Technology Acceptance Model

Read article by Venkatesh and Davies (2000) on the extension of the Technology Acceptance Model.   Need to write a bit here more about :

What it is:  Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) is a model developed to test one of the ‘productivity paradoxes’ that have been identified in IT systems development – that of the low usage of installed systems.  The TAM  model attempts to identify ‘perceived usefulness and usage intentions’ in terms of social influence and cognitive processes.  The model adopts a quantitative approach  in order to measure what is predominately within the  qualitative arena of research.  The research state that the model has been adopted to take into further into account the social influence when it comes to perception but that there is still more room for improvement.

Critique of it in relation to assessing technological innovations especially within the NHS:  The researchers state that ‘Mandatory, compliance based approaches to introducing new systems appear to be less effective over time than the use of social influence to target positive changes in perceived usefulness.  Practical alternatives to usage mandates based on social information should be developed and tested’.   This, from a systems thinking point of view will fail as it does not take into account the relationships that exist between various social groupings at different times.  There will be different emergent factors depending on the interactions of those perceived groupings.   The researchers are correct in stating that ‘user acceptance of information technology in the workplace remains a complex, elusive, yet extremely important phenomenon’, which is why prescriptive models that are not dynamic and do not take into account the level of complexity prevalent in human social systems such as organisations will not capture the complete picture but only just one perspective.  Perhaps a complimentary model that takes in s more systemic approach needs to be developed to be used together with the TAM model.


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