An Empirical Study of Factors that Influence the Adoption of Cloud Computing Applications by Students in Saudi Arabian Universities

Author: Abdulwahab Ali Almazroi

Almazroi, Abdulwahab Ali, 2017 An Empirical Study of Factors that Influence the Adoption of Cloud Computing Applications by Students in Saudi Arabian Universities, Flinders University, School of Computer Science, Engineering and Mathematics

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Cloud computing is an innovative technology that has revolutionized various areas such as education, healthcare, government, and commerce. The technology provides different solutions to organizations on demand in order to improve their performance and to lower hardware and software procurement and maintenance cost. There is a rich body of literature on its benefits for higher education institutions, however, studies that investigate the factors affecting cloud computing applications adoption by university students in developing countries especially Saudi Arabia are lacking. To fillthis gap, this study examines the factors that affect the adoption of cloud applications by Saudi Arabian university students. The researchadoptsTechnology Acceptance Model 3 (TAM3) as the basis for developing the study model. This study employs amixed method approach, which involves collecting and analyzing quantitative and qualitative data simultaneously. The proposed model is examined and validated using a questionnaire survey amongst university students at King Abdulaziz University and Taibah University in Saudi Arabia. Among 527 collected responses, 451 are valid for data analysis. In addition, 3 focus groups consisting of 14 students areconducted to validate the quantitative findings. Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS ver.22) and the Analysis of Moment Structures (AMOS ver. 19) software areutilized for questionnaire analysis. The findings show that both measurement and structural models demonstrate good fit to the data, and all constructs meet the criteria to achieve construct reliability and validity. In addition, the path estimates show that 9 out of the 17 proposed relationships aresignificant. The empirical results show that perceived ease of use hasa significant positive influence on perceived usefulness; perceived ease of use and perceived usefulness havea direct significant impact on behavioural intention; subjective norm has a direct positive influence on image; trust and job relevance have a significance positive impact on perceived usefulness; perceptions of external control, perceived enjoyment, and playfulness significantly predict perceived ease of use. On the other hand, subjective norm hasa non-significant effect on perceived usefulness, and behavioural intention; image has a non-significant effect on perceived usefulness; self-efficacy and anxiety have no influence on perceived ease of use; and trust has a non-significant influence on behavioural intention. The results further reveal that the moderating factors in this study which are output quality and Internet experience have a non-significant effect on the hypothesized relationships in the proposed research model. Furthermore, these findings are supported by the findings of the focus groups. The results of this study will help decision makers in Saudi Arabian academic institutions to ensure successful adoption of cloud services among students. Likewise, the findings will help cloud applications providers better understandthe factors that influence the adoption of cloud applications by students, in order to develop cloud computing applications that would be easily adopted and used by students.

Keywords: cloud computing, SaaS, Technology Acceptance Model, e-Learning, perceived usefulness, perceived ease of use.
Subject: Computer Science thesis

Thesis type: Doctor of Philosophy
Completed: 2017
School: School of Computer Science, Engineering and Mathematics
Supervisor: Haifeng Shen