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A Collaborative E-learning Approach: Exploring a Peer Assignment Review Process at the University Level in Uganda
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Computer and Systems Sciences.
2012 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

There is an increasing need, driven by the job market, for quality education and that requires expertise which is continuously being developed. The integration of e-learning into the education system is viewed as one way to meet this growing need for high-quality education. In developing country contexts, however, where there is a genuine need to join the knowledge society there is limited knowledge about the use of e-learning to facilitate learning. In fact, the actualization of e-learning for this purpose is very limited and in some cases lacking altogether.

This thesis is about how collaborative e-learning can be integrated in the teaching and learning process to support learning at the university level in a developing country context. The main research question to be answered is how collaborative e-learning support can student learning at the university level in Uganda. In an effort to answer this research question three exploratory case studies were carried out at Makerere University, Uganda. A mixed-methods approach was adopted to collect data and analyse the findings. The thesis explores an approach to supporting students' learning, a peer assignment review process model for collaborative e-learning employing development research. The model uses students to support each other’s learning through four process stages: familiarization, assignment, review and feedback.

Initial findings indicate that the current learning and teaching environment challenges the adoption and effective use of collaborative e-learning to support student learning. This is mainly attributed to the pedagogical culture and curriculum which is predominantly traditional, lecturers’ ability to use ICT pedagogy effectively, and the readiness of the environment to support collaborative e-learning. Notwithstanding the challenges, it was established that the peer assignment review process model for collaborative e-learning facilitated the students' learning. Students were able to participate actively in the course, gain experience in critical reading and evaluating peers' work, and reflect on their own work.

This thesis provides a practical approach for designing and implementing collaborative e-learning approaches to support student learning at the university level in a developing country context. It further highlights factors that are pertinent to supporting and sustaining student learning in a collaborative e-learning environment under the following categories: Institutional Readiness (44 factors), Technology/Infrastructure Readiness (40 factors) and Pedagogical Change (45 factors).

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Computer and Systems Sciences, Stockholm University , 2012. , 107 p.
Series
Report Series / Department of Computer & Systems Sciences, ISSN 1101-8526 ; 13-001
National Category
Information Systems Computer and Information Science
Research subject
Computer and Systems Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-83302ISBN: 978-91-7447-614-9 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-83302DiVA: diva2:575147
Public defence
2013-01-17, sal C, Forum 100, Isafjordsgatan 39, Kista, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

At the time of the doctoral defense, the following paper was unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 7: Accepted.

Available from: 2012-12-27 Created: 2012-12-07 Last updated: 2013-01-23Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Exploring the e-Learning State of Art
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Exploring the e-Learning State of Art
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2008 (English)In: Electronic Journal of e-Learning, ISSN 1479-4403, E-ISSN 1479-4403, Vol. 6, no 2, 77-88 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

e‑Learning implementation is an area in progress that continues to evolve with time and further research. Researchers in the field argue that e‑Learning is still in its infancy, resulting into numerous implementation strategies across a wide e‑Learning spectrum. This paper explores the e‑Learning state of art. It provides a general overview of the learning process, evaluates some current implementation trends pointing out a range of frameworks and strategies used in the past decade. It further looks at the changes created by the adoption of e‑Learning within the higher education process. This is followed by an identification of emerging issues from which two problems are identified; 1) the limited uptake of technology as an instruction delivery method; and 2) the ineffective use of technology to support learning. In respect to this, future research should therefore seek to further investigate these aspects and to explore suitable approaches for effective implementation of e‑Learning to support learning. Not the least in higher education contexts. 

Keyword
e-Learning learning, e-Learning implementation higher education, learning process, learning theories, learning methods
National Category
Information Science
Research subject
Computer and Systems Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-18592 (URN)
Available from: 2009-02-27 Created: 2009-01-26 Last updated: 2017-12-13Bibliographically approved
2. Explorative Study of E-learning in Developing Countries: A Case of the Uganda Education System
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Explorative Study of E-learning in Developing Countries: A Case of the Uganda Education System
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2008 (English)In: IADIS International Conference e-Learning 2008 / [ed] Miguel Baptista Nunes and Maggie McPherson, 2008, 195-199 p.Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The development and use of e-learning in education has gained global recognition as a learning method that facilitates the teaching and learning processes. As a result it comes as no surprise that, education institutions have been forced to embrace new education strategies to a large extent due to the increasing student needs seeking to constantly acquire and apply new knowledge and skills. This paper provides an overview of e-learning development in the Uganda Education System. It briefly highlights ICT developments in Uganda at the different education levels and how they impact elearning. The paper further discusses emerging issues from which we develop theoretical assumptions aimed at realizing suitable approaches for effective adoption and utilization of e-learning to support teaching and learning process at the higher education level for which we seek to test.    

Keyword
E-learning, Uganda Education System, teaching and learning processes, Lower education Level, Higher education level
National Category
Information Systems Computer and Information Science
Research subject
Computer and Systems Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-18512 (URN)978-972-8924-58-4 (ISBN)
Conference
IADIS International Conference e-Learning 2008, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Available from: 2009-02-27 Created: 2009-01-26 Last updated: 2012-12-11Bibliographically approved
3. Criticism of e-learning Adoption and Use in Developing Country Contexts
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Criticism of e-learning Adoption and Use in Developing Country Contexts
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2009 (English)In: IADIS International Conference e-Learning 2009 / [ed] Miguel Baptista Nunes and Maggie McPherson, 2009, 273-277 p.Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

While e-learning has been widely accepted and used there has been only very limited benefit to the learning process and its effectiveness. This is especially critical for developing countries where the integration of “e” into the learning process is mostly in the development stages, and the demand for the required investment in technology vis-à-vis institutional resources is disproportionately high. This paper provides a picture of the current e-learning implementation trends in developing countries, highlighting the challenges as well as suggesting strategies for effective adoption and use. The analysis of issues indicates 1) the need to move from fragmented approaches that mainly focus on ICT infrastructure acquisition to approaches that support adoption and utilization of e-learning to support student learning; 2) that policy formulation; transforming the pedagogical culture; utilization of the available ICTs, student involvement, training and localization of content among other factors are key aspects to be addressed if e-learning implementations within developing country contexts is to bring real benefit.    

Keyword
E-learning, Adoption and use, Developing Country Context, ICT, Learning
National Category
Information Systems Computer and Information Science
Research subject
Computer and Systems Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-33397 (URN)978-972-8924-83-6 (ISBN)
Conference
IADIS International Conference e-Learning 2009, Algarve, Portugal
Available from: 2009-12-23 Created: 2009-12-23 Last updated: 2012-12-11Bibliographically approved
4. An Empirical Investigation of Students' Perceptions of e-learning in Uganda
Open this publication in new window or tab >>An Empirical Investigation of Students' Perceptions of e-learning in Uganda
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2009 (English)In: IST-Africa 2009 Conference Proceedings / [ed] Paul Cunningham and Miriam Cunningham, 2009Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
National Category
Information Systems Computer and Information Science
Research subject
Computer and Systems Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-33368 (URN)978-1-905824-11-3 (ISBN)
Conference
IST-Africa Conference, Kampala, Uganda, 6-8 May, 2009
Available from: 2009-12-23 Created: 2009-12-23 Last updated: 2012-12-11Bibliographically approved
5. Collaborative E-learning in a Developing Country: A University Case Study in Uganda
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Collaborative E-learning in a Developing Country: A University Case Study in Uganda
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2011 (English)In: Proceedings of the 10th European Conference on e-Learning / [ed] Sue Greeener and Asher Rospigliosi, 2011, 101-102 p.Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Universities in developing countries are increasingly adopting and using eLearning in their teaching and learning processes as one of the means for leapfrogging into the knowledge driven world. However, despite the recognition eLearning has received, it has not fulfilled the expectations in terms of impact on the delivery and quality of learning, pointing to the need for improved or new approaches. This paper explores the collaborative eLearning approach as one of the strategies for effective adoption and use of eLearning. Using the first stage of development research this paper presents an empirical study that aimed to explore and understand the current practices of collaborative eLearning in a developing country context. The study was carried out with university students in Uganda and placed focus on the value derived from and challenges encountered in adopting and using collaborative eLearning. From a general perspective, it was evident that learning and teaching methods are predominantly traditional, with limited/no integration of eLearning and there were inconsistencies in understanding the integration of technology into teaching and learning processes. The findings obtained indicated that students through collaborative eLearning were able to share and gain knowledge, understand course concepts and access various views and learning material. Factors such as inadequate bandwidth, inadequate Internet/computer access, conflict resolution, adequate ICT skills and face to face interaction challenged the adoption and use of collaborative eLearning in this context.

Keyword
collaborative eLearning, developing countries, eLearning, ICT, higher education, Uganda
National Category
Information Systems Computer and Information Science
Research subject
Computer and Systems Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-67111 (URN)978-1-908272-23-2 (ISBN)
Conference
10th European Conference on e-Learning ECEL, Brighton, UK, 10-11 November 2011
Available from: 2011-12-26 Created: 2011-12-26 Last updated: 2012-12-11Bibliographically approved
6. Modelling a Peer Assignment Review Process for Collaborative E-learning
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Modelling a Peer Assignment Review Process for Collaborative E-learning
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2012 (English)In: Journal of Interactive Online Learning, ISSN 1541-4914, E-ISSN 1541-4914, Vol. 11, no 2, 67-79 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [sv]

The educational culture in most developing countries is lecturer-centred with lecturers asproviders of information and students as receivers of information. This approach has impacted onstudent’s ability to seek and create knowledge to support their learning process. A collaborativelearning approach that promotes students process of inquiry, critical thinking and skilldevelopment thus lacks in the context, yet these aspects are crucial in the knowledge society. Ifuniversities in developing countries are to educate students to compete and become activeparticipants in society, the teaching and learning processes underpinned by relevant theories andmodels should be adopted. This paper proposes an approach to support students´ learning in adeveloping country context - Uganda. Specifically, the authors design and model a peerassignment review process for collaborative e-learning, employing the second stage ofdevelopment research. The model is based on using student to pedagogically support eachother’s learning through four process stages: familiarization, assignment, review and feedback.Empirical investigations of the process stages indicated that the peer assignment review processfacilitated the students learning. Students indicated that they were able to actively participate inthe course, gain experience in critical reading and evaluating peers work, while reflecting ontheir own work. The empirical investigation further indicated that students were able to adoptand use online technologies in their learning activities. As such the peer assignment reviewprocess impacted the students learning both as receivers and providers of reviews creating a levelof acceptance to adopt and use the proposed collaborative e-learning approach.

National Category
Information Systems Learning
Research subject
Computer and Systems Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-83375 (URN)
Available from: 2012-12-10 Created: 2012-12-10 Last updated: 2017-12-07Bibliographically approved
7. Peer Assignment Review Process for Collaborative E-learning: Is the Student Learning Process Changing?
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Peer Assignment Review Process for Collaborative E-learning: Is the Student Learning Process Changing?
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2012 (English)In: International Journal of Advanced Computer Science and Applications, ISSN 2158-107X, Vol. 3, no 12, 149-155 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In recent years collaborative e-learning has been emphasized as a learning method that has facilitated knowledge construction and supported student learning. However some universities especially in developing country contexts are struggling to attain minimal educational benefits from its adoption and use. This paper investigates the application of a peer assignment review process for collaborative e-learning to third year undergraduate students. The study was aimed at evaluating the effect of the peer assignment review process on the student learning process. Data was collected using a survey questionnaire and analysed using SPSS Version 16.0. While the student reported positive impact of the peer assignment review process in terms of facilitating students to put more effort and improve their work; quick feedback on their assignments; effective sharing and development of knowledge and information and the need of computer competence to manipulate the peer assignment review system, analysis of the quantitative data indicated that the process had limited effect on the learning process. This is attributed to lack of review skills, absence of lecturer scaffolding, low ICT literacy levels and change management.

National Category
Information Systems Learning
Research subject
Computer and Systems Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-83378 (URN)
Available from: 2012-12-10 Created: 2012-12-10 Last updated: 2013-01-07Bibliographically approved

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Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
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