Blended Learning Adoption in Higher Education : Presenting the Lived Experiences of Students in a Public University from a Developing Country

 

ABSTRACT

The concept of Blended Learning (BL) is gaining widespread attention in Ghana as many public universitiesí switches into this delivery format. The paper investigates the BL experiences of students from a public university and among other things presents their views relative to the determinants of BL adoption and the barriers encountered out of the experience. The paper adopts a qualitative case study methodology and purposively interviews 15 students from a BL class of 57 students. The analysis was done using Thematic analysis techniques. The findings presented in this paper indicate that the students in the BL class hold a positive perception of BL. Insights into the perspective of the respondents show that students view BL as an approach that is convenient, flexible and among other things facilitate learning beyond the limitations imposed by the classrooms. Also, BL is viewed as an effective pedagogic tool that allows learning to take place in a socially constructive manner through the utility of Learning Management Systems. The contra-indications, however, are that inadequate infrastructure, internet connectivity in terms of cost and bandwidth as well as social distractions that affect students focus are viewed as challenges mitigating against studentsí successful adoption. The indications are that blended courses offer more convenience and flexibility than face to face delivery. These findings provide insights into the lived experiences of students that administrators and faculty members can tap into and when addressed will lead to successful BL implementations that ultimately lead to proving unique learning experiences and outcomes that students deserve and BL promises.