Discussion of a Pilot Case Study on Adult Learners’ Online Interaction


This pilot case study explores claims made in literature relating to the causes of lack of online interaction among adult-learners participating in a blended learning programme. Since this study is explorative in nature, it also informs the direction in which subsequent research should go. A preliminary literature review shows the salient factors relating to lack of online interaction as being ‘lack of convergence’ and ‘lack of social presence’. To seek said validation, a practical pilot case study, using a mixed-method approach, was carried out through a questionnaire and through interviews. Results in this study reveal that students do not engage with the online environment when the same content is repeated during f2f meetings, or when online assignments are not addressed during f2f meetings, i.e. lack of convergence. In relation to social presence, the teacher’s social presence was considered more important than that of peers as it relates to adult-learners specifically.


Keywords: adult-learner, blended learning, online interaction

Article Review Status: Published

Pages: 21-38 (Download PDF)

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