Exploring students' experiences of information and communication technology (ICT) facilitated feedback : a case study of business management education students at a higher institution in KwaZulu-Natal.
Chidiebere, Anyanwu Clinton.
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The changing context of higher education (HE) in an era of rapid technological and economic changes internationally, and in South Africa presents new challenges for lecturers and students. As an aspect of the challenges, the need for the integration of technology in teaching and learning in South African schools had received pivotal attention. Presently, there is widespread interest and research into the role feedback plays in education and modes of providing feedback to students in higher institution. The focus on the experiences of using email in teaching and learning has not been sufficiently explored. There is a major gap in terms of understanding the experiences of higher institution students of using e-mail feedback in teaching and learning in higher institutions. Hence in this study the focus is to explore students’ experiences of email facilitated feedback in Business Management Education at a Higher Institution. The study examines the use of e-mail as a teaching tool for providing feedback to Business Management Education students. In the study, students’ experiences of using e-mail feedback method in Business Management Education are explored in order to understand how useful and accessible e-mail feedback is as a teaching tool. The study further looks at what influences the use of e-mail facilitated feedback had on students’ learning of Business Management Education. This study uses a qualitative case study design and located within the interpretive paradigm. Ten Business Management Education students at a higher institution in KwaZulu-Natal Provinces, South Africa made up the study participants and provided the source of data for this study. The ten students are in their 3rd and 4th year of study. Students from the Institution had access to mains electricity, and the whole institution is served by a Local Area Network (LAN) which is constantly accessible to the students for academic and learning purposes. Findings from this study reveal that students have differing experiences of e-mail facilitated feedback. While majority of students have positive experience of e-mail feedback, some had challenges using e-mail facilitated feedback. Findings further revealed that the use of e-mail facilitated feedback in Business Management Education did not take into consideration the gaps in terms of levels of prior knowledge and literacy in basic computing and internet applications across the student population. In addition, students did not receive prior orientation on how to access and the uses of the e-mail facilitated mode of feedback that is used in the Business Management Education school.