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Diffusion of innovation: A case study of course management system adoption

, Northern Illinois University, United States

Northern Illinois University . Awarded


The purpose of this study was to examine the processes of evaluation, selection, adoption and diffusion of a Course Management System (CMS). This study incorporated two institutions, each having six participants. The participants were placed into three categories: faculty, staff, and administration. Each participant was either a faculty member, who was also an early adopter of the institution's CMS, a staff member, or an administrator. Each participant was involved in part or all of the evaluation, selection, adoption and diffusion processes.

The outcome of the study indicated that the participation of these individuals helped the institutions evaluate and select their CMS. In addition, the study indicated that each institution arrived at their decisions through different evaluation and selection processes. University #1 consisted of a committee to evaluate and select their system, while University #2 comprised members of the Technology Department and utilized the input of faculty members to help select a system. The findings also recommended that the participation of these individuals influenced others to adopt the system. Each university, however, provided different incentives to entice the adoption of these systems.

The study recommends that institutions with the resources might be more suitable to adopt open-source systems than smaller institutions without adequate resources to maintain these systems. Furthermore, the research suggests that additional studies are needed to analyze how many small institutions are using open-source systems and to what extent are they using these systems.


Powell, P. Diffusion of innovation: A case study of course management system adoption. Ph.D. thesis, Northern Illinois University. Retrieved December 6, 2019 from .

This record was imported from ProQuest on October 23, 2013. [Original Record]

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