Date of Conferral



Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)




Lynne Orr


AbstractTechnology integration is a key part of a 2-year teacher education program at the Canadian university; nontraditional students seemed unprepared to use technology for learning. The purpose of this study was to investigate nontraditional students’ perceptions and experiences about their successes and challenges using technology in the program. The study was guided by Knowles’s andragogy theory, which presents a learner-centred perspective on adult learning. The research questions focused on nontraditional students’ successes and challenges using technology in coursework. A basic qualitative design was used to capture the insights of 10 purposefully selected, nontraditional university students through semistructured interviews. Themes were identified through open coding. The trustworthiness of the study was established through member checking, rich and detailed descriptions, and research reflexivity. The findings revealed that nontraditional students, especially at the start of the program, encountered difficulties learning to use new technology tools, experienced technology user unfriendliness, and struggled with a shift to online learning. The findings also showed that nontraditional students developed technology self-efficacy as they progressed through the program, aiding them in applying educational technology tools. The successes have been attributed to personal, instructor, and institutional factors as well as peer support. A white paper was developed with suggestions for streamlining the learning management system and technology tools, offering peer mentoring, enhancing technology training, and allowing extra time for technology practice. The implications for positive social change included providing insights for improving nontraditional students’ learning experiences and those of their future students.