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[school-discuss] Results of a survey of computers in a school in Goa, India

URL             :  http://gscp.org/components/survey3.htm

Results of survey conducted at Vasant Vidyalaya HS

   Respondents Profile 30 students 9 males, 21 females from grade 9

   9 were 16-18 year range, 21 were 13-15 years range

   Background - Vasant Vidyalaya is a secondary school with a total
   enrollment of about 200 students from middle and lower class located
   in Siolim, a town of about 10,000 people. The school has a computer
   lab of 7 PCs, 2 (Windows) provided by Government and 4 (Linux)
   provided by GSCP in 2002, and 1 PC (Windows) additionally provided by
   the government in 2003. In the last semester of 2002-2003 academic
   year, 2 subject teachers were trained, and the social sciences teacher
   taught 3 Geography lesson in the computer lab using prepared lesson
   plans. In the same semester, children were permitted to use the
   computer lab after school hours on payment of a Rs. 10 per month fee.
   Internet use was demonstrated but not permitted on a regular basis
   because of phone cost considerations.

Results -

   Respondents indicated that
     * English is their favorite subject (50%), followed by Art, Math and
       Science (30% each)

   (100% of students responded to this question)

     * They had been using PCs for less than a year (7%), 1-2 years
       (63%), 2-4 years (30%). This is consistent with Vasant Vidyalaya
       aquiring PCs 2 years ago

   Students who have used PCs for more than 2 years mostly have one at
   home or at a relative/friends home

   (100% of students responded)

     * Only 16% of students claim to have taught themselves to use
       computers, the rest said that their computer Teacher taught them

   (100% of students responded)

     * Software used by students at school other than spreadsheets,
       word-processor and paint tool

   Games (60%) and educational software (only 50%)

   (85 % of students responded)

     * Favorite activity

   By far, Games (70%) and Paint (90%) were students favorite activites

   (% 85of students responded)

     * Major challenges

   Using keyboard and mouse

   Technical problems

   Too many students, not enough time

   (74 % of students responded)

     * Accessibility of computers after school hours

   30% of students said the computers were always accessible, 10% said
   they were sometimes accessible, 55% said they were never accessible

   43% said they use computers after school hours

   (97% responded)

   This implies that the benefits of After hours school access were not
   reaching all students (did this mean the Rs. 10 per student was too

     * Students opinion on the importance of computers

Computers very Important for

   Learning computer skills

   For Job in future

   To learn new things

   Help with schoolwork

Computers somewhat important for

   To  find or access information

   To communicate with others

   (97% responded)

   This indicates that students are aware of the relationship between
   computer skills and future employment. The lower perceived importance
   for accessing information and communication reflects the fact that
   internet is not used appreciably yet.

     * How useful are the following to help you learn

   Teachers 70%

   Textbooks 40%

   Your parents 60%

   Your friends 60%

   Computers 73%

   CD-Rom 30%

   (100% responded)

   This would seem to suggest that teachers and computers are the most
   helpful for students learning experience. However, given that only 30%
   thought educational CD-ROMs were useful, the concept of learning
   experience was probably not clear enough.

   The interpretation of the following section on student opinions should
   be treated with care as students had difficulty understanding the
   question format. Neutral implies that the student did not have an

     * 12% think that do not like school (20% neutral)

   (83% of students responded)

     * 50% think that computers have made them like school more (33%

   (80% of students responded)

     * 33% think that they know more about computers than my teachers

   (70% of students responded)

     * 71% think that computers have made them better students
       (14% neutral)

   (70% of students responded)

     * 42% think that most teachers seem afraid to use computers in the
       classroom (33% neutral)

   (70% of students responded)

     * 57% say that  their parents have never used computers

   (63% of students responded)

     * 57% think that their parents are very interested in their use of

   (63% of students responded)

     * 52 % would prefer to use computers alone when using computers in
       school (11% neutral)

   (60% of students responded)

     * Based on their experience with computers so far      50% want to
       use computers in your future profession (% neutral)

   (66 % of students responded)

What did we learn from this survey

     * Identifying students least favorite subject opens the possibility
       of targeting the  use of computer assisted teaching to make that
       subject more interesting
     * Students indicating that Paint and Games as favorite activities
       combined with the fact that they do not have frequent access to
       educational software raises the possibility that computers are
       becoming purely an entertainment tool
     * Identifying the major challenges faced by students using computers
       tells us that at grade 8 students still have a problem using
       keyboard and mouse (learning computers starts in grade 7 or
       earlier). Technical difficulties (hardware and software problems)
       are also mentioned, which raises the issue of timely maintenance
       and repair of equipment by school management
     * That a large minority of students are not overly impressed by
       their teachers computer knowledge or teaching ability. This
       suggests opportunities to improve teacher training.
     * That apparently the after hours access served only half the
       students. The reason for this need to be investigated.
     * The fact that most students do not indicate need to use computer
       alone, yet indicate that lack of computer time is a problem, means
       that the issue is not necessarily one of needing one computer per
       student, but of better utilization.
     * Response to the importance of computers and whether students will
       seek a career in IT suggests a way to bridge the gap between
       learning computer skills and applying them, is needed such as an
       internship program.

   Note The survey was a pilot survey designed by the Information
   Technology Group (ITG) at Harvard University and conducted by Daryl
   Martyris for GSCP.

   On the cards Surveys for the remaining GSCP supported schools, surveys
   with a control group to study differences of perceptions between kids
   with and without access to PCs (perhaps the same class before it had
   access to PCs), and a tracer study to see the career path the these 2
   groups follow.