Abuhlfaia, K and De Quincey, EJ (2019) Evaluating the Usability of an e-Learning Platform within Higher Education from a Student Perspective. In: 3rd International Conference on Education and E-Learning (ICEEL 2019)., 5-7 Nov 2019, Barcelona. (In Press)

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Abstract

With the advancement in information technologies, e-learning has become an integral part of the modern higher education system. As part of this progression, Universities have increasingly adopted Virtual Learning Environments (VLE) that enable learners and tutors to communicate efficiently for learning purposes. However, it has been shown in a number of studies that poor usability is an area that can have a significant impact on the success of this communication and students’ learning. The aim of this study therefore is to evaluate a VLE platform used in a higher education setting and provide some recommendations to enhance the interface design, system usability, and subsequent learning performance. Quantitative and qualitative research methods have been used, with a survey of 101 students recruited from all Schools at Keele University to investigate whether the system is usable or not (using the System Usability Scale (SUS)), from which 27 free-text responses were obtained for thematic analysis. The results indicate that the VLE performed below the average usability expectation (SUS score of 62.52). Thematic analysis of comments revealed very negative views of the VLE as well as areas for improvement. Evaluating the effect of usability on e-learning is complicated. However, there is a need to evaluate how usable VLE platforms are to ensure that this component of the platform design does not impede learning and teaching and further work is therefore needed by service providers to identify common usability issues as well as for educators to be more aware of usability issues and appropriate e-learning design principles.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Additional Information: This is the accepted author manuscript (AAM). The final published version (version of record) will be available online via Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) at https://dl.acm.org/dl.cfm - please refer to any applicable terms of use of the publisher.
Subjects: L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher Education
Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA76 Computer software
T Technology > T Technology (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Natural Sciences > School of Computing and Mathematics
Depositing User: Symplectic
Date Deposited: 03 Oct 2019 08:44
Last Modified: 03 Oct 2019 12:46
URI: http://eprints.keele.ac.uk/id/eprint/6916

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