ICT in the UAE Educational Setting: The Case in the Schools of Abu Dhabi Emirate

ICT in the UAE Educational Setting: The Case in the Schools of Abu Dhabi Emirate

Ahmed Ibrahim (Al Ain Model School, UAE)
Copyright: © 2013 |Pages: 11
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-1984-5.ch004
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This chapter is meant to investigate the current educational situation in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates to: a) discuss the impact of technology integration and the precise roles ICT plays in fostering learning, b) explore the most various problems and challenges teachers face in implementing ICT in teaching, and c) shed light on the role of educational leaders in enhancing teaching and learning through integrating ICT. This research-based chapter tackles the above-mentioned issues relying on the previous studies in the same field (literature review) and conducting a qualitative and a quantitative study- using surveys and interviews-to gather authentic data to assess the current situation of ICT in Abu Dhabi Emirate.
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To start with, let’s begin with looking at the word ICT. ICT (information and communications technology) is a common term that includes any communication device or application, including: radios, televisions, cell phones, computers and networks hardware and software, satellite systems and so on, as well as the various services and applications associated with them, such as videoconferences and distance learning. ICT is also defined as the study or business of developing and using technology to process information and help communications. With these in mind, ICT integration should neither be restricted to computers only nor should it be confronted to certain subject matter. It should include all other communication devices and it can be used in teaching any subject matter.

According to Pisapia, (1993) integrating technology with teaching means the use of learning technologies to introduce, reinforce, supplement, and extend skills. For example, if students are being instructed to read reading comprehension passage and they are provided with a computer follow up activities, this is integration. If they are just provided with computers to watch or play games or surf the Internet without any follow-up activities that leads to mastering certain skills, there is no ICT integration.

Breuleux, (2001) states that providing ICT facilities and related programs is not enough to enable students to master the skills and proficiencies. He argues that ICT can, in fact, support more powerful and complete knowledge-building experiences for learners “if we integrate well-designed technologies in the context of meaningful, mindful inquiry projects, non-presentational pedagogies, access to resources and tools, and adequate support for technological maintenance and pedagogical renewal” (Breuleux, 2001, p. 3).

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