An activity-theoretical approach to investigate learners' factors toward e-learning systems

Shu Sheng Liaw, Hsiu Mei Huang, Gwo Dong Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

151 Scopus citations


The Internet and World Wide Web have provided opportunities of developing e-learning systems. The development of e-learning systems has started a revolution for instructional content delivering, learning activities, and social communication. Based on activity theory, the purpose of this research is to investigate learners' attitude factors toward e-learning systems. A total 168 participants were asked to answer a questionnaire. After factor analysis, learners' attitudes can be grouped four different factors - e-learning as a learner autonomy environment, e-learning as a problem-solving environment, e-learning as a multimedia learning environment, and teachers as assisted tutors in e-learning. In addition, this research approves that activity theory is an appropriate theory for understanding e-learning systems. Furthermore, this study also provides evidence that e-learning as a problem-solving environment can be positively influenced by three other factors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1906-1920
Number of pages15
JournalComputers in Human Behavior
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2007


  • Activity theory
  • E-learning
  • Learner autonomy
  • Multimedia instruction
  • Problem solving
  • Teacher as assisted tutor


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