Date of Award

5-1-2010

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

Department

Workforce Education and Development

First Advisor

Waugh, Keith

Abstract

There is a lack of studies on the current status of the use of on-demand learning in organizations and factors that may accelerate or hold back the acceptance and implementation of on-demand learning in organizations. The purpose of this study is to contribute to a better understanding of the adoption of on-demand learning in organizations in the United States. More specifically, this research was conducted to answer the following questions: 1) Are training professionals familiar with the concept of on demand learning? 2) What are the most commonly practiced on-demand learning applications in organizations? 3) What are the most commonly used on-demand learning devices? 4) Which subject areas are appropriate for applying on-demand learning? 5) What factors explain and predict the adoption of on-demand learning? 6) Does organizational nature (non-profit vs. for-profit) have an impact on the adoption of on-demand learning? 7) Does economic sector have an impact on the adoption of on-demand learning? 8) Does organizational size have an impact on the adoption of on-demand learning? and 9) Does training budget have an impact on the adoption of on-demand learning? Study results indicated that although many factors influence the adoption of on-demand learning in organizations, compatibility and top management support were the most significant determinants in general. The training budget was a moderator for the adoption of on-demand learning and it amplified the effects of top management support and organizational centralization on the adoption process. The adoption of on-demand learning among small organizations, non-profit organizations, or organizations with relatively small training budgets, was primarily determined by available organizational resources, such as technical infrastructure, financial resources for experimental innovations, professional development opportunities, and investment on training and development. But among for-profit organizations or large organizations (i.e., 1,000 employees and over), the adoption of on-demand learning was primarily determined by its compatibility with organizations and organizational openness. Moreover, perceived usefulness, perceived ease of use, costs, and customer demand were not significant determinants in this study. In short, organizational factors had a greater explanatory power than innovative, environmental, or individual variables. Recommendations were proposed for future studies.

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