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Culture, profession, and attitudes towards educational technology: A large-scale, German-Romanian study

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Cultural dimensions and attitudes towards educational technology may differ between countries and ethnicities, but also between professional groups. This study examines a bicultural, German and Romanian sample (N = 2834) that includes both participants with technical and with non-technical professions. Results show large differences between Germans and Romanians as well as small differences between participants of technical and non-technical professions regarding Hofstede's cultural dimensions and regarding attitudes towards technology. The results will be discussed with respect to expanding Hofstede's framework towards differentiating between cultural sub-samples.
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... Weinberger and Nistor [70] show the influence of culture towards the use of educational technology. The study uses Hofstede's cultural dimensions to examine differences in attitudes towards educational technology between Germans and Romanians. ...
... For instance, Hofstede reports an overall higher uncertainty avoidance level in Romania compared to Germany. The findings of this study [70], though, show the opposite. The study reports that culture changes may be due to the influence of western European culture. ...
... It is interesting to note that Romanians are more positive towards the use of educational technology and at the same time have higher levels of technology anxiety compared to Germans. As the authors of the study explain, the positive attitude of Romanians towards technology may be due to the late technology adoption in their country [70]. Surprisingly, although the study reports lower uncertainty avoidance levels for Romanians compared to Germans, Romanians have higher technology anxiety. ...
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The Second Edition of this classic work, first published in 1981 and an international bestseller, explores the differences in thinking and social action that exist among members of more than 50 modern nations. Geert Hofstede argues that people carry "mental programs" which are developed in the family in early childhood and reinforced in schools and organizations, and that these programs contain components of national culture. They are expressed most clearly in the different values that predominate among people from different countries. Geert Hofstede has completely rewritten, revised and updated Cultures Consequences for the twenty-first century, he has broadened the book's cross-disciplinary appeal, expanded the coverage of countries examined from 40 to more than 50, reformulated his arguments and a large amount of new literature has been included. The book is structured around five major dimensions: power distance; uncertainty avoidance; individualism versus collectivism; masculinity versus femininity; and long term versus short-term orientation. --Publisher.
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This study starts by questioning the quality of e-learning transfer between countries by merely translating the text into a different language. We apply and thus verify the Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology (UTAUT), which has not yet been sufficiently empirically validated. Our bicultural sample encompasses N = 732 students aged under 30 from Romania and Germany. As a first result, we offer empirical evidence for UTAUT on a wider basis. Secondly, we propose an extension of the UTAUT model by the predictor computer anxiety and the moderator geographic location, and for the case in which generic learning technologies are questioned instead of a more specific technology. Thirdly, we present evidence for different acceptance mechanisms in the Romanian vs. the German sub-sample; a cluster analysis confirms the intercultural differences in the technology acceptance variables. Finally, we conclude that the transfer of e-learning concepts and contents from old to new EU member countries requires much more than language translation; acceptance factors are the first aspect to consider.
Value Survey Modules
  • G Hofstede