Resource title

Why don’t all lecturers make use of VLEs?: what can the so-called “laggards” tell us?

Resource image

image for OpenScout resource :: Why don’t all lecturers make use of VLEs?: what can the so-called “laggards” tell us?

Resource description

Virtual learning environments (VLEs) have been almost universally adopted by UK higher education institutions. However, academic staff appear to be less enthusiastic; adoption of VLEs into teaching practices is generally at a much lower level for individual staff. There is an existing body of research on the barriers to the adoption of learning technologies, such as the VLE, with fairly consistent findings. However, none of the existing studies have involved staff who are not using the VLEs; instead they have concentrated on those who have already integrated VLEs into their teaching. The diffusion theories of Rogers, which include a classification of adopters from ‘innovators’ through to ‘laggards’, are widely cited in the VLE implementation literature and provide a framework for this research. This report uses a case study approach at a single UK site – the London School of Economics (LSE) – and is based on interviews with five lecturers who are not currently using the institutional VLE. It reveals their strong awareness of the VLE, explores their understanding of its purpose and looks at their reasons for not adopting it. These include: their conception of what the VLE is for, pedagogical considerations and time pressures. The report highlights a concern that certain VLE uses may have a negative impact on students’ ability to develop skills that their educators’ value. The research strategy used doesn’t allow for wider generalisation but provides an important insight into the views and decisions of a group staff not yet reported on.

Resource author

Resource publisher

Resource publish date

Resource language


Resource content type


Resource resource URL

Resource license