A country’s national culture affects virtual learning environment adoption in higher education: a systematic review (2001–2020)

Na Li, Xiaojun Zhang*, Maria Limniou

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Although virtual learning environments (VLEs) have long been forecasted to accelerate the educational revolution, their adoption by teachers and students has not always been as effective as is expected over the years. This challenges universities that extensively investigated educational technologies. Stakeholders are keen to understand the underlying factors and mechanisms that influence technology adoption. However, the extant contradictive and inconsistent research findings from individual country or region fail to address the problem. To provide a holistic view, we follow the PRISMA protocol and synthesize 145 empirical studies across 42 countries and regions from 2001 to 2020. Our main contribution lies in integrating the institutional theory and the elements of country, culture, and university with the decision to adopt VLEs. Specifically, we develop three individual themes and two institutional themes about the factor characteristics. Power distance associates with the institutional cognitive-cultural influence, and long- and short-term orientation affects VLE adoption through the institutional normative facilitation. Masculinity-femininity links to individual cognition, while uncertainty avoidance has a connection with individual digital capability in the VLE adoption processes. We suggest that cultural dimensions should be examined as explanatory variables in future research. Implications and research significance in the COVID-19 pandemic are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4407-4425
Number of pages19
JournalInteractive Learning Environments
Volume31
Issue number7
Early online date14 Aug 2021
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 14 Aug 2021

Keywords

  • Culture
  • higher education
  • technology adoption
  • virtual learning environment

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