Influential factors in the adoption and implementation of educational technology at the University of Liverpool

Prescott, Debbie and Parchoma, Gale (2013) Influential factors in the adoption and implementation of educational technology at the University of Liverpool. PhD thesis, Lancaster University.

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This research explored the factors perceived to be influential for members of staff at the University of Liverpool (UoL) to adopt and implement educational technologies. The research was based in practice and the UoL examined as a case study. The theoretical framework was based upon innovation research and informed by Rogers’ (2003) Diffusion of Innovations (DOI), and Ely’s (1999) eight conditions of implementation. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with sixteen members of staff. Thematic analysis of the interview transcripts complemented an analysis of relevant UoL documentation. I did not find evidence for five categories of adopters as defined in the DOI. Instead I proposed three categories: Enthusiasts, Pragmatists and Risk Aversives. These categories were not perceived to be static but varied as a result of contextual and individual factors. Participants’ perceptions of drivers and rationales were examined using Hannan’s (2005) concept of drivers for directed, guided and individual innovations. Directed institutional drivers were generally perceived to be lacking, though some faculty, school or departmental drivers were reported. Guided drivers were not reported. However, participants perceived certain general institutional activities to be drivers. I defined these as indirect drivers. Several individual drivers were reported including a perception of benefit, general interest and career benefit. Factors perceived to enable participants to utilise educational technologies effectively were split between the support available from central services and informal developments within faculties, schools and departments. The availability of accessible colleagues, or near peers, was reported as one of the most influential factors. My findings were contrasted with the innovation-decision process of Rogers’ (2003) DOI and Ely’s (1999) eight implementation conditions. A new model focused upon the importance of context was proposed. There are implications for how the UoL supports the adoption and implementation of educational technologies. Recommendations are made and areas for further research are identified.

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22 Apr 2014 09:23
Last Modified:
03 Mar 2024 01:47