Readiness to Communicate in a Digital World

Kathy Lynch
InSITE 2006  •  Volume 6  •  2006
Communicating with friends, family, peers and colleagues has always underpinned work and social behaviour. However, the devices that act as conduits to this communication have changed over time, and differ across the globe. People in industralised corners of the world are more and more frequently using advances in information and communication technologies (ICTs) to assist both the senders and receivers to have more timely, synchronous and value-added communiques. Well, that is what the promotional material is telling us. The primary role of undergraduate education is to best prepare graduates for the workforce that they are being primed. To this end, educators need to be knowledgeable in what students already know, do, and their perceptions of what is required and is of value in assisting them to communicate with colleagues or peers. This paper presents a study that aimed to identify directions for undergraduate IT curriculum in developing the information and communication technology (ICT) readiness of beginning IT (in particular Information Systems) professionals to work in a collaborative team. Three hundred undergraduate Information Systems (IS) students were invited to participate in the study, one-hundred and sixty responded. The results indicate that there is a definitive relationship between frequency of use and the perceived value of an information and communication technology, and that the use of an ICT as a communication device in a social situation does not guarantee its use or even its perceived value as a communication device in a work situation: Visa versa is also true. Findings from the research could be used to influence IS curriculum developers in preparing undergraduate students’ readiness for communicating (and collaborating) in the digital workforce of today.
information and communication technologies, information systems, skill development, curriculum
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