Impact of showing a male instructor’s face on female students’ perceived social presence, satisfaction, and comprehension in distance education in a conservative, gender-segregated culture

Abstract

To overcome a shortage of female faculty members for teaching female students in a gender-segregated educational system, Saudi Arabian universities have assigned male faculty members to teach female students through videoconferencing. However, female students often do not prefer videoconferencing, and it does not reach an optimal level of satisfaction. Although students’ ability to see an instructor’s face might diminish this negativity, Saudi cultural norms do not encourage men to show women their faces. Therefore, this study aimed to explore the impact on female students’ perceived social presence, satisfaction, and comprehension of showing male faculty members’ faces during videoconferencing. The study used the quantitative method of a between-group quasi-experimental posttest-only design. Lasting 6 weeks and including 27 female graduate students, the study administered six tests to examine participants’ comprehension and an online questionnaire to measure their perceived social presence and satisfaction. No differences between control and experimental groups were found for perceived social presence, satisfaction, or comprehension. Thus, researchers and practitioners should pay attention to opposite-gender instructor, segregated campuses, synchronized courses, gathering of students in same physical context, and conservative culture to provide effective distance education for gender-segregated institutions, as well as students with gender-segregated backgrounds when engaging in non-segregated distance education in the globalized world.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2

References

  1. Alfowzan, A. (2015, November 20). Yastaftunak T.V. show: Judgment of woman’s seeing at men streets of through television [Video file]. Retrieved October 21, 2019 from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e9xvVmBHzWY.

  2. Algarni, A. (2014). Video conferencing technology for distance learning in Saudi Arabia: Current problems, feasible solutions and developing an innovative interactive communication system based on internet and wifi technology for communication enhancement (Doctoral dissertation, Durham University).

  3. Alsadoon, E. (2018). The impact of social presence on learners’ satisfaction in mobile learning. Turkish Online Journal of Educational Technology TOJET, 17, 226–233.

    Google Scholar 

  4. Borup, J., West, R. E., & Graham, C. R. (2012). Improving online social presence through asynchronous video. The Internet and Higher Education, 15(3), 195–203. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.iheduc.2011.11.001

    Article  Google Scholar 

  5. Bozkaya, M. (2008). The relationship between teacher immediacy behaviours and distant learners’ social presence perceptions in videoconferencing applications. Turkish Online Journal of Distance Education, 9, 180–192.

    Google Scholar 

  6. Campbell, D. T., & Stanley, J. C. (1963). Experimental and quasi-experimental design for research. Hand-Book of Research on Teaching. https://doi.org/10.1037/022808

    Article  Google Scholar 

  7. Cho, Y. H., Yim, S. Y., & Paik, S. (2015). Physical and social presence in 3D virtual role-play for pre-service teachers. The Internet and Higher Education, 25, 70–77. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.iheduc.2015.01.002

    Article  Google Scholar 

  8. Creswell, J. W. (2002). Educational research: Planning, conducting, and evaluating quantitative and qualitative research. Merrill Prentice Hall.

    Google Scholar 

  9. De Winter, J. C. (2013). Using the Student’s t-test with extremely small sample sizes. Practical Assessment, Research and Evaluation, 18, 10.

    Google Scholar 

  10. Diaz, D., Ramirez, R., & Hernandez-Leo, D. (2015). The effect of using a talking head in academic videos: An EEG study. Proceedings of the IEEE 15th: International conference on Advanced Learning Technologies (pp. 367–369). IEEE Publications. https://doi.org/10.1109/ICALT.2015.89

    Chapter  Google Scholar 

  11. Dow, M. J. (2008). Implications of social presence for online learning: A case study of MLS students. Journal of Education for Library and Information Science, 49(4), 231–242.

    Google Scholar 

  12. Gillies, D. (2008). Student perspectives on videoconferencing in teacher education at a distance. Distance Education, 29(1), 107–118. https://doi.org/10.1080/01587910802004878

    Article  Google Scholar 

  13. Goertzen, P., & Kristjánsson, C. (2007). Interpersonal dimensions of community in graduate online learning: Exploring social presence through the lens of Systemic Functional Linguistics. The Internet and Higher Education, 10(3), 212–230. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.iheduc.2007.06.005

    Article  Google Scholar 

  14. Gunawardena, C. N. (1995). Social presence theory and implications for interaction and collaborative learning in computer conferences. International Journal of Educational Telecommunications, 1, 147–166.

    Google Scholar 

  15. Gunawardena, C. N., & McIsaac, M. S. (2004). Distance education. In D. H. Jonassen (Ed.), Handbook of research on educational communications and technology (pp. 355–395). Lawrence Erlbaum.

    Google Scholar 

  16. Gunawardena, C. N., & Zittle, F. J. (1997). Social presence as a predictor of satisfaction within a computer-mediated conferencing environment. American Journal of Distance Education, 11(3), 8–26. https://doi.org/10.1080/08923649709526970

    Article  Google Scholar 

  17. Hackman, M. Z., & Walker, K. B. (1990). Instructional communication in the televised classroom: The effects of system design and teacher immediacy on student learning and satisfaction. Communication Education, 39(3), 196–206. https://doi.org/10.1080/03634529009378802

    Article  Google Scholar 

  18. Hoda, N., Ahmad, N., & Naveed, Q. N. (2018). Evaluating student satisfaction with interactive television classes in Saudi universities. IEEE 5th International Conference on Engineering Technologies and Applied Sciences (ICETAS) (pp. 1–5). IEEE.

    Google Scholar 

  19. Homer, B. D., Plass, J. L., & Blake, L. (2008). The effects of video on cognitive load and social presence in multimedia-learning. Computers in Human Behavior, 24(3), 786–797. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2007.02.009

    Article  Google Scholar 

  20. Ibn Baz, A. (2016, June 13). Lecture at King Saud University: Judgment of male faculty member teaching of female students, His Eminence Sheikh Abdulaziz Bin Baz [Video file]. Retrieved October 21, 2019 from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5DbSOhYpS84.

  21. Johnson, R. D. (2011). Gender differences in e-learning: Communication, social presence, and learning outcomes. Journal of Organizational and End User Computing, 23(1), 79–94. https://doi.org/10.4018/joeuc.2011010105

    Article  Google Scholar 

  22. Jung, Y. (2011). Understanding the role of sense of presence and perceived autonomy in users’ continued use of social virtual worlds. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 16(4), 492–510. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1083-6101.2011.01540.x

    Article  Google Scholar 

  23. Kim, J. (2011). Developing an instrument to measure social presence in distance higher education. British Journal of Educational Technology, 42(5), 763–777. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-8535.2010.01107.x

    Article  Google Scholar 

  24. Kim, J., Kwon, Y., & Cho, D. (2011). Investigating factors that influence social presence and learning outcomes in distance higher education. Computers and Education, 57(2), 1512–1520. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.compedu.2011.02.005

    Article  Google Scholar 

  25. Kizilcec, R. F., Bailenson, J. N., & Gomez, C. J. (2015). The instructor’s face in video instruction: Evidence from two large-scale field studies. Journal of Educational Psychology, 107(3), 724–739. https://doi.org/10.1037/edu0000013

    Article  Google Scholar 

  26. Kizilcec, R. F., Papadopoulos, K., & Sritanyaratana, L. (2014). Showing face in video instruction: Effects on information retention, visual attention, and affect. Proceedings of the SIGCHI conference on human factors in computing systems (pp. 2095–2102). London: Wiley.

    Chapter  Google Scholar 

  27. Lyons, A., Reysen, S., & Pierce, L. (2012). Video lecture format, student technological efficacy, and social presence in online courses. Computers in Human Behavior, 28(1), 181–186. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2011.08.025

    Article  Google Scholar 

  28. Mackey, K. R. M., & Freyberg, D. L. (2010). The effect of social presence on affective and cognitive learning in an international engineering course taught via distance learning. Journal of Engineering Education, 99(1), 23–34. https://doi.org/10.1002/j.2168-9830.2010.tb01039.x

    Article  Google Scholar 

  29. Merisotis, J. P., & Phipps, R. A. (1999). What’s the difference?: Outcomes of distance vs. traditional classroom-based learning. Change: the Magazine of Higher Learning, 31(3), 12–17. https://doi.org/10.1080/00091389909602685

    Article  Google Scholar 

  30. MOE Statistics Center. (2018). Higher Education Statistics [Data file]. Retrieved October 13, 2019 from https://departments.moe.gov.sa/PlanningDevelopment/RelatedDepartments/Educationstatisticscenter/EducationDetailedReports/Pages/default.aspx

  31. Pi, Z., Hong, J., & Yang, J. (2017). Does instructor’s image size in video lectures affect learning outcomes? Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 33(4), 347–354. https://doi.org/10.1111/jcal.12183

    Article  Google Scholar 

  32. Powell, R. G., & Harville, B. (1990). The effects of teacher immediacy and clarity on instructional outcomes: An intercultural assessment. Communication Education, 39(4), 369–379. https://doi.org/10.1080/03634529009378816

    Article  Google Scholar 

  33. Richardson, J., & Swan, K. (2003). Examining social presence in online courses in relation to students’ perceived learning and satisfaction. Journal of Asynchronous Learning Network, 7(1), 68–88.

    Google Scholar 

  34. Russo, T. C., & Benson, S. (2005). Learning with invisible others: Perceptions of online presence and their relationship to cognitive and affective learning. Educational Technology and Society, 8(1), 54–62.

    Google Scholar 

  35. Saykili, A. (2018). Distance education: Definitions, generations, key concepts and future directions. International Journal of Contemporary Educational Research, 5, 2–17.

    Google Scholar 

  36. Short, J., Williams, E., & Christie, B. (1976). The social psychology of telecommunications. Wiley.

    Google Scholar 

  37. Simonson, M., Zvacek, S. M., & Smaldino, S. (2019). Teaching and learning at a distance: Foundations of Distance Education (7th ed.). . Information Age Publishing Inc.

    Google Scholar 

  38. Siriaraya, P., & Siang Ang, C. (2012). Age differences in the perception of social presence in the use of 3D virtual world for social interaction. Interacting with Computers, 24(4), 280–291. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.intcom.2012.03.003

    Article  Google Scholar 

  39. Sung, E., & Mayer, R. E. (2012). Five facets of social presence in online distance education. Computers in Human Behavior, 28(5), 1738–1747. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2012.04.014

    Article  Google Scholar 

  40. Swan, K., & Shih, L. F. (2005). On the nature and development of social presence in online course discussions. Online Learning, 9(3), 115–136. https://doi.org/10.24059/olj.v9i3.1788

    Article  Google Scholar 

  41. Tu, C. H. (2002). The measurement of social presence in an online learning environment. International Journal on e-Learning, 1, 34–45.

    Google Scholar 

  42. Tung, F. W., & Deng, Y. S. (2006). Designing social presence in e-learning environments: Testing the effect of interactivity on children. Interactive Learning Environments, 14(3), 251–264. https://doi.org/10.1080/10494820600924750

    Article  Google Scholar 

  43. Vygotsky, L. S. (1978). Mind in society: The development of higher psychological processes. Harvard University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  44. Wang, J., & Antonenko, P. D. (2017). Instructor presence in instructional video: Effects on visual attention, recall, and perceived learning. Computers in Human Behavior, 71, 79–89. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2017.01.049

    Article  Google Scholar 

  45. Wang, Y., Liu, Q., Chen, W., Wang, Q., & Stein, D. (2019). Effects of instructor’s facial expressions on students’ learning with video lectures. British Journal of Educational Technology, 50(3), 1381–1395. https://doi.org/10.1111/bjet.12633

    Article  Google Scholar 

  46. Wei, C. W., Chen, N. S., & Kinshuk. (2012). A model for social presence in online classrooms. Educational Technology Research and Development, 60(3), 529–545. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11423-012-9234-9

    Article  Google Scholar 

  47. Yang, C. C., Tsai, I. C., Kim, B., Cho, M. H., & Laffey, J. M. (2006). Exploring the relationships between students’ academic motivation and social ability in online learning environments. The Internet and Higher Education, 9(4), 277–286. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.iheduc.2006.08.002

    Article  Google Scholar 

  48. Yen, C. J., & Tu, C. H. (2008). Online social presence: A study of score validity of the computer-mediated communication questionnaire. Quarterly Review of Distance Education, 9(3), 297–310.

    Google Scholar 

  49. Zahran, S. A. (2008). Interactive television versus Traditional Lecture Teaching Methods among Saudi Arabian Undergraduate Students. Journal of High Institute of Public Health, 38(3), 493–508. https://doi.org/10.21608/jhiph.2008.20900

    Article  Google Scholar 

Download references

Acknowledgements

The author extends his appreciation to the Deputyship for Research & Innovation, “Ministry of   Education“ in Saudi Arabia for funding this research work through the project No.( IFKSURG-2020-146).

Author information

Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Khalid Alasfor.

Ethics declarations

Conflict of interest

The author confirms that there is no conflict of interest in this research.

Ethical approval

Participants were informed about the study objectives, procedures, and confidentiality of their data. Moreover, they were informed that their partipation is voluntary and has no effect on them or their grades.

Informed consent

All participants consent to participate in this study.

Additional information

Publisher's Note

Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Alasfor, K. Impact of showing a male instructor’s face on female students’ perceived social presence, satisfaction, and comprehension in distance education in a conservative, gender-segregated culture. Education Tech Research Dev 69, 1799–1810 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11423-021-10013-8

Download citation

Keywords

  • Instructor face
  • Teaching opposite gender
  • Videoconferencing
  • Social presence
  • Satisfaction
  • Comprehension