Feasibility And Pilot Studies

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Feasibility and Pilot Studies

Feasibility and Pilot Studies


H0: The level of competence in using the Internet related computer technologies varies considerably among MSc students in Computing Department

H1: The level of competence in using the Internet related computer technologies does not vary considerably among MSc students in Computing Department


Forty undergraduate University students were surveyed using an instrument adapted from one used by Kennedy, Krause, Judd, Churchward & Gray (2006). The questionnaire was essentially a two part instrument: the first part collecting demographic information; the second part was concerned specifically with computer application use and skill. The demographic information collected included the age and sex of each of the participants. Participants were also asked how long they had been using computers, how long they had been using the Internet, if they had taken any formal computing as part of their study and how they rated their own overall computing ability. The computer skills questions focused on the use of various computer applications. Participants were asked to indicate how often they used a particular computer application and also to rank their skill level in each of the computing applications mentioned. The rankings were based on a 7 point scale for the frequency questions ranging from 1 for several times a day to 7 for once or twice a year. and a 5 point Likert type scale for the perception of skill questions (1 being little skill to 5 being very skilled). There was a 'never use' option for each application. Of the twenty one application type questions, nine could be classed as off-line use with the remaining questions classified as on-line (or Internet based) use. The off-line use included all the standard Office applications as well as activities such as writing computer code or manipulating images as well as playing games. The on-line use included such activities as email, chat, Internet searching, shopping, banking and social networking. The participants of this study were all undergraduate students at Lincoln University, Canterbury, New Zealand. Lincoln University is a small university in rural Canterbury and began as an agricultural college more than 125 years ago. In 2008 Lincoln, while still being strong in agricultural and life sciences has developed in to a university with a reputation for producing practically minded students from across a range of disciplines. For the purposes of this study 40 undergraduates from a range of disciplines were surveyed, with the only exclusions being Information Technology students.

Data analysis and results

The data collected from the questionnaire were analysed using the SPSS data analysis ...
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