NEED FOR COGNITION AS MODERATING VARIABLE IN THE TECHNOLOGY ACCEPTANCE OF WEB 2.0 TOOLS FOR EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES
Students use Web 2.0 services extensively for social purposes and increasingly as means that enable informal learning. Many attempts have been done by teachers to incorporate this sort of services in formal learning; however, the success of this educational usage depends on the acceptance by students. The Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) and user satisfaction have been used separately to predict the use and adoption of technology. In this paper we integrate both approaches in a model that envision user satisfaction as a mediating variable, according to previous literature (Bhattacherjee. 2001a,b, Hayashi et al., 2004, Rai et al., 2002, Bailey and Pearson, 1983) and investigates the moderating role of Need for Cognition (NFC).
The sample is composed of 203 students enrolled in Business studies in a Spanish University. The analysis was carried out in a course that used Web 2.0 tools (Facebook, Twitter, blogs and a wiki) for educational purposes integrated in a Personal Learning Environment (PLE). The model was evaluated by using structural equation model multi-group analysis. From the K-means cluster analysis, according to their Need For Cognition level, 2 groups arose: High NFC and Low NFC. Our results show significant differences that support the moderating effect of NFC in relevant paths of the proposed TAM model, mainly in the role of learning satisfaction. For instance, for low NFC students (contrariwise to High NFC), the perceived usefulness of a learning 2.0 system is not linked to the concept of learning satisfaction and this satisfaction has no impact in the intention to use again a PLE based in Web 2.0 tools.