LMOOC attrition rates have become a hot topic in research on open and online language education, which requires researchers to identify the psychological, technological, pedagogical, and technical factors leading to this phenomenon. To do so, the current study explored this problem by applying tri-phenomenon perspectives to explore what technical, pedagogical, and instructional support shapes language learners' L2 motivational self-system (L2MSS), and its mediation role in shaping their deep and surface language learning approaches to LMOOC. Consequently, 539 language learners who completed their online language course on the Iranian LMOOC platform answered the study survey before getting their course certificate. Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) results showed that LMOOCs' peer support and instructional support positively predicted language learners' deep approach while negatively predicting their surface approach. A significant correlation was not found between language learners' technical support and their deep or surface approaches to LMOOC. Furthermore, language learners who attend LMOOCs with intrinsic motivation to learn languages perceived greater effectiveness in shaping their deep approaches as a result of LMOOC instructional objectives than peer support. Peer support of LMOOCs enabled individuals who had an extrinsic motivation for learning English in LMOOC, such as receiving a course certificate, to pass such courses and shape a deeper approach to LMOOC. As a result, this study contributed a three-dimensional conceptual framework to the LMOOC literature by incorporating psychological, pedagogical, and technological factors, as well as language learners' approaches (LLA) to both CALL and LMOOC. It is imperative that the LMOOC designer clearly defines the lesson plans and objectives before enrolling language learners in an LMOOC. This ensures that students with intrinsic motivation can determine whether their objectives align with the course plan. Doing so prevents LMOOCs from witnessing high drop-out rates during the course. A further improvement to LMOOC's openness feature could allow students who find motivation from extrinsic factors to perceive more peer support, as well as feedback that could replace the absence of instructors' guidance and feedback in LMOOC.
The study applied a tri-phenomenon perspective to mitigate LMOOC's high attrition rate. Thus, 539 Iranian EFL learners answered the study instruments before getting the course certificate. The result of the Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) presented that language learners' peer support and instructional support shape their deep approach to LMOOC, While technical support could not be predicted to approach. Moreover, both types of intrinsic and extrinsic motivation mediated the correlation between learners' perceived support and approaches to MOOC. Indeed, those who had intrinsic motivation to enroll in LMOOC perceived more instructional support of LMOOC, while those with extrinsic motivation peer more peer support to shape their deep approach to MOOC. Hence, this study contributes a three-dimensional conceptual framework to the literature on LMOOC. In order to mitigate LMOOCs' high dropout rate, designers will need to increase LMOOCs' open access and features and provide more instructional objectives.
Amir Reza Rahimi, University of Valencia, Spain