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Instructional technologies in social science instruction in South Africa

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Computers & Education Volume 53, Number 2, ISSN 0360-1315 Publisher: Elsevier Ltd


This study describes the results of a survey and a description of instructional technologies in place in the social sciences in South African Universities. Lecturers in the social sciences reported a well-established practice of information and communication technologies (ICTs) use for general purposes (although frequent use tended to be for email and searching the Internet). They had a high self-efficacy in terms of using ICTs both generally and for teaching and learning, and a high enthusiasm for the use of ICTs for teaching and learning. Half the lecturers had started using ICTs recently with the introduction of learning management systems (LMSs) whereas the other half had established practices that preceded the mainstreaming of LMSs across universities. Only about a quarter of the respondents felt able to develop and update ICTs themselves which indicates that support is a necessary part of teaching with technology. In terms of different types of use the focus was on putting content on the web and course administration. Use of ICTs for teaching of skills (whether information literacy, problem solving or critical thinking) was infrequent. There were different types of ICT use across the different sub-disciplines. Lecturers reported factors which constrained their use of ICTs for teaching and learning, such as inadequate technology, pedagogical issues (e.g. plagiarism), and students opting out of lectures when materials were available online. It is argued that user studies in are relevant to the future delivery of educational material, in terms of removing barriers to use and targeting training and supportive activities.


Louw, J., Brown, C., Muller, J. & Soudien, C. (2009). Instructional technologies in social science instruction in South Africa. Computers & Education, 53(2), 234-242. Elsevier Ltd. Retrieved April 9, 2020 from .

This record was imported from Computers & Education on January 30, 2019. Computers & Education is a publication of Elsevier.

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