A Comparison of Education, Business, and Engineering Undergraduate Students’ Internet Use and their Experience, Confidence, and Competence in Using New Literacies of the Internet
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This study explored beginning and advanced pre-service teachers’ Internet use and their experience, confidence, and competence in using new literacies of the Internet. In addition, this study compared the pre-service teachers to same-aged business and engineering students. Through using an online survey, this study recruited 1350 students from the various disciplines. This study conducted comparisons between a) underclassmen across the three majors, b) seniors across the majors, and c) underclassmen and seniors within the majors. This study found that as digital natives, education, business, and engineering students used the Internet frequently. However, they were relatively unfamiliar with using new literacies of the Internet during their high school and university educational experiences. Overall, the three majors’ students were confident but they were not competent in using new literacies of the Internet including locating and evaluating information on the Internet. Comparisons between and within the majors revealed that education underclassmen were less confident and competent than engineering underclassmen peers and senior education students in evaluating information on the Internet. Education seniors were comparable to business and engineering seniors in their confidence and competence in both locating and evaluating information on the Internet. The findings imply that teacher educators need to understand the weaknesses of their pre-service teachers and provide them with appropriate opportunities and training to know how to effectively use and furthermore teach new literacies of the Internet.
Kim, Su Yeon (2011). A Comparison of Education, Business, and Engineering Undergraduate Students’ Internet Use and their Experience, Confidence, and Competence in Using New Literacies of the Internet. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A&M University. Available electronically from