A study of West Virginia secondary public school library media centers and library media specialists and their use of 21 st century technology tools
Kimberly Ann Bickel Sigman, Marshall University, United States
Marshall University . Awarded
Twenty-first century learning, learning that teaches global and wellness awareness, and civic and business literacy, is essential for students to become vital, contributing members of society. In order for students to participate in an environment of 21st century learning, the attainment of 21st century skills is essential. Twenty-first century skills encourage students to collaborate, communicate, critically think, and reflect. Such skills involve the use of technology tools—21st century tools—which include computers, Internet, production software, and communication processes. Literature establishes school library media centers as sites where students find many types of 21st century tools. Staffed by school library media specialists, school library media centers should be the hub of 21st century learning. It therefore becomes necessary to ascertain the types of 21st century tools available in school library media centers, how confident school library media specialists are in using the tools, and how often school library media specialists help students use the tools so that effective learning can occur.
This study utilized a researcher developed self-reporting mailed survey to conduct research with all 227 secondary school library media specialists in West Virginia. The study found that school library media specialists have reasonable level of access to 14 of 24 technology tools. The other 10 are absent in more than half of the West Virginia secondary school library media centers. The majority of West Virginia school library media specialists indicated they are extremely confident in using many 21st century technology tools; however they never assist students in using most of the tools. Ancillary findings showed increased incidences of technology training for school library media specialists increase the presence of technology tools in school library media centers, raise the confidence level of school library media specialists in using technology tools, and increase the frequency of assisting students with technology tools.
Sigman, K.A.B. A study of West Virginia secondary public school library media centers and library media specialists and their use of 21 st century technology tools. Ph.D. thesis, Marshall University.
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