Instructors’ Acceptance of Learning Management Systems: A Theoretical Framework

Instructors' Acceptance of Learning Management Systems: A Theoretical Framework

Table of Contents




Abstract

In the knowledge age, the use of information technology (IT) tools including learning management systems (LMS) has become imperative. The adoption rate of LMS in academic and training institutions is very promising worldwide. Learning Management system includes several tools that provide academic and training institutions efficient and effective means to support distance education and supplement their traditional way of teaching. LMS also provides academic insinuations mechanisms and tools to store, manage, and share its academic resources and knowledge. Instructors’ acceptance is essential for the deployment of LMS. The success of LMS in any institution starts with instructors’ acceptance, which in turn initiates and promotes learners’ utilization of LMS. Consequently, the objective of this paper is to develop a theoretical framework for evaluating instructors’ acceptance of LMS based on the Technology Acceptance Model. This framework provides a comprehensive look at the critical factors that influence the instructors’ perceived ease of use and perceived usefulness of LMS and consequently the actual use. These critical factors are related to the instructor, organization, and technology. Instructor factors include self-efficacy, attitude toward LMS, experience, teaching style, and personal innovativeness. Organization factors include motivators, technology alignment, organization support, technical support, and training. Technology factors include system quality, information quality, and service quality.

Keywords:

Learning Management Systems, E-Learning, Instructors’ Acceptance

Introduction

The internet is now ubiquitous and with internet penetration rates ranging between as low as 5.6% in Africa and up to 74.4% in North America (Internet World Stats, 2009), any industry that does not embrace this technology will be seriously disadvantaged. As a matter of fact, not only the internet that is gaining popularity in education worldwide, all sorts of ICTs such as mobile technologies are also putting up robust momentum in the same field. For example, Ahonen and O’Reilly (2007) found that South Koreans use hundreds of self-training services through their mobile phones to learn different things such as a new language, web design, and mathematics which stress the high potential of mobile phones as a new medium in learning. Educators are forced to incorporate modern ICT tools as students become more IT savvy through what is called a Learning Management System (LMS).

Current reports presented that more than 90% of all responding universities and colleges in USA (Hawkins and Rudy, 2007) and about 95% of the same institutions in UK have adopted LMS for students and faculty use (Browne et al., 2006). The Middle East is no exception. E-learning and LMS are very promising both to corporations and educational institutions worldwide and in the Middle East (Lasrado, 2009). The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries have introduced several modernizing plans in the education sector (Robinson and Ally, 2009).

For example, in Qatar a Blackboard Learning System has been introduced as part of the Carnegie Mellon University (Qatar Branch) website in 2006. In addition, investment in e-learning in UAE forms about 45% of the market share (ElTartoussi, 2009) and in Saudi Arabia an LMS solution was developed locally called JUSUR, which incorporated many features like site management, and course and users management such as announcements, forums, quizzes and assignments(Al-Khalifa, 2009). Finally in Oman, a revamped educational portal was launched in December 2007 by the Ministry of Education, which enables parents to keep track of their children grades and absence records. It also has an LMS dedicated service where digital content and e-books along with audio and visual aids and files are shared with students and teachers electronically (Ministry of Education, 2009). Some academic institutions in Oman are also adopting LMS such as Sultan Qaboos University.

Despite the adoption rate worldwide, several issues must be faced in the adoption and diffusion of LMS/e-learning systems in any country regardless of how advanced or modest its ICT capability is. Albirini (2006) argued that e-learning is more than implanting computers and electronic devices in schools and classes. ElTartoussi (2009) indicated that successful education does not lie only on technology, but rather careful planning and adoption strategies must be closely investigated and that the adoption among users such as teachers and students is a vital concern. Obviously, the success of LMS in any academic institution starts with instructors’ acceptance, which in turn initiates and promotes students’ utilization of LMS in classes. In this respect, the adoption and dissemination of LMS initiatives among teachers and trainers are pretty much under-researched in the Middle East. This paper aims to bridge the gap and seek to frame a model to evaluate LMS from the instructors’ perspective.

Conclusion

In the knowledge age, the use of information technology (IT) tools including learning management systems (LMS) has become imperative. The adoption rate of LMS in academic and training institutions is very promising worldwide. Learning Management system includes several tools that provide academic and training institutions efficient and effective means to support distance education and supplement their traditional way of teaching. LMS also provides academic insinuations mechanisms and tools to store, manage, and share its academic resources and knowledge. Instructors’ acceptance is essential for the deployment of LMS. The success of LMS in any institution starts with instructors’ acceptance, which in turn initiates and promotes learners’ utilization of LMS.

Consequently, the objective of this paper was to examine the critical factors that might influence the instructors’ perceived ease of use and perceived usefulness of LMS and consequently their actual use. These factors were categorized into three main categories which reflect the major elements of LMS utilization from the instructor’s point of view: instructor, organization, and technology see Figure2. These factors are related to the instructor, organization, and technology. Instructor factors include self-efficacy, attitude toward LMS, experience, teaching style, and personal innovativeness. Organization factors include motivators, technology alignment, organization support, technical support, and training. Technology factors include system quality, information quality, and service quality.

This study proposed a detailed framework that can be used by researchers and practitioners to assess the instructors’ acceptance of LMS, and ensure successful deployment of LMS. Thus, future research should develop or adopt reliable and valid measurements for researchers and practitioners to evaluate these factors’ impact on instructors’ acceptance of learning management systems. This study only proposed a theoretical model, thus empirical investigations are also needed to verify the effects of these factors. Future qualitative studies (such as case analysis, interviews etc) might reveal some further insights on these factors. However, further quantitative rigorous studies are needed to validate the model and generalize it. In addition, detailed treatment of the relationships between the drawn factors is beyond the scope of this study which also provides an opportunity for further studies. Furthermore, cross-cultural evaluation of the Moodle may add useful insights.

About KSRA

The Kavian Scientific Research Association (KSRA) is a non-profit research organization to provide research / educational services in December 2013. The members of the community had formed a virtual group on the Viber social network. The core of the Kavian Scientific Association was formed with these members as founders. These individuals, led by Professor Siavosh Kaviani, decided to launch a scientific / research association with an emphasis on education.

KSRA research association, as a non-profit research firm, is committed to providing research services in the field of knowledge. The main beneficiaries of this association are public or private knowledge-based companies, students, researchers, researchers, professors, universities, and industrial and semi-industrial centers around the world.

Our main services Based on Education for all Spectrum people in the world. We want to make an integration between researches and educations. We believe education is the main right of Human beings. So our services should be concentrated on inclusive education.

The KSRA team partners with local under-served communities around the world to improve the access to and quality of knowledge based on education, amplify and augment learning programs where they exist, and create new opportunities for e-learning where traditional education systems are lacking or non-existent.

FULL Paper PDF file:

Instructors' Acceptance of Learning Management Systems: A Theoretical Framework

Bibliography

author

Kamla Ali Al-Busaidi and Hafedh Al-Shihi

Year

2010

Title

Instructors’ Acceptance of Learning Management Systems: A Theoretical Framework

Publish in

Communications of the IBIMA

DOI

10.5171/2010.862128

PDF reference and original file: Click here

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Nasim Gazerani was born in 1983 in Arak. She holds a Master's degree in Software Engineering from UM University of Malaysia.

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Professor Siavosh Kaviani was born in 1961 in Tehran. He had a professorship. He holds a Ph.D. in Software Engineering from the QL University of Software Development Methodology and an honorary Ph.D. from the University of Chelsea.

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Somayeh Nosrati was born in 1982 in Tehran. She holds a Master's degree in artificial intelligence from Khatam University of Tehran.

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