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Title: Rethinking individual differences and perceived ease of use of E-learning systems
Author: Tai, Wei-Chun
ISNI:       0000 0004 2745 3974
Awarding Body: University of London
Current Institution: Royal Holloway, University of London
Date of Award: 2007
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This thesis comprises two studies that empirically examine the relationships between individual differences and perceived ease of use of e-leaming. Study 1 examines a complete model in order to investigate the relationships between IT-specific individual difference and perceived ease of use. The model contains the mediating role of dynamic IT-specific individual differences (e-learning system self-efficacy and computer anxiety) with regard to the effects of stable IT-specific individual differences (personal innovativeness with IT and computer playfulness) and computer experience on perceived ease of use. Study 2 investigates gender difference by using an improved research method which controls the study field background (science and non-science), computer experience, and age of the sample. In contrast to previous studies that prevalently focus on dynamic differences, this study examines gender difference in both stable and dynamic individual difference variables. In order to test the research hypotheses of this thesis, three new instruments were developed. The data was gathered from a stratified random sample (N = 403) in a Taiwanese university setting. Using Structural Equation Modeling for Study 1, the findings show that e-learning self-efficacy mediated or partially mediated the effects of personal innovativeness, computer playfulness, and computer experience on perceived ease of use. In addition, computer anxiety mediated the effects of personal innovativeness and computer playfulness on perceived ease of use. However, contrary to our expectation, no relationship between computer anxiety and computer experience was supported. Furthermore, using ANOVA for Study 2, the findings show that in both science and non-science groups, men were more willing to accept new computer technology and showed less fear of computer technology than women. However, in both science and non-science groups, no significant gender differences were found in computer playfulness and perceived ease of use. Significant gender differences in e-learning self-efficacy were only found in the science group. Key words: e-learning system self-efficacy; computer anxiety; computer experience; personal innovativeness with IT; computer playfulness; perceived ease of use; gender difference
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available