Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS: https://ethos.bl.uk/OrderDetails.do?uin=uk.bl.ethos.793923
Title: An investigation of the introduction of a virtual learning environment in five female private and international secondary schools in Saudi Arabia : a mixed method study
Author: Alhujayri, Israa Ahmad Y.
ISNI:       0000 0004 8497 8339
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2018
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Abstract:
This study investigates the use of Classera, a virtual learning environment, in five Saudi secondary schools. It explores to what extent teachers used Classera and what opportunities and constraints they found when using it. The study was carried out in private girls schools, three of which were international schools, in three different regions of Saudi Arabia. The overarching aim of this study was to investigate whether Classera has a future in secondary schools in Saudi Arabia. A mixed methods approach was used in this study involving questionnaires, interviews and observation of lesson. The data collection had four different phases. The first comprised an interview with the Classera director. The second phase covered the distribution of the teacher questionnaire survey in the five schools (n=91). The third phase involved interviewing teachers in these schools (n=14) and their headteachers (n=5). The fourth phase covered observation of classes in four schools (n=9). The study found that Classera was being used but its use was differentiated and some functions were more used than others. It was also found that there were some encouragers and difficulties for using Classera and these could be identified at the teacher level, at the school level, beyond the school level and at the level of CPD. In regard to the encouragers, it was found that key issues at the teacher level covered willingness to learn, teachers' ICT skills and teachers' beliefs. At the school level, it was found that availability of ICT tools, the way that ICT use was led and enthusiasm of the school members were all factors in encouraging the use of Classera. Beyond the school level, it was found that supervisors encouraged teachers to use ICT and evaluated teachers' use of ICT. It was also found that parents were positive about Classera and allowed their children to use it. In regard to CPD, teachers received workshops in how to use Classera and reported that they were sufficient, included a hands-on element, addressed their needs and focused on developing teaching and their IT skills. In regard to the difficulties, it was found that a few teachers in each school did not consider themselves very confident with ICT and were less sure about the value of Classera. It was also found teachers were unwilling to use Classera in a way that led to changes in pedagogic approach. At the school level, teachers found some students reluctant to use Classera and some found problems with internet access affected their use. A few teachers reported that leadership was unsupportive of the challenges involved and left them feeling pressurized. Beyond the school level, the teachers felt under pressure to complete the assigned curriculum following an unrealistic timetable, they were not always satisfied with the role of the supervisors and found that the Ministry of Education was not engaged in the use of Classera. Although, the majority of the teachers were happy about the CPD they received, some teachers found the training for Classera was not sufficient. This study contributes to an under-researched area of ICT take-up through the investigation of the use of VLEs in the Arab world, in this case Saudi Arabia. The research findings contribute to our understanding of ICT take-up by showing the importance of enthusiastic leadership, proactive teachers and effective CPD. It further contributes by offering a model to explain ICT take-up and the consequences which flow from the conditions under which ICT is introduced.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ed.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.793923  DOI: Not available
Keywords: LB Theory and practice of education ; LC Special aspects of education
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