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Title: Factors influencing the effective use of an online collaborative learning environment as experienced by Saudi male students in King Abdulaziz University
Author: Alzaidy, Bander Zaidi
ISNI:       0000 0004 5993 8861
Awarding Body: Durham University
Current Institution: Durham University
Date of Award: 2016
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This research explores and identifies factors that may influence the effective use of the Online Collaborative Learning (OCL) environment in the Saudi higher education context. Within this setting, the current OCL is in its early stages of adoption. Therefore, this study is a platform to assess how this environment can be used more effectively to improve teaching and learning, as well as identifying any underlying factors that may affect the students‘ overall learning experience when using the OCL environment. In doing so, the study provides an important contribution for educational institutes and policy makers, by drawing attention to factors that could be addressed to improve pedagogy and the effectiveness of the learning environment. In order to gain a clear insight into both the potential and the challenges that ensue when using OCL setting in Saudi higher education, the study investigates the experience of students: the participants (n=729) are Saudi male undergraduate distance students in their preparatory year, attending King Abdulaziz University (KAU). The participants have been exposed to the OCL environment and therefore are in a position to provide incisive information pertaining to its overall use, including underlying factors and challenges. The research methodology for this study adopts a sequential mixed-methods approach. The data reveals certain factors that are significantly influencing how effectively the OCL setting can be used within this context. Among those factors identified, the technology related aspects (i.e. Internet speed and technical support), the student characteristics (i.e. their awareness and willingness) and the tutors‘ roles (i.e. their attitudes towards a collaborative learning environment as well as their ICT skills) were viewed as significant. It is envisaged that the findings from this study may be used to assist in the development and implementation of OCL environments, not only in this context, but also within diverse contexts and environments found in developing countries.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available