Cyberethics in the elementary classroom: Teaching the responsible use of technology
Patricia H. Yamano, Pepperdine University, United States
Pepperdine University . Awarded
The increased use of technology by younger and younger children has caused increasing societal concerns about who bears the responsibility of guiding these children in the appropriate use of the technology. In the past, when instances such as this have arisen, schools have been asked to develop new forms of values education to deal with the changing issues.
This descriptive study describes the prevailing condition of cyberethics in 4th and 5th grade teachers of a large urban school district. Assessing teachers' attitude toward and awareness about cyberethics, how they developed their cyberethics, and what they are doing to help students understand the importance of using technology responsibly provided the data to determine the state of cyberethics among the participants. The relationship between technology implementation and cyberethics was also ascertained in this study. The cyberethics issues covered in this study included hacking, copyright, plagiarism, privacy, personal identity, and hate speech.
A paper survey was created using the researcher's Cyberethics Questionnaire (CEQ and the established Level of Technology Implementation (LoTi) Questionnaire. The survey was administered to and completed by 221 4th and 5th grade teachers. The analysis of data revealed that (a) teachers who scored high in attitudes and awareness of cyberethics were more likely to develop cyberethics in their students; (b) teachers perceive that little is being offered on instruction in cyberethics and were not attending professional development for cyberethics; (c) there was a relationship between classroom implementation of technology and cyberethics; and (d) there is support for the theory that beliefs drive practice.
This study is an affirmation that cyberethics is being neglected in our elementary schools. The finding suggests that the district needs to offer a variety of resources to raise teachers' classroom implementation of technology and attitude and awareness of cyberethics, which will then likely result in the development of cyberethics in their students.
Yamano, P.H. Cyberethics in the elementary classroom: Teaching the responsible use of technology. Ph.D. thesis, Pepperdine University.
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