Journal Article

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The role of social presence and cognitive absorption in online student satisfaction
This article investigates the relationships between social presence, cognitive absorption, interest, and student satisfaction in online learning. A hypothesized structural equation model was developed to study these critical variables that may influence interaction in online learning environments. Contrary to expectations, the study determined that social presence does not impact satisfaction directly. However, the study concludes that while social presence is related to student satisfaction, its impact is not direct but rather mediated by cognitive absorption. In addition, the study clarified the impact of students’ interest on social presence, cognitive absorption, and satisfaction. The results of this study indicate that interest affects social presence and satisfaction directly. Additionally, interest appears to influence satisfaction indirectly through social presence and cognitive absorption. Contrary to expectations, this study did not reveal any significant relationship between interest and cognitive absorption.
cognitive absorption, interest, online student satisfaction, social presence
Distance Education
Publication Date
May 2011
Peter W K Leong
Publication Volume
32 (1)
Publication Pages