CCE Theses and Dissertations

A National Approach to Touch Keyboarding Instruction on Computers in Primary Schools in Belize

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Graduate School of Computer and Information Sciences


Steven R. Terrell

Committee Member

W. Shane Bruce

Committee Member

Donnie J. McGahee


As a result of this study, it was possible to make suggestions for informed pedagogical decisions, regarding the manner in which learning should be structured for a national approach to touch keyboarding instruction on computers at the primary school level in Belize. The population consists of 1,757 Standard 2 students in the 68 primary schools in the Belize District. The design was a posttest-only control group design with random assignment of subjects to four sub-groups, and random assignment to two types of treatment at counter-balanced times and days. A cluster sample of 29 students in an intact class, divided into four sub-groups, was drawn from a typical, co-educational, inner-city primary school in Belize City. Two sub-groups -- the experimental group –used the Herzog System of Keyboarding, i.e., Herzog Fast-Track text and Hub-Key Sensors, and presentation of the keys in alphabetic sequence. The other two sub-groups the control group -- received keyboarding instruction by the traditional method, i.e., keyboarding text, and home keys followed by random letters. Subjects were taught the alphabet keys, period, comma, shift lock, and shift keys in about 11'/2 hours spread over an 8-week period, divided into 4-week sessions for each treatment. Towards the end of the period of instruction, subjects were involved in using their keyboarding capability to compose language arts material at the keyboard. At the end of the period of instruction, two 3-minute straight copy timings were administered as the posttest. Scores for each subject were averaged and analyzed by a parametric statistical test, viz., analysis of variance (ANOVA). It was hypothesized that subjects who were taught touch keyboarding by the Herzog System would achieve higher speeds, that they would be more accurate, and that they would be more adept at composing at the keyboard, than students taught by the traditional method. The analysis of variance procedure did not support the first two hypotheses, but it supported the third hypothesis.

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