Ayoola Johnson AJAYI
Kolawole Akinjide ARAMIDE
Abadina Media Resource Centre
University of Ibadan
This study investigated the influence of environmental and Institutional factors on Internet use by undergraduate students in selected universities in South West, Nigeria. The study used undergraduate students in Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) and Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta (FUNAAB), Nigeria. The copies of the questionnaire designed for the study was administered on 178 purposively selected students from the selected universities out of which only 110 were returned with useful responses making a response rate of 61.8%. The study further revealed reliable internet connection (Mean = 3.06), adequate infrastructural facilities (Mean = 2.62), Internet policy (Mean = 2.60), and ICT development policy (Mean = 2.54) as major environmental factors that influenced the use of internet among the students in the selected institutions. Also, the study established inadequate access points for internet use (Mean = 2.60), availability of adequate computer accessories (Mean = 2.55), high cost of internet use (Mean = 2.54), and adequate availability of computers connected to the Internet as major institutional factors that influenced the use of internet among the undergraduate students in the selected institutions. The study revealed that environmental factors significantly contribute positively to Internet use while institutional factors do not significantly influence internet use among undergraduate students in Nigerian universities.
Keywords: Environmental factors, Institutional factors, Internet use
Background to the study
The revolution in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and particularly the Internet, is exerting profound effects on institutions of higher learning. Many researchers have identified the impact of the Internet on higher education studies (Adogbji and Akporhonor, 2005). The influence of the Internet on the educational system which had been previously confined to communication and resources sharing had gradually developed into a new dimension affecting the teaching-learning process in a direct way. The Internet has come with an evolution that cannot be compared with existing technologies that were before it (Molosi, 2001). The Internet has shifted the paradigm of education from the traditional classroom lecture that it used to be to electronic teaching-learning process. The Internet can be used as a supplement to traditional instructional method (Usum, 2003). The Internet has the potential to accelerate, enrich and deepen basic skills in teaching and learning. It helps in motivating and encouraging students in learning as they are encouraged to be more independent and responsible for their own learning. The influence of the Internet is pervasive in education, and strengthens teaching and learning as it provides powerful resources and services for students thereby enabling them to meet their individual needs. Also, the Internet allows for networking among students and teachers, thus teachers and students are more connected with each other. The Internet also facilitate exchange of ideas, sharing of resources, and improve teaching-learning practices as well as provide opportunity for connecting schools to the world, as learning is expanded beyond the classroom, thus, relevant real life context can be established (Abolade and Yusuff, 2005). With the Internet, students and teachers can access information and resources, and they can communicate with experts and peers and make useful contributions to knowledge through electronic publications. The use of the Internet in education is...