Title

The systematic implementation of an innovative postgraduate online learning model in the middle east

Document Type

Article

Source of Publication

International Journal of Learning, Teaching and Educational Research

Publication Date

8-1-2021

Abstract

This paper aims at examining the factors contributing to effective implementation of online learning in the Middle East higher education sector, through investigating the success and learning effectiveness of an innovative online learning model offered jointly by three prestigious universities in two different Arab countries. A mixed-method research approach was employed to triangulate data collected from key stakeholders engaged with the programme, namely senior managers and enrolled students, to derive findings that would inform managers, trainers and educators, from a systemic implementation, faculty-development and course-design perspective. Qualitative data gathered from face-to-face, semi-structured interviews with a number of senior managers took place delineated on the necessary enabling conditions to create, design and offer a quality online programme. Quantitative data collected from a student satisfaction survey examined factors contributing to perceived learning and student satisfaction in an online learning context. Following thematic analysis, five major factors were identified as critical for effective online learning implementation, namely: Rationale and Motivating Factors, Technology Infrastructure, E-Learning Pedagogy and Support Infrastructure, Course Design and Delivery and Lessons Learned. Results showed that Course Structure/Organisation, Learner Interaction, Student Engagement and Instructor Presence appeared to be the major factors contributing to high satisfaction and perceived learning. This paper argues that the shift towards blended and online modes of learning is inevitable, advocating the fundamental conception that online education is instrumental in expanding access to tertiary education. If properly designed and implemented, online education has the potential to alleviate academic rigor through improved faculty productivity at reduced tuition costs. Implications for further research and practical recommendations are also discussed.

Publisher

Society for Research and Knowledge Management

Volume

20

Issue

8

First Page

139

Last Page

159

Disciplines

Education

Keywords

Course delivery, Course design, Higher education, Online education, Perceived learning, Student satisfaction, Success factors

Scopus ID

85115391407

Indexed in Scopus

yes

Open Access

no

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