COMPARING AND CONTRASTING FACULTY AND STUDENT PERCEPTIONS TOWARDS THE ATTITUDES, EFFECTS AND POTENTIAL BENEFITS OF E-LEARNING AT A GULF POLYTECHNIC

W. Hann

Bahrain Polytechnic (BAHRAIN)
The research set out to determine the attitudes, effects and benefits of e-learning at the Humanities Faculty Level at a Gulf Polytechnic. The study was carried out to determine whether the Faculty believed in the benefits of e-learning in order to better inform the Institution on the readiness to adapt to further e-integration.

A sample of 30 faculty members and 85 students were surveyed and results statistically analysed to determine similarities and differences in attitudes, effects and perceived benefits and these were compared to digital immigrant/native parameters.

Focus groups discussed seven key findings where differences in Faculty and Student responses were uncovered and congruence of opinion sought. These included, on the one hand, that students preferred the tutor to be present in class, and on the other that students are significantly more positive about the future saturation of e-learning at the Polytechnic than Faculty.

It is recommended that Faculty receive further training regarding the benefits of e-learning, and that further research is conducted on reducing student reliance on tutor presence.