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Doctor of Education




Namukasa, Immaculate


Digital technologies have been implemented in many educational contexts, becoming an integral part of curriculum design, teaching, and learning processes. This qualitative study investigated the lived experiences of adult Arab immigrants to Canada using Web 2.0/3.0 technologies for learning English. Using the new media literacies and the TIPEC frameworks, the study aimed to research the participants’ perceptions, affordances, constraints, and impacts of using Web 2.0/3.0 technologies before, during, and after learning English.

Phenomenography was the originally planned research method. However, a scoping review was conducted to complement the data collection process, mapped the literature, and utilized for triangulation (Santos et al., 2020). Fifteen adult Arab immigrants to Canada who were perusing higher education consented to participate in the phenomenographic study. Thirteen participants completed the online questionnaire sharing their individual experiences of Web 2.0/3.0 technologies. Two participants subsequently participated in the follow-up interview. The study sought to explore the underpinning conceptions influencing the participants’ experiences. Additionally, the research aimed to identify distinct and hierarchical categories that emerged from the collective analysis of the participants’ narrative questionnaire and interview responses.

The collected data was analyzed using NVivo 12 Pro software. The study’s findings shed light on the various types of Web 2.0/3.0 technologies used by the research population, including their experiences, purposes, temporal and spatial aspects, nature of use, and duration. The participants’ perceptions, impacts, affordances, and constraints constituted the unit of analysis. These concepts denoted the outcome space (Johansson, 1985). Five categories of description emerged from the collective analysis of data referred to as casual, experimental, knowledge, educational, and professional. There was no phenomenographic study found during the scoping review nor there was a scoping review conducted about the research subject.

The study’s implications of the findings and conclusion are significant for various educational stakeholders, ESL facilitators, curriculum developers, and policymakers. The study offers practical recommendations for enhancing ESL learning experiences using Web 2.0/3.0 technologies. The research study contributes to the knowledge of policy makers, researchers, ESL facilitators, instructors, and educators providing a comprehensive understanding of the researched population. The diverse perceptions of such population are significantly relevant in the Canadian context, as the country continues to attract adult Arab immigrants.

Summary for Lay Audience

In recent years, the use and integration of Web 2.0/3.0 technologies has transformed the landscape of English language learning, particularly among adult Arab immigrants settling in Canada. This phenomenon signifies a literacy shift in learning English and the use integration of technologies. Web 2.0/3.0 technologies play a crucial role in shaping the individuals’ English learning experiences of this specific population.

Web 2.0/3.0 technologies incorporate a range of interactive and collaborative tools, such as online language-learning platforms, social media, blogs, and podcasts. For adult Arab English language learners and immigrants in Canada, such technologies offer versatile opportunities to engage with the English language beyond traditional classroom settings. The phenomenon explores the fusion of language learning with contemporary digital communication, enabling learners to connect, practice, and immerse themselves in an English-rich digital environment.

The significance of this study is the flexibility Web 2.0/3.0 technologies provides to adult learners. these technologies also offer alternative resources that serve diverse learning preferences and proficiency levels. Adult Arab ESL immigrants have the autonomy to customize their learning experience through English language exchange platforms, interactive language apps, or online forums,. This adaptability is vital for individuals handling various daily responsibilities such as study, work, family, and community integration.

Furthermore, the phenomenon reflects the geo-political, socio-economic, marital status, education level, and religious and cultural dimensions that shape the English language learning experiences. Utilizing different digital platforms, adult Arab learners can participate in virtual communities, connect with native speakers, and engage in authentic conversations. This develops their linguistic skills and promotes cultural understanding and integration within the Canadian context.

However, challenges are accompanied by this phenomenon. Such challenges require a thorough investigation. Tailoring language-learning initiatives to address these challenges is essential for ensuring equitable opportunities for all adult Arab learning English. As technologies continue to advance and evolve, understanding and harnessing this phenomenon will be vital for English language facilitators, instructors, educators, policymakers, and researchers to improve the learning experiences of adult Arab immigrants and promote their successful integration into Canadian society.

Available for download on Wednesday, December 31, 2025