This paper describes some of the findings from a doctoral study of Chinese adult e-learners' learning experiences in two e-learning programmes conducted in China. Margaret Archer's critical realistic theory, which addresses the problem of structure and agency in sociology debates, informs the theoretical framework for this research in investigating the interaction between individual learners and their e-leaming environment combined with their wider social cultural context. Structural factors, such as cultural impacts, course design and delivery were examined through the lens of individual learners - how they exercise their agential power to respond to these structural forces and make their way around the e-world. Both quantitative and qualitative data were collected in two cases, with detailed accounts of learners' experiences obtained through interviews, digital audio diaries, informal discussions and reports. The findings suggest that cultural influences on learning deserve to be recognised when designing an e-learning course. At the same time, learners were evidently exercising high levels of reflexivity as the basis of their decision making in every aspect of their learning - their commitment to learn, the form of learning community, the usage of learning technologies, adapting to a new learning environment, etc. The findings are significant for course designers and implementers who intend to conduct e-learning programmes for Chinese learners in a Chinese context, and to enhance our understanding in structural and cultural influence on e-learning in general.