to use e-mail. Non-users were uncomfortable with the technology. Principals must be role models for the use of technology. E-mail has the potential to break down barriers of geographic isolation and instill a sense of community. If future educational leaders are to meet the challenges of an information age, colleges must provide instruction in the use of computers and e-mail. Contains 92 references and the survey questionnaire. (TD)
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A