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IJIET 2016 Vol.6(1): 17-22 ISSN: 2010-3689
DOI: 10.7763/IJIET.2016.V6.651

Essential Considerations in Distance Education in KSA: Teacher Immediacy in a Virtual Teaching and Learning Environment

A. Al Ghamdi, A. Samarji, and A. Watt

Abstract—Teacher immediacy (verbal and non-verbal) remains an important factor towards prompting efficient pedagogical approaches. Whilst teacher immediacy in a classroom setting is important, there is growing awareness about the importance of the construct in a virtual setting as education shifts from explicit conventional face-to-face teaching and learning to a blended environment which includes distance education. This paper attempts to generate some understandings about the correlation between teacher immediacy, both verbal and non-verbal, and students’ active participation and satisfaction in a distance education learning environment. This paper considers, in a preliminary research framework, a Saudi university which offers a range of distance education courses as an initial cohort from which to generate such understandings. Students’ opinions, perceptions, and reported satisfaction were captured through utilising a structured questionnaire completed by 413 participants, enrolled in a variety of distance education courses offered by the aforementioned university. This study found that there was significant correlation between the overall adopted teacher immediacy (verbal and non-verbal) and students’ overall online participation and satisfaction in the investigated distance education courses. In terms of gender differences, male participants have higher willingness to participate than female participants within the perceived immediacy behaviours. On the other hand, female participants were more satisfied in terms of communication than male participants within the perceived “e-immediacy” behaviours. These results serve as a prompt for further research on teacher immediacy in the rapidly developing and increasing virtual education domain in a global and connected world.

Index Terms—Distance education, teacher immediacy, e-immediacy, verbal immediacy, non-verbal immediacy, students’ satisfaction, students’ online participation, students’ communication satisfaction.

A. Al Ghamdi and A. Samarji are with College of Education, Victoria University, Australia (e-mail: abdullah.alghamdi2@live.vu.edu.au, ahmad.samarji@vu.edu.au).
A. Watt is with Victoria University Melbourne, Australia (e-mail: Anthony.Watt@vu.edu.au).


Cite: A. Al Ghamdi, A. Samarji, and A. Watt, "Essential Considerations in Distance Education in KSA: Teacher Immediacy in a Virtual Teaching and Learning Environment," International Journal of Information and Education Technology vol. 6, no. 1, pp. 17-22, 2016.

General Information

  • ISSN: 2010-3689 (Online)
  • Abbreviated Title: Int. J. Inf. Educ. Technol.
  • Frequency: Monthly
  • DOI: 10.18178/IJIET
  • Editor-in-Chief: Prof. Dr. Steve Thatcher
  • Executive Editor: Ms. Nancy Y. Liu
  • Abstracting/ Indexing: Scopus (CiteScore 2022: 2.0), INSPEC (IET), UGC-CARE List (India), CNKI, EBSCO, Google Scholar
  • E-mail: ijiet@ejournal.net


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