Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) of an Extended Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) to Report Web Technology Adoption Behavior in Higher Education Institutions
Type of Degreedissertation
Education Foundation, Leadership, and Technology
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Web technologies used in higher education institutions are aimed to offer practical value to faculty members and students in facilitating their teaching learning and other academic processes. However, a number of recent studies revealed that instructors and students are reluctant to engage in activities that require information technology (Reffell & Whitworth, 2002). This dissertation aimed to contribute in the current understandings of what factors influence faculty members’ and students’ attitudes toward web technology adoption in higher education settings. Using a sequential mixed method research design, three research studies were conducted in three phases of this dissertation. Three different web technologies were tested, one in each study. Davis’s (1989) Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) was used as the baseline model for all three studies. The dissertation reported on findings from these three studies that examined factors leading to users’ adoption of three different web technologies in higher education settings. The purpose of study 1 was to explore faculty members’ attitudes toward Blackboard Learning Management Systems (LMS). The study used Davis’s (1989) Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) as the baseline model to identify how faculty attitudes toward LMSs impact their LMS adoption behavior. Data were collected from 36 faculty members through a web-based survey. Directive content analysis was utilized to analyze and interpret the data. The findings of Study 1 shed light on the factors that affect faculty members’ acceptance of LMS. The strengths and weaknesses of Blackboard from the faculty members’ perspective were revealed as well. Also, faculty members’ recommendations on ensuring increased use of LMSs were reported. Study 2 examined faculty attitudes toward Canvas Learning Management System (LMS) in higher education settings. The study proposed an extension of Davis’s (1989)’s Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) by incorporating system quality, perceived self-efficacy and facilitations conditions as three external factors and examined its validity in explaining faculty attitudes toward LMS usage. A total of 560 usable responses were collected through a web-survey. Quantitative data were analyzed using Confirmatory Factor Analysis (CFA) and Structural Equation Modeling (SEM). The study results confirmed the validity of the extended TAM in determining faculty attitudes toward LMS usage. All three exogenous variables were found to be significant predictors of faculty usage of LMS. Study 3 took a holistic view and examined the validity of the extended TAM proposed in Study 2 in determining students’ acceptance of university web portals. Quantitative data collected from 429 respondents were analyzed using CFA and SEM. The results of the study revealed that all three external constructs were significant in explaining students’ acceptance of university web portals. Overall, the results indicated that the extended TAM had sufficient explanatory power to explain students’ attitude towards university web portals. In summary, the results of Study 1 provided evidence of the applicability of TAM in organizing and analyzing open-ended data. The results of Study 2 and Study 3 provided overall general support for the extended TAM in determining web technology adoption behavior in higher education settings. Common issues that act as barriers in web technology adoption were revealed. Based on the overall findings, important recommendations were provided to reduce these barriers and ensure increased use of web technologies in higher education settings. Specific findings, theoretical and practical implications and future research directions were discussed as well.