Adelle M. Williams, Augustine O. Agho, Margo B. Holm; Perceptions of Computer Literacy Among Occupational Therapy Students. Am J Occup Ther 1996;50(3):217-222. doi: 10.5014/ajot.50.3.217.
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Objective. Educational programs for the occupational therapist and the occupational therapy assistant are mandated to include content on technologies in their curricula. Given the increasing use of technology skills among occupational therapists, especially computer technology skills, it seemed judicious to ascertain the current and desired levels of skill of occupational therapy students as well as their opinions about computer technology.
Method. Program directors from five baccalaureate-level curricula distributed the Computer Opinion Survey and the Computer Knowledge Survey to 109 junior and senior occupational therapy students. The students were instructed to complete and return questionnaires to their program directors who, in turn, forwarded the questionnaires to the principal investigators.
Results. Respondents were generally positive about computer technology, and the level of knowledge they desired about computer technology applications in occupational therapy was much greater than their current level of knowledge. Although respondents’ positive attitudes were significantly correlated with their current levels of computer knowledge, no significant relationship was established among positive attitudes, current levels of computer knowledge, and number of computer courses completed before entering an occupational therapy curriculum.
Conclusions. Even though the respondents were computer literate (i.e., they had a general working knowledge of the uses, limitations, and impact of computers), no relationship was established between their previous computer course work and their current knowledge of the use of computer technology in occupational therapy. The linkage between generic computer literacy and knowledge of its relationship to the use of computer technology in occupational therapy was not evident to this sample of junior and senior students.
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