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ERIC Number: ED432791
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1998-Nov
Pages: 13
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Learning To Use Computers for Future Communication Professions.
Hurme, Pertti
A study examined how to teach computer skills to future professionals in communications. The context of the study was the communications department in a mid-sized Finnish university. Data was collected on computer use and attitudes to computers and computer-mediated communication by means of surveys and learning journals during the Communications Technology Courses arranged in 1994-1998; follow-up data was gathered by means of email during spring semester 1998. Yearly improvement in the computer skills of university entrants was noted. An analysis of the journals revealed four types of learners: I-know-nothing-about-computers, computers-are-not-for-me, computers-are-tools, and I-know-just-about-everything-about-computers. Most of the university entrants with poor self-reported computer skills and a negative attitude to computers reported better computer skills and a more positive attitude to computers within weeks or months after entering the university. Most of the entrants with good skills and a positive attitude reported better skills and even more positive attitudes. An analysis of the reasons for changes ("turning points") in the students' computer use and attitudes highlights peer group influence (email contacts with friends and direct help from friends), access to computers, courses (the Communications Technology Course and other courses), and learning-by-doing. The students showed differences in perceived usefulness of the Communications Technology Course, in computer anxiety and in the adoption of an overly critical attitude to computers. In contrast, gender differences were small. As future communications professionals, the students were highly motivated to become confident users of computers. Contains 13 references. (Author/RS)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Finland