This paper investigated the adoption of Course and Learning Management Systems (C/LMS) by lecturers at the four residential universities of South Africa’s Western Cape province. To explain the differences in use patterns, a dedicated analysis framework, ActAD, grounded in activity theory was used. Lecturer interviews pointed to important differences in views – and consequent use patterns – of E-Learning and C/LMS. The key considerations were found to be differences in perceived usefulness, perceived ease of use, accessibility and functional expectations. This research not only shows how activity theory, and ActAD in particular, can be useful in understanding individual perspectives on and use of C/LMS, but also provides some useful comparative data to researchers in technology-based education.


course and learning management systems, LMS, activity theory, e-Learning, technology-based education, ActAD, information technology in higher education


ISBN: [978-1-86435-644-1]; Full paper