Educators' Use of Electronic Networks: An E-Mail Survey of Account-Holders on a Statewide Telecomputing System
American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting,
This study investigated educators' use of TENET, a statewide educational telecomputing network in Texas. It also documented the development and testing of a lengthy theory-based questionnaire and verified the efficacy of a method for administering surveys via electronic mail. The 70-item survey was sent to a random sample of 300 TENET users with a response rate of 66%, and was designed to measure variables which have been identified as important to understanding use of computer-mediated communication systems: personal attributes (demographic characteristics and computer experience); environmental characteristics (access, cost, training and time, and social context; perceived media characteristics (ease of use, social presence, utility and relative advantage); patterns of use (amount and type of use); and gratifications obtained (cognitive, diversion, and interpersonal utility). The response rate was 66%. The majority of respondents were highly experienced and educated public school teachers, support staff, and administrators who were experienced computer users with easy access to equipment needed to connect to TENET. Participants logged on to TENET an average of 4-6 times per week. Electronic mail was the most often used network function. Most respondents felt TENET was useful. The network served professional, as well as social and diversionary functions. Social integration with a community of TENET users was a consistent and strong predictor of both usage and satisfaction variables. Ten tables illustrate findings. (Contains 32 references.) (MAS)
Anderson, S.E. & Harris, J.B. (1995). Educators' Use of Electronic Networks: An E-Mail Survey of Account-Holders on a Statewide Telecomputing System. Presented at American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting 1995.