Examination of University Students’ Level of Satisfaction and Readiness for E-Courses and the Relationship between Them
Authors: Arzu Deveci Topal
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The success of a distance education program can be evaluated according to student satisfaction, aside from comprehensive examinations, projects and presentations. The purpose of this research study is to determine both the relationship between e-course satisfaction and online learning readiness by ascertaining student levels, and the effect of the materials used in e-learning on student satisfaction. A general screening model was used in this study to determine the characteristics of a group and to clarify the existing situation in their own conditions. The study was conducted during the 2014-2015 academic year at Kocaeli University. The E-Course Satisfaction Scale (ECSS), consisting of 35 five-point Likert-type items, and the Online Learning Readiness Scale (OLRS) consisting of 18 five-point Likert-type items, were applied to 352 university students. The data were analyzed by methods of descriptive statistics, independent t-test and regression analysis in the SPSS program.
According to the survey the satisfaction level of the students is moderate; when the sub-dimensions were examined, satisfaction was high in the instructor-student interaction and environment design sub-dimensions while it was moderate in the course content and teaching process, materials used and communication tools, and attitude towards e-learning sub-dimensions. When interaction and communication tools such as a virtual classroom, forum, chat, e-mail, web pages, animation, video, graphics and images as content tools, and questionnaire as assessment tool were used there was a difference in student satisfaction, and satisfaction was higher in these courses. There was not a significant difference in the students’ satisfaction with the exams and homework as assessment tools, or content of .pdf and text documents as content tools, but .pdf-text documents and exams were among the most-used tools in the courses. Student satisfaction was high when the number of materials used in courses was 7 and over, that is, as the number of materials increased, so did the satisfaction level.
The levels of students’ readiness for online learning were high in all sub-dimensions in total, and there was a positive significant relationship between students’ levels of readiness and their satisfaction level. Moreover, the satisfaction levels of learners who were self-directed, had high motivation and could control their own learning appeared to be affected positively.
In conclusion, to increase the satisfaction level of the students it would be useful to increase the number of materials used in the e-courses; give more importance to interaction; and use more tools such as animation, virtual classroom, video, forum, survey, chat and email. In order to increase satisfaction, student readiness should be considered, students should be able to use technology effectively.