Exploring the diffusion of e-learning: general and enabling guidelines for implementation of computer-aided teaching in developing countries.
Full recordShow full item record
AbstractThe purpose of the study was to create guidelines regarding effective diffusion of elearning to and within developing countries. Another aim of the study was to identify challenges and problems related to the diffusion of e-learning, as well as identifying what characterizes a successful ICT diffusion project. To achieve the purpose of the study a case study was performed in Thailand, where two different schools, i.e. two cases that had been targeted by ICT diffusion projects were studied. In combination to studying the schools, the donor side of the project were also included in the study. The study was conducted with a qualitative research approach, and was divided into one inductive and exploratory phase, which generated a theory, and one deductive phase where the theory was both theoretically and empirically validated. To gather the empirical material, eight semi-structured interviews were conducted of which six included staffs from the two schools, and two included donors that were involved in one of the studied ICT diffusion projects. Yet another semi-structured interview was performed with a person involved in an ICT diffusion project, which helped to perform the empirical validation of the generated theory. With the help of the collected empirical material as well as through existing theories it was possible to identify numerous of challenges regarding diffusion of e-learning to and within developing countries. The challenges were primarily connected to language, culture, governmental, lack of computer knowledge and infrastructural. To tackle the challenges a number of characteristics regarding effective ICT diffusion projects in developing countries were identified. These characteristics included the importance of doing a proper investigation about the recipients, follow ups, provided right amount of computers, provided software that had been adapted and provided education about how computers should be used. Based on the challenges and characteristics guidelines for effective diffusion of e-learning to and within developing countries were designed. The knowledge about challenges and characteristics led to the identification of two important findings. The first was that the diffusion of e-learning to developing countries is highly dependant on the diffusion of ICT to the schools, as an evident problem that existed was that the schools lacked the proper technical infrastructure to be able to support computer-aided teaching. The other finding was that in order for the diffusion process to be effective, it is vital to provide information and education about the technology in advance of the implementation. These two findings lead to that the 19 created guidelines were divided into two categories; basic guidelines for diffusion of ICT and enabling guidelines for diffusion of e-learning.