New information and communication technologies provide tools that help users to progress from traditional teaching methods towards new and more participative approaches consistent with collaborative learning. This study aims to assess the application of online discussion forums as a support tool for lecturing in marketing.
The authors seek to pinpoint which factors determine student use of online forums on the basis of the Technology Acceptance Model and to provide empirical evidence concerning their impact on learning performance.
The findings indicate that it is not ease of use but perceived usefulness that determines a positive attitude towards forums, an attitude which in turn influences forum use and perceived learning. Adopting a new learning system may be seen as a gradual process in which students become involved as they develop a positive attitude towards the system.
Lecturers and web developers should pay particular care not only to the layout of the web site supporting the forums, but also to their usefulness and ability to stimulate ongoing and interesting debates among students.
The findings of the study are valuable in helping lecturers and educational administrators in the application and promotion of online forums for creating knowledge through internal and interactive dialogue in a more conversational model of learning.
Camarero, C., Rodríguez, J. and San José, R. (2012), "An exploratory study of online forums as a collaborative learning tool", Online Information Review, Vol. 36 No. 4, pp. 568-586. https://doi.org/10.1108/14684521211254077Download as .RIS
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