Students’ Evaluation of Google Hangouts Through A Cross-Cultural Group Discussion Activity


Michiko KOBAYASHI


ABSTRACT
The study investigated perceived ease of use and usefulness of Google Hangouts as an instructional/learning tool. Forty-two teacher education students at U.S and Japanese universities participated in an online cross-cultural activity using Google Hangouts and discussed cultural differences between the two countries and their teaching philosophies. After the activity, students responded to a survey to evaluate the ease of use and usefulness of Google Hangouts. Qualitative data were also collected through the survey to examine their overall learning experience. The results indicated that Google Hangouts is a useful instructional tool, but not easy to use. Although technical problems occurred during the conference, the activity provided valuable experiences for both U.S. and Japanese students. The study provides suggestions for how Google Hangouts can be integrated into online classrooms based on the findings.


KEYWORDS: Videoconference, computer mediated communication, online learning.


DOI : 10.17718/tojde.98784 
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