Are we ready for Web 2.0? Evidence from a Caribbean university
Keywords:web 2.0 research, educational technology, social networking software, higher education, developing countries
Web 2.0 technologies have gained increased popularity over the last decade. They have transformed user engagement on the World Wide Web and have made inroads in Education. However, adoption of these technologies in Higher Education in developing countries is hindered by the absence of facilitating conditions such as administrative support, equipment, skills and infrastructure. This study explores the readiness of lecturers at a Caribbean University for the adoption of Web 2.0 in the education process through a survey instrument which includes constructs from the decomposed theory of planned behavior. The study also investigates the limiting factors to achieving maximum benefits from Web 2.0 adoption in the learning process through experimental employment of a Facebook group in the teaching of a computer science course followed by a survey. Lecturers at the University are found to be ready, however, the extent of Web 2.0 adoption does not mirror this readiness signaling the need to address the facilitating conditions. The students' responses to the survey items indicate the existence of limiting factors such as internet connection speed, familiarity with moderators and frequency of feedback. These should be deliberately addressed in any effort to adopt Web 2.0 in education in a developing country setting.
* Authors are listed according to university department. All three authors contributed equally to this paper.