The Fourth Pan-Commonwealth Forum on Open Learning (PCF4)
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Hanafi Atan

The Usefulness of the Functionalities of the Distance Education Electronic Portal

Hanafi Atan
School of Distance Education, Universiti Sains Malaysia, Malaysia

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     Last modified: August 1, 2006
     Presentation date: 11/01/2006 10:00 AM in ST Windsor A
     (View Schedule)

This article reports on the study undertaken to elucidate the extent of the usefulness of the functionalities of the e-learning portal developed as a part of the academic support system in the teaching and learning at the School of Distance Education (SDE), Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM), Malaysia. A total of four functionalities namely the Announcement, Learning Activities, Communication and General Support System of the portal that consisted of eleven sub-features were studied. These features were the general bulletin, staff directory, links, info on study programmes, video conferencing schedule, and course information, past examination papers, assignment questions, forum board, course notices, and e-mail. Out of the features studied, information on the study programmes was the main features visited and utilized by the students followed by the course information features and to a lesser extent by the assignment questions, and past examination paper. The features that were least visited and utilized by the student were the e-mail, staff directory, links and the video conferencing schedule. The effect in terms of the future designs of the e-learning portal that conform to the need and usefulness to the distance learners the will be discussed and elaborated

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