Face-to-Face Tutorials, Learning Management System and WhatsApp Group: How Digital Immigrants Interact and Engage in E-learning?

Volume 8 - Issue 1
Lay Kee Chng
Pages: 18-35 Download Count : 506 View Count: 875 DOI Number 10.17220/mojet.2020.01.002 Facebook Share on Google+ Save to Zotero Save to Mendeley


The advancement of educational technology enables universities to provide various online courses to fit the needs of different learners. However, the question is – how do adult learners learn in this digital age, especially for those who had learned and developed their digital skills through experience and by self-exploring at their workplace? As such, a case study in Malaysia was conducted to examine learning experiences exhibited by middle-aged learners, also known as digital immigrants, in an e-learning environment. Fourteen new students from the first semester of a first-year programme in a private university, with ages ranging from 40–55 years, participated in the study. Face-to-face interviews were conducted and observations were performed in Learning Management System (LMS) and WhatsApp groups for a semester. This study has pointed out that the digital immigrants require human-to-human interaction in e-learning. The forming of virtual groups using the WhatsApp application is also very important to digital immigrants. Conclusively, blended learning mode in the e-learning environment which still allows interaction between humans is still the best choice for these digital immigrants, while technology is an alternative tool for the learners to complete their studies.


  • Interaction
  • Engagement
  • WhatsApp
  • Learning Management System
  • E-learning
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