Evaluating teacher's training in ICT in Hong Kong SAR : the perceptions of teachers and IT co-ordinators of secondary schools
With the implementation of Hong Kong's IT in education initiative as a 'Five-Year Strategy' in 1998, more than HK$530 million has been invested in the ICT in-service teacher course to help more than 40,000 school teachers achieve different levels of IT competency. The effectiveness of those courses and the justification of the amount of money spent were the main concerns of the government and the public. This research project aims to evaluate the effectiveness of the in-service teacher training scheme referred to as 'Teacher Enablement' in the 'Five-Year Strategy' mainly through a questionnaire survey of 227 teachers and IT co-ordinators of nine secondary schools under the same sponsoring body. In addition, more qualitative information was sought from eight respondents from seven sampled schools in the form of interviewing. The results of the survey show that these schools have mostly fulfilled the government's requirements to have a fixed proportion of teachers qualified in each level of IT competency. In course popularity, teacher training courses of the basic level of It competency were more welcomed by the respondents than those of other levels. School-based teacher training was found to be better received by the teachers than other types of course provision. However, the integration of ICT into the school curriculum and the use of ICT in the classroom setting was considered to be unsatisfactory. There was further evidence that many teachers had not achieved the paradigm shift for using computers in the classroom. Therefore, Hong Kong's IT in Education initiative can be assessed as successful in terms of quantity but not of quality.