Technology-mediated ELT Writing: Acceptance and Engagement in an Online Moodle Course

 

In the past fifteen years, Web 2.0 social networking technologies have ushered in a new era of information production, distribution and consumption with significant implications for language teaching and learning. An example of such technology is Moodle, which is a learning management system with several useful features that can transform the learning environment into a site for interactivity, connectivity and great amounts of extensive learning. With this in mind, the present case study aims to investigate tertiary education students’ acceptance of and engagement in a Moodle-hosted writing course. Using case study methodology, qualitative data were elicited from 24 semester-two students on the basis of focus group interviews constructed in line with Technology Acceptance Model 2. Another source of data is Moodle log reports, which offered a detailed account of students’ contributions and activities in the online writing course. The results showed that almost all the students perceived Moodle as a useful tool for sharing, collaboration and learning. The results also uncovered three different categories of students in terms of level of engagement; namely, highly engaged, moderately engaged and poorly engaged. The implications of these results for an effective implementation of Moodle are discussed.