The Usage of E-Learning Instructional Technologies in Higher Education Institutions in the United Arab Emirates (UAE)
Higher education institutions in the UAE are increasingly incorporating e-learning programs into their curriculum. The large investment spent on these learning systems does not match the slow rate of adoption of e-learning among the faculty of these higher education institutions in the UAE. This autoethnographic study aimed to investigate and identify the factors that affect the adoption of e-learning systems among the faculty in higher education institutions in the UAE. The diffusion of innovation theory was used as a theoretical model and as a lens to guide this autoethnographic study. The purpose of this study was to identify the factors that positively affect the rate of adoption of Blackboard Learn among the faculty of the Computer Information Sciences and how the faculty measured that success. A qualitative autoethnographic research methodology was used and data was collected from personal reflections presented in my personal experiences and from my own recall of discussions with colleague. The findings revealed that the Computer Information Sciences faculty use the four variables of the diffusion of innovation theory to determine the rate of adoption of new e-learning initiatives and to measure their success. This study confirmed the importance of relative advantages, communication channels, time and social system in the diffusion of e-learning. It also revealed the need to increase the level of some attributes of these variables to increase the adoption rate of Blackboard Learn.