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Title: The factors impacting the acceptance of E-assessment by academics in Saudi universities
Author: Alruwais, Nuha
ISNI:       0000 0004 7656 5120
Awarding Body: University of Southampton
Current Institution: University of Southampton
Date of Award: 2018
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As assessment is one of the important pillars of the learning process, E-assessment has been introduced to develop the models of assessment and to address some of the limitations and problems of paper-tests. In Saudi higher education, E-assessment has been emerging alongside E-learning systems. At present, few Saudi academics use E-assessment, but the factors that affect these academics' acceptance of E-assessment have not yet been investigated. Therefore, this study aims to find and investigate the factors that influence academics' behavioural intention to accept E-assessment. The theories and models of user acceptance of new technology that help to understand the individual behavioural intention have been reviewed and a Model of Acceptance E-assessment (MAE) proposed based on the models of user acceptance and use of technology and previous studies in the same field. The MAE consists of: attitude (perceived ease to use, perceived usefulness, and compatibility), subjective norm (peer influence and superior influence) and perceived behavioural control (self-efficacy, resource facilitating conditions, and IT support). These three main factors were used as determinants of academic behavioural intention to accept E-assessment. Age and gender were added to the model as moderating factors. The study followed a sequential mixed methods approach, which gathered qualitative and quantitative data in an ordered sequence and used different data collection tools (interview, questionnaire, and focus group discussion). The developed model (MAE) was validated through interviewing 15 experts, who confirmed all the factors except gender. Awareness of E-assessment and the existence of a strong security system were suggested by the experts as factors that should added to MAE. Later, an on-line questionnaire was sent to academics in Saudi universities and 306 responses were received from different universities in Saudi Arabia. The model and the relationship between the factors were assessed using Structural Equation Modelling (SEM). The results showed that MAE achieved a good fit with the collected data, and the model's instruments were reliable and valid. Finally, the SEM results were explored by focus groups discussions, among ten Saudi academics. The study found that Attitude is the most affecting factor on academics' behavioural intention to accept E-assessment, and Compatibility has high impact on academics' attitude, followed by perceived ease of use and perceived usefulness, while awareness has no effect on academics' attitude. Subjective norm was found to have a slight effect on academics' behavioural intention to accept E-assessment, and superior influence had a strong impact on subjective norm. Surprisingly, perceived behavioural control was found to have no influence on academics' intention, and only self-efficacy had an effect on perceived behavioural control. Additionally, the results showed that age has an effect on attitude, and slight effect on subjective norm. The research contributes to the body of knowledge in the fields of technology acceptance research and use of technology to enhance education. The MAE provides a depth understanding of academics' beliefs regarding acceptance of E-assessment that can help developers and educational institutions in Saudi Arabia to be aware of the factors that encourage academics to accept E-assessment before implementing.
Supervisor: Wills, Gary Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available