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Strategy as Plan for Technology Integration to Reposition Lecturers for the New Normal in Higher Education

Written By

Sibongile R. Ngcapu, Sibongile Simelane-Mnisi and Andile Mji

Submitted: December 8th, 2021Reviewed: December 18th, 2021Published: March 18th, 2022

DOI: 10.5772/intechopen.102078

IntechOpen
New Updates in E-LearningEdited by Eduard Babulak

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New Updates in E-Learning [Working Title]

Prof. Eduard Babulak

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Abstract

This chapter reports on the strategy as plan using ICT policy that could impact on repositioning the lecturers for the integration of technology for the new normal in education. Global, the COVID-19 pandemic distinctly exposed the unpreparedness of lecturers to integrate technology in teaching and learning when the shutdown of the higher institutions was announced. The participants consisted of 37 lecturers from four departments in the School of Education at a university of technology in South Africa. A qualitative case study method was used. An open-ended questionnaire, individual interviews and document analysis were used to collect data. Atlas.ti was used to analyse data. The findings revealed that the study University does not have the eLearning policy to enforce technology integration. Hence the unpreparedness of lecturers to integrate was discovered during Covid-19. It is recommended the study university develops an ICT policy, involving lecturers as stakeholders to promote ownership and conformability.

Keywords

  • ICT policy
  • repositioning
  • integration technology
  • COVID-19

1. Introduction

The unpreparedness of lecturers to integrate technology for teaching and learning was distinctly exposed when the shutdown of the higher institutions of learning was announced in March 2020 due to the COVID19 pandemic [1] and the lockdown regulations to facilitate social distancing, as a measure to control the spread of the virus [2]. The pandemic brought an enormous transformation in the way we live, learn and work [3]. These factors resulted in the new normal in all the sectors including education [4]. Global, education institutions provided a speedy adaption to the way learning and teaching were conducted [3]. To save the 2020 academic year, online teaching and learning were opted for Simelane-Mnisi and Mji [2]. In the study conducted in 20 countries on the online adoption for teaching and learning, the results reveal that very few countries were prepared to swiftly move to online learning instantly [5].

In South Africa, out of fourteen universities, only four universities were able to switch to online learning immediately [6]. This posed a challenge to both the lecturers and the students in the study university, as they were not able to continue with learning and teaching during this period. The emergency remote workshops were put in place to prepare lecturers for remote teaching [7]. Emergency remote technology-enhanced development programs were adopted to support lecturers with the design and development of online modules [8] by the instructional designers as experts [910]. However, not all lecturers were on board. Furthermore, students were affected by digital divide as not all of them had access to a strong network connection. Hence the study university had to adopt the multimodal teaching and learning to save 2020 academic year [6]. These barriers were also observed with the University students in Nigeria who did not have computers and Wi-Fi to move their studies online [3]. It is worth noting that in the study university professional development programs on technology integration in education including Partners@work and eLeaders had been in place, but the buy-in remained low as the lecturers reverted to traditional methods of teaching [11].

This chapter reports on the strategy as a plan, ICT policy that could support in repositioning lecturers for the integration of technology for the new normal in Education. The question posed in this study is “How can the strategy as plan, ICT policy, be utilized to promote technology integration to reposition lecturers for the new normal in the School of Education?” To respond to this question, literature on the strategy as plan, ICT leadership role, stakeholders and the ICT policy processes were reviewed, the document analysis on the school of Education policies, relating to Internet access policy, strategic plan, consolidation plan and institutional strategy 2014–2019 was conducted. Furthermore, to establish lecturers’ perceptions on the promotion of ICT in the School of Education, open-ended questionnaires and individual interviews were conducted.

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2. Strategy as plan

To overcome lecturers’ challenges in this study, the strategy as a plan which is one of the strategies in the Mintzberg 5Ps strategic Model [12] used in the business sector was explored to reposition the lecturers. According to Simelane [13], the strategy as plan in the business sector is a policy of the organization intended to regulate how business is run. In education, the ICT policy is defined as the plan of actions or rules set by the institution to integrate technology in teaching and learning [14, 15]. The ICT policy determines the culture of teaching and learning. The integration of technology has been applauded for enhancing teaching and learning among other factors. Proponents of technology integration argue that the development of the ICT policy is the prominent step towards successful technology integration [14]. Furthermore, it is asserted that schools that are successful in technology integration are regulated by the ICT policy. Parry et al. [16] argue that for the policy to translate into results it must be planned, developed, implemented, monitored and reviewed. However, the development of the ICT policy requires ICT leadership with a distributive approach that is “diffused and dispersed” within the institution of learning [17]. It is also asserted that the involvement of all the stakeholders throughout the phases of the policy processes positively impacts the adoption and implementation of the policy [18]. Hence all the stakeholders must be involved in the planning, development, monitoring and reviewing of the policy.

2.1 The leadership role in the ICT policy process

Cross and Adam [19] and Nath [20] perceive the ICT leadership as an important and precondition for successful development and implementation of the ICT policy. These authors posit that effective leadership must establish the steering committee which must, in turn, establish the working committee. The working committee is responsible for reviewing the ICT policy draft and ensuring that all the stakeholders are involved and are in agreement with the stipulations [21]. They must also ensure that there are experts such as instructional designers to advise the working committee. The ICT policy from another institution can also be useful as an example. The steering committee is responsible for ensuring that the policy is approved by all the stakeholders before its implementation.

2.2 Stakeholder’ role in the integration of ICT policy in HEIs

According to [18, 22, 23] stakeholders in the university includes anyone who is influenced or influences the innovation including the knowledge industry, academia, designers, policymakers and other institutions involved in higher education. The stakeholders consist of internal and external members. The internal members relate university admission board, governing council, undergraduate and postgraduate students, government, academic and non-academic staff, university administrators. Whereas, external stakeholders involve the National university commission, NGOs, industries, private companies, parents, development agencies and trade unions [20].

2.2.1 The university administrator

The Vice-Chancellor as the administrator, his assistants, including deputy vice-chancellor, registrar, the deans of faculties, directors of institutes and heads of departments has the responsibility to set the academic tone of the institution. This is accomplished when there is a collaborative approach in problem-solving and decision-making. This creates a healthy relationship between the stakeholders. Rana et al. [24] assert that a distributed approach influences the quality of education.

2.2.2 Government and university governing board

The government owns and funds the universities. It is their responsibility to ensure that there are relevant resources including the ICTs to influence the quality of education. Usman [25] argues that effective policymaking requires an enlightened governing board that has a broad view of the impact of higher education on society and is conscious of the strategic directions and resources for achieving institutional missions. Additionally, the governing council also must ensure the continuous improvement of the quality of university education, define strategic visions, formulate and monitor policies, contribute to the university decision making, ensure that the academic staff is of good quality. Goodson [18] posits that the governing council must collaborate with external stakeholders in improving academic standards and quality in the university.

2.2.3 Students

Students are primary stakeholders in the education industry [26]. The participation of students in taking decisions positions the students to play a responsible role in their learning. It is argued that students must be involved in academic decisions including the integration of ICT for teaching and learning as they are part of the academic community and clients of the university [27].

2.2.4 Council of Higher Education (CHE)

The regulating body responsible for all the universities in South Africa is the Council of Higher Education (CHE). Its responsibility includes ensuring that all the programs that are run in the university are credited, setting the standards for qualifications, the quality of teaching and learning determining the number of students to be admitted to each university [27]. The involvement of this council as stakeholders influences the decisions that would enhance the quality of teaching and learning.

2.2.5 University admission board

The admission board has a responsibility of ensuring that all the students admitted and enrolled meets the admission requirements as this has an impact on the quality of education in the university. Furthermore, this board must ensure that the environment in the university is conducive for teaching and environment including the relevant ICTs [18].

2.2.6 Academic and non-academic staff

Lecturers are the academic staff and play a very prominent role in enhancing the quality of teaching and learning. As the facilitators in the teaching and learning environment, they are responsible for ensuring a conducive environment that has relevant ICTs for students to engage meaningfully for learning to take place. Lecturers as professionals, are responsible for guiding, planning and evaluating the students [18].

2.2.7 The non-governmental organizations (NGOs)

For the government to accomplish the goals in the national development plan (NDP), it needs the NGOs that will assist by aligning their work with the NDP. For instance, the NGOs can mediate intervention programs, which will connect the department of education, and universities, other partners and industry. Moreover, NGOs can bring innovations that can benefit the institutions of learning. Additionally, the involvement of NGOs has a positive impact as they can influence collaboration, advocate excellence, assist in policymaking at the university level, to the attention of policy developers. The NGOs can solicit the 1% of net profit as the Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (BBBEE) code to be spent for socio-economic development [28].

2.2.8 Parents

Parents as stakeholders in education are responsible to ensure that the students have all the resources needed to enhance the quality of education. They are to ensure that there is food, accommodation, offer counseling to the student by encouraging them to attend classes [29]. The policy process is discussed next and illustrated in Figure 1.

Figure 1.

Framework for ICT policy process.

2.3 Policy process

The ICT policy process as illustrated in Figure 1 entails the planning, development, Implementation, reviewing phases. Monitoring is also an integral part of the cycle and runs throughout all the phases.

2.3.1 Planning phase

The planning phase is the initial phase of the policy cycle. This phase is sometimes referred to as the needs analysis. To conduct the needs analysis system approach is often used [30]. It consists of six levels relating to alpha, beta, delta, gamma, and zeta.

Alpha as the first level entails identifying the needs of the institution or clearly articulating the main objective to the stakeholders. In the case of changing the culture of instruction, the main objective would be integrating technology for teaching and learning to enhance students’ engagement.

Beta involves establishing issues that are associated with the main objectives that can lead to its accomplishment. The baseline data is collected where the use of instruments including, survey questionnaires, document analysis, observations and interviews are employed. The data collected is analyzed. All the issues that have the agenda status that is, clearly defined are compiled in the agenda-setting. Which leads to the next phase. In Gamma as the third step, these items on the agenda are deliberated and solutions are identified, deliberated, and agreed upon. This step leads to Gamma, where the strategies to address issues raised in the first step are developed. Delta as the fourth level consists of the final report of the needs analysis which involves the compilation of the strategies to be used. The Epsilon level of the analysis entails the summative evaluation of the strategies employed to establish if they will work. For ICT integration, ICTs would be piloted [31]. The ultimate level is the Zeta level of analysis, the final level where amendment is done if needed. This level entails the compilation of a report to be submitted to the steering committee leading to the development of the ICT policy [30]. However, when the members of the working committee are not skilled, they may bring unrealistic recommendations that will hinder the implementation of the ICT policy. ICT policy [32].

2.3.2 Developing an ICT policy

The lack of a clear ICT policy poses major snags to effectively integrate ICT for teaching and learning in the universities [32, 33] argue that the school-based ICT policy planning must be in the context of curriculum reform and suggest that the ICT policy should possess the features including the institution ICT policy description that is in line with the ICT National policy. It must have a vision that serves as the blueprint or a guidepost to keep the institution focused [34]. It should include a mission statement on how the institution’s vision will be achieved, objectives and sub-objectives to be realized in teaching and learning an o. Have an overview of the ICT services relating to administration, education, research, a description of the university’s infrastructure with the details of the hardware and the software to be installed in the lecture halls. Furthermore, the type of hardware and software general standards of how the ICT services are to be managed and supported and a plan regarding the implementation of the policies in the institution and the envisaged budget. However, the development of an ICT policy is not without challenges. These hindrances result from the lack of the stakeholders’ involvement, skills and knowledge transfer that is required for a sound vision and a comprehensive ICT policy [35]. Furthermore, the incompetency of the leadership to promote the participation of the stakeholders affects the integration of technology [31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36].

2.3.2.1 Guidelines for a successful ICT policy

Fishman & Pinkard [37] postulate that the guidelines for the ICT policy should be grounded in a shared vision of teaching and learning [38, 39]. Secondly, the ICT policy must be aligned with the curriculum content and enhance the student’s learning [40] in [41]. Thirdly, technology is ever-evolving therefore an ICT policy must be frequently reviewed and updated [38]. Lastly, the ICT policy development required the collaboration of all the stakeholders to be successful. However, its success depends on its implementation [42]. It is, therefore, asserted that the strategic plan developed in the planning phase should include strategies to implement the ICT policy [43].

2.3.3 Implementing the ICT policy

Implementing the ICT policy denotes the integration of the ICT to enhance teaching and learning for a meaningful engagement in the learning institution as stipulated in the ICT policy [44]. There are four dimensions of implementation relating to smart policy design, inclusive stakeholder engagement, conducive context and a coherent implementation strategy [45]. According to Aziz [46], a smart policy design consists of logical and feasible solutions to identified needs. Inclusive stakeholder engagement implies the involvement of the relevant, skilled stakeholders throughout the stages of the ICT policy. The conducive context denotes the implementation that is supported by an environment where there are relevant ICTs for students and lecturers to interact. Finally, there must be a coherent implementation strategy that outlines all concrete measures for the successful implementation of the ICT policy [47]. The implementation can be hindered by inefficient leadership, non-involvement of stakeholders, unskilled stakeholders, financial constraints, over-dependence on donors and students and lecturers’ resistance [47].

2.3.4 ICT policy monitoring

Policy monitoring entails tracking the progress of policy implementation, observing the activities during the policy implementation, and identifying obstacles [48]. To allay some of the challenges associated with the policy process, it is suggested that stakeholders’ participation; monitoring and evaluation with mechanisms for learning should be integrated into all the phases of the policy process [31]. Benner [49] and Maski Rana [50] assert that observations during the implementation of the ICT policies are scarce in the institutions of learning. This is due to the lack of expertise to assess the progress of strategies and activities, funding and human resource to effectively monitor the progress of the implementation of ICTs [48, 51] argue that there must be at least three units that assess different aspects of the ICT integration relating to the progress of the integration in general, activities in the classrooms, the skills and resources.

2.3.5 Reviewing the ICT policy

Reviewing the ICT policy implies evaluating the catastrophes or accomplishments of the implementation of the policy to come up with actionable outcomes [5]. According to Bratton & Gold [47] the three phases entailed in the review of the ICT policy include preparing the ground for the review, carrying out the review and finalizing the review report and disseminating the results.

‘Phase 1: Preparing the ground for the review entails clearly defining the objectives to be reviewed and compiled a list of the aspects to be reviewed before the policy experts can be consulted. It is suggested that to effectively identify aspects to be assessed, previous research and reports of similar projects can be used to identify similar aspects to be evaluated. After the relevant information is identified, aspects to be reviewed may be handed over to the policy experts for consideration. It is also indicated that aspects may be assigned to stakeholders to be consulted and attend meetings where the mission will be discussed [47]. Phase 2: Carrying out the review, involves swotting the key policy components of the institution’s ICT master plan and their implementation, examining the availability of human resources and ICT skills; assessing the institutional framework, scrutinizing implementation mechanisms and the roles of different stakeholders [6]. Phase 3: Finalizing the review and disseminating of the results relate to compiling a written report and distributing it to the relevant stakeholders to view and come up with the way forward [47].

For successful reviewing of the policy process, the leadership direct the reviewal and assign roles to the other stakeholders and report the progress of the ICT integration, ensuring that the stakeholders are capacitated with the necessary skills to review policies and there are relevant resources to conduct the process of reviewing and there is enough budget for the process. Furthermore, the leadership must encourage stakeholders’ involvement in reviewing the ICT policy to avoid the process being the responsibility of certain individuals. If the stakeholders are not capacitated with negotiation skills, conflicts arise which results in disagreements [47].

For the ICT policy to work in the higher learning institution, stakeholders including lecturers, instructional designers, student teachers, subject heads, and ICT specialists have to collaborate in its planning and development [11]. The involvement of all the stakeholders during the development of the ICT policy promotes ownership and conformability in integrating technology [14, 52]. The collaboration of all the stakeholders is equally important in the implementation of the ICT policy [53]. In Vietnam, for instance, COVID-19 has resulted in the development of ICT policy to support blended learning [54]. Furthermore, it is posited that technology integration is more likely to succeed when the lecturers understand and share the value of ICT policies [55]. Furthermore, it is argued that many benefits could be obtained by giving students freedom of learning anytime and anywhere as education compared to traditional learning [11].

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3. Method

A qualitative case study method was used to answer the question “How can the strategy as plan, ICT policy be utilized to promote technology integration to reposition lecturers for the new normal in the School of Education?” Imenda and Muyangwa [56] argued that in a qualitative case study, qualitative methods should be utilized and the research method should be located in the interpretive tradition. Hence in this study document analysis, an open-ended questionnaire and individual interviews were used to collect data. Atlas.ti was used to analyze data. From these instruments, 188 codes were created. These codes were clustered into 12 categories. These categories were grouped into the theme of ICT promotion to make an in-depth understanding of these categories.

3.1 Participants

Convenient and purposeful sampling was used to select the participants. Convenience sampling is a group of subjects selected based on being accessible and may represent specific types of characteristics [57]. Purposeful sampling allows one to select people or events because they are interested, relevant and suitable for the research [58]. Participants comprised of 37 lecturers, 25 females and 12 males from the four departments in the School of Education, Department of Technology and Vocational Education [21], Educational Foundations [4], Mathematics Science and Business Education [8] and Primary Education [40]. Most of the participants’ age groups range between 41 years – 50 years and 51 years – 60 years. In terms of employment type, 24 were full-time and 13 were part-time.

3.2 Instrument and procedure

The instruments that were used to obtain data in this study were document analysis, open-ended questionnaires and individual semi-structured interviews. The procedure utilize to gather data is briefly explained.

3.3 Document analysis

Document analysis is a systematic procedure used to review and evaluate documents in qualitative research which includes text and images [59]. In this study, documents that were examined were Internet access policy, strategic plan curriculum development, institutional strategy, consolidation plan, technology stations policy, policy on electronic resource centres, and Internet centres policy and audit report on ICT.

3.4 Open-ended questionnaire

An open-ended questionnaire comprises questions that allow the respondents to express their opinion without being channeled to the alternatives provided by the researcher. The open-ended questionnaire was divided into two parts [60]. The first part allowed the participants to indicate gender. The second part comprises of five questions to find out more about the Strategy as Plan. The researchers developed these questions. The open-ended questionnaire aimed to establish if the lecturers were aware of the study university ICT, Teaching and Learning (T&L) and e-Learning policies. Furthermore, to find out if the T&L policy incorporates technology-enhanced teaching and learning. Also establishing if the lecturers participated in the development of the policies. Typical examples of items from this section included “Were you involved in the development and the reviewing of these policies? Yes/No. Explain” and “Does the teaching and learning policy incorporate technology-enhanced teaching and learning? Yes/No. If yes, elaborate.”

3.5 Individual interview

In this study, individual semi-structured interviews were conducted with 18 lecturers. Interviews are referred to as the tools that yield an in-depth understanding of a subject at hand [60, 61]. The individual interviews consisted of one question. This question was: Were you involved in the development of the ICT policy? If yes explain. This question serves as the follow-up and verification of the responses provided on other instruments.

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4. Findings and discussion

To determine the technology integration in teaching and learning, in terms of the Internet Access Policy, it was found that the provision of the Internet is clearly stated. The policy stipulated the Internet and connectivity would be provided to staff and students. It was also found that the rule on access to the Internet was available on the policy. Payne and Payne [62] support this policy and argued that the Internet is a fundamental need for technology integration to take place.

It was also found that the policy stated that, the institution’s Internet connectivity and bandwidth shall be primarily intended for use by staff and students for teaching, learning and conducting research.” It may be argued that the study university planned for the ICTs to be used for the benefit of teaching, learning and research. In this case, Rana and Rana [32] argued that in the strategic plan of the HEIs, ICTs intended to be incorporated to enhance the quality of teaching and learning as well as to create a platform for multimodal.

The findings show the update to the Internet would be undertaken by the ICT Services department. The policy indicated that the ICT Services is responsible for updating of policy as and when changes are required and ensuring compliance with this policy.” It was also found that at a study university ICT Services department took accountability for the supervision of the execution of the policy by staff. In this regard, the policy stated that “the ICT Services is responsible for monitoring and reporting any breach of policy.”

Concerning the strategic plan, findings revealed that the objectives of the strategic plan emphasize the quality of teaching and learning as well as the student-centered approach. The objectives relevant to this study included: to enhance the quality of teaching and learning for holistic student success as well as prepare diverse students for rewarding careers and responsible citizenry by providing a student-centered learning experience that is underpinned by a scholarship of teaching and learning. The student-centered approach highlights innovation in diverse learning environments [63, 64].

About the consolidation plan, it was found that this plan emphasized the strategy to capacitate the staff with the incorporation of technology in teaching and learning using the multimodal approach. The statement relating to a strategy to empower staff to integrate educational technology in T&L to achieve optimal results; introduce multimodal teaching. The multimodal approach played a significant role during pandemic at a study university to support the socio-economic background of the students, the role of study packs or printed material supported the students without access to technology and the Internet [64] and have access to the information anytime and anywhere [12]. The findings revealed that the study university had a plan to establish computer laboratories on all campuses. The university’s infrastructure should be described in depth in the policy [64].

Concerning the curriculum development document, it was found that the document stipulated that all programs should incorporate technology. The document stipulated that all the new and existing programs must in addition to the particular focus of the learning area, also address areas of development in computer skills, technology innovation and technology transfer strategy and research skills. It may be argued that the curriculum development document supports 21st –century skills. In this regard, Suleiman et al. [64] argued that the 21st -century skills are necessary for the successful integration of technology.

In terms of the Study University Strategy 2014–2019 the findings reveal that technology integration was intended to support postgraduate studies by providing a conducive environment. The document stated the encouragement and promotion of postgraduate studies, research and innovation in current and emerging niche areas. The lack of relevant technologies in the teaching, learning and research environment is one of the primary hindrances for technology integration [65].

It was also found that postgraduates would be provided with technology to support the research projects. The document ensured an enabling and supportive environment through technology-based postgraduate studies, research and innovation. These findings are supported by the theory of the zone of proximal [66], where the appropriate resources are made available and accessible for the construction of knowledge.

The findings also revealed the improvement of quality of teaching and learning as well as student success. The document revealed the enhancement of the quality of teaching and learning for holistic student success. It was also found that the document promised to provide the utmost quality service to all the stakeholders. It was stated that to deliver the highest quality service to internal and external clients and stakeholders.

To establish lecturers’ perception on the promotion of ICT in education to reposition them for the integration of technology in the new normal, in terms of the availability of the ICT policy, the findings revealed that the majority of lecturers were not aware of the ICT policy in the School of Education. Miss Koto and Dr. Lebelo indicated that they were not aware of the ICT policy and they were not sure if there was an ICT policy. Mrs. Tsotetsi disputed the availability of ICT policy and said, no, there was no ICT policy. However, Mr. Nyoni said, yes, there was an ICT policy. The lecturers as stakeholders would be aware if they took part in the development of the ICT policy [36].

Regarding the lecturer’s awareness of e-Learning policy, the findings revealed that most lecturers were not aware of the availability of the eLearning policy. Mrs. Tsotetsi said there was no eLearning policy. Whilst Miss Pelle said she was not sure if there was an e-Learning policy. Mr. Ndlozi indicated “he had never seen the e-learning policy. Mrs. Ntanzi said she was not aware of the e-Learning policy. Mr. Nyoni indicated otherwise and stated, yes, there was an e-Learning. Lecturers must be involved in the development of eLearning policy, to increase awareness among the academic staff [36].

Pertaining to the awareness of the availability of the Teaching and Learning policy, the findings show that the lecturers attest to its availability. Mr. Nyoni, for instance, argued, “Yes, it was there we access it through the staff portal. Ms. Pelle also indicated that they always refer to it. It may be observed in this study that when lecturers are implementing the policy, their chances of awareness and utilization improve because of the collaboration of all the stakeholders [38].

Concerning the incorporation of technology-enhanced teaching and learning, the findings show that most lecturers were ignorant of this policy. For instance, Mr. Ndlozi posited, he did not know whether the teaching & learning policy incorporates technology. Mr. Pule indicated, he was not sure if the teaching & learning incorporates technology. However, Mr. Nyoni and Mrs. Nkosi posited, yes, the teaching & learning policy incorporates technology. To raise awareness of this policy, the emphasis should be made that technology is not meant to replace the teachers, but it is used as an add-on to harness teaching and learning [67].

In terms of the lecturers’ involvement in the development and reviewing of policies. The findings indicate that most lecturers were not involved except for two lecturers. Mr. Booi and the rest of the lectures said, no, we were not involved in the development and reviewing of policies. Whereas Mr. Nyoni indicated, the draft was circulated, and we made inputs. Ms. Pelle indicated, yes, she was involved in the development and reviewing of policies. Ngcapu et al. [68] argue, that a bottom-up approach, is a more effective way to the policy change, in the long run, acceptance is aided by a democratic component.

Regarding the awareness of the constant development and reviewing of policies. It was found that most lecturers were not aware of the constant reviewing and development of policies except for one lecturer. Mr. Ndlozi stated, no, the institution does not constantly revise the policies. Mrs. Ntanzi indicated, “She did not know if the institution constantly revises the policies. Whereas Mr. Nyoni stated, yes, the institution constantly revises the policies. Van Der Mars [69] argues that the lack of advocacy of the policies negatively impacts its implementation.

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5. Conclusion

In conclusion, the strategy as plan using ICT policy that could impact on repositioning the lecturers for the integration of technology for the new normal in education was explored. It may be observed in this study that indeed lecturers were not prepared before the COVID-19 pandemic to incorporate technology in their teaching practice. The new normal was the rapid online adoption of teaching and learning. Even though various policies were applied to the study university, it was clear during the pandemic that their implementation was not realized and was not advocated the lecturers.

During the first phase of the national lockdown, many universities in South Africa were not ready to immediately switch to remote teaching. Due to various challenges relating to lack of implementation of ICT and e-learning policies, the involvement of all stakeholders in the policy development, the unpreparedness of lecturers to teach online, digital divide, lack of network data. It was reported that emergency remote workshops serve to mitigate some of the challenges. It was indicated that the study university adopted multi-modal teaching, learning and assessment strategy to cater to the socio-economic background of the students.

It is worth noting that there was no evidence of the E-Learning policy or ICT policy. Hence, the majority of lecturers were not aware of these policies in the School of Education. However, lecturers ignored the integration of technology to enhance teaching and learning as there were training programs provided in the school of education. The lecturers were aware of the teaching and learning policy and they ensured to implement and constantly refer to it.

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6. Recommendations

It is recommended that the strategy as plan using ICT policy be fundamental and populated in higher education institutions. This will enable the involvement of all stakeholders from the planning phase of the ICT policy, throughout the policy process. If this is considered The ICT policy implementation could prove successful. The involvement of the lecturing staff as the primary stakeholders can influence them to embrace the use of technology in teaching practices and prepare them to assume responsibility. Lecturers should be involved in the reviewing and the revision of the ICT and eLearning policies as they are the custodians of teaching and learning and they have more insight on what works and not with regards to technology integration in education.

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Written By

Sibongile R. Ngcapu, Sibongile Simelane-Mnisi and Andile Mji

Submitted: December 8th, 2021Reviewed: December 18th, 2021Published: March 18th, 2022