The proliferation of personal computers throughout business environments will continue to place demands on workers at all levels to develop proficient computer skills. A variety of training mechanisms exist that allow workers to introduce, develop, and hone any needed computer skills. Identical training mechanisms, however, are nonetheless likely to result in individuals with different computer abilities (Hicks, Hicks, and Senn, 1991). Existing researchhas examined differences in demographic factors (Dambrot, Silling, and Zook; 1988) as well as differences in attitudes (Torkzadeh and Koufteros, 1993). Much of the research that has examined this area has focused on the changes in attitudes (e.g. computeranxiety) that occur due to a training intervention. Research to date, however, has not extended this effect of training on attitudes as well as to performance. The theory of reasoned action (TRA) (Fishbein and Ajzen, 1975) suggests that attitudes will influence behavior, including performance. The Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) ( Davis, Bagozzi, and Warshaw, 1989) also suggests that attitudes towards use directly influence intentions to use the computer and ultimately actual computer use. Davis et al. demonstrate that an individual's initial attitudes regarding a computer's ease of use and a computer's usefulness influence attitudes toward use. In addition to the attitudes of computer ease of use and computer usefulness, a number of other attitudes related to computer use have been identified in the research literature. Items measuring attitudes examined in this study have been previously defined and used in other studies. The attitudes and measures used in this study were perceived usefulness , perceived ease of use (Davis et al. 1989), computer anxiety (Loyd and Gressard, 1984), anticipation of computer use (Heinssen, Glass, and Knight, 1987), fear of computer use (Heinssen et al.,1987), and attitude toward previous academic achievement. Computer anxiety has been an attitude of primary focus that corresponds closely to the concept of math anxiety (Torkzadeh and Angulo, 1992). Although computer anxiety has definitions ranging from psychological, physical or sociological discomfort to fear. The definition of anxiety in this research referred to the psychological discomfort that might come from using a computer. This discomfort might come from using something unknown, concern over making mistakes or destroying pertinent information. In addition to measuring computer anxiety, we also wanted to measure computer fear. Although extreme anxiety might become fear, there is a distinction between the two constructs. Fear was defined as a trepidation that computers would change something about the individual, such as making the person too dependent on computers. Anticipation was defined as comfort with the idea of learning and using computer skills (Harrison and Ranier, 1992). Academic achievement provided a perceived measure of a subject's past performance in both math and other academic endeavors. The perceived ease of use and usefulness constructs have been well established in the work by Davis et al. (Davis, 1989; Davis, Bagozzi, and Warshaw, 1992). Perceived usefulness was defined as "the degree to which a person believes that using a particular system would enhance his or her job performance". Perceived ease of use was defined as "the degree to which a person believes that using a particular system would be free of effort" (Davis, 1989, pg. 320).
Speier, Cheri; Morris, Michael G.; and Briggs, Carl M., "Attitudes Toward Computers: The Impact on Performance" (1995). AMCIS 1995 Proceedings. 43.