University of Colombo Institute for Agro-technology and Rural Sciences (SRI LANKA)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN18 Proceedings
Publication year: 2018
Pages: 6461-6464
ISBN: 978-84-09-02709-5
ISSN: 2340-1117
doi: 10.21125/edulearn.2018.1539
Conference name: 10th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 2-4 July, 2018
Location: Palma, Spain
With the developments of information and communication technology (ICT), and the use of Internet as a new mode of knowledge delivery, has made innovative changes in the traditional teaching process. Use of computers, videoconferencing, audio, Internet as the mode of conducting e-learning has introduced a new learning environment and set-ups to potential users. This phenomenon can be applied to the users in agriculture sector too. It is argued that the outcomes accomplished from the traditional education and training programs are quite often far from ideal and therefore, institutions have to find a new way of training and learning and developing a new system to manage the flow of knowledge. It has been demonstrated that there is a need to have new ways of teaching to provide an ideal learning environment in order to respond to changing education demands for users such as farmers.

This study examines factors that determine the adoption of blended learning system among farmers using data collected by questionnaire from a sample of 250 farmer students involved in Bachelor of Agro- technology Degree program in University of Colombo Institute for Agro-technology and Rural Sciences in Sri Lanka. A theoretical model is developed using previous studies based on Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) and data analysis and model development performed using structural equation modeling techniques. Several theoretical findings of TAM are confirmed but there are new findings concerned with important indirect effects on the user adoption such as flexible access to instructional/assessment media, language capability, interactive delivery, interactions among teachers and students, job relevance and social recognition. Each of these indirect effects directly affected for easy use of the system (Perceived Ease of Use) and usefulness of the system which helps to produce an improved adoption towards the E-learning system. Based on the theoretical findings, the study suggested several actions for practical and theoretical implications for improving the learner’s acceptance toward the E-learning in the special focus on student farmers. Education professionals and blended e-learning system developers can consider these factors when developing e-learning systems for the users such as farmers
e-learning, technology acceptance, farmers.