Instructors and Students Competences, Perceptions, and Access to E-Learning Technologies Implication

Instructors and Students Competences, Perceptions, and Access to E-Learning Technologies Implication

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Unformatted text preview: International Jl. on E-Learning (2011) 10 (1), 63-85. Instructors and Students Competences, Perceptions, and Access to E-Learning Technologies: Implications for Implementation at the Open University of Tanzania KASSIMU A. NIHUKA Open University of Tanzania, United Republic of Tanzania k.a.nihuka@gw.utwente.nl JOKE VOOGT University of Twente, Netherlands j.m.voogt@utwente.nl In most sub-Sahara African countries, distance education is delivered us- ing printed materials which are distributed to students at the beginning of the academic year. A few face-to-face sessions are arranged in a year for instructors to meet students in regional centers for some real time lectures, discussions and administrative announcements. Despite great role that print materials play in the delivery of distance education, the approach is asso- ciated with a myriad of challenges (Dzakiria, 2004; Khoo & Idrus, 2004; Ludwing-Harman & Dunlap, 2003; Mcharazo & Olden, 2000; Mnyanyi & Mbwette, 2009). The challenges include: (i) inefFcient interaction among students and between instructors and students, (ii) lack of effective commu- nication and interaction between instructors and students (iii) delays in de- livery of study materials and assignments, (iv) lack of immediate feedback on students’ assignments and tests, (v) outdated reading resources/study ma- terials and (vi) feelings of isolation. In some cases the challenges are so pressing to the extent that some dis- tance learners opt to withdraw from studies and others delay to graduate (Carr, 2000; Galusha, 1997). E-learning technologies have great potential to enrich delivery of distance education programs and in redressing most of these challenges (Pena-Bandalaria, 2007; Peters, 1996; Tschang & Senta, 2001; Mnyanyi & Mbwette, 2009). In this study, e-learning technologies refer to technologies such as computers, internet, mobile phones, CDs and 64 Nihuka and Voogt DVDs. These technologies (and others) are used in distance education to systematically complement course delivery, facilitate access to resources, improve interaction and communication between instructors and students and for provision of feedback and support to students (Ludwig-Hardman & Dunlap, 2003; Pena-Bandalaria, 2007; Wright, 2000). Despite the potentials, the application of e-learning technologies in dis- tance education in most sub-Sahara African countries is low (Hoven, 2000; Siritongthaworn, Krairit, Dimmitt, & Paul, 2006) and instructors use tech- nologies such as computers mostly for simple applications such as typing examinations, processing of examination results and development of learn- ing materials. Moreover, according to Hoven instructors rarely use comput- ers and internet for delivery of courses, guidance and counselling of stu- dents, and communication and interaction with students. This study sought to understand instructors and students access to e-learning technologies, their perceptions, competences and the implications of all these for e-learn-...
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This note was uploaded on 03/13/2011 for the course PUK 202 taught by Professor Roth during the Spring '10 term at Universität Klagenfurt.

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Instructors and Students Competences, Perceptions, and Access to E-Learning Technologies Implication

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